Upcoming Releases in SFF Publishing

Summer should be a time for reading. I envy Europeans who get a month off every year for holiday. Given a month paid leave, I would never leave my house. I could garden, cook, and read for 30 days, no problem.

Lacking that, those of us in the US, chained to a desk, must take advantage of our weekends. Fortunately, there are plenty of exciting new books to make the days seem long enough for leisure purposes. Pre-order now so that you’ve got yummy books for those dog days of July and August.

theredLinda Nagata’s The Red: First Light (Saga Press, June  2015) is out this month. A MilSF novel with a twist, the blurb reads, “Lieutenant James Shelley commands a high-tech squad of soldiers in a rural district within the African Sahel. They hunt insurgents each night on a harrowing patrol, guided by three simple goals: protect civilians, kill the enemy, and stay alive–because in a for-profit war manufactured by the defense industry there can be no cause worth dying for. To keep his soldiers safe, Shelley uses every high-tech asset available to him–but his best weapon is a flawless sense of imminent danger…as if God is with him, whispering warnings in his ear. Hazard Notice: contains military grade profanity.”

I’m looking forward to finding out what military grade profanity consists of. My dad was career military, so this could be what throws me out of the novel, or a delightful bit of authenticity.

letterstozellLetters to Zell (47North, July 2015) is the first novel from local author Camille Griep, already known for her lovely short stories. I love fairy tale retellings (Robin McKinley does several gorgeous rewrites of classic fairy tales), and Ms Griep’s book promises more of the same, only funny: “In this hilarious modern interpretation of the fairy-tale stories we all know and love, Letters to Zell explores what happens when women abandon the stories they didn’t write for themselves and go completely off script to follow their dreams.”

The Watchmaker of Filigree Street (Bloomsbury USA, July 2015) has been receiving rave reviews as both speculative and historical fiction. It’s Natasha Pulley’s debut novel, and that’s a lot of hype to livwatchmakere up to: I hope the novel lives up to the press, although generally Publisher’s Weekly reviews are a pretty good guide and Watchmaker got excellent reviews from both PW and Library Journal.

From Library Journal’s review: ” This delightful first novel is as impressive as a work of historical fiction, with its evocative details of 19th-century England on the cusp of technological and cultural revolutions, as it is a delicate fantasy with enough gadgetry to pull in the steampunk fans, and a mystery to boot. The climax is so well plotted that readers will immediately want to read it again.”

Also, the cover is gorgeous. I hope the book designer and art department got lots and lots of praise from the author, agent, and editor.

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