The Qwillery | category: Terri Favro


The Qwillery

A blog about books and other things speculative

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.

Jenn Bennett (2011)

Alex Approximately
Simon Pulse, April 3, 2018
Trade Paperback, 416 pages
Hardcover and eBook, April 4, 2017

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
In this delightfully charming teen spin on You’ve Got Mail, the one guy Bailey Rydell can’t stand is actually the boy of her dreams—she just doesn’t know it yet.

Classic movie buff Bailey “Mink” Rydell has spent months crushing on a witty film geek she only knows online by “Alex.” Two coasts separate the teens until Bailey moves in with her dad, who lives in the same California surfing town as her online crush.

Faced with doubts (what if he’s a creep in real life—or worse?), Bailey doesn’t tell Alex she’s moved to his hometown. Or that she’s landed a job at the local tourist-trap museum. Or that she’s being heckled daily by the irritatingly hot museum security guard, Porter Roth—a.k.a. her new arch-nemesis. But life is whole lot messier than the movies, especially when Bailey discovers that tricky fine line between hate, love, and whatever-it-is she’s starting to feel for Porter.

And as the summer months go by, Bailey must choose whether to cling to a dreamy online fantasy in Alex or take a risk on an imperfect reality with Porter. The choice is both simpler and more complicated than she realizes, because Porter Roth is hiding a secret of his own: Porter is Alex…Approximately.

Starry Eyes
Simon Pulse, April 3, 2018
Hardcover and eBook, 432 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
In this romantic dramedy from the author of Alex, Approximately, a teen girl’s way-too-ordinary life is driven off the beaten path when she’s abandoned in the wilderness with her worst adversary—the boy who broke her heart.

Ever since last year’s homecoming dance, best friends-turned-best enemies Zorie and Lennon have made an art of avoiding each other. It doesn’t hurt that their families are the modern day, Californian version of the Montagues and Capulets.

But when a group camping trip goes south, Zorie and Lennon find themselves stranded in the wilderness. Alone. Together.

What could go wrong?

With no one but each other for company, Zorie and Lennon have no choice but to hash out their issues via witty jabs and insults as they try to make their way to safety. But fighting each other while also fighting off the forces of nature makes getting out of the woods in one piece less and less likely.

And as the two travel deeper into Northern California’s rugged backcountry, secrets and hidden feelings surface. But can Zorie and Lennon’s rekindled connection survive out in the real world? Or was it just a result of the fresh forest air and the magic of the twinkling stars?

Robyn Bennis (2017)

The Guns Above
A Signal Airship Novel 1
Tor Books, April 17, 2018
Trade Paperback, 368 pages
Hardcover and eBook, May 2, 2017

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
Robyn Bennis’s THE GUNS ABOVE is an adventurous military fantasy debut about a nation's first female airship captain.

They say it’s not the fall that kills you.

For Josette Dupre, the Corps’ first female airship captain, it might just be a bullet in the back.

On top of patrolling the front lines, she must also contend with a crew who doubts her expertise, a new airship that is an untested deathtrap, and the foppish aristocrat Lord Bernat, a gambler and shameless flirt with the military know-how of a thimble. Bernat’s own secret assignment is to catalog her every moment of weakness and indecision.

So when the enemy makes an unprecedented move that could turn the tide of the war, can Josette deal with Bernat, rally her crew, and survive long enough to prove herself?

“Full of sass and terrific characters. Great storytelling. Loved it.” —Patricia Briggs

By Fire Above
A Signal Airship Novel 2
Tor Books, May 15, 2018
Hardcover and eBook, 368 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
Rip-roaring new adventure in Robyn Bennis's military airship fantasy series that Patricia Briggs hails as “full of sass and terrific characters.”

"All's fair in love and war," according to airship captain Josette Dupre, until her hometown becomes occupied by the enemy and her mother a prisoner of war. Then it becomes, "Nothing's fair except bombing those Vins to high hell."

Before she can rescue her town, however, Josette must maneuver her way through the nest of overstuffed vipers that make up the nation's military and royal leaders in order to drum up support. The foppish and mostly tolerated crew member Lord Bernat steps in to advise her, along with his very attractive older brother.

Between noble scheming, under-trained recruits, and supply shortages, Josette and the crew of the Mistral figure out a way to return to Durum—only to discover that when the homefront turns into the frontlines, things are more dangerous than they seem.

“Full of sass and terrific characters. Great storytelling. Loved it.” —Patricia Briggs

“Marvelous, witty and action-packed steampunk with exquisite attention to detail. Bennis's writing is incredible, her vocabulary impressive, and she honest to God made me believe you could build an airship from spare parts.”—New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Ann Aguirre

Read an interview with Robyn Bennis here.

Terri Favro (2017)

Generation Robot
    A Century of Science Fiction, Fact, and Speculation by Terri Favro
Skyhorse Publishing, February 6, 2018
Hardcover and eBook, 300 pages

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors
Generation Robot covers a century of science fiction, fact and, speculation—from the 1950 publication of Isaac Asimov’s seminal robot masterpiece, I, Robot, to the 2050 Singularity when artificial and human intelligence are predicted to merge. Beginning with a childhood informed by pop-culture robots in movies, in comic books, and on TV in the 1960s to adulthood where the possibilities of self-driving cars and virtual reality are daily conversation, Terri Favro offers a unique perspective on how our relationship with robotics and futuristic technologies has shifted over time. Peppered with pop-culture fun-facts about Superman’s kryptonite, the human-machine relationships in the cult TV show Firefly, and the sexual and moral implications of the film Ex Machina, Generation Robot explores how the techno-triumphs and resulting anxieties of reality bleed into the fantasies of our collective culture.

 Clever and accessible, Generation Robot isn’t just for the serious, scientific reader—it’s for everyone interested in robotics and technology since their science-fiction origins. By looking back at the future she once imagined, analyzing the plugged-in present, and speculating on what is on the horizon, Terri Favro allows readers the chance to consider what was, what is, and what could be. This is a captivating book that looks at the pop-culture of our society to explain how the world works—now and tomorrow.

Read an interview with Terri Favro here.

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts

Each month you will be able to vote for your favorite cover from that month's debut novels. At the end of the year the 12 monthly winners will be pitted against each other to choose the 2017 Debut Novel Cover of the Year. Please note that a debut novel cover is eligible in the month in which the novel is published in the US. Cover artist/illustrator/designer information is provided when we have it.

I'm using PollCode for this vote. After you the check the circle next to your favorite, click "Vote" to record your vote. If you'd like to see the real-time results click "View". This will take you to the PollCode site where you may see the results. If you want to come back to The Qwillery click "Back" and you will return to this page. Voting will end sometime on April 30, 2017.

Vote for your favorite April 2017 Debut Cover! free polls

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover design by Erin Seaward-Hiatt

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover design by Peter Mendelsund

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover and book design by KG Design International

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Illustrated and designed by Julia Lloyd

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Designed by Alison Forner

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover design by Adrijus Guscia

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover art by Eugene Teplitsky

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Jacket design by Oliver Munday

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover design by David Gee

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover art by Craig White

2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April Debuts
Cover illustrated by John Jude Palencar

Interview with Terri Favro, Author of Sputnik's Children

Please welcome Terri Favro to The Qwillery as part of the 2017 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. Sputnik's Children is published on April 11th by ECW Press.

Please join The Qwillery in wishing Terri a Happy Publication Day!

Interview with Terri Favro, Author of Sputnik's Children

TQWelcome to The Qwillery. When and why did you start writing?

Terri:  I come from a family with a strong storytelling tradition, so I started making up stories and telling them to the neighborhood kids before I even started kindergarten. I grew up in a community in Canada’s Niagara Peninsula (across the Niagara River from upstate New York, near Buffalo) that was almost entirely made up of immigrant families from eastern and southern Europe, as well as black families who had been there longer than the rest of us. Quite a few of the newcomer kids didn’t speak English or had parents who didn’t, and one mom actually told my mother that she learned English partly by listening to me tell stories to her kids. I was probably about four years old at the time. I wrote my first stories in grade one. So, I have no concept of not writing: I’ve always done it.

I’m not sure why I write although I suspect it’s genetic. Storytelling was a survival skill for one of my grandfathers, Giovanni-Battista Favro. He was from the Italian Alps, near France, and would often find himself snowed in on high mountain passes with other men. While they were waiting it out, they’d tell stories to one another to keep themselves from developing what we now call ‘cabin fever’ – like in “The Shining”. As a child, I heard stories from him constantly –– very dark, sometimes sexier Italian versions of fairytales like “Jack in the Beanstalk”. As a result I grew up to be an avid reader of books and comic books, and quickly starting writing my own.

I loved MAD Magazine and I was always writing parodies and send-ups, usually of the blurbs in the TV Guide or advice columns in the newspaper, making fun of the boilerplate writing styles. I was published for the first time at age 12 when I won a limerick-writing contest in a magazine for grown-ups. I made $5.00!

TQAre you a plotter, a pantser or a hybrid?

Terri:  I am a dyed in the wool Pantser all the way! I like Stephen King’s approach: come up with a ‘what if?” scenario, then stand back and watch your characters work their way out of it. I find stories a lot more interesting when they unfold before me. But I do a lot of re-writing to create a solid narrative arc and a strong ending.

TQWhat is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

Terri:  Research, because I want to get down to the writing! When I have to dig deeply into a topic before I write, I find myself impatient with the process.

TQWhat has influenced / influences your writing?

Terri:  I think my strongest influence is the community where I grew up, because it was unique in many ways. It was very much a neighborhood of outsiders – new immigrants, primarily Roman Catholics or Orthodox Catholics, who weren’t of the typical Scots-Irish-English stock that was the dominant group in Canada of that era. I sat in a lot of classrooms where kids were learning English on the fly, usually by having another kid translate everything the teacher said. And we were so close to the U.S. border that we were much more exposed to American TV shows and radio than Canadian ones. I think we identified more with upstate New York. But we weren’t Americans either – we were on the outside looking in. Watching TV stations from Buffalo, we constantly saw ads for candy and fast food joints that didn’t yet exist in Canada, so it was like watching transmissions from a wonderful fantasyland that we could only enter by crossing the Peace Bridge – we always referred to the U.S. as “Over The River”. (Canadians in Niagara still call it that, or shorten it to ‘OTR’.) Plus, we were all living on the “wrong” side of the Welland Canal, which was the part of the St. Lawrence Seaway that made it possible for ships to get around the obstacle of Niagara Falls to get to the Great Lakes. Ships passed through the canal from all over the world and the sailors would throw candy, cigarettes and toys down at us, or call out where they were from. It was as if we were always seeing the “real world” from a distance. You’ll see the influence of my old neighborhood very strongly in “Sputnik’s Children”, for which I invented a kind of grey area between the two countries called “Canusa”.

Books also influence me, especially ones I read as a very young person: C.S. Lewis’ Narnia books, and his science fiction works, Perelandra and That Hideous Strength. I loved everything by Tolkien, especially The Hobbit. And then there was my intense love of comic books, which might be obvious from my novel. I was a huge DC fan: I liked the mythic story of Superman, who I saw as the ultimate immigrant. Michael Chabon’s “The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay” is one of my favorite novels, and was a big influence on me in the way it showed comic book writers in New York of the 1940s being influenced by their own cultural backgrounds and the World War. I think we tend to think of the comics as just being wild flights of imagination but like all books, they have their roots in the subconscious of the creators.

Pop culture is important to me too especially television shows of the sixties and seventies: for “Sputnik’s Children”, the original Star Trek was a huge influence, particularly two episodes that dealt with time travel and alternative reality: “Mirror Mirror” (sometimes known as the Bearded Spock episode), and “City on the Edge of Forever”, which was scripted by Harlan Ellison. Trekkies will probably detect the influence of those two episodes when they read my novel. I won’t explain how, because it would be a spoiler.

TQDescribe Sputnik's Children in 140 characters or less.

Terri:  Cult comic book creator claims she sacrificed her own past to save Earth from a horrific post-nuclear future. Is her origin story true or a martini-fuelled delusion?

TQTell us something about Sputnik's Children that is not found in the book description.

Terri:  Debbie Biondi, the novel’s comic book writer and heroine, can’t settle down in one place for long, own property, have kids, or even have a normal bank account because technically she doesn’t exist in our timeline (which is called Earth Standard Time). In fact, she has to maintain the exact mass she had when she left her own timeline in order not to upset the time space continuum: if she gains weight, bits of her body fall off. (She discovered this after a weekend at a hotel with an all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet, when she woke up missing a toe.) So she seems at first glance to have an eating disorder but it could be simple self-protection. In the book she operates on a cash only basis –– which she earns from her comic books. However, Debbie is able to use cryptocurrency, which is my way of suggesting that maybe Bitcoin comes from an alternate reality.

TQWhat inspired you to write Sputnik's Children? How much do you and your main character, Debbie Reynolds Biondi, have in common?

Terri:  I was very much inspired by the experience of growing up during the Cold War years on the Canadian-U.S. border. Because we were so close to the Niagara Falls hydroelectric station, which provided power down the eastern seaboard to Washington, we were told as kids that our town was a ‘first strike’ target for the Soviets, and that if there was a nuclear war, we’d be ‘the first to go’. This was a common belief among all the kids I grew up with. I find it strange now that we weren’t all emotional wrecks, being told that by our parents and teachers. So, part of the drive to write the book was to explore the idea of a girl who was a lot like me, growing up in an alt-reality version of her home town where the bomb actually did drop. In a way it was a surprise to us all that it never happened.

And yes, Debbie and I do have a lot in common in terms of family background and life experiences. Like her, I made money as a picker on a strawberry farm in my teens, and I have a rare enzyme deficiency, which makes me intolerant of certain type of general anesthesia. And I, like Debbie, attempted to enroll in the Famous Artists Art School correspondence lessons from a Norman Rockwell ad in the back of a comic book with the headline “we’re looking for people who like to draw.” Unlike Debbie, I never got past the stage of the sales rep showing up at our house. My parents were not pleased.

TQWhat sort of research did you do for Sputnik's Children?

Terri:  I looked back at the era that I’d actually lived through, in the sixties, seventies and eighties, to try to accurately reflect an alt-version of the times. So when I twist history slightly, I wanted to be sure of the “true facts” before I offered the “alternative facts”. Also, I read up on the theory of parallel worlds posed by quantum physicist Hugh Everett, who believed that there are an almost infinite number of time continuums with alternate histories to ours. He theorized that every time we make a decision, a new continuum exists elsewhere in which we made a different decision, and so history unfolds differently.

I adapted his theory so that the “splitting” of time into multiple timelines only begins in 1945 with the testing of the first atomic bomb. In the 1960s another physicist who was a follower of Everett theorized that it would be possible for one time continuum or “world”, to pick up TV signals from another “closely coupled” world, which sounds a bit like the movie “Galaxy Quest”. I loved that idea, and since it’s something that quantum physicists think might be possible, I used it in my book.

I also researched the experience of black Canadians who would have been growing up in the era and place depicted in the book. My neighborhood as a child was home to a number of families whose Niagara roots went back to the nineteenth century, because their ancestors had come to Niagara on the Underground Railroad with help from Harriet Tubman, who lived in my home town of St. Catharines for many years. (It’s referred to as “Shipman’s Corners” in the book, which was the old historical name for St. Catharines.) In depicting Debbie’s relationship with a young black man, John Kendal, I wanted a sense of what that would have been like for both of them. I looked for books and articles about the black experience in southern Ontario that had been written at the time –the early seventies –– not interpretations of social history that were written more recently.

TQPlease tell us about Sputnik's Children's cover? 

Terri:  My publisher, ECW Press, hired an amazing cover designer, David Gee. My only suggestions were to consider something to do with outer space or satellites, or something that reflected Debbie’s martini drinking habits. We considered making it look more “comic booky”, but you run the risk of looking like a graphic novel, rather than a novel. David came back with an array wonderful options but the martini constellation against a glittery black space-scape was my favorite. I love that ECW produced the book so that the stars actually twinkle! And the interior design is cool too.

TQIn Sputnik's Children who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

Terri:  The easiest character was Debbie’s friend, Bum Bum, in part because I had written about him previously in a novella called “The Proxy Bride”. He’s actually based on a real person, who had that awful nickname. I wanted Bum Bum to be a resilient child who came out of a horrible background. He’s going to turn up in another book I have coming out, too. I can’t seem to stop writing about BB.

The hardest character was Debbie herself because she’s struggling so much to write an origin story about her lost past, in the guise of her comic book, “Sputnik Chick, Girl With No Past”. Debbie is, to some extent, portrayed as an unreliable narrator. Sometimes she herself is not sure what’s true and what’s not, so I had to walk that line carefully. I didn’t want to confuse the reader but at the same time, I wanted to give a sense of Debbie’s deep insecurities and grief over having lost her past –– especially the people she loved who no longer remember her. And I wanted to do all that without making her a character mired in negativity and despair. In fact, Debbie can be very funny, but her complexity is born of trying to get along in a time line where she has no real place.

TQWhy have you chosen to include or not chosen to include social issues in Sputnik's Children? 

Terri:  Debbie’s relationship with John Kendal –– a girl from an Italian immigrant family dating a young black man whose family goes back to the days of the Underground Railroad –– is partly based on a couple I knew back in the 1970s. Their relationship was “acceptable” and yet in some ways, was not accepted. The racism they experience was not overt but it was there.

In the novel, Debbie is a bit oblivious to how Kendal is treated as a young black man in a small town immigrant neighborhood. There is a chapter in the book when a farmer catches the two of them necking in a strawberry field, with ugly consequences. That’s when it finally comes home to Debbie that she really doesn’t grasp what Kendal’s life is like, or the challenges he faces.

Later in the book, when Debbie is getting married, I touch on the role of women in that era of the 1970s when we were apparently “liberated” but still chained to our crock-pots and blenders. Debbie’s ambition to become an astronaut is seen as ridiculous because she’s a girl. That’s one of the reasons I use a quote from Sally Ride, the first American woman in space, as one of epigraphs for the novel, along with one from a Silver Surfer comic.

TQWhich question about Sputnik's Children do you wish someone would ask? Ask it and answer it!

Terri:  Is there really a place like the Z-Lands, where kids are exposed to radiation and born with extra sets of teeth and other mutations?

The answer is yes. The Z-Lands was inspired by the Love Canal neighborhood in Niagara Falls, New York, which was built on a toxic dumpsite, which, among other things, contained nuclear waste from the Manhattan Project. It took an enormous amount of community activism to have that area closed down and the people moved out of their homes. I think most people know the story of Love Canal. If you go on YouTube, you can see a video someone made by driving around the perimeter of the area, which is still fenced off. It’s creepy seeing the empty playground equipment still standing there as a reminder that a generation (or more) of children grew up on poisoned land and suffered the consequences.

TQGive us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery quotes from Sputnik's Children.

Terri:  In a few minutes, Endeavour will enter the region of maximum dynamic pressure, 13,000 kilometers above the Earth. If she passes through safely, she’ll escape the fate of her doomed sister, Challenger. Bum Bum and I witnessed that disaster together at a twenty-four-hour greasy spoon on Bleecker near Broadway, hungover from a night at the clubs. I can almost smell the fug of cigarette smoke, bacon grease and Poison, a perfume as subtle as a kick to the grown –– my signature scent, in those days.

In the summer of 1969 (Atomic Mean Time), I was a couple of months shy of my thirteenth birthday. Linda was sixteen. We arrived in the Z-Lands at sun-up, the daisies already turning their monstrous heads toward the sticky, honey-colored sky.

TQWhat's next?

Terri:  In collaboration with my artist-partner Ron Edding, I have a full length graphic novel coming out some time this summer called “Bella and the Facer Street Gang”, which is once again based in my old neighborhood. It will published by Grey Borders Books in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Ron and I are also at work on a true-crime graphic novel set in Toronto in the 1930s, which will be called “Providence”.

A novel length sequel to “The Proxy Bride” will be published in September 2017. It’s called “Once Upon A Time In West Toronto” – the title was inspired by “Once Upon A Time In The West”, because the main character loves the spaghetti westerns of Sergio Leone. So if “Sputnik’s Children” crosses genres between literary and science fiction, “Once Upon A Time In West Toronto” crosses genres between literary and western romance. It will be published by Inanna Publishing of Toronto.

I’m also working on two new books: a Steampunk novel called “United Kingdom of America” (a full-length version on a short story I had published in the anthology “Clockwork Canada” last year) and a non-fiction book about my generation’s relationship with robots –– both real ones, and ones like R2D2 that exist only in popular culture. It’s called “Generation Robot” and will be out in February 2018 with Skyhorse Publishing, New York.

TQThank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Terri:  Thank you for letting me talk about “Sputnik’s Children”! I loved your questions and hope your readers enjoy the book.

Sputnik's Children
ECW Press, April 11, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 360 pages

Interview with Terri Favro, Author of Sputnik's Children
A literary, genre-bending novel full of heart

Cult comic book creator Debbie Reynolds Biondi has been riding the success of her Cold War era–inspired superhero series, Sputnik Chick: Girl with No Past, for more than 25 years. But with the comic book losing fans and Debbie struggling to come up with new plotlines for her badass, mutant-killing heroine, she decides to finally tell Sputnik Chick’s origin story.

Debbie’s never had to make anything up before and she isn’t starting now. Sputnik Chick is based on Debbie’s own life in an alternate timeline called Atomic Mean Time. As a teenager growing up in Shipman’s Corners — a Rust Belt town voted by Popular Science magazine as “most likely to be nuked” — she was recruited by a self-proclaimed time traveller to collapse Atomic Mean Time before an all-out nuclear war grotesquely altered humanity. In trying to save the world, Debbie risked obliterating everyone she’d ever loved — as well as her own past — in the process.

Or so she believes . . . Present-day Debbie is addicted to lorazepam and dirty, wet martinis, making her an unreliable narrator, at best. A time-bending novel that delves into the origin story of the Girl with No Past, Sputnik’s Children explores what it was like to come of age in the Atomic Age.

About Terri

Interview with Terri Favro, Author of Sputnik's Children
Photo by Ayelet Tsabari
Terri Favro is the author of three novels: Sputnik’s Children (ECW), Once Upon A Time in West Toronto (Inanna), and The Proxy Bride, winner of the Ken Klonsky-Quattro Books Novella Award. She also collaborates on the Bella graphic novel series, published by Grey Borders. A CBC Literary Prize finalist, Terri’s stories have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies including the Humber Literary Review, Geist, Prism, and Clockwork Canada: Steampunk Fiction. Terri is currently writing a book about human-robot relationships, and a novel featuring an Steampunk heroine of the War of 1812.

Website  ~  Blog  ~  Twitter @fluffybaggins

The View From Monday - April 10, 2017

Happy Monday!

There are 3 debuts this week:

Sputnik's Children by Terri Favro;

Abigale Hall by Lauren A. Forry;


Celestial Mechanics by William Least Heat-Moon.

The View From Monday - April 10, 2017The View From Monday - April 10, 2017The View From Monday - April 10, 2017
Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.

From formerly featured DAC Authors:

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders it out in Trade Paperback;

The Witch of Torinia (Tale of Valdur 2) by Clifford Beal;

The Island Deception (Gateway to Alissia 1) by Dan Koboldt;

The Wolf Road by Beth Lewis is out in Trade Paperback;

A Murder in Time (Kendra Donovan Mysteries 1) by Julie McElwain is out in Trade Paperback;


The Mirror Thief by Martin Seay is out in Trade Paperback.

The View From Monday - April 10, 2017The View From Monday - April 10, 2017The View From Monday - April 10, 2017
The View From Monday - April 10, 2017The View From Monday - April 10, 2017The View From Monday - April 10, 2017
Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.

The View From Monday - April 10, 2017

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

April 10, 2017
Blood From Stone (e) (ri) Laura Anne Gilman UF - A Retrievers Novel 6
The Nymph King (e) (ri) Gena Showalter PNR - Atlantis 3

April 11, 2017
The Wine-Dark Sea Robert Aickman H
All the Birds in the Sky (h2tp) Charlie Jane Anders CF/SF
Indomitable (h2tp) W. C. Bauers SF/SO - Chronicles of Promise Paen 2
The Witch of Torinia Clifford Beal F - Tale of Valdur 2
Fate of Devotion K. F. Breene SF - Finding Paradise 2
Generation Decks: The Unofficial History of Gaming Phenomenon Magic the Gathering Titus Chalk RP/F
Starcraft II: Heaven's Devils William C. Dietz SF - Blizzard Legends
The Alchemists of Kush Minister Faust CF
Sputnik's Children (D) Terri Favro LF/SF/AP/PA/CoA
Abigale Hall (D) Lauren A. Forry PsyTh/SupTh/H
The Regional Office Is Under Attack! (h2tp) Manuel Gonzales LF/SF
Starcraft: Liberty's Crusade (ri) Jeff Grubb SF - Blizzard Legends
Celestial Mechanics (D) William Least Heat-Moon LF
The Loney (h2tp) Andrew Michael Hurley LF
Razr: A Demonica Underworld Novella Larissa Ione PNR - Demonica Underworld
Proof of Concept Gwyneth Jones SF
The Island Deception (e) Dan Koboldt F - Gateways to Alissia 2
The Wolf Road (h2tp) Beth Lewis PsyTh/SF/AP/PA
Thirteen Views of the Suicide Woods Bracken MacLeod Occ/Sup/H - Collection
The Last Adventure of Constance Verity (h2tp) A. Lee Martinez UF - Constance Verity 1
Void Star Zachary Mason LF/Dys
A Murder in Time (h2tp) Julie McElwain TT/M - Kendra Donovan Mysteries 1
Starcraft: I, Mengsk (ri) Graham McNeill SF - Blizzard Legends
Hystopia (h2tp) David Means LF/AH
Cold Welcome Elizabeth Moon SF/SO - Vatta's Peace 1
Waking Hell Al Robertson SF
Once Upon a Summer Night Nancy Scanlon TTR - Mists of Fate 3
The Mirror Thief (h2tp) Martin Seay HistF/M/VisMeta
Special Purposes Gavin Smith SF
The Last Machine in the Solar System Matthew Isaac Sobin SF/Dys/AP/PA/LF
Avengers of the Moon Allen Steele SF/SO
Great With Child Sonia Taitz F/FR
Take Us to Your Chief: And Other Stories: Classic Science-Fiction with a Contemporary First Nations Outlook Drew Hayden Taylor SF/Aboriginal - Collection
WarDance (e) Elizabeth Vaughan F
Blue Plague: The Fall Thomas A. Watson DF - Blue Plague 1
Thrawn Timothy Zahn SF/SO - Star Wars

April 12, 2017
Dark Warm Heart: A Original (e) Rich Larson H

April 13, 2017
And the Rest is History (e) Jodi Taylor HistF/TT - The Chronicles of Saint Mary's 8

April 14, 2017
And Her Smile Will Untether the Universe (e) Gwendolyn Kiste H

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

AC - Alien Contact
AH - Alternate History
AP - Apocalyptic
CF - Contemporary Fantasy
CoA - Coming of Age
CulH - Cultural Heritage
CW - Contemporary Women
DF - Dark Fantasy
Dys - Dystopian
F - Fantasy
FairyT - Fairy Tales
FolkT - Folk Tales
FR - Fantasy Romance
GB - Genre Bender
GenEng - Genetic Engineering
GH - Ghost(s)
H - Horror
HistF - Historical Fantasy
HistM - Historical Mystery
HU - Humor
LF - Literary Fiction
LM - Legends and Mythology
M - Mystery
MR - Magical Realism
Occ - Occult
P - Paranormal
PA - Post Apocalyptic
PCM - Paranormal Cozy Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
PolTh - Political Thriller
Psy - Psychological
PsyTh - Psychological Thriller
R - Romance
RP - Role Playing
RSus - Romantic Suspense
SF - Science Fiction
SH - Superheroes
SO - Space Opera
SP - Steampunk
Sup - Supernatural
SupTh - Supernatural Thriller
Sus - Suspense
TechTh - Technological Thriller
Th - Thriller
TT - Time Travel
TTR - Time Travel Romance
UF - Urban Fantasy
VisMeta - Visionary and Metaphysical
WM - War and Military

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

2017 Debut Author Challenge - April Debuts

There are 15 debut novels for April.

Please note that we use the publisher's publication date in the United States, not copyright dates or non-US publication dates.

The April 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 April cover for the 2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will take place starting on April 15, 2017.

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 2017 Debut Author Challenge featured authors. However, any of these novels may be read by Challenge readers to meet the goal for April 2017 The list is correct as of the day posted.

Omar El Akkad

American War
Knopf, April 4, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages
Literary Fiction

An audacious and powerful debut novel: a second American Civil War, a devastating plague, and one family caught deep in the middle—a story that asks what might happen if America were to turn its most devastating policies and deadly weapons upon itself.

Sarat Chestnut, born in Louisiana, is only six when the Second American Civil War breaks out in 2074. But even she knows that oil is outlawed, that Louisiana is half underwater, and that unmanned drones fill the sky. When her father is killed and her family is forced into Camp Patience for displaced persons, she begins to grow up shaped by her particular time and place. But not everyone at Camp Patience is who they claim to be. Eventually Sarat is befriended by a mysterious functionary, under whose influence she is turned into a deadly instrument of war. The decisions that she makes will have tremendous consequences not just for Sarat but for her family and her country, rippling through generations of strangers and kin alike.

Casey Doran

Jericho's Razor
Jericho Sands 1
Polis Books, April 25, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 272 pages
Horror, Thriller

Horror writer Jericho Sands has had a hell of a month. He's endured a bitter break up with his punk rocker girlfriend, learned that his lungs are blacker than a coal mine, and served time in county jail for throwing a United States Congressman in a dumpster. He's heartbroken, sleep deprived and suffering from a debilitating case of writer's block

Life is about to get much worse.

Somebody from Jericho's past has left a decapitated body on his doorstep. The similarity to methods used in his books, his lack of an alibi and his proximity to the victim all lead the detectives handling the case to quickly identify Jericho as the primary suspect.

But being framed for murder is the least of Jericho's problems, because this killer is only getting started. The mysterious executioner known as 'The River City Slasher' has made it clear that more innocent people will be killed before Jericho himself is the final victim. Unable to trust the cops, Jericho is forced to examine the darkest parts of his own psyche to catch a killer, save innocent lives, and free himself from his own guilt. When Jericho finally learns the identity of the killer terrorizing the city, it shocks him in ways he was unprepared for, causing him to doubt all he holds to be true, including his own judgment and motivations.

The first book in the Jericho Sands series, Jericho's Razor heralds the debut of a phenomenal new thriller writer in Casey Doran.

Ruthanna Emrys

Winter Tide
The Innsmouth Legacy 1, April 4, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 368 pages
Historical Fantasy, Dark Fantasy

"Winter Tide is a weird, lyrical mystery — truly strange and compellingly grim. It's an innovative gem that turns Lovecraft on his head with cleverness and heart" —Cherie Priest

After attacking Devil’s Reef in 1928, the U.S. government rounded up the people of Innsmouth and took them to the desert, far from their ocean, their Deep One ancestors, and their sleeping god Cthulhu. Only Aphra and Caleb Marsh survived the camps, and they emerged without a past or a future.

The government that stole Aphra's life now needs her help. FBI agent Ron Spector believes that Communist spies have stolen dangerous magical secrets from Miskatonic University, secrets that could turn the Cold War hot in an instant, and hasten the end of the human race.

Aphra must return to the ruins of her home, gather scraps of her stolen history, and assemble a new family to face the darkness of human nature.

Winter Tide is the debut novel from Ruthanna Emrys, author of the Aphra Marsh story, "The Litany of Earth"--included here as a bonus.

Terri Favro

Sputnik's Children
ECW Press, April 11, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 360 pages
Literary Fiction

A literary, genre-bending novel full of heart

Cult comic book creator Debbie Reynolds Biondi has been riding the success of her Cold War era–inspired superhero series, Sputnik Chick: Girl with No Past, for more than 25 years. But with the comic book losing fans and Debbie struggling to come up with new plotlines for her badass, mutant-killing heroine, she decides to finally tell Sputnik Chick’s origin story.

Debbie’s never had to make anything up before and she isn’t starting now. Sputnik Chick is based on Debbie’s own life in an alternate timeline called Atomic Mean Time. As a teenager growing up in Shipman’s Corners — a Rust Belt town voted by Popular Science magazine as “most likely to be nuked” — she was recruited by a self-proclaimed time traveller to collapse Atomic Mean Time before an all-out nuclear war grotesquely altered humanity. In trying to save the world, Debbie risked obliterating everyone she’d ever loved — as well as her own past — in the process.

Or so she believes . . . Present-day Debbie is addicted to lorazepam and dirty, wet martinis, making her an unreliable narrator, at best. A time-bending novel that delves into the origin story of the Girl with No Past, Sputnik’s Children explores what it was like to come of age in the Atomic Age.

Lauren A. Forry

Abigale Hall
Skyhorse Publishing, April 11, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 376 pages
Psychological Thriller

Amid the terror of the Second World War, seventeen-year-old Eliza and her troubled little sister Rebecca have had their share of tragedy, having lost their mother to the Blitz and their father to suicide. Forced to leave London to work for the mysterious Mr. Brownwell at Abigale Hall, they soon learn that the worst is yet to come. The vicious housekeeper, Mrs. Pollard, seems hell-bent on keeping the ghostly secrets of the house away from the sisters and forbids them from entering the surrounding town—and from the rumors that circulate about Abigale Hall. When Eliza uncovers some blood-splattered books, ominous photographs, and portraits of a mysterious woman, she begins to unravel the mysteries of the house, but with Rebecca falling under Mrs. Pollard’s spell, she must act quickly to save her sister, and herself, from certain doom.

Perfect for readers who hunger for the strange, Abigale Hall is an atmospheric debut novel where the threat of death looms just beyond the edge of every page. Lauren A. Forry has created a historical ghost story where the setting is as alive as the characters who inhabit it and a resonant family drama of trust, loyalty, and salvation.

William Least Heat-Moon

Celestial Mechanics: A Tale for a Mid-Winter Night
Three Rooms Press, April 11, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages

In this emotional tale of haunted love, CELESTIAL MECHANICS’s Silas Fortunato finds himself locked in a marriage descending toward darkness until the arrival of his sister-in-law and soon thereafter the appearance of a witching neighbor who may or may not be alive. In ways enigmatic, ghostly, and funny, the three women draw him into the equivocal nature of dreams and reality, their influences leading Silas on a journey toward what may be light and a new belonging to something vastly beyond him.

The debut novel of famed Blue Highways author William Least Heat-Moon, CELESTIAL MECHANICS embarks on a journey through the mind and wrestles with life’s major questions, like the nature of the Cosmos, the value of knowledge, and the essence of truly being alive. Heat-Moon has already proven he is a master at taking readers on powerful journeys as shown in his initial release Blue Highways, which spent 42 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list. CELESTIAL MECHANICS is a Blue Highways of the mind, in which the author leads readers on a path unlike any other, offering new insight into finding one’s place in this universe we struggle to understand.

Just as Heat-Moon’s nonfiction employs many fictional narrative techniques, CELESTIAL MECHANICS draws upon nonfictional devices to build a story that crosses traditional boundaries between the two. It is the clarion call of a generation that believes rationality and spirituality can—and should—coexist, a generation defined by globalization, where the only things left unknown are what is within and beyond us, those cosmic realms revealed by the telescope and the quantum world suggested by the microscope. This book is for readers steeped in a hustle-and-bustle world that seems impossible to escape; for those who believe that practices like mindfulness and rational deduction and childlike wonder are the keys to the kind of fulfillment commercial aspects of life can never hope to address.

Antonia Honeywell

The Ship
Orbit, April 25, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 336 pages
Coming Of Age, Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic

"Powerful, haunting, and beautiful," (M. R. Carey, author of The Girl With All the Gifts) The Ship is a luminous and genre-defying debut novel that follows a young woman's coming of age in a world where she has no future.

London burned for three weeks. And then it got worse...

Young, naive Lalla has grown up isolated in her parents' apartment, sheltered from the chaos amid the ruins of civilization. But things are getting more dangerous outside. People are killing each other for husks of bread, and the police are detaining anyone without an identification card. On her sixteenth birthday, Lalla's father decides it's time to use their escape route--a ship he's built that is only big enough to save five hundred people.

But the utopia her father has created isn't everything it appears. There's more food than anyone can eat, but nothing grows; more clothes than anyone can wear, but no way to mend them; and no-one can tell her where they are going.

Vivien Jackson

Wanted and Wired
Tether 1
Sourcebooks Casablanca, April 4, 2017
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 384 pages
SF Romance

“Raw. Smart. Quick-witted. Mouthwatering. Just a few adjectives that describe this exquisite tale. Do not let this unforgettable story, or its incredible cast of characters, slip by you.” —DARYNDA JONES, New York Times bestselling author

A rip-roarin’ new snarky, sexy sci-fi paranormal romance series with the perfect balance of humor, heat, and heart. Now that Texas has seceded and the world is spiraling into chaos, good guys come in unlikely packages and love sprouts in the most inconvenient places…

Rogue scientist • technologically enhanced • deliciously attractive
Heron Farad should be dead. But technology has made him the man he is today. Now he heads a crew of uniquely skilled outsiders who fight to salvage what’s left of humanity: art, artifacts, books, ideas—sometimes even people. People like Mari Vallejo.

Gun for hire • Texan rebel • always hits her mark
Mari has been lusting after her mysterious handler for months. But when a by-the-book hit goes horribly sideways, she and Heron land on the universal most wanted list. Someone set them up. Desperate and on the run, they must trust each other to survive, while hiding devastating secrets. As their explosive chemistry heats up, it’s the perfect storm…

T. M. Lakomy

The Shadow Crucible: The Blind God
SelectBooks, April 25, 2017
Trade Paperback, 400 pages

In a world where angels, demons, and gods fight over the possession of mortal souls, two conflicted pawns are ensnared in a cruel game. The enigmatic seer Estella finds herself thrown together with Count Mikhail, a dogmatic Templar dedicated to subjugating her kind. But when a corrupted cardinal and puppet king begin a systematic genocide of her people, the two become unlikely allies.

Taking humanity back to their primordial beliefs and fears, Estella confronts Mikhail’s faith by revealing the true horror of the lucrative trade in human souls. All organized religions are shops orchestrated to consume mankind. Every deity, religion, and spiritual guide has been corrupted, and each claims to have the monopoly on truth and salvation.

In a perilous game where the truth is distorted and meddling ancient deities converge to partake of the unseen battle, Estella unwittingly finds herself hunted by Lucifer. Traversing the edge of hell’s precipice, Estella and Mikhail are reduced to mere instruments. Their only means to overcome is through courting the Threefold Death, the ancient ritual of apotheosis—of man becoming God.

The Shadow Crucible is a gripping epic set in medieval England where the struggle for redemption is crushed by the powers of evil. Tamara Lakomy is a new and compelling voice in the world of dark fantasy.

Kent Lester

The Seventh Sun
Forge Books, April 18, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 416 pages
Technological Thriller, Political Thriller

In a breathtaking debut, Kent Lester has married fast-paced narrative and cutting-edge, reality-based science to produce an edge-of-the-seat thriller in The Seventh Sun.

A seemingly random murder alerts scientist Dan Clifford to a global conspiracy that stretches from the halls of Washington to the Honduran coast. Illegal, undersea activities have unwittingly uncovered a primordial secret that is wreaking havoc on aquatic life and the local human population.

When the CDC and the full resources of a U.S. “threat interdiction” team fails to uncover the source of the devastation, Dan and a brilliant marine biologist, Rachel Sullivan, must race to unravel an unimaginable, ancient mystery in the murky depths. It's up to them to stop this terror before a determined multi-national corporation triggers a worldwide extinction event, the Seventh Sun of ancient myth.

Mariam Petrosyan

The Gray House
Yuri Machkasov (Translator)
AmazonCrossing, April 25, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 734 pages
Coming of Age, Fantasy

The Gray House is an astounding tale of how what others understand as liabilities can be leveraged into strengths.

Bound to wheelchairs and dependent on prosthetic limbs, the physically disabled students living in the House are overlooked by the Outsides. Not that it matters to anyone living in the House, a hulking old structure that its residents know is alive. From the corridors and crawl spaces to the classrooms and dorms, the House is full of tribes, tinctures, scared teachers, and laws—all seen and understood through a prismatic array of teenagers’ eyes.

But student deaths and mounting pressure from the Outsides put the time-defying order of the House in danger. As the tribe leaders struggle to maintain power, they defer to the awesome power of the House, attempting to make it through days and nights that pass in ways that clocks and watches cannot record.

Pajtim Statovci

My Cat Yugoslavia
David Hackston (Translator)
Pantheon, April 18, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 272 pages
Literary Fiction

A love story set in two countries and in two radically different moments in time, bringing together a young man, his mother, a boa constrictor, and one capricious cat

In 1980s Yugoslavia, a young Muslim girl is married off to a man she hardly knows, and what was meant to be a happy match quickly goes wrong. Shortly thereafter, the country is torn apart by war and she and her family flee to Finland, where her son Bekim grows up to become a social outcast—not just an immigrant in a country suspicious of foreigners but also a gay man in an unaccepting society. Aside from casual hookups, his only companion is a boa constrictor that, improbably (he is terrified of snakes), he lets roam around his apartment.

Then one night, at a gay bar, Bekim meets a talking cat, who also moves in with him. It is this witty, charming, manipulative creature who starts Bekim on a journey back to Kosovo to confront his demons and make sense of the magical, cruel, incredible history of his family. And this, in turn, enables Bekim finally to open himself to true love—which he will find in the most unexpected place.

Sara O. Thompson

Muddy Waters
Otherwhere 1
Curiosity Quills Press, April 4, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook
Occult & Supernatural, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy

Twenty years ago, the boundary between worlds dropped. It will be a while before the political, social, and religious upheaval settles down but the good news is: now you can book a vacation to Valhalla as easily as you can go to Las Vegas. Your real estate agent might be a Wood Sprite. Your mechanic might be a Minotaur. For better or for worse, Supernormals are part of Earth life.

Five years ago, Tessa Reddick was convicted of killing her entire family: 37 Witches from one of the most powerful covens in history. She’s been locked up at Lakeland Psychiatric hospital, still grieving but mad as hell at whoever-or whatever-put her there.

Half an hour ago, a handsome FBI agent showed up to spring Tessa from the joint
-but there’s a price. A series of murders is picking off Supernormals and the feds need the help of the last known Reddick Witch.

Determined to learn who set her up for the fall, help solve the FBI crimes, and maybe get closer to her mysterious (and seriously hot) Dark Elf partner, Tessa is more than willing to play Witchy Nancy Drew.

But Tessa has few friends left and something is coming for her, too - maybe it’s the one who framed her and killed her coven, or perhaps a new foe with a taste for Witch’s blood.

Solving crimes, doing magic, drinking bourbon. It’s dirty work, but somebody has to do it.

Eleanor Wasserberg

Penguin Books, April 4, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 320 pages
Literary Fiction

An astonishing literary debut about a young girl’s coming of age in the haunting, enchanting world of an English commune—a modern gothic novel with echoes of Room and Never Let Me Go

Foxlowe is a crumbling old house in the moors—a wild, secluded, and magical place. For Green, it is not just home, but everything she knows.

Outside, people live in little square houses, with unhappy families and tedious jobs. At Foxlowe, Green runs free through the hallways and orchards, in the fields and among the Standing Stones. Outside, people are corrupted by money. At Foxlowe, the Family shares everything. Outside, the Bad is everywhere. At Foxlowe, everyone in the Family is safe—as long as they follow Freya’s rules and perform her rituals. But as Green’s little sister, Blue, grows up, she shows more and more interest in the Outside. Before long she starts to talk about becoming a Leaver. . . .

Building inexorably to its terrifying climax, Foxlowe tells a chilling, irresistible story of superstition and survival, betrayal and redemption, and a utopia gone badly wrong.

Deborah A. Wolf

The Dragon's Legacy
The Dragon's Legacy Book 1
Titan Books, April 18, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 320 pages
Epic Fantasy

In the heart of the singing desert, the people are fading from the world. Mothers bear few live children, the warriors and wardens are hard-pressed to protect those who remain, and the vash’ai—the great cats who have called the people kithren for as long as there have been stories— bond with fewer humans each year.

High above, the Sun Dragon sings a song of life and love, while far below, the Earth Dragon slumbers as she has since the beginning of time. Her sleep is fitful, and from the darkness of her dreams come whispers of war… and death.

Sulema is a newly minted warrior of the people and a true Ja’Akari—a daughter of the unforgiving desert. When a mysterious young man appears in her home of Aish Kalumm, she learns that the Dragon King is dying in distant Atualon. As the king fades, so does the magic that sings the Earth Dragon to sleep.

There are those who wish to keep the dragon trapped in endless slumber. Others would tap her power to claim it for their own. And there are those who would have her wake, so they might laugh as the world burns.

Covers Revealed - Upcoming Works by DAC Authors2017 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - April DebutsInterview with Terri Favro, Author of Sputnik's ChildrenThe View From Monday - April 10, 20172017 Debut Author Challenge - April Debuts

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