This month’s 21 science fiction releases range from the near-future to far out among the stars, with new titles from Robert J. Sawyer, James Gunn, Myke Cole, and many more!
Fiction Affliction details releases in science fiction, fantasy, and “genre-benders.” Keep track of them all here. Note: All title summaries are taken and/or summarized from copy provided by the publisher.
The Courier (San Angeles #1)—Gerald Brandt (March 1, DAW)
Kris Ballard is a motorcycle courier. A nobody. Level 2 trash in a multi-level city that stretches from San Francisco to the Mexican border—a land where corporations make all the rules. A late day delivery changes everything when she walks in on the murder of one of her clients. Now she’s stuck with a mysterious package that everyone wants. Hunted, scared, and alone, she retreats to the only place she knows she can hide: the Level 1 streets. Fleeing from people that seem to know her every move, she is rescued by Miller—a member of an underground resistance group—only to be pulled deeper into a world she doesn’t understand. Together Kris and Miller barely manage to stay one step ahead of the corporate killers, but it’s only a matter of time until Miller’s resources and their luck run out…
The Destructibles—Matthew De Abaitua (March 1, Angry Robot)
A recovering addict to weirdcore,Theodore Drown is keeping his head down lecturing at the university of the Moon. Twenty years after the appearance of the first artificial intelligence, the AIs or—as they preferred to be called—emergences have left Earth and reside beyond the orbit of Mercury in a Stapledon Sphere known as the university of the sun. The emergences were our future but they chose exile. All except one. Dr. Easy remains, researching a single human life from beginning to end. Theodore’s life. One day, Theodore is approached by freelance executive Patricia to investigate an archive of data retrieved from just before the appearance of the first emergence. The secret living in that archive will take him on an adventure through a stunted future of asylum malls, corporate bloodrooms and a secret off-world colony where Theodore must choose between creating a new future for humanity or staying true to his nature, and destroying it.
7 Sykos—Marsheila Rockwell and Jeff Mariotte (March 1, Harper Voyager Impulse)
Phoenix is one of the most populated cities in America…but not for long. With a mysterious sickness spreading through the streets, two things are becoming very clear: there’s no cure, and it doesn’t necessarily kill you. Instead, the so-called “Infecteds” have become a living plague, killing and eating everyone they come into contact with. Chaos is spreading, and no one is safe. No one, that is, except for a group of psychos. Somehow unaffected by the disease—and with promises of clemency for their monstrous pasts—a group of seven is sent downtown to hopefully find the cause of the disease…and therefore a cure. But when the asylum is the size of a city, it no longer matters who is running things. Not when everyone is running for their lives.
Quantum Night—Robert J. Sawyer (March 1, Ace)
Experimental psychologist Jim Marchuk has developed a flawless technique for identifying the previously undetected psychopaths lurking everywhere in society. But while being cross-examined about his breakthrough in court, Jim is shocked to discover that he has lost his memories of six months of his life from twenty years previously—a dark time during which he himself committed heinous acts. Jim is reunited with Kayla Huron, his forgotten girlfriend from his lost period and now a quantum physicist who has made a stunning discovery about the nature of human consciousness. As a rising tide of violence and hate sweeps across the globe, the psychologist and the physicist combine forces in a race against time to see if they can do the impossible—change human nature—before the entire world descends into darkness.
Chosen Soldiers—R.H. Scott (March 1, Harper Voyager Impulse)
After the missiles tore up the Earth, societies crumbled, leaving scattered patches of humanity struggling to survive. Slowly, a group came together, helping each other regrow a world worth living in. And then the Others attacked. Realizing the need to truly protect themselves, they formed the Academy: a place where young people could be built into an elite military force. The training is intense…and so are the consequences for failure. Sloan Radcliffe is not a failure. In fact, she’s the best of the best—the girls’ Senior Champion—and the only one who can match her is matched to her: her betrothed, Jared Dawson. They are the perfect couple: exemplary fighters, pure leaders, and exceptional role models. But as their time at the Academy draws to a close, Sloan is starting to see signs that maybe their life is built upon secrets…and that secrets are never a strong foundation.
Arkwright—Allan Steele (March 1, Tor Books)
Written by a highly regarded expert on space travel and exploration, Arkwright features the precision of hard science fiction with a compelling cast of characters. Nathan Arkwright is a seminal author of the twentieth century. At the end of his life he becomes reclusive and cantankerous, refusing to appear before or interact with his legion of fans. Little did anyone know, Nathan was putting into motion his true, timeless legacy. Convinced that humanity cannot survive on Earth, his Arkwright Foundation dedicates itself to creating a colony on an Earth-like planet several light years distant. Fueled by Nathan’s legacy, generations of Arkwrights are drawn together, and pulled apart, by the enormity of the task and weight of their name.
The Road to Hell (Hell’s Gate #3)—David Weber and Joelle Presby (March 1, Baen)
The war between magically-gifted Arcana and psionically talented Sharona continues to rage. The dragon-borne Arcanan assault across five universes has been halted at Fort Salby by a desperate defense, but at atrocious cost. One of those costs was the life of Crown Prince Janaki, heir to the newly created Sharonian Empire, who went knowingly to his death in the tradition expected of the House of Calirath. And another price will be the sacrifice of his younger sister, Grand Imperial Princess Andrin, now heir of Sharona, for the accords creating the Sharonian Empire require the marriage of the heir to the Crown to wed a Uromathian prince. Andrin bears her family’s Talent, the Glimpses, which show flashes of events yet to come. She knows the accords must be secured … and like her brother, she will pay any price, make any sacrifice for her duty to her people.
Imperative (Starfire #7)—Steve White and Charles E. Gannon (March 1, Baen)
The war with the Arduans—profoundly alien invaders who originally arrived in STL ships—is over. Most of those attackers are now probationary (and very productive) citizens of the Rim Federation. Their leader, the ruthless admiral of the second Arduan exodus—Amunsit—is in firm control of the Zarzuela system. Along with a fifth column among the peaceable Arduans, she hopes to find allies in subsequent refugee fleets that abandoned their race’s now-dead home system long ago. But as the victors’ diplomats attempt to soothe tensions with these warlike neighbors, two heroes of the last war—veteran Admiral Ian Trevayne and young trouble-shooter Ossian Wethermere—suspect they have stumbled upon a deeper Arduan plot: one which could shatter the Pan-Sentient Union, and perhaps interstellar civilization itself.
The Cold Between—Elizabeth Bonesteel (March 8, Harper Voyager)
When her crewmate, Danny, is murdered on the colony of Volhynia, Central Corps chief engineer Commander Elena Shaw, is shocked to learn the main suspect is her lover, Treiko Zajec. She knows Trey is innocent—he was with her when Danny was killed. Retracing Danny’s last hours, they discover that his death may be tied to a mystery from the past: the explosion of a Central Corps starship at a wormhole near Volhynia. For twenty-five years, the Central Gov has been lying about the tragedy, even willing to go to war with the outlaw PSI to protect their secrets. With the authorities closing in, Elena and Trey head to the wormhole, certain they’ll find answers on the other side. But the truth that awaits them is far more terrifying than they ever imagined.
On the Edge of Gone—Corinne Duyvis (March 8, Amulet Books)
Young adult. January 29, 2035. That’s the day the comet is scheduled to hit—the big one. Denise and her mother and sister, Iris, have been assigned to a temporary shelter outside their hometown of Amsterdam to wait out the blast, but Iris is nowhere to be found, and at the rate Denise’s drug-addicted mother is going, they’ll never reach the shelter in time. A last-minute meeting leads them to something better than a temporary shelter—a generation ship, scheduled to leave Earth behind to colonize new worlds after the comet hits. But everyone on the ship has been chosen because of their usefulness. Denise is autistic and fears that she’ll never be allowed to stay. Can she obtain a spot before the ship takes flight? What about her mother and sister? When the future of the human race is at stake, whose lives matter most?
Forest of Memory—Mary Robinette Kowal (March 8, Tor.com Publishing)
Katya deals in Authenticities and Captures, trading on nostalgia for a past long gone. Her clients are rich and they demand items and experiences with only the finest verifiable provenance. Other people’s lives have value, after all. But when her A.I. suddenly stops whispering in her ear she finds herself cut off from the grid and loses communication with the rest of the world. The man who stepped out of the trees while hunting deer cut her off from the cloud, took her A.I. and made her his unwilling guest. There are no Authenticities or Captures to prove Katya’s story of what happened in the forest. You’ll just have to believe her.
Halo: New Blood—Matt Forbeck (March 15, Gallery Books)
While Spartans get all the glory, no soldier—not even the legendary Master Chief—wins a war on his own. Gunnery Sergeant Edward Buck and his team of Orbital Drop Shock Troopers (ODSTs) played a major role in saving Earth from all-out invasion at the end of the Covenant War―acts of bravery and ingenuity that did not go unnoticed by the United Nations Space Command. Now, after many Spartans have been killed in battle and the Master Chief is listed as MIA, the UNSC decides to create a new generation of Spartans to defend humanity from threats both outside—and within. When they come to Buck with an extraordinary proposition, he is forced to make a life-altering decision. With the Covenant War finally over, is it time for him to retire to the sidelines for a life he could only dream about…or is he prepared to step up and become part of the military’s new blood?
Titan’s Fall (Icarus Corps #2)—Zachary Brown (March 22, Saga Press)
In book two of the fast-paced Icarus Corps series, the team wages war on the Conglomeration—and this battle may be the final one. The rapacious Confederation has taken their war to our solar system. Now that the human and PAC forces won a decisive battle on the moon, they need to try to head off the coming armada before their overpowering strength is amassed and The Icarus Corps is once again on the front line.
Transgalactic—James Gunn (March 22, Tor Books)
When Riley and Asha finally reached the planet Terminal and found the Transcendental Machine, a matter transmission device built by an ancient race, they chose to be “translated.” Now in possession of intellectual and physical powers that set them above human limitations, the machine has transported them to two, separate, unknown planets among a possibility of billions. Riley and Asha know that together they can change the galaxy, so they attempt to do the impossible—find each other.
Call Forth the Waves (Celestine Series #2)—L.J. Hatton (March 22, Skyscape)
Young adult. Earth, not so very long from now: the silent, inscrutable alien visitors who bathed the planet in transforming rains have moved on, leaving behind a world much changed. Penn Roma, age sixteen, is blessed—or cursed—with supernatural talents she has always concealed. Her sisters, likewise afflicted, are prisoners of the Commission, the government agency tasked with controlling these strange children. Penn’s determination to save them only gains urgency when she learns of the horrifying plans the twisted Warden Dodge has for the peculiar charges. But Penn herself must remain hidden, navigating a series of fantastical havens with her embattled allies, similarly enhanced teens also in the Commission’s crosshairs. Can Penn trust a rogue warden, supposedly opposed to Dodge’s schemes, to help free her family…or has the Commission set its most nefarious trap yet?
Rise of the Federation: Live by the Code—Christopher L. Bennett (March 29, Pocket Books/Star Trek)
Admiral Jonathan Archer has barely settled in as Starfleet Chief of Staff when new crises demand his attention. The Starfleet task force commanded by Captain Malcolm Reed continues its fight against the deadly Ware technology, but one of the task force ships is captured, its Andorian crew imprisoned by an interstellar Partnership that depends on the Ware for its prosperity. Worse, the Partnership has allied with a renegade Klingon faction, providing it with Ware drone fleets to mount an insurrection against the Klingon Empire. Archer sends Captain T’Pol and Endeavour to assist Reed in his efforts to free the captured officers. But he must also keep his eye on the Klingon border, for factions within the Empire blame Starfleet for provoking the Ware threat and seek to take revenge.
Heroes Reborn: Collection One—David Bishop, Timothy Zahn, Steven Blackmoore (March 29, Titan Books)
Three brand-new novellas based on Heroes and Heroes Reborn. Brave New World by David Bishop is set a year after the fateful events of the Odessa Summit. The world is no longer friendly for Evolved Humans—“Evos”—who are held responsible for what happened. If the government doesn’t find you, there are some tenacious and merciless Evo-hunters out there who will. In Timothy Zahn’s A Matter of Trust, Father Mauricio begins searching for a way to help all Evos after befriending a troubled teenager who possesses a devastating secret. In Dirty Deeds by Stephen Blackmoore, a veteran Federal agent begins investigating the involvement of ruthless Los Angeles Police Department detective James Dearing in the death of an Evolved Human. But when she gets close to uncovering a dangerous truth, it could cost him everything: his job, his freedom, maybe even his life.
Javelin Rain (Shadow Ops)—Myke Cole (March 29, Ace)
Being a US Navy SEAL was Jim Schweitzer’s life right up until the day he was killed. Now, his escape from the government who raised him from the dead has been coded “Javelin Rain.” Schweitzer and his family are on the run from his former unit, the Gemini Cell, and while he may be immortal, his wife and son are not. Jim must use all of his strength to keep his family safe, while convincing his wife he’s still the same man she once loved. But what his former allies have planned to bring him down could mean disaster not only for Jim and his family, but for the entire nation…
Dark Transmissions: A Tale of the Jinxed Thirteenth—Davila LeBlanc (March 29, Harper Voyager)
It is the late 23rd century. For engineers Jessie Madison and her husband David, a routine maintenance contract on board the orbital mining station Moria 3 has become a nightmare. Upon awakening from cryo-stasis, they learn a horrifying truth: while they were asleep, machines rose up against humanity…and won. Marooned and at the mercy of the station’s malicious artificial intelligence, OMEX, David and Jessie rig an emergency transmission to broadcast into the darkness, desperately hoping someone is still alive to hear it. Navigating the fringes of explored space in the Covenant Patrol vessel the Jinxed Thirteenth, Captain Morwyn Soltaine picks up a distress signal from a space station. But it’s broadcasting in Ancient Humanity, a language that has been extinct for several millennia. As the past and future collide, a routine mission becomes a deadly game of wits.
World of Water (Dev Harmer Missions #2)—James Lovegrove (March 29, Solaris)
Dev Harmer, reluctant agent of Interstellar Security Solutions, has travelled to ocean world Robinson D, nicknamed Triton. Here, settlements belonging to the Terran Diaspora have been coming under attack by members of the planet’s sub-aquatic indigenous race. ISS suspects the involvement of an agent provocateur working for humankind’s galactic rivals, the artificial intelligence civilisation known as Polis+. As the violence escalates, Dev finds himself battling to restore order – but he has only seventy-two hours before his genetically engineered host form breaks down irreversibly. And all as an ancient god-beast rises from the depths to usher in an apocalypse…
The Blood Red City (Never War #2)—Justin Richards (March 29, Thomas Dunne Books)
The alien Vril are waking, and the Never War is heating up. Colonel Brinkman and his team at Station Z desperately need answers—they have to discover exactly what they are facing and how the attack will come. But the information doesn’t come easily. With a major Vril offensive imminent, the Nazis step up their own project to exploit Vril weapons and technology. From a spaceship crash in Bavaria in 1934 to the rat-infested devastation of Stalingrad, from the ancient ruins of occupied Greece to the bombed-out streets of London, the second book of the Never War series continues a secret history of the Second World War in which humanity itself is fighting for survival…