There are 8 debuts for August. Please note that we use the publisher's publication date in the United States, not copyright dates or non-US publication dates.
The August debut authors and their novels are listed in alphabetical order by author (not book title or publication date). Take a good look at the covers. Voting for your favorite August cover for the 2015 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will take place starting on August 15th.
If you are participating as a reader in the Challenge, please let us know in the comments what you are thinking of reading or email us at "DAC . TheQwillery @ gmail . com" (remove the spaces and quotation marks). Please note that we list all debuts for the month (of which we are aware), but not all of these authors will be 2015 Debut Author Challenge featured authors. However, any of these novels may be read by Challenge readers to meet the goal for August. The list is correct as of the day posted.
Adrienne CeltThe Daughters
Liveright, August 3, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 272 pages
In this virtuosic debut, a world-class soprano seeks to reclaim her voice from the curse that winds through her family tree.
Lulu can't sing. Since the traumatic birth of her daughter, the internationally renowned soprano hasn't dared utter a note. She's afraid that her body is too fragile and that she may have lost her talent to a long-dreaded curse afflicting all of the mothers in her family.
When Lulu was a child, her strong-willed grandmother Ada filled her head with fables of the family's enchanted history in the Polish countryside. A fantastical lore took hold—an incantatory mix of young love, desperate hope, and one sinister bargain that altered the family's history forever. Since that fateful pact, Ada tells Lulu, each mother in their family has been given a daughter, but each daughter has exacted an essential cost from her mother.
Ada was the first to recognize young Lulu's transcendent talent, spotting it early on in their cramped Chicago apartment, then watching her granddaughter ascend to dizzying heights in packed international concert halls. But as the curse predicted, Lulu's mother, a sultry and elusive jazz singer, disappeared into her bitterness in the face of Lulu's superior talent—before disappearing from her family's life altogether. Now, in the early days of her own daughter's life, Lulu now finds herself weighing her overwhelming love for her child against the burden of her family's past.
In incandescent prose, debut novelist Adrienne Celt skillfully intertwines the sensuous but precise physicality of both motherhood and music. She infuses The Daughters with the spirit of the rusalka, a bewitching figure of Polish mythology that inspired Dvořák's classic opera. The result is a tapestry of secrets, affairs, and unimaginable sacrifices, revealing a family legacy laced with brilliance, tragedy, and most mysterious and seductive of all—the resonant ancestral lore that binds each mother to the one that came before.
Nick Holdstock The Casualties
Thomas Dunne Books, August 4, 2015
Hardcover ane eBook, 288 pages
Debut - Fiction
In Nick Holdstock's The Casualties, a man recounts the final weeks of his neighborhood before the apocalyptic event that only a few of the eccentric residents will survive.
Samuel Clark likes secrets. He wants to know the hidden stories of the bizarre characters on the little streets of Edinburgh, Scotland. He wants to know about a nymphomaniac, a man who lives under a bridge, a girl with a cracked face. He wants to uncover their histories because he has secrets of his own. He believes, as people do, that he is able to change. He believes, as the whole world does, that there is plenty of time to solve his problems. But Samuel Clark and the rest of the world are wrong. Change and tragedy are going to scream into his and everyone's lives. It will be a great transformation, a radical change; and it just might be worth the cost.
Written by a rising literary star whose work has been published in notoriously selective publications such as n+1 and The Southern Review, The Casualties is an ambitious debut novel that explores how we see ourselves, our past and our possible futures. It asks the biggest question: How can we be saved?
Harper Voyager UK, August 13, 2015
eBook, 400 pages
(Debut - Adult)
Rodrig Wishard is a killer, a thief and a liar. He’s a fighting man who prefers to solve his problems with his sword.
In a world without government or law, where a man’s only loyalty is to his family and faerie tales are strictly for children, Rodrig Wishard is not happy to discover that he’s carrying faerie blood. Something his family neglected to tell him. Not only that but he’s started to see faeries for real.
If he’s going to make any sense of it he’s going to have to go right to the source – the faeries themselves. But that’s easier said than done when the only information he has to go on is from bards and myth.
David NabhanThe Pilots of the Borealis
Talos, August 11, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 236 pages
Top Gun heads to outer space in this throwback to the classic science fiction of Asimov, Clarke, and Heinlein.
Strapped in to artificial wings spanning twenty-five feet across, your arms push a tenth of your body weight with each pump as you propel yourself at frightening speeds through the air. Inside a pressurized dome on the Moon, subject to one-sixth Earth’s gravity, there are swarms of chiseled, fearless, superbly trained flyers all around you, jostling for air space like peregrine falcons racing for the prize. This was the sport of piloting, and after Helium-3, piloting was one of the first things that entered anyone’s mind when Borealis was mentioned.
It was Helium-3 that powered humanity’s far-flung civilization expansion, feeding fusion reactors from the Alliances on Earth to the Terran Ring, Mars, the Jovian colonies, and all the way out to distant Titan. The supply, taken from the surface of the Moon, had once seemed endless. But that was long ago. Borealis, the glittering, fabulously rich city stretched out across the lunar North Pole, had amassed centuries of unimaginable wealth harvesting it, and as such was the first to realize that its supplies were running out.
The distant memories of the horrific planetwide devastation spawned by the petroleum wars were not enough to quell the rising energy and political crises. A new war to rival no other appeared imminent, but the solar system’s competing powers would discover something more powerful than Helium-3: the indomitable spirit of an Earth-born, war-weary mercenary and pilot extraordinaire.
Antoine RouaudThe Path of Anger
The Book and the Sword 1
Thomas Dunne Books, August 25, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 448 pages
Debut - US
There will be blood. There will be death. This is the path of anger...
Year 10 of the new Republic, in the remote port city of Masalia. Dun-Cadal, once the greatest general of the Empire, has been drinking his life away for years. Betrayed by his friends and grief-stricken at the loss of his apprentice, he's done with politics, with adventure, and with people. But people aren't finished with him - not yet.
Viola is a young historian looking for the last Emperor's sword, said to have been taken by Dun-Cadal during the Empire's final, chaotic hours. Her search not only leads her to the former general, but embroils them both in a series of assassinations. Dun-Cadal's turncoat friends are being murdered, one by one, in the unmistakable style of an Imperial assassin...
But as Dun-Cadal comes to realize, none of these developments - not even the surprise of meeting his supposedly deceased apprentice - has been the result of chance. An intrigue transcending the fates of the individual characters has been put into motion, and its secrets are revealed one by one as the story unfolds.
In this debut novel, Antoine Rouaud displays an astonishing virtuosity, sustaining a high level of suspense seldom seen in a work of Fantasy. Depicting mortal characters thrown into the maelstrom of History and who ultimately become figures of legend, The Path of Anger proves to be one of the most hotly anticipated fantasy debuts of this year.
M.E. RoufaThe Norma Gene
Bitingduck Press, August 3, 2015
Trade Paperback, 310 pages
Abe Finkelstein is an illegal clone of Abraham Lincoln - not an easy thing to keep secret when your face is on money. Norma Greenberg, one of the world’s many Marilyn Monroe clones, is wrestling with identity issues of a different sort. It’s not easy living as a perfect copy of the beautiful Norma Jeane Baker! When Abe is kidnapped by government agents eager to discover the secrets of his illustrious ancestor, Norma could be Abe’s last hope of escape - or thanks to her barely suppressed kleptomania, his worst chance of recapture. With only their wits, a cigarette lighter, a bottle of perfume, and the disembodied arm of Richard Millhouse Nixon (don't ask), can Abe and Norma make it back to safety and anonymity? Set in Orlando, Florida, where artifice beats authenticity with one animatronic hand tied behind its back, The Norma Gene features a host of Abe Lincolns, a gaggle of Marilyns, a segway chase through the secret underground tunnels of the Magic Kingdom, and the answer to the age-old mystery about the dodo bird: what flavor was it?
Scott WilbanksThe Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster
Sourcebooks Landmark, August 4, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 400 pages
Annabelle Aster doesn't bow to convention-not even that of space and time-which makes the 1890s Kansas wheat field that has appeared in her modern-day San Francisco garden easy to accept. Even more peculiar is Elsbeth, the truculent schoolmarm who sends Annie letters through the mysterious brass mailbox perched on the picket fence that now divides their two worlds.
Annie and Elsbeth's search for an explanation to the hiccup in the universe linking their homes leads to an unsettling discovery-and potential disaster for both of them. Together they must solve the mystery of what connects them before one of them is convicted of a murder that has yet to happen...and yet somehow already did.
Cat WintersThe Uninvited
William Morrow Paperbacks, August 11, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 368 pages
Debut - Adult
From the award-winning author of In the Shadow of Blackbirds comes a stunning new novel—a masterfully crafted story of love, loss, and second chances. Set during the fear and panic of the Great Influenza of 1918, The Uninvited is part gothic ghost-story, part psychological thriller, perfect for those who loved The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield or The Vanishing by Wendy Webb.
Twenty-five year old Ivy Rowan rises from her bed after being struck by the flu, only to discover the world has been torn apart in just a few short days.
But Ivy’s life-long gift—or curse—remains. For she sees the uninvited ones—ghosts of loved ones who appear to her, unasked, unwelcomed, for they always herald impending death. On that October evening in 1918 she sees the spirit of her grandmother, rocking in her mother’s chair. An hour later, she learns her younger brother and father have killed a young German out of retaliation for the death of Ivy’s older brother Billy in the Great War.
Horrified, she leaves home, to discover the flu has caused utter panic and the rules governing society have broken down. Ivy is drawn into this new world of jazz, passion, and freedom, where people live for the day, because they could be stricken by nightfall. But as her ‘uninvited guests’ begin to appear to her more often, she knows her life will be torn apart once more, but Ivy has no inkling of the other-worldly revelations about to unfold.
The Uninvited is an atmospheric, haunting, and utterly compelling novel.