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The Qwillery

A blog about books and other things speculative

Cover Reveal - FAKE CHOCOLATE by Amber Royer!

The Qwillery is thrilled to host the cover reveal for the 3rd novel in Amber Royer's Chocoverse  - FAKE CHOCOLATE!

When disease ravages Earth’s cacao plantations, Bo Benitez returns home to help with the media spin to hide that chocolate is in danger of being lost forever. HGB has come up with a new product – one which doesn’t appease the cocoa-addicted murderous, shark-toothed aliens threatening to invade the planet. Someone has to smooth things out. Just when Bo starts to make headway, someone tries to kidnap her. While trying to avoid more would-be-kidnappers, Bo finds out that HGB is developing a cure for withdrawal from the Invincible Heart. Will she let her need to be physically whole again tie her to HGB and its enigmatic CEO? When she gets a key piece of evidence that would unravel secrets from three different planets, she has tough choices to make about the future of her world and its place in the galaxy.

Fake Chocolate will be available in paperback and Kindle eBook on April 14, 2020!

Pre-order Fake Chocolate at Amazon and Barnes and Noble!

Space Pirates
Amber Royer

As a writer, influences come from a ton of different places and can pop up in your work years, even decades later. And when one idea sparks off another, those influences can be changed in ways you couldn’t have imagined before you started writing. With the Chocoverse, where there’s about to be a galactic war over controlling the source of chocolate, one big plot thread centers around space pirates who are known to grapple onto chocolate transport vessels, space the crew and take the cargo. Brill, the romantic lead in the series, is constantly reminding people he’s not a pirate – he’s a gray trader. Which goes a long way in defining his moral code. Even though he does questionable things over the course of the trilogy, there are some big lines he won’t cross.

People keep asking how I thought up the Chocoverse, and why I wrote it. There are a number of aspects and reasons. But for the inclusion of the space pirates, it is simple.

When I was a kid, we lived close enough to Galveston, Texas, to daytrip across to the island. After my husband and I first got married, we were even known to take the occasional ferry ride over just for dinner. We were spoiled to fresh Gulf Coast seafood, and after-dinner walks along the moonlit beach. As long as it wasn’t jellyfish season. And there wasn’t a high concentration of washed-up seaweed or tar balls. (If you’re not from Texas, here’s an explanation of what a tar ball is:

Galveston doesn’t rate tops as a beach destination. But one thing it does have is history. And I’ve always been fascinated with it. Not one, but two, of my early (eck, unpublishable) novels were set in the midst of the events leading up to the 1900 hurricane that devastated the island. ( I took a run at it as historical fiction, then again as time travel. When I was doing the research, I spent a lot of time upstairs in the Special Collections section of the Rosenberg Library, handling with gloved hands original letters survivors wrote in the aftermath of the devastation, learning about the way they piped sand in from underwater in order to raise the island farther up out of the ocean by fifteen feet (watch this video detailing it: and then topping it with a sea wall to brace against another storm. (2008’s Hurricane Ike took a similar path across the island, and while the damage was still devastating, it was mitigated by the sea wall).

But there was something else that happened as a result of raising the island. Jean Lafitte’s pirate treasure – if it every really existed – was lost forever under fifteen feet worth of new soil, and the already vague ideas about the potential location were made worthless when the landmarks all changed. ( People today are still looking for the treasure up Texas rivers, and in Lafitte’s other favorite town, New Orleans.

There’s so much mystery surrounding Lafitte – nobody even knows for sure when he was born or when he died (either in exile or in battle, depending in which sources you believe). And how history views him as a person – well, that varies. After all, one historian’s pirate is another historian’s privateer.

A privateer is a pirate who is backed by a specific government, who is legally allowed to commit acts of piracy against ships from countries with which that country is at odds. Even then, it wasn’t always clear cut. As part of his brother Pierre’s operation, Lafitte likely got his first Letter of Marque (privateer sponsorship) from the French, in Saint-Domingue (now Haiti). (This of course cannot be verified – the sources keep hedging with statements like, “Ramsay speculates that Lafitte was born in the French colony of Saint-Domingue. . .” ). That early privateering would have started around 1805. But by the time war broke out in 1812, a number of the Lafitte Brothers’ boats had Letters of Marque from the United States – and the British. And other governments, too. According to, “Goods captured from British ships were supposed to be turned over to the US, but it was hard to tell what was what, so the Americans quickly felt double-crossed by Lafitte and his men. On November 13, 1812, the Americans raided Barataria, arrested the Lafittes and 25 of their men and confiscated all of their goods. The borthers Lafitte made bail but then skipped, not returning for trial. Pierre was re-arrested in 1813 and jailed. Jean continued the smuggling and piracy . . .”

Even after that, when the British offered Lafitte a pardon for his crimes in exchange for information that could turn the tide of the war, Lafitte refused, honoring his previous loyalties. (His brother was “allowed to escape” from prison, as a sort of a thank-you for this.) Yet later, we see Lafitte in the role of spy, assisting the Spanish in their attempts to stop Mexico from gaining independence. So it is really hard to see what his motives were in all of this, and where his values lay. Many of his decisions can be explained best in terms of self-interest and profit. And yet, he was a folk hero, even during his own lifetime.

It was this complexity and moral ambiguity about pirates that fascinated me (and reading Treasure Island as a kid didn’t hurt.) There is such of a sense of romance surrounding pirates – and yet, if you look at accounts of actual modern-day piracy, you can see how coldly horrific their actions must have been. That’s something I wanted to explore a bit with the galactic-level pirates in Free Chocolate.

On some geeky level, space pirates are just cool. Look at the joy protagonist Mark Watney feels in The Martian, when he’s able – through some quirks of real-world international law – to say, "After I board Ares 4, before talking to NASA, I will take control of a craft in international waters without permission. That makes me a pirate! A space pirate!"

But I didn’t want to just slap the word “space” in front of everything and consider it a magnification of the earth equivalent. (The silliness of that is explored in this TvTropes article over here: -- but don’t blame me if you get sucked in clicking links to other terms on their site.)

And on a practical level, look at Treasure Planet, which completely bombed at the box office (though it’s my second favorite Treasure island film adaptation – right after Muppet Treasure Island.) It probably did so poorly in part because “Space pirates,” as a term is almost a joke (which makes it a good thing I’m writing a comedy). There are other universes where characters are committing piracy (erherm, I’m looking at you Firefly), but they just don’t call it that. Which makes it more palatable. But Free Chocolate’s supposed to be funny, so I let the characters use the term. At one point in Book 3 Bo is exasperated about being kidnapped by space pirates. Again.

Previously in the Chocoverse

Free Chocolate
Chocoverse 1
Angry Robot, June 5, 2018
Trade Paperback and eBook, 448 pages

Latina culinary arts student, Bo Benitez, becomes a fugitive when she’s caught stealing a cacao pod from the heavily-defended plantations that keep chocolate, Earth’s sole valuable export, safe from a hungry galaxy. Forces arraying against her including her alien boyfriend and a reptilian cop. But when she escapes onto an unmarked starship things go from bad to worse: it belongs to the race famed throughout the galaxy for eating stowaways. Surrounded by dangerous yet hunky aliens, Bo starts to uncover clues that the threat to Earth may be bigger than she first thought.

Amazon : Barnes and Noble : Book Depository
Books-A-Million : IndieBound : iBooks : Kobo

Pure Chocolate
Chocoverse 2
Angry Robot, March 5, 2019
Trade Paperback and eBook, 464 pages

To save everyone she loves, Bo Benitez is touring Zant, home of the murderous, shark-toothed aliens who so recently tried to eat her. In the midst of her stint as Galactic paparazzi princess, she discovers that Earth has been exporting tainted chocolate to the galaxy, and getting aliens hooked on cocoa. Bo must choose whether to go public, or just smile for the cameras and make it home alive. She’s already struggling with her withdrawal from the Invincible Heart, and her love life has a life of its own, but when insidious mind worms intervene, things start to get complicated!

Amazon : Barnes and Noble : Books-A-Million : IndieBound : iBooks : Kobo

Chocoverse Short Stories

There is a Chocoverse short story in Amazing Stories, Issue 5: "When Kromish Eyes are Smiling" - Bo winds up having to cooperate with one of Brill’s friends after the two of them are kidnapped by a bounty hunter with a penchant for strategy games. Get the issue at Amazon.

And a Chocoverse short story, "Sublingual Breakdown", at Book Funnel:

About Amber

Amber Royer is the author of the high-energy comedic space opera Chocoverse series (Free Chocolate, Pure Chocolate available now. Fake Chocolate coming April 2020). She teaches creative writing classes for teens and adults through both the University of Texas at Arlington Continuing Education Department and Writing Workshops Dallas. She is the discussion leader for the Saturday Night Write writing craft group. She spent five years as a youth librarian, where she organized teen writers’ groups and teen writing contests. In addition to two cookbooks co-authored with her husband, Amber has published a number of articles on gardening, crafting and cooking for print and on-line publications.They are currently documenting a project growing Cacao trees indoors.

Website  ~  Facebook  ~  Twitter @amber_royer  ~  Instagram

Click on the image to learn more about the Chocoverse at Amber's website!

Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. Belcher

The cover for the 2nd novel in The Brotherhood of the Wheel series by R. S. Belcher has been revealed! King of the Road will be published in December by Tor Books.

You may read a Guest Blog by R. S. Belcher - The Night at the Edge of the Road: Where the Nightwise and Brotherhood of the Wheel Series Intersect - here.


The Brotherhood of the Wheel
Brotherhood of the Wheel 1
Tor Books, March 21, 2017
Trade Paperback, 416 pages
Hardcover and eBook, March 1, 2016

Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. Belcher
R.S. Belcher, the acclaimed author of The Six-Gun Tarot and The Shotgun Arcana launches a gritty new urban fantasy series about the mysterious society of truckers known only as, The Brotherhood of The Wheel.

In 1119 A.D., a group of nine crusaders became known as the Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon--a militant monastic order charged with protecting pilgrims and caravans traveling on the roads to and from the Holy Land. In time, the Knights Templar would grow in power and, ultimately, be laid low. But a small offshoot of the Templars endure and have returned to the order's original mission: to defend the roads of the world and guard those who travel on them.

Theirs is a secret line of knights: truckers, bikers, taxi hacks, state troopers, bus drivers, RV gypsies--any of the folks who live and work on the asphalt arteries of America. They call themselves the Brotherhood of the Wheel.

Jimmy Aussapile is one such knight. He's driving a big rig down South when a promise to a ghostly hitchhiker sets him on a quest to find out the terrible truth behind a string of children gone missing all across the country. The road leads him to Lovina Hewitt, a skeptical Louisiana State Police investigator working the same case and, eventually, to a forgotten town that's not on any map--and to the secret behind the eerie Black-Eyed Kids said to prowl the highways.

And while you're waiting for the second novel in The Brotherhood of the Wheel series, check out the Nightwise series and the Golgotha series.


Nightwise 1
Tor Books, January 16, 2018 (New Cover & Additional Content)
Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Trade Paperback, September 20, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, August 18, 2015

Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. Belcher
R.S. Belcher, the acclaimed author of The Six-Gun Tarot and The Shotgun Arcana launches a gritty new urban fantasy series set in today's seedy occult underworld in Nightwise.

In the more shadowy corners of the world, frequented by angels and demons and everything in-between, Laytham Ballard is a legend. It's said he raised the dead at the age of ten, stole the Philosopher's Stone in Vegas back in 1999, and survived the bloodsucking kiss of the Mosquito Queen. Wise in the hidden ways of the night, he's also a cynical bastard who stopped thinking of himself as the good guy a long time ago.

Now a promise to a dying friend has Ballard on the trail of an escaped Serbian war criminal with friends in both high and low places-and a sinister history of blood sacrifices. Ballard is hell-bent on making Dusan Slorzack pay for his numerous atrocities, but Slorzack seems to have literally dropped off the face of the Earth, beyond the reach of his enemies, the Illuminati, and maybe even the Devil himself. To find Slorzack, Ballard must follow a winding, treacherous path that stretches from Wall Street and Washington, D.C. to backwoods hollows and truckstops, while risking what's left of his very soul . . . .

The Night Dahlia
Laytham Ballard 2
Tor Books, April 3, 2018
Trade Paperback and eBook, 400 pages

Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. Belcher
Laytham Ballard once protected humanity as part of the Nightwise, a secret order of modern-day mages dedicated to holding hellish supernatural forces at bay, but that was before a string of sadistic ritual murders shook everything he believed in—and sent him down a much darker path. One that has already cost him most of his soul, as well as everything he once held dear.

Now a powerful faerie mob boss has hired Ballard to find his lost-lost daughter, who went missing several years ago. The long-cold trail leads him across the globe, from the luxurious playgrounds of the rich and famous to the seedy occult underbelly of Los Angeles, where creatures of myth and legend mingle with street gangs and sex clubs, and where Ballard finds his own guilty past waiting for him around every shadowy corner. To find Caern Ankou, he will have to confront old enemies, former friends and allies, and a grisly cold case that has haunted him for years.

But is Caern still alive? And, perhaps more importantly, does she even want to be found?


The Six-Gun Tarot
Golgotha 1
Tor Fantasy, March 25, 2014
Mass Market Paperback, 480 pages
Hardcover and eBook, January 22, 2013

Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. Belcher
Six-Gun Tarot is the first book in the twisted weird west world of the Golgotha series by R.S. Belcher.

Nevada, 1869: Beyond the pitiless 40-Mile Desert lies Golgotha, a cattle town that hides more than its share of unnatural secrets. The sheriff bears the mark of the noose around his neck; some say he is a dead man whose time has not yet come. His half-human deputy is kin to coyotes. The mayor guards a hoard of mythical treasures. A banker’s wife belongs to a secret order of assassins. And a shady saloon owner, whose fingers are in everyone’s business, may know more about the town’s true origins than he’s letting on.

A haven for the blessed and the damned, Golgotha has known many strange events, but nothing like the primordial darkness stirring in the abandoned silver mine overlooking the town. Bleeding midnight, an ancient evil is spilling into the world, and unless the sheriff and his posse can saddle up in time, Golgotha will have seen its last dawn…and so will all of Creation.

R.S. Belcher’s The Six-Gun Tarot is “an astonishing blend of first-rate steampunk fantasy and Western adventure.” (Library Journal, Starred Review)

The Shotgun Arcana
Golgotha 2
Tor Books, October 20, 2015
Trade Paperback, 400 pages
Hardcover and eBook, October 7, 2014

Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. Belcher
R. S. Belcher's debut novel, The Six-Gun Tarot, was enthusiastically greeted by critics and readers, who praised its wildly inventive mixture of dark fantasy, steampunk, and the Wild West. Now Belcher returns to Golgotha, Nevada, a bustling frontier town that hides more than its fair share of unnatural secrets.

1870. A haven for the blessed and the damned, including a fallen angel, a mad scientist, a pirate queen, and a deputy who is kin to coyotes, Golgotha has come through many nightmarish trials, but now an army of thirty-two outlaws, lunatics, serial killers, and cannibals are converging on the town, drawn by a grisly relic that dates back to the Donner Party...and the dawn of humanity.

Sheriff Jon Highfather and his deputies already have their hands full dealing with train robbers, a mysterious series of brutal murders, and the usual outbreaks of weirdness. But with thirty-two of the most vicious killers on Earth riding into Golgotha in just a few day's time, the town and its people will be tested as never before-and some of them will never be the same.

The Shotgun Arcana is even more spectacularly ambitious and imaginative than The Six-Gun Tarot, and confirms R. S. Belcher's status as a rising star.

The Queen of Swords
Golgotha 3
Tor Books, June 27, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages
Trade Paperback, November 27, 2018

Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. Belcher
1720. Escaping the gallows, Anne Bonney, the infamous pirate queen, sets sail in search of a fabulous treasure said to be hiding in a lost city of bones somewhere in the heart of Africa. But what she finds is a destiny she never expected . . . .

1870. Maude Stapleton is a respectable widow raising a daughter on her own. Few know, however, that Maude belongs to an ancient order of assassins, the Daughters of Lilith, and heir to the legacy of Anne Bonney, whose swashbuckling exploits blazed a trail that Maude must now follow—if she ever wants to see her kidnapped daughter again!

Searching for her missing child, come hell or high water, Maude finds herself caught in the middle of a secret war between the Daughters of Lilith and their ancestral enemies, the monstrous Sons of Typhon, inhuman creatures spawned by primordial darkness, she embarks on a perilous voyage that will ultimately lead her to the long-lost secret of Anne Bonney—and the Father of All Monsters.

Oneof the most popular characters from The Six-Gun Tarot and The Shotgun Arcana now ventures beyond the Weird Weston a boldly imaginative, globe-spanning adventure of her own!


The Qwillery is thrilled to reveal the cover for The Bulletproof Spy #1: The Silver Bullet Affair by S.L. Lahna. This debut novella will be available at Amazon on March 15th. The cover art is by Dante Saunders.

The year is 1965, and Alan Gable is the best spy America doesn’t know they have. Operating off books and outside the law, Alan has been tasked to do the impossible—get inside a laboratory in Moscow, get the Russian’s lead nuclear scientist, and get out, all without the KGB ever knowing he was there. No human could do it.

But Alan isn’t human.

Yulian’s life is perfect. A top counter-intelligence agent for the KGB, favored by the head of Section 1. His best friend is happily awaiting his first child. His indiscretions have remained discreet.

Until Dr. Tamm and his entire lab goes missing, and Yulian’s life starts to unravel.

The only way to survive long enough to get the bottom of the mystery is for Alan and Yulian to work together. If they can survive each other that is.

A madcap mashup of Hellboy and The Man From Uncle, The Silver Bullet Affair is a winning combination of espionage and the supernatural, an action-packed novella from start to finish lead by LGBT characters. Fans of the genre who’ve grown weary of the same old James Bond song and dance will find a new series to love with the Bulletproof Spy.

About the Author

S. L. Lahna goes by they pronouns and knows way too much about Weird Things and Cold War history. Will tell you all of the reasons why James Bond is Wrong.  They are hard at work on various novels for teens and adults. Some are about asexual magicians and their demonic mentors, some are about mentally-ill monster hunters, some are about pansexual teenage boys trying to survive a horror movie. Their day job is tearing apart books for money as a freelance editor at Word Vagabond. The Bulletproof Spy series is their debut novella.

Twitter @Vagabond_Sue  ~  Facebook

Cover Reveal and Excerpt - Windhome by Kristin Landon

The Qwillery is thrilled to help reveal the cover for Windhome by Kristin Landon coming in December from Candlemark & Gleam. The fabulous cover is by Julie Dillon.

See the full Wrap Cover Reveal and another excerpt from Windhome at Candlemark & Gleam here.

Candlemark & Gleam, December 11, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 346 pages

Cover Reveal and Excerpt - Windhome by Kristin Landon
Earth has sent out exploratory expeditions in a desperate attempt to discover the nature of the alien force that wiped out at least one extrasolar civilization and now threatens Earth itself. One of the exploratory starships is stealth-attacked by the hostile aliens. The survivors, marooned among the pre-technological inhabitants of the icy world of Windhome, struggle to survive, to understand this harsh world and its few, grim people—and, somehow, to fulfill their mission. Thrown into an unwilling alliance with a Windhome outsider faction, exiled into wilderness, two of the human crew must live by this world’s bitter laws, accept the ways of its people—and eventually make a terrifying choice.


        Only here, on all of Windhome, was music studied as an art. Here the crowds were smaller, but they stood in silence to listen. The music troubled Pierre. The men’s deep, warm voices shaped long, curving branches of melody over a firm ground. It was music potent with mystery, heavy with the considered grief of years. The strange scale, like and yet unlike any music of Earth—the sense of searching, searching, for a center, for return, and just as it seemed the music might come to rest there, the voices would fade....
        Pierre knew what he was hearing in that music, and behind that music. He could not allow the dark, ravenous longing for home to begin again. Yet the memories came: The songs and dances in his village, handed down from generation to generation on the fringe of the Covenant world. The singing in the church at Christmas. And at last, his own son’s face, pinched with distress—Why are you going away? Was I bad? Pierre knotted his hands together, gripped until the bones hurt.
        He could not allow himself to remember that now. He straightened, stood firm, watching Kelru’s tall figure moving through the crowd, always looking down. And still he listened to the music. The words were simpler than the harmonies that carried them. Perhaps if he concentrated on the words— The singers’ faces were intent, disciplined. Over those mountains is my home, they sang. In this broad valley is the land where I will die. Worldwind, carry my ashes high. Carry them higher than those mountains, O wind.
        Pierre’s breath caught in his throat and he looked up, up at the stars, which trembled at first, trembled and then stilled as he won his battle yet again. Thousands of stars burned there, a bitter glory. He had never seen such stars in the dusty skies of Earth. Here the night was a flawless emptiness between himself and infinity. He stood exposed on the backbone of an alien world, waiting for death to find him. To find them all.

About Kristin

Kristin Landon lives in Oregon with her husband Tom and an imperious Cavalier spaniel named Lucy. In addition to writing science fiction, she works as a freelance copyeditor of a wide range of scholarly and medical books. Her novelette “From the Depths” appeared in the highly acclaimed science fiction anthology To Shape the Dark (Candlemark & Gleam, 2016). She is also the author of the Hidden Worlds trilogy: The Hidden Worlds, The Cold Minds, and The Dark Reaches (Ace Books).

Website  ~  Twitter @kristinlandon

Cover Revealed - Heaven's Crooked Finger by Hank Early

The cover for Heaven's Crooked Finger by Hank Early was revealed yesterday. Heaven's Crooked Finger will be published in November by Crooked Lane Books. I love this cover!

Hank Early (John Mantooth 2013)

Heaven's Crooked Finger
An Earl Marcus Mystery 1
Crooked Lane Books, November 7, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 336 pages

Cover Revealed - Heaven's Crooked Finger by Hank Early
Earl Marcus thought he had left the mountains of Georgia behind forever, and with them, the painful memories of a childhood spent under the evangelical rule of his father RJ’s church―a church built on fear, penance, and the twisting, writhing mass of snakes. But then an ominous photo of RJ is delivered to Earl’s home. The photograph is dated long after his father’s burial, and there’s no doubt that the man in the picture is very much alive.

As Earl returns to Church of the Holy Flame searching for the truth, faithful followers insist that his father has risen to a holy place high in the mountains. Nobody will talk about the teenage girls who go missing, only to return with strange tattoo-like marks on their skin. Rumors swirl about an old well that sits atop one of the mountains, a place of unimaginable power and secrets. Earl doesn’t know what to believe, but he has long been haunted by his father, forever lurking in the shadows of his life. Desperate to leave his sinful Holy Flame childhood in the past, Earl digs up deeply buried secrets to discover the truth before time runs out and he’s the one put underground in Heaven’s Crooked Finger, Hank Early’s thrilling series debut.

About Hank

Cover Revealed - Heaven's Crooked Finger by Hank Early
Photo by Pamela Houston
Hank Early spent much of his youth in the mountains of North Georgia, but he never held a snake or got struck by lightning. These days, he lives in central Alabama with his wife and two kids. He writes crime, watches too much basketball, and rarely sleeps. Heaven's Crooked Finger is his first novel. He's represented by Alec Shane of Writers House.

In a previous life, he published some books as John Mantooth. Check them out here.

Website  ~  Twitter @hankjearly  ~  Facebook


Cover Revealed: An Echo of Things to Come by James Islington

The cover has been revealed for the 2nd novel in James Islington's Licanius Trilogy - An Echo of Things to Come.

The jacket design is by Lauren Panepinto and the illustration is by Dominick Saponaro.

Read The Qwillery's interview with James here.

An Echo of Things to Come
The Licanius Trilogy 2
Orbit, August 22, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 704 pages

Cover Revealed: An Echo of Things to Come by James Islington
"Love The Wheel of Time? This is about to become your new favorite series." - B&N SF & Fantasy Blog

The second book in a glorious new fantasy trilogy by the next major force in commercial epic fantasy.

In the wake of the devastating attack on Ilin Illan, an amnesty has been declared for all Augurs - finally allowing them to emerge from hiding and openly oppose the dark forces massing against Andarra. However as Davian and his new allies hurry north toward the ever-weakening Boundary, fresh horrors along their path suggest that their reprieve may have come far too late.

In the capital, Wirr is forced to contend with assassins and an increasingly hostile Administration as he controversially assumes the mantle of Northwarden, uncovering a mystery that draws into question everything commonly believed about the rebellion his father led twenty years ago. Meanwhile, Asha begins a secret investigation into the disappearance of the Shadows, determined to discover not only where they went but the origin of the Vessels that created them - and, ultimately, a cure.

And with time against him as he races to fulfill the treacherous bargain with the Lyth, Caeden continues to wrestle with the impossibly heavy burdens of his past. Yet as more and more of his memories return, he begins to realise that the motivations of the two sides in this ancient war may not be as clear-cut as they first seemed...

And The Licanius Trilogy 1

The Shadow of What Was Lost
The Licanius Trilogy 1
Orbit, November 8, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 704 pages

Cover Revealed: An Echo of Things to Come by James Islington
"Love The Wheel of Time? This is about to become your new favorite series." - B&N SF & Fantasy Blog

"Storytelling assurance rare for a debut . . . Fans of Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson will find much to admire." - Guardian

"Islington has built a world with all the right genre elements: complex magic, terrifying threats out of legend, political intrigue, and a large cast of characters whose motivations are seldom clear. Fans of doorstop epic fantasy will not be disappointed." - Publishers Weekly

"Ingeniously plotted...Islington's natural storytelling ability provides incessant plot twists and maintains a relentless pace...A promising page-turner from a poised newcomer." - Kirkus

"Wonderful worldbuilding and terrific characters." - Boing Boing

"Will appeal to anybody looking for a coming-of-age fantasy tale with likeable characters and strong world building." - Fantasy Faction

As destiny calls, a journey begins.

It has been twenty years since the god-like Augurs were overthrown and killed. Now, those who once served them - the Gifted - are spared only because they have accepted the rebellion's Four Tenets, vastly limiting their powers.

As a Gifted, Davian suffers the consequences of a war lost before he was even born. He and others like him are despised. But when Davian discovers he wields the forbidden power of the Augurs, he sets into motion a chain of events that will change everything.

To the west, a young man whose fate is intertwined with Davian's wakes up in the forest, covered in blood and with no memory of who he is...

And in the far north, an ancient enemy long thought defeated begins to stir...

Cover Revealed - The Song of the Dead by Carrie Patel

Angry Robot has revealed the cover for The Song of the Dead by Carrie Patel, the 3rd novel in the Recoletta series. John Coulthart created the cover.

The Song of the Dead
Recoletta 3
Angry Robot, May 2, 2017
Mass Market Paperback and eBook

Cover Revealed - The Song of the Dead by Carrie Patel
Finally, the lost histories of the Catastrophe will be revealed and with them the ultimate fate of the buried city of Recoletta in the dramatic conclusion to Carrie Patel’s trilogy.

With Ruthers dead and the Library Accord signed by Recoletta, its neighbours, and its farming communes, Inspector Malone and her partner Laundress Jane Lin are in limbo as the city leaders around them vie for power.

A desperate attempt to save Arnault from execution leads to Malone’s arrest and Jane’s escape. They must pursue each other across the sea to discover a civilization that has held together over the centuries. There they will finally learn the truths about the Catastrophe that drove their own civilization underground.

File Under: Fantasy


The Buried Life
Angry Robot Books, March 3, 2015
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 336 pages

Cover Revealed - The Song of the Dead by Carrie Patel
The gaslight and shadows of the underground city of Recoletta hide secrets and lies. When Inspector Liesl Malone investigates the murder of a renowned historian, she finds herself stonewalled by the all-powerful Directorate of Preservation – Recoletta’s top-secret historical research facility.

When a second high-profile murder threatens the very fabric of city society, Malone and her rookie partner Rafe Sundar must tread carefully, lest they fall victim to not only the criminals they seek, but the government which purports to protect them. Knowledge is power, and power must be preserved at all costs…

File Under: Science Fantasy [ Thriller | Society in Ruins | Fully Booked | New and Weird ]

Cities and Thrones
Recoletta 2
Angry Robot, July 7, 2015
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 448 pages

Cover Revealed - The Song of the Dead by Carrie Patel
In the fantastical, gaslit underground city of Recoletta, oligarchs from foreign states and revolutionaries from the farming communes vie for power in the wake of the city’s coup. The dark, forbidden knowledge of how the city came to be founded has been released into the world for all to read, and now someone must pay.

Inspector Liesl Malone is on her toes, trying to keep the peace, and Arnault’s spy ring is more active than ever. Has the city’s increased access to knowledge put the citizens in even more danger? Allegiances change, long-held beliefs are adjusted, and things are about to get messy.

File Under: Fantasy [ Buried Cities / Secrets & Lies / Revolutionary / Total War ]

Cover Revealed: Empire of Time by Daniel Godfrey

The cover for Empire of Time, the 2nd novel in the New Pompeii series, by Daniel Godfrey has been revealed.

Empire of Time
New Pompeii 2
Titan Books, June 20, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 432 pages

Cover Revealed: Empire of Time by Daniel Godfrey
Fifteen years on from the events of NEW POMPEII, and New Rome is cut off from the rest of the world in a new Cold War. The Romans, lead by Calpurnia, have control of the time travel technology, which keeps western governments at bay. But the public at large know nothing of this, and are eager for action to destroy New Rome, a place where slavery and deadly gladiatorial combat flourish. Meanwhile Calpurnia is fending off threats to her control over her people, aided by Decimus Horatius Pullus, the man who was once Nick Houghton… Has Nick truly embraced the Roman way of life? Can the Romans harness the power of time travel or will the new world destroy them?

Cover Revealed: Among the Fallen by N.S. Dolkart

The cover for Among the Fallen, the 2nd novel in the Godserfs series, by N.S. Dolkart has been revealed.

Check out this stunning cover art by Andreas Rocha.

Among the Fallen
Godserfs 2
Angry Robot, April 4, 2017
Mass Market Paperback and eBook

Cover Revealed: Among the Fallen by N.S. Dolkart
The Gods are Drawing Battle Lines

In the wake of the battle of Silent Hall, the city of Ardis is reeling, its leaders frightened and disorganized. The remaining oracle of the god Ravennis has resurfaced there and is spreading a new gospel – one in which Ravennis is the new Lord of the Underworld. Narky is swept up in the promotion of his religion, even while the prevailing church of Magor tries to put down its upstart rivals.

In the meantime, Criton and Bandu discover a community of Dragon Touched that has survived in hiding, and with Criton’s leadership, they begin a campaign to retake their former territories with the power of God Most High at their backs.

Left to their own devices, Phaedra and Hunter go on a quest to rediscover the secrets of academic wizardry. But they soon discover that all five islanders are needed to prevent a true worldwide catastrophe. If only Criton and Narky weren’t already on opposing sides of a regional war…

File Under: Fantasy

Cover Revealed - Horizon by Fran Wilde

The cover for Horizon, the 3rd novel in the Bone Universe series, by Fran Wilde has been revealed at

Check out this fabulous cover art by Tommy Arnold.

Bone Universe 3
Tor Books, September 26, 2017
Hardcover and eBook

Cover Revealed - Horizon by Fran Wilde
A winged society faces the threat of ultimate extinction in the thrilling finale to Fran Wilde's Bone Universe fantasy series

"One of the most fun, imaginative fantasy novels...I'm already anxiously awaiting her next book." —Book Riot on Updraft

"That rare bird, the follow-up to a highly praised first novel that doesn't just equal its predecessor's accomplishments, but exceeds them." —Locus Publications on Cloudbound

A City of living Bone towers crumbles to the ground and danger surrounds. Kirit Densira has lost everything she loved the most—her mother, her home, and the skies above. Nat Brokenwings—once Kirit's brother long before the rebellion tore them apart—is still trying to save his family in the face of catastrophe. They will need to band together once more to ensure not just own survival, but that of their entire community.


Bone Universe 1
Tor Books, September 13, 2016
Trade Paperback, 368 pages
Hardcover and eBook, September 1, 2015

Cover Revealed - Horizon by Fran Wilde
In Fran Wilde's Updraft, a young woman must expose a dangerous secret to save everyone she loves.

Welcome to a world of wind and bone, songs and silence, betrayal and courage.

Kirit Densira cannot wait to pass her wingtest and begin flying as a trader by her mother's side, being in service to her beloved home tower and exploring the skies beyond. When Kirit inadvertently breaks Tower Law, the city's secretive governing body, the Singers, demand that she become one of them instead. In an attempt to save her family from greater censure, Kirit must give up her dreams to throw herself into the dangerous training at the Spire, the tallest, most forbidding tower, deep at the heart of the City.

As she grows in knowledge and power, she starts to uncover the depths of Spire secrets. Kirit begins to doubt her world and its unassailable Laws, setting in motion a chain of events that will lead to a haunting choice, and may well change the city forever-if it isn't destroyed outright.

Bone Universe 2
Tor Books, September 27, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages

Cover Revealed - Horizon by Fran Wilde
After the dust settles, the City of living bones begins to die, and more trouble brews beneath the clouds in the companion to Updraft.

"A thrilling and complex tale about the most difficult stage of a revolution: what do you do after you win? Highly recommended both for the story it tells as well as how it tells that story. Wilde takes risks that pay off hugely.” —Ken Liu, Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author of The Grace of Kings

The Towers in disarray, without a governing body or any defense against the dangers lurking in the clouds, and daily life is full of terror and strife. Nat Densira, the wing-brother to Kirit (Skyshouter, Spirebreaker, no-longer-of-Densira) sets out to be a hero in his own waysitting on the new Council to cast votes protecting Tower-born, and exploring lower tiers to find more materials to repair the struggling City.

But what he finds down-tier is more secretsand now Nat will have to decide who to trust, and how to trust himself without losing those he holds most dear, before a dangerous myth raises a surprisingly realistic threat to the crippled City, in Cloudbound.

"I long to know more about the world and where Wilde's imagination will soar next. In the meantime it's all I can do to slow-clap this powerfully engaging debut: Wilde's world and characters—as is entirely appropriate—blew me away." —NPR on Updraft

Cover Reveal - FAKE CHOCOLATE by Amber Royer!Cover Revealed - King of the Road by R. S. BelcherCover Reveal: THE BULLETPROOF SPY #1: THE SILVER BULLET AFFAIR by S.L. LahnaCover Reveal and Excerpt - Windhome by Kristin LandonCover Revealed - Heaven's Crooked Finger by Hank EarlyCover Revealed: An Echo of Things to Come by James IslingtonCover Revealed - The Song of the Dead by Carrie PatelCover Revealed: Empire of Time by Daniel GodfreyCover Revealed: Among the Fallen by N.S. DolkartCover Revealed - Horizon by Fran Wilde

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