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What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 31


This is the thirty-first in a series of updates about formerly featured Debut Author Challenge authors and their 2015 works published since the last update and any upcoming works for 2016. The year in parentheses after the author's name is the year she/he was featured in the Debut Author Challenge.


Part 1 herePart 11 herePart 21 here
Part 2 herePart 12 herePart 22 here
Part 3 herePart 13 herePart 23 here
Part 4 herePart 14 herePart 24 here
Part 5 herePart 15 herePart 25 here
Part 6 herePart 16 herePart 26 here
Part 7 herePart 17 herePart 27 here
Part 8 herePart 18 herePart 28 here
Part 9 herePart 19 herePart 29 here
Part 10 herePart 20 herePart 30 here



Catherine Chanter (2015)

The Well
Washington Square Press, March 1, 2016
Trade Paperback, 400 pages
Hardcover and eBook, May 19, 2015

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 31
Set in a modern-day Britain where water is running out everywhere except at the farm of one seemingly ordinary family whose mysterious good fortune leads to a shocking act of violence, The Well is “extraordinary...a mesmerizing read…combining a gripping mystery, nuanced psychological drama, and striking prose” (Publishers Weekly, starred review).

When Ruth Ardingly and her family make that first long drive up from the city in their grime-encrusted car and view The Well, they are enchanted by a jewel of a farm that appears to offer everything they need: an opportunity for Ruth, an escape for her husband, and a home for their grandson. But when the drought begins, everything changes. Surrounded by thirty acres of lush greenery, the farm mysteriously thrives while the world outside crumbles under the longest dry spell in recorded history. No one, including the owners, understands why.

But The Well’s unique glory comes at a terrible price. From the envy of their neighbors to the mandates of the government, from the fanaticism of a religious order called the Sisters of the Rose to the everyday difficulties of staying close as husband and wife, grandmother and child—all these forces lead to a shocking crime. Accusations of witchcraft, wrongdoing, and murder envelop the family until their paradise becomes a prison.

A beautifully written debut novel that “channels Margaret Atwood and Gillian Flynn, creating a story that’s speculative and suspenseful” (Minneapolis Star Tribune), The Well is an utterly haunting meditation on the fragile nature of our relationships with each other and the places we call home.




Kristi Charish (2015)

Owl and the City of Angels
Owl 2
Pocket Star, October 5, 2015
    eBook, 304 pages
Gallery Books, March 1, 2016
    Trade Paperback, 432 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 31
The wild second adventure for unforgettable antiquities thief Owl—a modern-day “Indiana Jane” who reluctantly navigates the hidden supernatural world—from the pen of rising urban fantasy star Kristi Charish. For fans of Kim Harrison, Jim Butcher, Jennifer Estep, Jenn Bennett, and the like. The series also includes Owl and the Japanese Circus and Owl and the Electric Samurai.

Alix Hiboux, better known as Owl, international antiquities thief for hire, is settling into her new contract job for Vegas mogul Mr. Kurosawa, a red dragon with a penchant for ancient, supernatural artifacts. And now he has his sights set on some treasures of the mysterious Syrian City of the Dead that are sitting in a recluse’s private collection.

There’s just one wrinkle. To stop the resurrection of an undead army that could wreak havoc on Los Angeles, Owl must break into a heavily guarded archaeological sight [sic] in one of the most volatile regions in the world. A detour through Libya and a run-in with Somali pirates sends the clock ticking hastily toward total paranormal disaster.

Meanwhile, Alexander and the Paris vampires have stopped stalking Owl’s apartment, but they have by no means forgotten their death grudge against her. To top everything off, Owl finds out the hard way that there is nothing heavenly about the City of Angels...


Owl and the Electric Samurai
Pocket Star, July 18, 2016
Owl 3
eBook, 416 pages

[cover not yet available]
The third exciting novel starring the unforgettable antiquities thief Owl—a modern-day “Indiana Jane” who reluctantly navigates the hidden supernatural world. From the pen of rising urban fantasy star Kristi Charish (Owl and the Japanese Circus) and for fans of Kim Harrison, Jim Butcher, Jennifer Estep, Jenn Bennett, and fantasy lovers everywhere.

The International Archaeology Association (IAA) is responsible for keeping all things supernatural under wraps. They’re also responsible for ruining the promising archaeology career of Alix Hiboux, better known as Owl.

Needless to say, Owl’s still a little sore about that.

Just to keep Owl’s life lively, the IAA has opened a bounty on the two designers of World Quest, the online RPG that is much, much more than it seems. Owl needs to locate the notorious gaming duo before the other mercenaries do. But finding the gamers won’t be easy since every clue points to them hiding out in the legendary lost city of Shangri-La. Not to mention that the last time Owl and the game designers spoke, their conversation didn’t exactly end on the best note…

Meanwhile, undercurrents of supernatural politics are running amok in Tokyo, dragging Owl and her friends into a deadly game of wits with an opponent who calls himself the Electric Samurai. The cost of losing? All-out civil war between two powerful supernatural factions.

All in all, just another great day on the job.




Zen Cho (2015)

Sorcerer to the Crown
A Sorcerer Royal Novel 1
Ace, July 12, 2016
Trade Paperback, 384 pages
Hardcover and eBook, September 1, 2015

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 31
Magic and mayhem clash with the British elite in this whimsical and sparkling debut.

The Royal Society of Unnatural Philosophers maintains the magic within His Majesty’s lands. But lately, the once proper institute has fallen into disgrace, naming an altogether unsuitable gentleman as their Sorcerer Royal and allowing England’s stores of magic to bleed dry. At least they haven’t stooped so low as to allow women to practice what is obviously a man’s profession…

At his wit’s end, Zacharias Wythe, Sorcerer Royal of the Unnatural Philosophers, ventures to the border of Fairyland to discover why England’s magical stocks are drying up, an adventure that brings him in contact with Prunella Gentlewoman, a woman with immense power and an unfathomable gift, and sets him on a path which will alter the nature of sorcery in all of Britain—and the world at large…




Gerrard Cowan (2015)

The Strategist
The Machinery Trilogy 2
Harper Voyager (UK), May 5, 2016
eBook, 400 pages

[cover not yet available]
Ruin is coming.

The Strategist rules from the depths of See House, searching for the omnipotent Machinery that once chose the Overland’s rulers, to ensure it is broken beyond repair. Only then will the Prophecy be fulfilled. Only then will Ruin come for everyone.

But only the Dust Queen knows where the Machinery resides. She is the oldest creature in creation, and she bows to no one, especially not the Strategist. She has built an army of the dead, and she is heading north.

It was the Dust Queen who made the Prophecy, and she knows its true meaning. Before the Machinery is finally broken, the immortals will play their favourite game one last time. A game from darker days. A game in which mortals are nothing more than pawns.

And this time, the Dust Queen wants to play.




Seth Dickinson (2015)

Please Undo This Hurt
A Tor.com Origianl
Tor Books, September 16, 2015
eBook, 32 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 31
Ever feel like you care too much? After a breakup, after the funeral...it feels like the way to win at life is to care the least.

That's not an option for Dominga, an EMT who cares too much, or her drinking buddy Nico, who just lost his poor cat. Life hurts. They drink. They talk:

Nico's tired of hurting people. He wants out. Not suicide, not that - he'd just hurt everyone who loves him. But what if he could erase his whole life? Undo the fact of his birth? Wouldn't Dominga be having a better night, right now, if she didn't have to take care of him?

And when Dominga finds a way to do just that, when she is gifted or armed with a terrible cosmic mercy, she still cares enough to say:

I am not letting him have this. I am not letting Nico go without a fight.


Note: The Traitor Baru Cormorant will be published in Trade Paperback in November 2016.

Interview with Catherine Chanter, author of The Well - May 21, 2015


Please welcome Catherine Chanter to The Qwillery as part of the 2015 Debut Author Challenge Interviews.  The Well was published on May 19th by Atria Books.



Interview with Catherine Chanter, author of The Well - May 21, 2015




TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery. When and why did you start writing?

Catherine:  I started keeping a diary when I was very young and kept going until having three children meant I was so tired at night, I could never stay awake. Looking back at the teenage entries now, I can’t pretend they are of great literary merit, but I have always kept writing, mostly poetry and some short stories. As to why, who knows? I recently made contact with my birth mother for the first time, only to discover that she too is a poet, so maybe it is in the genes.



TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Catherine:  Pants, every time, although writing The Well made me wonder who was wearing the pants! Ruth, the narrator, was a very strong voice in my head from the beginning and at times she took the story in directions I had not consciously thought of.



TQ:  What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

Catherine:  Staying off the internet. I write on a laptop and have a terrible habit of flicking between sites whenever the going gets tough. For that reason, I now tend to choose places to write where I have no internet connection.



TQ:  Who are some of your literary influences? Favorite authors?

Catherine:  I think poets have probably had a stronger influence on me than writers of fiction. T S Eliot, Yeats, Heaney, Houseman and so many more. Having said that, novels such as Never Let Me Go by Ishiguro and Flight Behaviour by Barbara Kingsolver have been very interesting for me in the way they combine psychological realism with extra-ordinary situations. Penelope Lively’s Moon Tiger and John Banville’s The Untouchables were influential in terms of narrative structure.



TQ:  Describe The Well in 140 characters or less.

Catherine:  In a time of drought, a couple purchase their dream farm only to find that it rains, but only their land. What happens when you have what everyone else needs? And does that make Ruth a witch, a murderer or a saint?



TQ:  Tell us something about The Well that is not in the book description.

Catherine:  For me, every time a reader engages with the book, they make the story their own, so it is what readers say that fascinate me, for instance: ‘it is a book not about what happens if there is no rain, but what happens when you have all the rain, which is different.’ That is a great angle.



TQ:  What inspired you to write The Well? Into which genre classifications does The Well fit?

Catherine:  Two disparate thoughts came together; I often think that is how creativity works. The first came as a result of research I was doing for a series of poems. I was studying paintings through the ages which depicted The Annunciation and I wondered, what would it be like to be a ‘chosen one’ nowadays? The second question arose from spending time in an isolated cottage where the water came from a well. By UK standards it was a very dry summer and I began to ask what it would be like in a rain-soaked country like England, if it all started to dry up.

As for genre, I think this is a difficult question. There are elements of dystopic and apocalyptic fiction and in that the novel asks questions about faith and religion, there is, perhaps, a supernatural element. I suppose the all-embracing genre would be literary fiction/suspense, but I know that is a pretty big umbrella.



TQ:  What sort of research did you do for The Well?

Catherine:  I researched women who chose to become nuns, both now and historically, including the writings of the mediaeval mystics in Europe such as Hildegard of Bingen and Julian of Norwich. These early female writers exemplify the thin lines between religious devotion, sexual ecstasy and madness, grey areas which fascinate me: one century’s saint is another century’s psychotic in need of medication. I also explored the world of online worship.

Then of course, there was research in drought conditions for which I drew upon real examples such as California, but also Government papers modeling possible scenarios in the UK.



TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

Catherine:  Ruth, the protagonist was probably both the easiest and the hardest. I was able to write in her voice fluently and quickly, but she was unreliable in more ways than one! Writing Sister Amelia was great fun, in a dark sort of way, whereas I found real solace in the character of Hugh, the visiting priest.



TQ:  Which question about The Well do you wish someone would ask? Ask it and answer it!

Catherine:  I wish they’d ask more about the rural tradition in which I hope this novel sits. I think that the rural setting has recently been overlooked in favour of urban fiction. The arrival of the internet has meant that rural stories can have all the claustrophia, tension and beauty of Thomas Hardy’s novels, whilst being connected to the whole world beyond in one click on a keyboard.



TQ:  Give us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery lines from The Well.

Catherine:  One of them is when Ruth and Mark first go to view The Well, which is a breathtakingly idyllic smallholding.

“The track ahead of us was a dotted line awaiting our signature…..We signed up the moment we stepped out of the car, but we did not know what for.”



TQ:  What's next?

Catherine:  I have given up the day job – as Head of Education in an adolescent in-patient psychiatric ward – but find myself missing it, so I am slowly finding ways of continuing my work with children whilst making the most of having more time to write. The next novel is finished, in as much as a I’ve got to the end, but if I’ve learned anything from writing The Well, it’s that this is where the real work starts.



TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.





The Well
Atria Books, May 19, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages

Interview with Catherine Chanter, author of The Well - May 21, 2015
From the winner of the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize, a brilliantly haunting and suspenseful debut set in modern-day Britain where water is running out everywhere except at The Well—the farm of one seemingly ordinary family whose mysterious good fortune leads to suspicion, chaos, and ultimately a shocking act of violence.

Ruth Ardingly has just been released from prison to serve out a sentence of house arrest for arson and suspected murder at her farm, The Well. Beyond its borders, some people whisper she is a witch; others a messiah. For as soon as Ruth returns to The Well, rain begins to fall on the farm. And it has not rained anywhere else in the country in over three years.

Ruth and her husband Mark had moved years before from London to this ancient idyll in the hopes of starting their lives over. But then the drought began, and as the surrounding land dried up and died, and The Well grew lush and full of life, they came to see their fortune would come at a price. From the envy of their neighbors to the mandates of the government, from the fanaticism of a religious order called the Sisters of the Rose to the everyday difficulties of staying close as husband and wife, mother and child—all these forces led to a horrifying crime: the death of their seven-year-old grandson, drowned with cruel irony in one of the few ponds left in the countryside.

Now back at The Well, Ruth must piece together the tragedy that shattered her marriage, her family, and her dream. For she believes her grandson’s death was no accident, and that the murderer is among the people she trusted most. Alone except for her guards on a tiny green jewel in a world rapidly turning to dust, Ruth begins to confront her worst fears and learns what really happened in the dark heart of The Well.

A tour de force about ordinary people caught in the tide of an extraordinary situation, Catherine Chanter’s The Well is a haunting, beautifully written, and utterly believable novel that probes the fragility of our personal relationships and the mystical connection between people and the places they call home.


Read Deb's review of The Well here.





About Catherine

Interview with Catherine Chanter, author of The Well - May 21, 2015
© Gaby Gerster/laif/Redux
Catherine Chanter is a teacher, poet, and short story writer. She is the winner of the Yeovil Poetry Prize and the Lucy Cavendish Prize awarded by Cambridge University. She grew up in the West Country before attending Oxford. The Well is her first novel.



Website  ~  Twitter @ChanterLloyd

Review: The Well by Catherine Chanter


The Well
AuthorCatherine Chanter
Publisher:  Atria Books, May 19, 2015
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages
List Price:  $25.00 (print)
ISBN:  9781476772769 (print)
Review Copy:  Provided by the Publisher

Review: The Well by Catherine Chanter
From the winner of the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize, a brilliantly haunting and suspenseful debut set in modern-day Britain where water is running out everywhere except at The Well—the farm of one seemingly ordinary family whose mysterious good fortune leads to suspicion, chaos, and ultimately a shocking act of violence.

Ruth Ardingly has just been released from prison to serve out a sentence of house arrest for arson and suspected murder at her farm, The Well. Beyond its borders, some people whisper she is a witch; others a messiah. For as soon as Ruth returns to The Well, rain begins to fall on the farm. And it has not rained anywhere else in the country in over three years.

Ruth and her husband Mark had moved years before from London to this ancient idyll in the hopes of starting their lives over. But then the drought began, and as the surrounding land dried up and died, and The Well grew lush and full of life, they came to see their fortune would come at a price. From the envy of their neighbors to the mandates of the government, from the fanaticism of a religious order called the Sisters of the Rose to the everyday difficulties of staying close as husband and wife, mother and child—all these forces led to a horrifying crime: the death of their seven-year-old grandson, drowned with cruel irony in one of the few ponds left in the countryside.

Now back at The Well, Ruth must piece together the tragedy that shattered her marriage, her family, and her dream. For she believes her grandson’s death was no accident, and that the murderer is among the people she trusted most. Alone except for her guards on a tiny green jewel in a world rapidly turning to dust, Ruth begins to confront her worst fears and learns what really happened in the dark heart of The Well.

A tour de force about ordinary people caught in the tide of an extraordinary situation, Catherine Chanter’s The Well is a haunting, beautifully written, and utterly believable novel that probes the fragility of our personal relationships and the mystical connection between people and the places they call home.



Deb's Review

Water impacts all of us on the most basic level. It sustains all life. It's used in manufacturing, transportation, and in the production of electricity among so many other things. If it stopped raining tomorrow and the reservoirs ran dry, how would it impact you? Life without water is scarcely life at all. Now imagine that you are the only one in the country with access to water. You and your property will thrive while all around you withers and dies. Welcome to The Well, where you will be envied and feared, hated and worshipped.

In Catherine Chanter's debut novel, The Well, Ruth Ardingly and her husband Mark leave London to escape a scandal that he cannot seem to shake. At the beginning of a dry spell, they purchase the titular farm in the English countryside for its remote location and postcard charm. They make new friends, entertain her daughter Angie and grandson Lucien, and make a go of Mark's dream of self-sufficient living. All is right in their lush corner of the world until the dry spell turns into a deadly drought, and the only place where rain continues to fall is at The Well. The Ardinglys' inexplicable good fortune attracts the attention of their envious neighbors, the press, a suspicious government, and an order of nuns, The Sisters of the Rose, who have a particular interest in the property, and in Ruth. With this powder keg of conflicting interests, something is bound to go wrong.

The story opens after everything has come crashing down, and Ruth is being transported from prison back to The Well. She is being placed under house arrest for arson and her involvement in an unspecified death. Allowed only the company of the three soldiers guarding her and an occasional visit from a local priest, she is truly isolated from the world. She passes her empty hours piecing together the events leading up to her arrest, hoping to solve the murder and finally find some semblance of peace.

It's difficult to tell if Ruth is an unreliable narrator and, by extension, the motives of those around her. She and Mark have weathered many hardships in their marriage and have stood together throughout, but after the London scandal can he really be trusted? Angie, a recovering addict, is frequently at odds with her mother and lives an unconventional life with a traveling group of friends who are also in recovery. Is she an appropriate influence on young Lucien, and should Ruth take a stand against this vagabond existence for her only grandchild? And while the Sisters of the Rose offer Ruth a sense of purpose and belonging, what do they really want?

Although The Well is a murder mystery, to simply categorize it that way is to do it an injustice. It is not an action packed story, but a beautifully written time-lapse view of the Ardinglys' days at The Well. Chanter has a lovely, ethereal style that suits the story, but might not be everyone's cup of tea. I would still recommend this book to anyone with a love of character-driven fiction. Ruth is authentically flawed and fascinating: all at once nurturing and uncertain, bright and naive, needy and headstrong, sympathetic and selfish. The hidden pieces of the story revealed in the last handful of chapters, and the consequences accepted by those still standing, left me unexpectedly teary-eyed.

I also want to make mention of the website, The Ardingly Well. Intended to be Ruth's blog to keep their London friends apprised of the goings-on at The Well, it is a nice companion piece to the book, but I was disappointed to find so few entries. I believe the site was only maintained until the UK release of the book in March.

The Well is the sort of book that can prompt a sort of empathetic self-examination of personal connections and priorities. Ruth's story will, I believe, stay with me for quite some time. This is truly an exceptional debut.

2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts


2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts

Each month you will be able to vote for your favorite cover from that month's debut novels. At the end of the year the 12 monthly winners will be pitted against each other to choose the 2015 Debut Novel Cover of the Year. Please note that a debut novel cover is eligible in the month in which the novel is released in the US. Cover artist/illustrator information is provided when we have it.

I'm using PollCode for this vote. After you the check the circle next to your favorite, click "Vote" to record your vote. If you'd like to see the real-time results click "View". This will take you to the PollCode site where you may see the results. If you want to come back to The Qwillery click "Back" and you will return to this page. Voting will end sometime on May 27, 2015.

Vote for your favorite May 2015 Debut Cover!
 
pollcode.com free polls



2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts




2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May Debuts

The View From Monday - May 18, 2015


Happy Monday! There are 5 debuts this week:

The Well by Catherine Chanter;

The Choosing (Seer 1) by Rachelle Dekker;

Disclaimer by Renée Knight;

The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan;

and

When the Heavens Fall (The Chronicles of the Exile 1) by Marc Turner.



And from formerly featured Debut Author Challenge authors:

Two Tales of the Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne;

Radiant State (The Wolfhound Century 3) by Peter Higgins;

Talking Dirty (Pax Arcana) by Elliott James;

and

Eighth Grave After Dark (Charley Davidson 8) by Darynda Jones.



The View From Monday - May 18, 2015



May 18, 2015
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Phantom Quartz (Ke) Barbra Annino PM - Stacy Justice Witch Mystery 6
Krewe of Hunters Series Volume 3: The Night Is Watching\The Night Is Alive\The Night Is Forever (e) Heather Graham PNR - Krewe of Hunters
Two Tales of the Iron Druid Chronicles (Ke) Kevin Hearne UF - Iron Druid



May 19, 2015
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Hothouse (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
Enemies of the System (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
An Island Called Moreau (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
Report on Probability A (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
Dracula Unbound (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
The Malacia Tapestry (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
The Saliva Tree and Other Strange Growths (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF - Collection
Super-State: A Novel of a Future Europe (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
White Mars; or, The Mind Set Free: A 21st-Century Utopia (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss
Roger Penrose
SF
Frankenstein Unbound (e)(ri) Brian W. Aldiss SF
Unbearable Desire (e) Vivi Andrews PNR - Lone Pine Pride 4
The Scarlet Gospels Clive Barker H
Sly Mongoose (ri) Tobias S. Buckell SF/SO
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers GN/SF
The Well (D) Catherine Chanter Sus/Ap
Against a Darkening Sky Lauren B. Davis HistF
The Choosing (D) Rachelle Dekker Dys/PA - Seer 1
The Hanged Man P. N. Elrod SP/M - On Her Majesty's Psychic Service 1
Radiant State Peter Higgins F - The Wolfhound Century 3
Talking Dirty (e) Elliott James CF - Pax Arcana
Eighth Grave After Dark Darynda Jones PM - Charley Davidson 8
Witches Be Burned (e) Stacey Kennedy PNR - Magic & Mayhem 1
Disclaimer (D) Renée Knight PsyTh
Devil in the Wires (e) Tim Lees CF - Field Ops 2
The Gracekeepers (D) Kirsty Logan LF/Myth/FL
Odin: The Viking Allfather Steven Long F - Myths and Legends 14
Revive Tracey Martin PNR - RedZone 1
Uprooted Naomi Novik F
The Coldest Sea (e) Marian Perera PNR - Eden 5
Dead Shift Richard Phillips SF - The Rho Agenda Inception 3
Hannu Rajaniemi: Collected Fiction Hannu Rajaniemi SF/Ap/PA - Collection
The Geeky Chef Cookbook: Real-Life Recipes for Your Favorite Fantasy Foods - Unofficial Recipes from Doctor Who, Games of Thrones, Harry Potter, and more Cassandra Reeder F - Cookbook
Protective Instinct (e) Katie Reus PNR - Moon Shifter 5.5
Crossfades: A Dystopian Novella (e) William Todd Rose Dys/H
Snatched David Saperstein SF/Ad
Sword of Destiny (e) Andrzej Sapkowski F - Tales of the Witcher Collection
Behind the Eyes of Dreamers: and Other Short Novels (e)(ri) Pamela Sargent SF - Collection
Eye of Flame: Fantasies (e)(ri) Pamela Sargent SF - Collection
The Golden Space (e)(ri) Pamela Sargent SF
The Mountain Cage: and Other Stories (e)(ri) Pamela Sargent SF - Collection
Ever Night (e) Gena Showalter PNR - Novella
Wings of Flame (e)(ri) Nancy Springer F
The Hex Witch of Seldom (e)(ri) Nancy Springer F
Apocalypse (e)(ri) Nancy Springer F
Chains of Gold (e)(ri) Nancy Springer F
Chance: and Other Gestures of the Hand of Fate (e)(ri) Nancy Springer F - Collection
Fair Peril (e)(ri) Nancy Springer F
Plumage (e)(ri) Nancy Springer F
Oceanspace (e)(ri) Allen Steele SF
Clarke County, Space (e)(ri) Allen Steele SF - Near-Space 2
Lunar Descent (e)(ri) Allen Steele SF - Near-Space 3
Time Loves a Hero (e)(ri) Allen Steele SF
Seveneves Neal Stephenson SF/Ap/PA
If You Could See Me Now Peter Straub H
When the Heavens Fall (D) Marc Turner F - The Chronicles of the Exile 1
My Real Children (h2tp) Jo Walton SF
The Shadow of Elysium (e) Django Wexler F - Shadow Campaigns Novella
Use Once, Then Destroy: Stories Conrad Williams H - Collection
In the Distance, and Ahead in Time (e)(ri) George Zebrowski SF - Collection



May 20, 2015
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Metropolis (ri) Thea von Harbou SF
Ginga: A Tor.Com Original (e) Daniel José Older UF - Bone Street Rumba



D - Debut
e - eBook
ed - Editor
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
Ke - Kindle eBook only
ri - reissue or reprint


Ap - Apocalyptic
CF - Contemporary Fantasy
Dys - Dystopian
F - Fantasy
FL - Folk Lore
GN - Graphic Novel
H - Horror
HistF - Historical Fantasy
LF - Literary Fiction
PA - Post Apocalyptic
PM - Paranormal Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
PsyTh - Psychological Thriller
SF - Science Fiction
SO - Space Opera
SP - Steampunk
UF - Urban Fantasy

May 2015 Debuts


May 2015 Debuts


There are 16 debuts for May. Please note that we use the publisher's publication date in the United States, not copyright dates or non-US publication dates.

The May debut authors and their novels are listed in alphabetical order by author (not book title or publication date). Take a good look at the covers. Voting for your favorite May cover for the 2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will take place starting on May 15th.

If you are participating as a reader in the Challenge, please let us know in the comments what you are thinking of reading or email us at "DAC . TheQwillery  @  gmail . com" (remove the spaces and quotation marks). Please note that we list all debuts for the month (of which we are aware), but not all of these authors will be 2015 Debut Author Challenge featured authors. However, any of these novels may be read by Challenge readers to meet the goal for May. The list is correct as of the day posted.




Catherine Chanter

The Well
Atria Books, May 19, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages

May 2015 Debuts
From the winner of the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize, a brilliantly haunting and suspenseful debut set in modern-day Britain where water is running out everywhere except at The Well—the farm of one seemingly ordinary family whose mysterious good fortune leads to suspicion, chaos, and ultimately a shocking act of violence.

Ruth Ardingly has just been released from prison to serve out a sentence of house arrest for arson and suspected murder at her farm, The Well. Beyond its borders, some people whisper she is a witch; others a messiah. For as soon as Ruth returns to The Well, rain begins to fall on the farm. And it has not rained anywhere else in the country in over three years.

Ruth and her husband Mark had moved years before from London to this ancient idyll in the hopes of starting their lives over. But then the drought began, and as the surrounding land dried up and died, and The Well grew lush and full of life, they came to see their fortune would come at a price. From the envy of their neighbors to the mandates of the government, from the fanaticism of a religious order called the Sisters of the Rose to the everyday difficulties of staying close as husband and wife, mother and child—all these forces led to a horrifying crime: the death of their seven-year-old grandson, drowned with cruel irony in one of the few ponds left in the countryside.

Now back at The Well, Ruth must piece together the tragedy that shattered her marriage, her family, and her dream. For she believes her grandson’s death was no accident, and that the murderer is among the people she trusted most. Alone except for her guards on a tiny green jewel in a world rapidly turning to dust, Ruth begins to confront her worst fears and learns what really happened in the dark heart of The Well.

A tour de force about ordinary people caught in the tide of an extraordinary situation, Catherine Chanter’s The Well is a haunting, beautifully written, and utterly believable novel that probes the fragility of our personal relationships and the mystical connection between people and the places they call home.




Rachelle Dekker

The Choosing
Seer 1
Tyndale House, May 19, 2015
Trade Paperback, 448 pages

May 2015 Debuts
Like all citizens since the Ruining, Carrington Hale knows the importance of this day. But she never expected the moment she’d spent a lifetime preparing for—her Choosing ceremony—to end in disaster. Ripped from her family, she’ll spend her days serving as a Lint, the lowest level of society. She knows it’s her duty to follow the true way of the Authority.

But as Carrington begins this nightmare, rumors of rebellion rattle her beliefs. Though the whispers contradict everything she’s been told, they resonate deep within.

Then Carrington is offered an unprecedented chance at the life she’s always dreamed of, yet she can’t shake the feeling that it may be an illusion. With a killer targeting Lints and corruption threatening the highest levels of the Authority, Carrington must uncover the truth before it destroys her.




Bridget Foley

Hugo & Rose
St. Martin's Press, May 5, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages

May 2015 Debuts
Rose is disappointed with her life, though she has no reason to be - she has a beautiful family and a perfectly nice house in the suburbs. But to Rose, this ordinary life feels overshadowed by her other life - the one she leads every night in her dreams.

After a childhood accident, Rose's dreams take her to a wondrous island fraught with adventure. On this island, she has never been alone: she shares it with Hugo, a brave boy who's grown up with her into a hero of a man.

But when Rose stumbles across Hugo in real life, both her real and dream worlds are changed forever. Here is the man who has shared all of her incredible adventures in impossible places, who grew up with her, even if they aren't what either one imagined. Their chance encounter begins a cascade of questions, lies, and a dangerous obsession that threatens to topple everything she knows. Is she willing to let go of everything she holds dear to understand their extraordinary connection? And will it lead her to discover who she truly wants to be?




Nathan Garrison

Veiled Empire
Harper Voyager Impulse, May 26, 2015
eBook

May 2015 Debuts
The Empire is Shrouded, not only by the barrier that covers the land, but by the lies and oppression of the mierothi regime. Magic is the privilege of the elite, and the people of this shadowed country have forgotten what it means to hope under their rule.

But there are some who would resist, with plans put into motion millennia before. For returned to the Empire is a valynkar, servant of the god of light, and with him come the strength and cunning that could tip the scales to end the Emperor's reign. He has gathered a group of heroes ready to ignite the flame of rebellion and fight against the dark power that has ruled for nearly two thousand years. A power that has champions of its own.

Nathan Garrison's Veiled Empire throws a mythical land into chaos, with races long thought forgotten, and magics only just discovered. Steel and sorcery clash as brave souls vie for freedom and control in this astonishing debut novel.




Sophie Jaff

Love is Red
The Night Song Trilogy 1
Harper, May 12, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 384 pages

May 2015 Debuts
Redefining the thriller's tale of the hunter and the hunted, This electrifying, hypnotically beautiful debut spins dark suspense and literary fantasy into a mesmerizing story of survival.

Katherine Emerson was born to fulfill a dark prophecy centuries in the making, but she doesn't know it yet. However, one man does: a killer stalking the women of New York City, a monster the media dubs the "Sickle Man" because of the weapon he uses to turn his victims' bodies into canvases for his twisted art. People think he's the next Son of Sam, but we know how he thinks and how he feels . . . and discover that he is driven by darker, much more dangerous desires than we can bear to imagine. He takes more than just his victims' lives, and each death brings him closer to the one woman he must possess at any cost.

Amid the city's escalating hysteria, Katherine is trying to unknot her tangled heart. Two very different men have entered her previously uneventful world—handsome and personable David, alluring yet aloof Sael—and turned it upside down. She finds herself involved in a complicated triangle . . . but how well does she really know either of them?

Told from the alternating viewpoints of Katherine and the Sickle Man, Sophie Jaff's intoxicating narrative will pull you in and hold you close. As the body count rises, Katherine is haunted by harrowing visions that force her to question her sanity. All she wants is to find love. He just wants to find her.

Ablaze with fear, mystery, and possibility, Love Is Red is the first book in the Night Song trilogy. With this unforgettable novel—one that combines the literary and the supernatural, fantasy and horror, the past and the present—Katherine's moment of awakening is here. And her story is only just beginning.




Brooke Johnson

The Brass Giant
A Chroniker City Story
Harper Voyager Impulse, May 5, 2015
eBook

May 2015 Debuts
Sometimes, even the most unlikely person can change the world

Seventeen-year-old Petra Wade, self-taught clockwork engineer, wants nothing more than to become a certified member of the Guild, an impossible dream for a lowly shop girl. Still, she refuses to give up and tinkers with any machine she can get her hands on, in between working and babysitting her foster siblings.

When Emmerich Goss—handsome, privileged, and newly recruited into the Guild—needs help designing a new clockwork system for a top-secret automaton, it seems Petra has finally found the opportunity she's been waiting for. But if her involvement on the project is discovered, Emmerich will be marked for treason, and a far more dire fate will await Petra.

Working together in secret, they build the clockwork giant, but as the deadline for its completion nears, Petra discovers a sinister conspiracy from within the Guild council…and their automaton is just the beginning.




Aer-ki Jyr

Apex
Harper Voyager Impulse, May 12, 2015
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 448 pages

May 2015 Debuts
A new dawn is coming.

It's been eons since Humans controlled the universe, after their defeat by a mysterious enemy. With their downfall came a virtual dark age in which culture and technology stagnated. But now trade is once again flourishing as Human artifacts resurface throughout the galaxy, resurrecting long-forgotten advancements.

And one such discovery may very well alter the course of the future forever.

An epic space adventure, Aer-ki Jyr's Apex is a breathless race to the ultimate prize, with the very fate of the stars hanging in the balance.




Renée Knight

Disclaimer
Harper, May 19, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages

May 2015 Debuts
A brilliantly conceived, deeply unsettling psychological thriller— already an international sensation—about a woman haunted by secrets, the consuming desire for revenge, and the terrible price we pay when we try to hide the truth.

Finding a mysterious novel at her bedside plunges documentary filmmaker Catherine Ravenscroft into a living nightmare. Though ostensibly fiction, The Perfect Stranger recreates in vivid, unmistakable detail the terrible day she became hostage to a dark secret, a secret that only one other person knew—and that person is dead.

Now that the past is catching up with her, Catherine’s world is falling apart. Her only hope is to confront what really happened on that awful day . . . even if the shocking truth might destroy her.




Jason LaPier

Unexpected Rain
Harper Voyager (UK), May 7, 2015
eBook, 400 pages

May 2015 Debuts
In a domed city on a planet orbiting Barnard's Star, a recently hired maintenance man named Kane has just committed murder.

Minutes later, the airlocks on the neighbourhood block are opened and the murderer is asphyxiated along with thirty-one innocent residents.

Jax, the lowly dome operator on duty at the time, is accused of mass homicide and faced with a mound of impossible evidence against him.

His only ally is Runstom, the rogue police officer charged with transporting him to a secure off-world facility. The pair must risk everything to prove Jax didn’t commit the atrocity and uncover the truth before they both wind up dead.




Kirsty Logan

The Gracekeepers
Crown, May 19, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 320 pages

May 2015 Debuts
For readers of The Night Circus and Station Eleven, a lyrical and absorbing debut set in a world covered by water

As a Gracekeeper, Callanish administers shoreside burials, laying the dead to their final resting place deep in the depths of the ocean. Alone on her island, she has exiled herself to a life of tending watery graves as penance for a long-ago mistake that still haunts her. Meanwhile, North works as a circus performer with the Excalibur, a floating troupe of acrobats, clowns, dancers, and trainers who sail from one archipelago to the next, entertaining in exchange for sustenance.

In a world divided between those inhabiting the mainland ("landlockers") and those who float on the sea ("damplings"), loneliness has become a way of life for North and Callanish, until a sudden storm offshore brings change to both their lives--offering them a new understanding of the world they live in and the consequences of the past, while restoring hope in an unexpected future.

Inspired in part by Scottish myths and fairytales, The Gracekeepers tells a modern story of an irreparably changed world: one that harbors the same isolation and sadness, but also joys and marvels of our own age.




K.M. McKinley

The Iron Ship
The Gates of the World 1
Solaris, May 26, 2015
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 672 pages

May 2015 Debuts
An incredible epic fantasy begins!

The order of the world is in turmoil. An age of industry is beginning, an age of machines fuelled by magic. Sprawling cities rise, strange devices stalk the land. New money brings new power. The balance between the Hundred Kingdoms is upset. For the first time in generations the threat of war looms.

In these turbulent days, fortunes can be won. Magic runs strong in the Kressind family. Six siblings strive – one to triumph in a world of men, one to survive murderous intrigue, one to master forbidden sorcery, one to wash away his sins, one to contain the terrible energies of his soul.

And one will do the impossible, by marrying the might of magic and iron in the heart of a great ship, to cross an ocean that cannot be crossed.




Susan Murray

The Waterborne Blade
Waterborne 1
Angry Robot Books, May 5, 2015
       (North America Print and eBook)
Mass Market Paperback and eBook,
Cover: Paul Young at Artist Partners

May 2015 Debuts
The citadel has long been the stronghold of Highkell. All that is about to change because the traitor, Vasic, is marching on the capital. Against her better judgement, Queen Alwenna allows herself to be spirited away by one of the Crown’s most trusted servants, safe from the clutches of the throne’s would-be usurper.

Fleeing across country, she quickly comes to learn that her pampered existence has ill-equipped her for survival away from the comforts of the court. Alwenna must toughen up, and fast, if she is even to make it to a place of safety. But she has an even loftier aim – for after dreaming of her husband’s impending death, Alwenna knows she must turn around and head back to Highkell to save the land she loves, and the husband who adores her, or die in the attempt.

But Vasic the traitor is waiting. And this was all just as he planned.

File Under: Fantasy




Andrea Phillips

Revision
Fireside Fiction Company, May 5, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 230 pages

May 2015 Debuts
Mira is a trust fund baby playing at making it on her own as a Brooklyn barista. When Benji, her tech startup boyfriend, dumps her out of the blue, she decides a little revenge vandalism is in order. Mira updates his entry on Verity, Benji’s Wikipedia-style news aggregator, to say the two have become engaged. Hours later, he shows up at her place with an engagement ring. Chalk it up to coincidence, right?

Soon after, Benji’s long-vanished co-founder Chandra shows up asking for Mira’s help. She claims Verity can nudge unlikely events into really happening — even change someone’s mind. And Chandra insists that Verity — and Mira’s newly minted fiance — can’t be trusted.

Amazon print edition, Barnes and Noble ebook, and iTunes ebook will be available May 5th




Marguerite Reed

Archangel
Archangel 1Arche Press, May 12, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 298 pages

May 2015 Debuts
Earth is dying, and we have begun the search for a new home. Our hopes are pinned on Ubastis, an untamed paradise at the edge of colonized space. But such an influx of people threatens the planet’s unstudied ecosystem–before these settlers arrive, a tenuous research colony must complete its essential and desperate analysis, lest humanity abandon one planet only to die on another.

The Ubasti colonists barely get by on their own. To acquire the tools and supplies they truly need, the colonists are relegated to selling whatever they can to outside investors. For xenobiologist Vashti Loren, this means bringing Offworlders on safari to hunt the specimens she and her fellow biologists so desperately need to study.

Haunted by the violent death of her husband, the heroic and celebrated Lasse Undset, Vashti must balance the needs of Ubastis against the swelling crush of would-be settlers. As she negotiates her grief, Vashti struggles in her role as one of the few colonists licensed to carry deadly weapons, just as she struggles with her history of using them. And when she discovers a genetically engineered soldier smuggled onto the surface, Vashti must face the nightmare of her husband’s murder all over again. Vashti must protect herself, her daughter, and all of Ubastis as she is forced to draw alliances with old enemies, re-evaluate old friends, and take planet-wide action against those who threaten her world. Vashti stands at the threshold of humanity’s greatest hope, and she alone understands the darkness of guarding paradise.




Marc Turner

When the Heavens Fall
The Chronicles of the Exile 1
Tor Books, May 19, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 544 pages

May 2015 Debuts
If you pick a fight with Shroud, Lord of the Dead, you had better ensure your victory, else death will mark only the beginning of your suffering.

A book giving its wielder power over the dead has been stolen from a fellowship of mages that has kept the powerful relic dormant for centuries. The thief, a crafty, power-hungry necromancer, intends to use the Book of Lost Souls to resurrect an ancient race and challenge Shroud for dominion of the underworld. Shroud counters by sending his most formidable servants to seize the artifact at all cost.

However, the god is not the only one interested in the Book, and a host of other forces converge, drawn by the powerful magic that has been unleashed. Among them is a reluctant Guardian who is commissioned by the Emperor to find the stolen Book, a troubled prince who battles enemies both personal and political, and a young girl of great power, whose past uniquely prepares her for an encounter with Shroud. The greatest threat to each of their quests lies not in the horror of an undead army but in the risk of betrayal from those closest to them. Each of their decisions comes at a personal cost and will not only affect them, but also determine the fate of their entire empire.

The first of an epic swords & sorcery fantasy series, Marc Turner's When the Heavens Fall features gritty characters, deadly magic, and meddlesome gods.




Eli K. P. William

Cash Crash Jubilee
Jubilee Cycle 1
Talos Press, May 5, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 392 pages

May 2015 Debuts
A cyber-dystopian world unlike any other

In a near future Tokyo, every action from blinking to sexual intercourse is intellectual property owned by corporations that charge licensing fees. A BodyBank computer system implanted in each citizen records their movements from moment to moment, and connects them to the audio-visual overlay of the ImmaNet, so that every inch of the metropolis crawls with information and shifting cinematic promotainment.

Amon Kenzaki works as a Liquidator for the Global Action Transaction Authority. His job is to capture bankrupt citizens, remove their BodyBank, and banish them to BankDeath Camps where they are forever cut off from the action-transaction economy. Amon always plays by the rules and is steadily climbing the Liquidation Ministry ladder.

With his savings accumulating and another promotion just around the corner, everything seems to be going well, until he is asked to cash crash a charismatic politician and model citizen, and soon after is charged for an incredibly expensive action called "jubilee" that he is sure he never performed. To restore balance to his account, Amon must unravel the secret of jubilee, but quickly finds himself asking dangerous questions about the system to which he's devoted his life, and the costly investigation only drags him closer and closer to the pit of bankruptcy.

In book one of the Jubilee Cycle, Cash Crash Jubilee, debut novelist Eli K. P. William wields the incisive power of speculative fiction to show how, in a world of corporate finance run amok, one man will do everything for the sake of truth and justice.

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 31Interview with Catherine Chanter, author of The Well - May 21, 2015Review: The Well by Catherine Chanter2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - May DebutsThe View From Monday - May 18, 2015May 2015 Debuts

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