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The View From Monday - February 3, 2020


Happy 1st Monday in February. This month is chock full of debuts - 18 in total with 7 debuts this week!

The 7 debuts are:

Gravity's Heir by Sara Bond;

The Regrets by Amy Bonnaffons;

Witness X by S E Moorhead;

The Last Day by Andrew Hunter Murray;

The Town by Shaun Prescott;

The Baudelaire Fractal by Lisa Robertson;

and

Mazes of Power by Juliette Wade.

The View From Monday - February 3, 2020The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
The View From Monday - February 3, 2020The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
The View From Monday - February 3, 2020The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.



From formerly featured DAC Authors:

The Initiate by James L. Cambias;

Upright Women Wanted by Sarah Gailey;

A Blight of Blackwings (Seven Kennings 2) by Kevin Hearne;

Things in Jars by Jess Kidd;

The Puzzler's War (Tarakan Chronicles 2) by Eyal Kless;

Paris Adrift by E.J. Swift is reissued with a new cover;

and

The Firmament of Flame (The Universe After 3) by Drew Williams.

The View From Monday - February 3, 2020 The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
The View From Monday - February 3, 2020 The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
The View From Monday - February 3, 2020 The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
The View From Monday - February 3, 2020
Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.



The View From Monday - February 3, 2020



Debut novels are highlighted in blue. Novels, etc. by formerly featured DAC Authors are

February 4, 2020
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Out of the Attic V.C. Andrews Sagas - Dollanganger 10
Thieves' World Collection Volume One: Thieves' World, Tales from the Vulgar Unicorn, and Shadows of Sanctuary (e) Robert Lynn Aspirin (Ed)
Lynn Abbey (Ed)
F - Thieves' World®
Thieves' World© Collection Volume Two: Storm Season, The Face of Chaos, and Wings of Omen (e) Robert Lynn Aspirin (Ed)
Lynn Abbey (Editor)
F - Thieves' World®
Thieves' World (e) Joe Haldeman
John Brunner
F - Thieves' World® 1
Tales from the Vulgar Unicorn (e) Robert Lynn Aspirin (Ed)
Lynn Abbey (Ed)
F - Thieves' World® 2
Shadows of Sanctuary (e) Robert Lynn Aspirin (Ed)
Lynn Abbey (Ed)
F - Thieves' World® 3
Storm Season (e) Robert Lynn Aspirin (Ed)
Lynn Abbey (Ed)
F - Thieves' World® 4
The Face of Chaos (e) Robert Lynn Aspirin (Ed)
Lynn Abbey (Ed)
F - Thieves' World® 5
Wings of Omen (e) Robert Lynn Aspirin (Ed)
Lynn Abbey (Ed)
F - Thieves' World® 6
The Scent Keeper (h2tp) Erica Bauermeister CW
The Regrets (D) Amy Bonnaffons LF
Straight Outta Dodge City David Boop (Ed) F/WW/H - Anthology
Cry of the Raven Morgan L Busse F - The Ravenwood Saga 3
The Initiate James L. Cambias F
Reticence (h2tp) Gail Carriger F/Gaslamp - Custard Protocol 4
Space Marine Conquests: Fist of the Imperium Andy Clark F - Warhammer 40,000
Burn Cycle (e) Joel Dane SF - Cry Pilot 2
Our War (h2tp) Craig DiLouie Dys
The Deepest Blue (h2tp) Sarah Beth Durst F - Tales of Renthia
Death Knell Hailey Edwards UF - Foundling 3
Slaves to Darkness John French SF/SO - Horus Heresy
Upright Women Wanted Sarah Gailey SF
A Conjuring of Assassins Cate Glass F - Chimera 2
Moonbreaker (h2tp) Simon R. Green UF - Secret Histories 11
Murder in the Dark (h2tp) Simon R. Green PM - Ishmael Jones Mystery 6
Wolfsbane Guy Haley SF/SE - Horus Heresy 49
Prisoner of Midnight (h2tp) Barbara Hambly UF - A James Asher Vampire Novel 8
A Blight of Blackwings Kevin Hearne F - Seven Kennings 2
The Resisters Gish Jen Dys
Things in Jars Jess Kidd LF
The Puzzler's War Eyal Kless SF/HSF - Tarakan Chronicles 2
Breaking Silence Mercedes Lackey
Cody Martin
CF - Serrated Edge 10
Firefly - Big Damn Hero (h2tp) James Lovegrove
Nancy Holder
MTI/SF
China Mountain Zhang Maureen F. McHugh SF/CyP
The Gnome Stories Ander Monson SS
The Last Day (D) Andrew Hunter Murray SF/AP/PA
The Legacy of Heorot (ri) Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle
Steven Barnes
SF - Heorot 1
The Freedom Artist Ben Okri LF/Dys
The Town (D) Shaun Prescott LF
Bone Silence (e) Alastair Reynolds SF - Revenger Universe 3
Zombie Army: Fortress of the Dead Chris Roberson MTI
The Baudelaire Fractal (D) Lisa Robertson LF
Three Californias: The Wild Shore, The Gold Coast, and Pacific Edge Kim Stanley Robinson SF/AP/PA - Three Californias Trilogy
Jeweled Fire (h2tp) Sharon Shinn F - An Elemental Blessings Novel 3
Bloodshot - The Official Movie Novelization Gavin G. Smith MTI
The Inhabited Island Arkady Strugatsky
Boris Strugatsky
Andrew Bromfeld (Tr)
SF
Paris Adrift (ri) E.J. Swift SF
A Heart of Blood and Ashes Milla Vane FR - A Gathering of Dragons 1
Mazes of Power (D) Juliette Wade SF - The Broken Trust 1
Lent: A Novel of Many Returns (h2tp) Jo Walton HistF
The Infernal Battalion (h2tp) Django Wexler F - The Shadow Campaigns 5
The Guns of Empire (h2tp) Django Wexler F - The Shadow Campaigns 4
The Firmament of Flame Drew Williams SF/SOThe Universe After 3
Valdor: Birth of the Imperium Chris Wraight SF/SO - The Horus Heresy
Heroes of the Empire Chris Wraight F - Warhammer Chronicles
Vaults of Terra: The Hollow Mountain Chris Wraight SF - Warhammer 40,000
The Lost Book of Adana Moreau Michael Zapata Fiction/Hispanic and Latino



February 6, 2020
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Gravity's Heir (D) Sara Bond SF
Witness X (D) SE Moorhead TechTh



D - Debut
e - eBook
Ed - Editor
h2mm - Hardcover to Mass Market Paperback
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
ri - reissue or reprint
tp2mm - Trade Paperback to Mass Market Paperback
Tr - Translator



AC - Alien Contact
AP - Apocalyptic
CF - Contemporary Fantasy
CoA - Coming of Age
CW - Contemporary Women
CyP - Cyperpunk
DF - Dark Fantasy
Dys - Dystopian
F - Fantasy
FR- Fantasy Romance
GothicM - Gothic Mystery
H - Horror
Hist - Historical
HistF - Historical Fantasy
HistM - Historical Mystery
HSF - Hard Science Fiction
LC - Literary Criticism
LF - Literary Fiction
MTI - Media Tie-In
Occ - Occult
PA - Post Apocalyptic
PerfArts - Performing Arts
PM - Paranormal Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
PsyTh - Psychological Thriller
SE - Space Exploration
SF - Science Fiction
SO - Space Opera
SP - Steampunk
SS - Short Stories
Sup - Supernatural
SupTh - Supernatural Thriller
TechTh - Technological Thriller
Th - Thriller
UF - Urban Fantasy
W - Western
WW - Weird Western

Note: Not all genres and formats are found in the books, etc. listed above.

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors


Here are some of the upcoming works by formerly featured Debut Author Challenge (DAC) Authors. The year in parentheses is the year the author was featured in the DAC.


James L. Cambias (2014)

The Initiate
Baen, February 4, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 288 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
A SECRET ORDER OF SORCERERS RULES THE WORLD. ONE MAN HAS VOWED TO DESTROY THEM.

THE SORCERERS WHO RULE THE WORLD ARE GOING DOWN!

The Apkallu are masters of magic. They rule the world from the shadows, using mind control and deadly monsters to eliminate any threat to their power. Sam Arquero lost his family to a demon sent by an Apkallu. He knew that nobody would believe the truth, but now an old man offers Sam the chance to find out who is responsible and bring down the Apkallu forever.

Under a new identity, Sam must learn the secrets of magic, infiltrate the Apkallu, and walk a razor’s edge of daring as he attempts to destroy the Apkallu leaders and avoid the supernatural detectives on his trail. But Sam’s greatest challenge perhaps lies within—to avoid becoming like the hated Apkallu himself!





Dana Chamblee Carpenter (2015)

Book of the Just
The Bohemian Trilogy 3
Pegasus Books, February 11, 2020
Trade Paperback, 368 pages
Hardcover and eBook, October 2, 2019

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
After centuries of searching, Mouse now has everything she’s ever wanted within her reach―a normal life, a lover, a brother. What will she risk to keep them?

Cherished by a Father, coveted by a king, loved by an almost-priest; tormented by demons, tortured by a madman, hunted by a cult, hounded by her father. Mouse has survived it all. But then, she was never just a girl.

Despite Mouse’s power, her father always wanted a son―and now, at long last, he has him. And Mouse has a brother, someone else in the world just like her. Though she’s never met him, the hope of what they might mean for each other tugs at her soul, even as it terrifies her lover, Angelo.

Hiding among a tribe of the Martu in the isolation of the Australian outback near the edges of Lake Disappointment, Mouse and Angelo have seemingly evaded at least one of the predators hunting them. Carefully dropping bogus breadcrumbs across Europe, they misdirect the Novus Rishi, a ruthless cult that wants Mouse as the ultimate weapon in their battle against evil. But when unnerving dreams start to plague Angelo, and the ancient beings of the Martu’s Dreaming send prophetic warnings that include visions of Mouse at her father’s side, the two lovers realize it’s time to act. With nowhere left to run, Mouse and Angelo prepare for a last showdown with their enemies. As they chase after legendary ancient weapons ensconced in the ages old battle between good and evil, Mouse and Angelo must each decide if a final victory is worth the cost.

Book of the Just continues Mouse’s story after The Devil’s Bible and completes the journey she started so long ago in Bohemian Gospel. Imbued with a rich sense of history, magic, and mythology, this explosive final installment in Mouse’s journey will keep you captivated until the very end.

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
Book 1
Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
Book 2





Andy Davidson (2017)

The Boatman's Daughter
MCD x FSG Originals, February 11, 2020
Trade Paperback and eBook, 416 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
A "lush nightmare" (Paul Tremblay) of a supernatural thriller about a young woman facing down ancient forces in the depths of the bayou

Ever since her father was killed when she was just a child, Miranda Crabtree has kept her head down and her eyes up, ferrying contraband for a mad preacher and his declining band of followers to make ends meet and to protect an old witch and a secret child from harm.

But dark forces are at work in the bayou, both human and supernatural, conspiring to disrupt the rhythms of Miranda’s peculiar and precarious life. And when the preacher makes an unthinkable demand, it sets Miranda on a desperate, dangerous path, forcing her to consider what she is willing to sacrifice to keep her loved ones safe.

With the heady of Neil Gaiman and the heartrending pacing of Joe Hill, Andy Davidson spins a thrilling tale of love and duty, of loss and discovery. The Boatman's Daughter is a gorgeous, horrifying novel, a journey into the dark corners of human nature, drawing our worst fears and temptations out into the light.

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works By DAC Authors


Here are some of the upcoming works by formerly featured DAC Authors. The year in parentheses is the year the author was featured in the DAC.


Ezekiel Boone (2016)

The Mansion
Atria / Emily Bestler Books, December 4, 2018
Hardcover and eBook, 432 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works By DAC Authors
In this white-knuckle thriller from the internationally bestselling author of the “apocalyptic extravaganza” (Publishers Weekly) The Hatching series, a family moves into a home equipped with the world’s most intelligent, cutting-edge, and intuitive computer ever—but a buried secret leads to terrifying and catastrophic consequences.

After two years of living on cheap beer and little else in a bitterly cold tiny cabin outside an abandoned, crumbling mansion, young programmers Shawn Eagle and Billy Stafford have created something that could make them rich: a revolutionary computer they name Eagle Logic.

But the hard work and escalating tension have not been kind to their once solid friendship—Shawn’s girlfriend Emily has left him for Billy, and a third partner has disappeared under mysterious circumstances. While Billy walks away with Emily, Shawn takes Eagle Logic, which he uses to build a multi-billion-dollar company that eventually outshines Apple, Google, and Microsoft combined.

Years later, Billy is a failure, beset by poverty and addiction, and Shawn is the most famous man in the world. Unable to let the past be forgotten, Shawn decides to resurrect his and Billy’s biggest failure: a next-generation computer program named Nellie that can control a house’s every function. He decides to set it up in the abandoned mansion they worked near all those years ago. But something about Nellie isn’t right—and the reconstruction of the mansion is plagued by accidental deaths. Shawn is forced to bring Billy back, despite their longstanding mutual hatred, to discover and destroy the evil that lurks in the source code.





James L. Cambias (2014)

Arkad's World
Baen, January 1, 2019
Hardcover and eBook, 384 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works By DAC Authors
Adventure and Excitement on an Alien World. Packed with exotic world-building and amazing characters, Arkad's World is a rollicking adventure story about growing up and the things we share that make us human, from celebrated author James L. Cambias.

Young Arkad is the only human on a distant world, on his own among beings from across the Galaxy. His struggle to survive on the lawless streets of an alien city is disrupted by the arrival of three humans: an eccentric historian named Jacob, a superhuman cyborg girl called Baichi, and a mysterious ex-spy known as Ree. They seek a priceless treasure which might free Earth from alien domination. Arkad risks everything to join them on an incredible quest halfway across the planet. With his help they cross the fantastic landscape, battling pirates, mercenaries, bizarre creatures, vicious bandits and the harsh environment. But the deadliest danger comes from treachery and betrayal within the group as dark secrets and hidden loyalties come to light.

Praise for the work of James L. Cambias:

"Beautifully written, with a story that captures the imagination the way SF should."—Booklist, Starred Review

“An engaging nail-biter that is exciting, fun and a satisfying read.” —The Qwillery

''An impressive debut by a gifted writer.''—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

''An exceptionally thoughtful, searching and intriguing debut.''—Kirkus, Starred Review

"James Cambias will be one of the century's major names in hard science fiction.''—Robert J. Sawyer, Hugo Award-winning author of Red Planet Blues

'Fast-paced, pure quill hard science fiction.... Cambias delivers adroit plot pivots that keep the suspense coming.''—Gregory Benford, Nebula Award-winning author of Timescape





John Hornor Jacobs (2011)

The Sea Dreams It Is the Sky
   A Novella of Cosmic Horror
Harper Voyager, October 30, 2018
eBook, 304 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works By DAC Authors
They had escaped their country, but they couldn’t escape the past

Having lost both her home and family to a brutal dictatorship, Isabel has fled to Spain, where she watches young, bronzed beauties and tries to forget the horrors that lie in her homeland.

Shadowing her always, attired in rumpled linen suits and an eyepatch, is “The Eye,” a fellow ex-pat and poet with a notorious reputation. An unlikely friendship blossoms, a kinship of shared grief. Then The Eye receives a mysterious note and suddenly returns home, his fate uncertain.

Left with the keys to The Eye’s apartment, Isabel finds two of his secret manuscripts: a halting translation of an ancient, profane work, and an evocative testament of his capture during the revolution. Both texts bear disturbing images of blood and torture, and the more Isabel reads the more she feels the inexplicable compulsion to go home.

It means a journey deep into a country torn by war, still ruled by a violent regime, but the idea of finding The Eye becomes ineluctable. Isabel feels the manuscripts pushing her to go. Her country is lost, and now her only friend is lost, too. What must she give to get them back? In the end, she has only herself left to sacrifice.

THE SEA DREAMS IT IS THE SKY asks:

How does someone simply give up their home...especially when their home won’t let them?

The View From Monday - May 9, 2016


Happy Monday! The sun is out here after a week a rain and there are 4 debuts this week!

The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley;

Too Like the Lightning (Terra Ignota 1) by Ada Palmer;

and

The Mirror Thief by Martin Seay.

The View From Monday - May 9, 2016 The View From Monday - May 9, 2016 The View From Monday - May 9, 2016


And from formerly featured DAC Authors:

The Corsair by James L. Cambias is out in Trade Paperback;

The Voodoo Killings (Kincaide Strange 1) by Kristi Charish;

Love is Red (The Nightsong Trilogy 1) by Sophie Jaff is out in Trade Paperback;

The Enceladus Crisis (Daedalus 2) by Michael J. Martinez is out in Mass Market Paperback;

The Vagrant by Peter Newman is out in Hardcover;

and

Binary ((R)evolution 2) by Stephanie Saulter is out in Trade Paperback.

The View From Monday - May 9, 2016 The View From Monday - May 9, 2016 The View From Monday - May 9, 2016
The View From Monday - May 9, 2016 The View From Monday - May 9, 2016 The View From Monday - May 9, 2016




The View From Monday - May 9, 2016



Debut novels are highlighted in blue. Novels by formerly featured Debut Author Challenge Authors are highlighted in green.



May 10, 2016
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
The Unburdened David Annandale SF - The Horus Heresy
Pyres of Armageddon (h2tp) David Annandale SF - Yarrick 2
Corsair: A Science Fiction Novel (h2tp) James L. Cambias SF
The Voodoo Killings Kristi Charish SF - Kincaide Strange 1
Nemesis Games (h2tp) James S.A. Corey SF - The Expanse 5
The World Engine Ben Counter SF - Space Marine Battles
Vengeance of the Demons Rebekah R. Ganiere PNR - The Society 3
Dark Orbit (h2tp) Carolyn Ives Gilman SF/AC
The Pier Falls: And Other Stories Mark Haddon LF/MR - Collection
The Stealers' War Stephen Hunt F -Far-Called Trilogy 3
The Loney (D) Andrew Michael Hurley LF/GO
Watchlist: 32 Stories by Persons of Interest Bryan Hurt (Ed) SF/LF - Anthology
Love Is Red (h2tp) Sophie Jaff H/F - The Nightsong Trilogy 1
Mongrels Stephen Graham Jones CoA/P/UF
Children of Earth and Sky Guy Gavriel Kay HistF
The Wolf in the Attic Paul Kearney F
A Whisper of Southern Lights Tim Lebbon HistF - The Assassins Series 2
The Corporation Wars: Dissidence Ken MacLeod SF - Corporation Wars 1
The Enceladus Crisis (tp2mm) Michael J. Martinez SF - Daedalus 2
The Alchemists' Council Cynthea Masson F
The Last Phoenix Graham McNeill SF - The Horus Heresy Omnibus 2
Secondhand Souls (h2tp) Christopher Moore Hu
The Vagrant Peter Newman DF
Too Like the Lightning (D) Ada Palmer SF - Terra Ignota 1
Binary (h2tp) Stephanie Saulter SF - (R)evolution 2
The Mirror Thief (D) Martin Seay Hist/M/Vis/Meta
The Potemkin Mosaic Mark Teppo SupTh
Central Station Lavie Tidhar AP/PA/CyberP
A Head Full of Ghosts (h2tp) Paul Tremblay H
Look Who's Back (h2tp) Timur Vermes Satire



May 11, 2016
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
The Pigeon Summer: A Tor.Com Original (e) Brit Mandelo F




May 13, 2016
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Operation Sea Mink (e) Addison Gunn SF - Extinction Biome: Invasion 4


D - Debut
e - eBook
Ed - editor
h2mm - Hardcover to Mass Market Paperback
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
tp2mm - Trade to Mass Market Paperback
ri - reissue or reprint


AC - Alien Contact
AH - Alternate History
AP - Apocalyptic
CF - Contemporary Fantasy
CoA - Coming of Age
CyberP - Cyberpunk
DF - Dark Fantasy
Dys - Dystopian
F - Fantasy
FairyT - Fairy Tale
FolkT - Folk Tale
FR - Fantasy Romance
GB - Genre Bender
GH - Ghost
GO - Gothic
GoR - Gothic Romance
H - Horror
Hist - Historical
HistF - Historical Fantasy
HistTh - Historical Thriller
Hu - Humor
LF - Literary Fiction
LM - Legends and Mythology
M - Mystery
Meta - Metaphysical
MR - Magical Realism
Occ - Occult
P - Paranormal
PA - Post Apocalyptic
Phil - Philosophy
PM - Paranormal Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
Pol - Political
PsyTh - Psychological Thriller
PTh - Paranormal Thriller
R - Romance
SF - Science Fiction
SO - Space Opera
SocSci - Social Science
SP - Steampunk
SupTh - Supernatural Thriller
Sus - Suspense
TechnoTh - Technological Thriller
Th - Thriller
TT - Time Travel
UF - Urban Fantasy
V - Visionary

Note: not all of these genres are represented in the above releases.

Review: A Darkling Sea by James L. Cambias


A Darkling Sea
Author:  James L. Cambias
Publisher:  Tor Books, January 28, 2014
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages
Also Available:  Trade Paperback
List Price: US$25.99 (Hardcover); US$9.99 (eBook)
ISBN:  9780765336279 (Hardcover); 9781466827561 (eBook)

Review: A Darkling Sea by James L. Cambias
On the planet Ilmatar, under a roof of ice a kilometer thick, a team of deep-sea diving scientists investigates the blind alien race that lives below. The Terran explorers have made an uneasy truce with the Sholen, their first extraterrestrial contact: so long as they don’t disturb the Ilmataran habitat, they’re free to conduct their missions in peace.

But when Henri Kerlerec, media personality and reckless adventurer, ends up sliced open by curious Ilmatarans, tensions between Terran and Sholen erupt, leading to a diplomatic disaster that threatens to escalate to war.

Against the backdrop of deep-sea guerrilla conflict, a new age of human exploration begins as alien cultures collide. Both sides seek the aid of the newly enlightened Ilmatarans. But what this struggle means for the natives—and the future of human exploration—is anything but certain, in A Darkling Sea by James Cambias.



Brannigan's Review

I was drawn to this book initially because it reminded me of one of my favorite movies Abyss. Instead of surly oil workers, A Darkling Sea has scientists interacting with aliens on the sea floor. James L. Cambias creates a dynamic plot that kept me reading late into the night.

Cambias' world is in our future when Earth begins to truly explore space and the many different planets and moons. During our exploration, we meet a peaceful alien race named the Sholen who resemble six-legged otters. The Sholen fear humans because we remind them of their war-ridden past. They try to control human exploration when a group of humans sets up an underwater base to study the alien race of Ilmatarians who resemble lobsters. The Sholen try to control the contact between the humans and Ilmatarians. I enjoyed the fact that both alien races are very different in their development, even though they both have connections to water-based animals.

Cambias shares the POVs of several different characters for each race that helps to establish their races while also allowing for character development. My only complaint about the aliens was the fact that they were basically lobsters and otters. I like my aliens weirder. I will say I was very happy with their unique cultures though.

Where the book truly shines is the pacing. It helps that Cambias has several different POV characters who keep the story fresh and exciting. It also helps that he's not afraid of action. One of my pet peeves with science fiction is it can be a little dry with very little going on. Thankfully, Cambias doesn't have this problem. He doesn't waste a lot of time before we get a lot of interesting conflicts and battles.

A Darkling Sea is a science fiction political action tale. Besides the animalistic qualities to the aliens, I had a blast reading it. It was also nice to read a stand alone novel. There is violence, language and sexual situations involving otter aliens. I would recommend it to older teens and adults.

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22


This is the twenty-second 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 here
Part 3 herePart 13 here
Part 4 herePart 14 here
Part 5 herePart 15 here
Part 6 herePart 16 here
Part 7 herePart 17 here
Part 8 herePart 18 here
Part 9 herePart 19 here
Part 10 herePart 20 here


Mary Behre (2014)

Harmonized
A Tidewater Novella
Intermix, July 21, 2015
eBook, 125 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
From the author of Energized and Guarded comes an all-new novella in the series that’s “a perfect mix of paranormal, suspense, and romance”(SnS Reviews).

After nearly dying on assignment, Tidewater police officer Zig Harmon has been awarded the Silver Star and desk duty. But handling every case that walks through the door while his entire department is out hunting a serial killer is nothing compared to dealing with his former flame, Karma De La Cruz.

As much as she hates it, Karma knows that her best chance of finding the kidnapped baby haunting her visions is the man she once left behind. Forced to work together, Karma and Zig start to realize that they may have let go of something incredible. But now, time is running out, both for the missing infant and for their chance to start again...

Includes an exclusive preview of the latest Tidewater novel, Energized.


Energized
Tidewater 3
Berkley, August 4, 2015
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 320 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
In the new Tidewater novel by the author of Guarded, a kiss between strangers draws both into unexpected danger and unforgettable desire . . .

She’s searching for a sign . . .

Hannah Halloran has always believed in her gift. The things she sees through her psychic touch have never led her wrong before. Not when they led her to an unforgettable night with a sexy marine at a bar. Not when she felt a need to leave her home and find the sisters she barely knows. And not now, when she is an unwilling witness to a brutal murder . . .

He’s ready to show her . . .

All Niall Graham wants is some peace. He’s recovering from the horrors of war, struggling to save his family’s restaurant, and desperate to forget Hannah, the beautiful woman who left him with memories of a mind-blowing night together and a bogus phone number. But a quiet life is hard to manage—especially when Hannah strides back into his restaurant with the news that a serial killer is on the loose and lurking closer than anyone could have guessed . . .




Deborah Blake (2014)

Veiled Magic
InterMix, November 17, 2015
eBook, 280 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
A spellbinding new novel from the author of the Baba Yaga novels.

Since Witches came out of the broom-closet in the early 21st century, they have worked alongside humans as police officers, healers, stock traders, and more. But they aren’t the only paranormal entities in our world…

Police officer and Witch Donata Santori spends her days interrogating dead witnesses by summoning their spectral forms. Normally the job is little more than taking statements and filing reports. But when she’s called in on the case of a murdered art restorer, she finds herself suddenly in possession of a mystical portrait that both the human and paranormal communities would kill to get their hands on.

Unable to take on the forces hunting her alone, Donata seeks help from two unlikely and attractive allies: a reluctant shape-changer and a half-dragon art forger. But as the three of them hurry to uncover the truth about the powerful painting, Donata realizes that she’s caught in the middle of not one but two wars—one for possession of the painting’s secrets and one for possession of her heart…

Includes an exclusive preview of the next Baba Yaga novel, Wickedly Powerful.


Wickedly Ever After
A Baba Yaga Novella
InterMix, January 19, 2016
eBook, 66 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one…

Having triumphed over a powerful enemy and ended up with both a wonderful guy—Sheriff Liam McClellan—and an adorable adopted daughter to raise as a Baba Yaga, Barbara Yager is ready to welcome her happily ever after.

But first she must bring Liam to the Otherworld and get the Queen’s permission to marry him. The Queen, however, is not so easily persuaded. She gives them three impossible tasks to complete in two weeks’ time—and if they fail Barbara will have to watch Liam slowly age and die like all humans, and kiss her happily ever after good-bye forever.

Includes an exclusive preview of the next Baba Yaga Novel, Wickedly Powerful


Wickedly Powerful
A Baba Yaga Novel
Berkley, February 2, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
The author of Wickedly Wonderful returns to her “addicting”* world of Russian witches in the latest Baba Yaga novel.

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one of them…

The only thing more fiery than Bella Young’s red hair is her temper. She knows that a Baba Yaga’s power without strict control can leave the people she cares about burned, so to protect her heart—and everyone around her—the only company she keeps is her dragon-turned-Norwegian-Forest-cat, Koshka.

But when Bella is tasked with discovering who’s setting magical fires throughout Wyoming’s Black Hills, she finds herself working closely with former hotshots firefighter Sam Corbett—and falling hard for his quiet strength and charm.

Sam may bear the scars of his past, but Bella can see beyond them and would do anything to help him heal. Only before she can rescue her Prince Charming, she’ll have to overcome the mysterious foe setting the forest fires—a truly wicked witch who wields as much power and even more anger than Bella…


Dangerously Charming
A Broken Riders Novel 1
Berkley, October 4, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

[cover not yet available]
From the author of the Baba Yaga novels, a brand new series set in the same “addicting”* world, filled with wild magic, enchanting damsels, and the irresistibly daring men who serve the Baba Yagas…

The Riders are three immortal brothers who protect the mythical Baba Yagas. But their time serving the witches has ended—and their new destinies are just beginning…

Ever since a near-fatal mistake stripped Mikhail Day and his brothers of their calling to be Riders, Day has hidden from his shame and his new, mortal life in a remote cabin in the Adirondack mountains. But when a desperate young woman appears on his doorstep, he cannot resist helping her—and cannot deny how strongly he’s drawn to her…

For generations, women in Jenna Quinlan’s family have been cursed to give up their first born child to the vengeful fairy Zilya. When Jenna finds herself unexpectedly pregnant, she is determined to break her family’s curse and keep her baby, even if it means teaming up with a mysterious and charismatic man with demons of his own…

To unravel the curse, Jenna and Day will have to travel deep into the Otherworld. But the biggest challenge of the journey might not be solving an ancient puzzle but learning to heal their own broken hearts…




Pierce Brown (2014)

Morning Star
Book III of The Red Rising Trilogy
Del Rey, February 9, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 544 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
Red Rising thrilled readers and announced the presence of a talented new author. Golden Son changed the game and took the story of Darrow to the next level. Now comes the exhilarating conclusion to the Red Rising Trilogy: Morning Star.

Darrow would have lived in peace, but his enemies brought him war. The Gold overlords demanded his obedience, hanged his wife, and enslaved his people. But Darrow is determined to fight back. Risking everything to transform himself and breach Gold society, Darrow has battled to survive the cutthroat rivalries that breed Society’s mightiest warriors, climbed the ranks, and waited patiently to unleash the revolution that will tear the hierarchy apart from within.

Finally, the time has come.

But devotion to honor and hunger for vengeance run deep on both sides. Darrow and his comrades-in-arms face powerful enemies without scruple or mercy. Among them are some Darrow once considered friends. To win, Darrow will need to inspire those shackled in darkness to break their chains, unmake the world their cruel masters have built, and claim a destiny too long denied—and too glorious to surrender.




Jeremy P. Bushnell (2014)

The Insides
Melville House, June 7, 2016
Trade Paperback and eBook, 288 pages

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
The highly anticipated follow-up to Jeremy P. Bushnell’s “wonderfully weird and entertaining” (Esquire) debut, The Weirdness

Ollie Krueger’s days as a punk kid practicing street magic are are mostly behind her. Now she’s a butcher at Carnage, a high-end restaurant offering deconstructed takes on meat, and on the busiest nights of the week she and her partner, Guychardson, race to see who can produce more finished cuts. Ollie’s the better butcher, but somehow Guychardson almost always wins.  And Ollie thinks maybe it’s because the mysterious knife he uses is magic.

Before she knows it, Ollie’s interest in the knife has thrown her square in the path of a dangerous ex-marine called “Pig” and his hired psychic, Maja, who are on the hunt for the knife too—who want it so badly, in fact, that they might kill for it.

Now, magic is back in Ollie’s life and she’s being chased through New York City, with the fabric of space-time tattering around her and weird inter-dimensional worms squirming their way into her kitchen. And before all this is over she’s going to need to face up to the Possible Consequences of some bad decisions, to look at the uncomfortable truths that she stuffed away long ago, deep down inside . . .




James L. Cambias (2014)

Corsair : A Science Fiction Novel
Tor Books, May 10, 2016
9780765379115, 0765379112
Trade Paperback, 336 pages
Hardcover and eBook, May 5, 2015

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22
In the early 2020s, two young, genius computer hackers, Elizabeth Santiago and David Schwartz, meet at MIT, where Schwartz is sneaking into classes, and have a brief affair. David is amoral and out for himself, and soon disappears. Elizabeth dreams of technology and space travel and takes a military job after graduating. Nearly ten years later, David is setting himself to become a billionaire by working in the shadows under a multiplicity of names for international thieves, and Elizabeth works in intelligence preventing international space piracy. With robotic mining in space becoming a lucrative part of Earth's economy, shipments from space are dropped down the gravity well into the oceans. David and Elizabeth fight for dominance of the computer systems controlling ore drop placement in international waters. If David can nudge a shipment 500 miles off its target, his employers can get there first and claim it legally in the open sea. Each one intuits that the other is their real competition but can't prove it. And when Elizabeth loses a major shipment, she leaves government employ to work for a private space company to find a better way to protect shipments. But international piracy has very high stakes and some very evil players. And both Elizabeth and David end up in a world of trouble.

Space pirates and computer hackers . . . James L. Cambias's Corsair is a thrilling near-future adventure!

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13


This is the thirteenth in a series of updates about formerly featured Debut Author Challenge authors and their upcoming 2015 books. This update covers some of the 2014 Debut Author Challenge authors. What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 14 will cover additional 2014 DAC authors.

See Part 1 here
See Part 1.5 here
See Part 2 here
See Part 3 here
See Part 4 here
See Part 5 here
See Part 6 here
See Part 7 here
See Part 8 here
See Part 9 here
See Part 10 here
See Part 11 here
See Part 12 here


What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13



James L. Cambias

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13
A Darkling Sea
Tor Books, February 3, 2015
Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Previously published in Hardcover and eBook, January 2014

On the planet Ilmatar, under a roof of ice a kilometer thick, a team of deep-sea diving scientists investigates the blind alien race that lives below. The Terran explorers have made an uneasy truce with the Sholen, their first extraterrestrial contact: so long as they don’t disturb the Ilmataran habitat, they’re free to conduct their missions in peace.

But when Henri Kerlerec, media personality and reckless adventurer, ends up sliced open by curious Ilmatarans, tensions between Terran and Sholen erupt, leading to a diplomatic disaster that threatens to escalate to war.

Against the backdrop of deep-sea guerrilla conflict, a new age of human exploration begins as alien cultures collide. Both sides seek the aid of the newly enlightened Ilmatarans. But what this struggle means for the natives—and the future of human exploration—is anything but certain, in A Darkling Sea by James Cambias.




What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13
From the Author's website
Corsair
Tor Books, May 5, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 336 pages

In the early 2020s, two young, genius computer hackers, Elizabeth Santiago and David Schwartz, meet at MIT, where Schwartz is sneaking into classes, and have a brief affair. David is amoral and out for himself, and soon disappears. Elizabeth dreams of technology and space travel and takes a military job after graduating. Nearly ten years later, David is setting himself to become a billionaire by working in the shadows under a multiplicity of names for international thieves, and Elizabeth works in intelligence preventing international space piracy. With robotic mining in space becoming a lucrative part of Earth’s economy, shipments from space are dropped down the gravity well into the oceans. David and Elizabeth fight for dominance of the computer systems controlling ore drop placement in international waters. If David can nudge a shipment 500 miles off its target, his employers can get there first and claim it legally in the open sea. Each one intuits that the other is their real competition but can't prove it. And when Elizabeth loses a major shipment, she leaves government employ to work for a private space company to find a better way to protect shipments. But international piracy has very high stakes and some very evil players. And both Elizabeth and David end up in a world of trouble. Space pirates and computer hackers . . . James L. Cambias's Corsair is a thrilling near-future adventure!






Beth Cato

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13
The Clockwork Crown
Clockwork Dagger 2
Harper Voyager, June 9, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

Rich in atmosphere, imagination, and fun, the action-packed, magic-filled sequel to The Clockwork Dagger is an enchanting steampunk fantasy, evocative of the works of Trudi Canavan and Gail Carriger.

Narrowly surviving assassination and capture, Octavia Leander, a powerful magical healer, is on the run with handsome Alonzo Garrett, the Clockwork Dagger who forfeited his career with the Queen’s secret society of spies and killers—and possibly his life—to save her. Now, they are on a dangerous quest to find safety and answers: Why is Octavia so powerful? Why does she seem to be undergoing a transformation unlike any witnessed for hundreds of years?

The truth may rest with the source of her mysterious healing power—the Lady’s Tree. But the tree lies somewhere in a rough, inhospitable territory known as the Waste. Eons ago, this land was made barren and uninhabitable by an evil spell, until a few hardy souls dared to return over the last century. For years, the Waste has waged a bloody battle against the royal court to win its independence—and they need Octavia’s powers to succeed.

Joined by unlikely allies, including a menagerie of gremlin companions, she must evade killers and Clockwork Daggers on a dangerous journey through a world on the brink of deadly civil war.





Rjurik Davidson

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13
Unwrapped Sky
Caeli-Amur 1
Tor Science Fiction, March 3, 2015
Mass Market Paperback, 528 pages
Previously published in Hardcover and eBook, April 2014

A hundred years ago, the Minotaurs saved Caeli-Amur from conquest. Now, three very different people may hold the keys to the city's survival.

Once, it is said, gods used magic to create reality, with powers that defied explanation. But the magic—or science, if one believes those who try to master the dangers of thaumaturgy—now seems more like a dream. Industrial workers for House Technis, farmers for House Arbor, and fisher folk of House Marin eke out a living and hope for a better future. But the philosopher-assassin Kata plots a betrayal that will cost the lives of godlike Minotaurs; the ambitious bureaucrat Boris Autec rises through the ranks as his private life turns to ashes; and the idealistic seditionist Maximilian hatches a mad plot to unlock the vaunted secrets of the Great Library of Caeli-Enas, drowned in the fabled city at the bottom of the sea, its strangeness visible from the skies above.

In a novel of startling originality and riveting suspense, these three people, reflecting all the hopes and dreams of the ancient city, risk everything for a future that they can create only by throwing off the shackles of tradition and superstition, as their destinies collide at ground zero of a conflagration that will transform the world . . . or destroy it.

Unwrapped Sky is a stunningly original debut by Rjurik Davidson, a young master of the New Weird.
[Hardcover description]




The Stars Askew (Caeli-Amur 2) will be published by Tor Books in October 2015.  Here is the cover (from the author's website):

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13





Rene Denfeld

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13
The Enchanted
Harper Perennial, February 24, 2015
Trade Paperback, 272 pages
Previously published in Hardcover and eBook, March 2014

For the narrator locked inside an ancient prison, waiting for death, life is full of magic, from the golden horses that stampede underground to the tiny men who hammer away inside the stone walls. That the enchanted place is a death row matters less to him than the people he watches from the bars of his cage: the lady, an investigator hired to help the men escape execution; the fallen priest, brought by shame to work the row; and the kindly warden, who ushers men to death.

As the lady digs deep into the past of one of the men on the row, she finds secrets that ring chillingly familiar, and begins a journey that will bring all of them to unexpected salvation.

Guilt and innocence collide in this story of the beauty that can exist in the midst of despair. A luminous novel about redemption, the poetry that can be found in the unfathomable, and the human capacity to transcend even the most nightmarish reality, The Enchanted is a new classic.





John Dixon

What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13
Devil's Pocket
Gallery Books, August 4, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 320 pages

The follow-up to the critically acclaimed Phoenix Island, which reads like “Lord of the Flies meets Wolverine and Cool Hand Luke” (F. Paul Wilson, creator of Repairman Jack) and inspired the CBS TV show Intelligence.

With a chip in his head and hundreds more throughout his body, sixteen-year-old Carl Freeman was turned from an orphan with impulse control issues into a super-soldier. Forced into the mercenary Phoenix Force group, he begins to fear he’ll never escape. Sent to a volcanic island to fight for them, he’ll compete in a combat tournament that awards teens with survival for merciless brutality. But just when all looks lost, he spies a friendly face…and possibly a way out.


Guest Blog by James L. Cambias - Sexifying Monsters! - February 24, 2014



Please welcome James L. Cambias to The Qwillery as part of the 2014 Debut Author Challenge Guest Blogs and the A Darkling Sea Blog Tour. A Darkling Sea, James' debut novel, was published on January 28, 2014 by Tor Books. You may read James' DAC Interview here.




Guest Blog by James L. Cambias - Sexifying Monsters! - February 24, 2014



Sexifying Monsters!

by James L. Cambias

It's a curious observation that monsters in fantasy or horror tend to get sexier over time. Things which start out as unambiguous monsters turn into ambiguous monsters and then sexy monsters and then sexy non-monsters.

Consider one of the oldest folkloric monsters: the fairies. We tend to think of fairies as Disneyfied pixies scattering fairy-dust and living in acorns, or Tolkeinified forest Vulcans with great hair and swishy clothes, but it's worth remembering that "elf" and "fairy" and "dwarf" and "goblin" were originally synonyms. You called them the "Fair Folk" because you were scared that if you bad-mouthed them they'd come into your cottage at night and murder you.

But as the fear of the wilderness and the night declined, the fairies got nicer. Shakespeare turned them into tiny sprites living in acorns. One could call this "Disneyfication" except that it happened about three hundred years before Walt was born. By the time the Romantics got hold of them in the 19th Century, fairies were figures of wild freedom opposing buttoned-up Victorian morality. Modern fantasy has transformed them into sexy leather-jacketed immortal hipsters who can do magic, pretty much indistinguishable from that girl who lived with your college roommate for a while.

The sexification of fairies left an ecological niche open, and vampires moved into it. Vampires were once smelly, shambling walking corpses who fed on the living. Their breath smelled of decay and grave-dirt, they were covered with hair like an un-waxed pro wrestler, and they didn't talk or do anything but try to murder you. But then Dr. John Polidori decided to turn vampires into Lord Byron with fangs (which says a lot about his relationship with Byron, I think). Then Bram Stoker gave Count Dracula a way with the ladies which would make even Pablo Picasso jealous. Anne Rice took that and ran with it, and Stephanie Myers took it past eleven with her sparkling pretty Edward. Now vampires are sexy leather-jacketed immortal hipsters who can do magic, pretty much indistinguishable from that dude who used to go out with your college roommate for a while.

Dragons are another surprising example of sexification. They started off as big poisonous snakes, with no ambition beyond lying around on a treasure hoard and murdering people. They got legs, then wings, and their poison turned into fire. But they were still big monsters who ravaged villages and murdered people. Then Tolkein wrote The Hobbit, and gave half the best lines in the book to Smaug the dragon. After that, dragons in fiction never shut up. They got smarter, they got magic powers, and they started sexifying up. Authors like Patricia Briggs and Mercedes Lackey made them into shapeshifters, capable of appearing human. Now dragons seem to spend most of their free time in human form, as sexy leather-jacketed immortal hipsters who can do magic, pretty much indistinguishable from that guy whose college roommate you dated for a while.

Werewolves? Started out as forest psychopaths who took on animal form to murder people. Now they're sexy bare-chested immortal hipsters like that dude who wouldn't leave after your college roommate's party until you threatened to call the cops.

Demons? Started out as embodiments of pure evil, then Marlowe gave Mephistopheles all the good lines in Faust. Devils acquired wealth and taste, became shrewd bargainers, and finally now are sexy leather-jacketed immortal hipsters like your college roommate's friend who sold you what he claimed was weed but wasn't.

Frankenstein's Monster? Two words: Aaron Eckhart.

Even angels have gotten sexified. Angels started out as . . . not all that different from demons except not trying to murder you as much. Consider the things Ezekiel saw, all wheels and eyes and fire and wings. But then artists started making sexy angel statues (check out Bernini's Ecstasy of St. Theresa, some of the most NSFW church art ever) and modern fantasy writers wanted darker and edgier angels, and now they're yet another bunch of sexy leather-jacketed immortal hipsters, like that vegetarian chick your roommate used to live with who said buying milk was like slavery.

The only standard monster I can think of that hasn't sexificated is the zombie. In fact, it's notable that zombies have actually become less sexy over time. Originally zombies weren't smelly cannibal undead, they were more like brainwashed not-quite-dead-but-not-really-alive-either beings. The fear wasn't that the zombies would murder you, but that you might wind up a zombie yourself. And about five seconds after someone heard the story of brainwashed people bound to serve an evil sorcerer, we got a whole passel of black and white sexy zombie movies and pulp sexy zombie stories.

But as vampires abandoned the shambling undead cannibal niche, zombies moved in, losing their sexificativosity in the process. A brainwashed person in thrall to a depraved sorcerer has much more inherent sleaze appeal than a rotting corpse looking for brains. Still, I have no doubt that the sexification process will apply to zombies before long. Fast zombies are already a harbinger. Pretty soon we'll get fast talkative zombies, then sexy zombies, and before long they'll acquire leather jackets and magical powers. The zombie apocalypse will look like your college dormitory on Sunday morning.

What drives this process? Why the urge to sexificate monsters? Well, I think it's a fairly obvious pattern. When a monster is first invented, it's a monster — a threat to escape or overcome. But after you've written a few dozen stories about overcoming that kind of monster, the audience gets bored. "Use silver bullets!" they say. "Put a stake in him!" So what's an author to do? Well, turn the monster into a character. Give them good lines and a personality. From there the obvious next step is to make the monster character sympathetic. And if you're being friendly anyway . . . cue the Barry White music.

Plus there's the undeniable fact that power is sexy. Call it "Kissinger's Law." Monsters, in order to be credible menaces, have to be powerful. They're strong, they're dangerous, they're aloof and predatory. In short, monsters are walking pick-up artist handbooks. Add to that the bonus of social power that wealthy, aristocratic vampires, fairy nobles, or gold-hoarding dragons can boast, and it's no wonder they have groupies like rock stars. (Less aristocratic werewolves have to get by with nothing but animal attractiveness, and poor proletarian zombies can't get past the bouncer at the club.)

Sexified monsters are an interesting bellwether of social attitudes, with both good and worrisome implications. The good part is that it shows how completely accepting our society has become of "outsiders." Falling in love with an undead bloodsucker or fire-breathing dragon is just another lifestyle choice. Nobody (except the Evil Business Guy played by Ronny Cox) is depicted as irredeemable in modern fiction.

The worrisome part is how all this works as a model. One of the purposes of fiction is that it helps us learn to interact with others, and vicariously "try on" different social roles. Do sexy monsters encourage the notion that you have to be a monster to be sexy?




A Darkling Sea

A Darkling Sea
Tor Books, January 28, 2014
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages

Guest Blog by James L. Cambias - Sexifying Monsters! - February 24, 2014
On the planet Ilmatar, under a roof of ice a kilometer thick, a team of deep-sea diving scientists investigates the blind alien race that lives below. The Terran explorers have made an uneasy truce with the Sholen, their first extraterrestrial contact: so long as they don’t disturb the Ilmataran habitat, they’re free to conduct their missions in peace.

But when Henri Kerlerec, media personality and reckless adventurer, ends up sliced open by curious Ilmatarans, tensions between Terran and Sholen erupt, leading to a diplomatic disaster that threatens to escalate to war.

Against the backdrop of deep-sea guerrilla conflict, a new age of human exploration begins as alien cultures collide. Both sides seek the aid of the newly enlightened Ilmatarans. But what this struggle means for the natives—and the future of human exploration—is anything but certain, in A Darkling Sea by James Cambias.




Extras!

There is a terrific tie-in website for UNICA (The United Nations Interstellar Cooperation Agency): IlmatarMission.com:
  • A mission statement for Ilmatar Expedition III
  • Facts about Ilmatar
  • What we currently know about life on Ilmatar
  • A description of the Hitode Station
  • Crew bios where you can meet the personnel of the Ilmatar mission
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • The Ilmatar Expedition 111 Mission Blog
  • Information about The United Nations Interstellar Cooperation Agency
  • The personal website of the universally famous explorer and adventurer Henri Kerlerec, currently on mission with the Ilmatar Expedition




About James

Guest Blog by James L. Cambias - Sexifying Monsters! - February 24, 2014
James L. Cambias was raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, and no matter where he goes, that city will always be home. He attended the University of Chicago intending to become an astronomer, but became fascinated by the history of science and wound up getting his degree in History and Philosophy of Science in 1988. At Chicago he also met Diane Kelly, who later became his wife.

Jim worked for two publishing companies right out of college -- Pelican Publishing of Louisiana in New Orleans, and then Nelson-Hall Publishers in Chicago. But in 1990 he decided to try freelance writing full time.

For most of a decade Jim wrote for roleplaying game publishers, becoming a mainstay at game magazines like GDW's Challenge, Steve Jackson's Pyramid, and the Star Wars Adventure Journal. Because of his Star Wars pieces he has an entry in the online "Wookieepedia," which is extremely impressive to his young son.

His first game book was Arabian Nights, a sourcebook for the Rolemaster game system from Iron Crown Enterprises. Over the next two decades he wrote six game books and coauthored to ten others. His best-known game products are probably GURPS Mars, GURPS Castle Falkenstein, Star HERO, and GURPS Space Fourth Edition.

In 2006 he joined with Diane Kelly and Joseph Steig to start Zygote Games, a company publishing science and nature-based games, dedicated to the idea that educational games don't have to be lame. The Zygote game Parasites Unleashed was picked by Scientific American as one of their "Top Science Toys" in 2012.

He has also written nonfiction for a variety of magazines and newspapers, including aviation history pieces for Airpower and Balloon Life, articles on maps, wine, parenting advice, travel, restaurant reviews, and astronomy. He writes a weekly stargazing column for the Greenfield Recorder.

Mr. Cambias has been writing science fiction since his teens, but his first professional sale came in the year 2000, when his short story "A Diagram of Rapture" appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Since then he has published 19 short stories in F&SF, Shimmer, and several original anthologies. In 2001 he was nominated for the John W. Campbell Award for best new writer. A Darkling Sea is his first novel.

When he isn't writing, Jim Cambias cuts firewood, cooks, plays roleplaying games, and haunts coffee shops in western Massachusetts. He blogs at www.jamescambias.com.


Interview with James L. Cambias, author of A Darkling Sea - January 28, 2014


Please welcome James L. Cambias to The Qwillery as part of the 2014 Debut Author Challenge Interviews and the A Darkling Sea Blog Tour. A Darkling Sea, James' debut novel, is published today, January 28, 2014 by Tor. Please join The Qwillery in wishing James a Happy Publication Day!



Interview with James L. Cambias, author of A Darkling Sea - January 28, 2014




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

James:  I started writing in 1980. I'd just read Isaac Asimov's autobiography and was struck by the fact that he sold his first story at the age of only 15. "I'm 14," I thought. "Maybe I can beat him!" So I wrote something mostly for the sake of writing something and sent it to (where else) Asimov's SF Magazine. Unsurprisingly, they rejected it. I kept getting rejections as I finished high school and college, and made my first sale in 2000 to Gordon Van Gelder.

However, by then I had broken into roleplaying game writing, with dozens of published scenarios, magazine articles, and sourcebooks. I started doing that in 1990. The game writing let me practice and get paid for it.

I still haven't sold anything to Asimov's.



TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

James:  Plotter. I write outlines and tinker with them. When the Muse doesn't come calling, her sister the Outline is very comforting to have around.



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

James:  Where I write depends on the time of year. In summer I sit out on my screen porch at home and write, while watching the chickens harass each other. When the weather's too nasty for that (and in New England that means about 2/3 of the time) I go to coffeeshops or libraries. If I sit at home alone indoors I don't get anything done; I'm not sure why. I have to be "out" even it it's just the porch.

The most challenging thing is plotting. I can come up with a good "hook" but after that it's real brute-force engineering: "what would that character do next?"



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

James:  I'll split this between SF and non-SF. In science fiction my strongest influences are probably Larry Niven, Poul Anderson, and John M. Ford. Outside SF I'd cite James Thurber, Raymond Chandler, and Geoffrey Household.

As to my favorites, I love Alistair Reynolds, Rudyard Kipling, Tim Powers, Jack Vance, Jorge Luis Borges, and Lois Bujold.



TQ:  Describe A Darkling Sea in 140 characters or less.

James:  Scientists under an ice-covered alien ocean fight to keep their research topic.



TQ:  Tell us something about A Darkling Sea that is not in the book description.

James:  It's about two spacefaring civilizations acting like fools while the low-tech native inhabitants they're fighting over try to figure out why.



TQ:  What inspired you to write A Darkling Sea? Why did you choose to write hard Science Fiction? Do you want to write in any other genres?

James:  I was inspired to write it by my growing irritation with the notion that people should keep our grubby hands off the universe, like we're a disease or something. I wanted to write a pro-contact novel.

As to why I picked a hard-SF approach, well, part of that's just my personality. I like to get stuff right. Plus I'm married to a scientist so I can show scientists doing science stuff pretty well.

That being said, I'm also a history devotee, so I'd love to write a historical fantasy novel or an alternate-history adventure.



TQ:  What sort of research did you do for A Darkling Sea?

James:  Oh, lots. I talked with my wife (a biologist) about creature design, and with a biochemist friend about the metabolism the organisms might use in the story's environment.

A lot of my research was double-dipping: I've written two or three different roleplaying sourcebooks on how to build a science fiction universe, so I've done lots of research for those on how to create planets, aliens, cultures, et cetera. Basically I breathe this stuff all the time.



TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why? Who is your favorite good guy, bad guy or ethically ambiguous character?

James:  The easiest character in Darkling Sea is the human viewpoint character, Rob Freeman. He's kind of a meatball Everyman hero, so I could just mentally turn my cap backwards and write him. The native scientist Broadtail was also pretty easy for me (though avoiding any visual or time-based references in his passages was hard).

The hardest was undoubtedly Gishora, the alien leader who helps to bring about the conflict even though he's trying to prevent it. He's a social manipulator who isn't as clever as he thinks he is, and I had a lot of difficulty showing that.



TQ:  Give us one of your favorite lines from A Darkling Sea.

James:  I have two. The first one is the first line of the book: "By the end of his second month at Hitode Station, Rob Freeman had already come up with 85 ways to murder Henri Kerlerec."

The second comes about midway through the book, after the humans have made contact with the inhabitants of Ilmatar: "There was a huge spiky alien monster perched atop the rock, but it was a familiar one and Rob gave a huge sigh of relief."



TQ:  What's next?

James:  My next novel is a near-future tale of space piracy, called Corsair. It's about a hacker who steals payloads bound from the Moon to the Earth and his nemesis, an Air Force officer trying to catch him. But when he gets involved in a plot much more sinister than he realizes, he has to join forces with his adversary to stop the real villains.



TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

James:  Thanks for inviting me!






A Darkling Sea

A Darkling Sea
Tor Books, January 28, 2014
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages

Interview with James L. Cambias, author of A Darkling Sea - January 28, 2014
On the planet Ilmatar, under a roof of ice a kilometer thick, a team of deep-sea diving scientists investigates the blind alien race that lives below. The Terran explorers have made an uneasy truce with the Sholen, their first extraterrestrial contact: so long as they don’t disturb the Ilmataran habitat, they’re free to conduct their missions in peace.

But when Henri Kerlerec, media personality and reckless adventurer, ends up sliced open by curious Ilmatarans, tensions between Terran and Sholen erupt, leading to a diplomatic disaster that threatens to escalate to war.

Against the backdrop of deep-sea guerrilla conflict, a new age of human exploration begins as alien cultures collide. Both sides seek the aid of the newly enlightened Ilmatarans. But what this struggle means for the natives—and the future of human exploration—is anything but certain, in A Darkling Sea by James Cambias.




Extras!

There is a terrific tie-in website for UNICA (The United Nations Interstellar Cooperation Agency): IlmatarMission.com:
  • A mission statement for Ilmatar Expedition III
  • Facts about Ilmatar
  • What we currently know about life on Ilmatar
  • A description of the Hitode Station
  • Crew bios where you can meet the personnel of the Ilmatar mission
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • The Ilmatar Expedition 111 Mission Blog
  • Information about The United Nations Interstellar Cooperation Agency
  • The personal website of the universally famous explorer and adventurer Henri Kerlerec, currently on mission with the Ilmatar Expedition




About James

Interview with James L. Cambias, author of A Darkling Sea - January 28, 2014
James L. Cambias was raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, and no matter where he goes, that city will always be home. He attended the University of Chicago intending to become an astronomer, but became fascinated by the history of science and wound up getting his degree in History and Philosophy of Science in 1988. At Chicago he also met Diane Kelly, who later became his wife.

Jim worked for two publishing companies right out of college -- Pelican Publishing of Louisiana in New Orleans, and then Nelson-Hall Publishers in Chicago. But in 1990 he decided to try freelance writing full time.

For most of a decade Jim wrote for roleplaying game publishers, becoming a mainstay at game magazines like GDW's Challenge, Steve Jackson's Pyramid, and the Star Wars Adventure Journal. Because of his Star Wars pieces he has an entry in the online "Wookieepedia," which is extremely impressive to his young son.

His first game book was Arabian Nights, a sourcebook for the Rolemaster game system from Iron Crown Enterprises. Over the next two decades he wrote six game books and coauthored to ten others. His best-known game products are probably GURPS Mars, GURPS Castle Falkenstein, Star HERO, and GURPS Space Fourth Edition.

In 2006 he joined with Diane Kelly and Joseph Steig to start Zygote Games, a company publishing science and nature-based games, dedicated to the idea that educational games don't have to be lame. The Zygote game Parasites Unleashed was picked by Scientific American as one of their "Top Science Toys" in 2012.

He has also written nonfiction for a variety of magazines and newspapers, including aviation history pieces for Airpower and Balloon Life, articles on maps, wine, parenting advice, travel, restaurant reviews, and astronomy. He writes a weekly stargazing column for the Greenfield Recorder.

Mr. Cambias has been writing science fiction since his teens, but his first professional sale came in the year 2000, when his short story "A Diagram of Rapture" appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Since then he has published 19 short stories in F&SF, Shimmer, and several original anthologies. In 2001 he was nominated for the John W. Campbell Award for best new writer. A Darkling Sea is his first novel.

When he isn't writing, Jim Cambias cuts firewood, cooks, plays roleplaying games, and haunts coffee shops in western Massachusetts. He blogs at www.jamescambias.com.





Book Tour

James L. Cambias, Brian Staveley (The Emperor's Blades) and Ramona Wheeler (Three Princes) will be touring together. Here is the schedule:

2/4, 7pm - Towne Book Center, Collegeville, PA

2/6, 7pm - Barnes & Noble, Holyoke, MA

2/7, 7pm -Annie’s Book Stop, Worcester, MA

2/8, 2pm - Barnes & Noble, Hingham, MA

2/11, 7pm - RiverRun Bookstore, Portsmouth, NH

2/13, 7pm - Harvard Coop, Cambridge, MA

2/15, 3pm - Bartleby’s Books, Wilmington, VT

2/22, 7pm - Flights of Fantasy, Albany, NY

2/24, 7:30pm – Housing Works Bookstore, New York, NY


The View From Monday - February 3, 2020Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC AuthorsCovers Revealed - Upcoming Works By DAC AuthorsThe View From Monday - May 9, 2016Review: A Darkling Sea by James L. CambiasWhat's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors? - Part 22What's Up for the Debut Author Challenge Authors in 2015? - Part 13Guest Blog by James L. Cambias - Sexifying Monsters! - February 24, 2014Interview with James L. Cambias, author of A Darkling Sea - January 28, 2014

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