This Chance Planet October 22, 2014 This Chance Planet Elizabeth Bear We are alone, except for the dog. Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza October 15, 2014 Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza Carrie Vaughn A Wild Cards story. The Girl in the High Tower October 14, 2014 The Girl in the High Tower Gennifer Albin A Crewel story. Mrs. Sorensen and the Sasquatch October 8, 2014 Mrs. Sorensen and the Sasquatch Kelly Barnhill An unconventional romance.
From The Blog
October 23, 2014
Devil in a Blue Dress: Horns by Joe Hill
Alex Brown
October 21, 2014
Fall 2014 Anime Preview: Symbiotic Alien Hands Don’t Make Good Pets
Kelly Quinn
October 21, 2014
Happily Remixed and Mashed-Up Ever After: Modern Fairy Tales!
Leah Schnelbach
October 20, 2014
Snow White: The Blankest Slate of Them All
Natalie Zutter and Emily Asher-Perrin
October 17, 2014
The Bloody Books of Halloween: The October Country by Ray Bradbury
Will Errickson
Tue
Oct 21 2014 5:00pm

The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe: Karen Akins

Karen Akins pop quiz interviewWelcome back to The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe, a recurring series here on Tor.com featuring some of our favorite science fiction and fantasy authors, artists, and others!

Today we’re joined by YA author Karen Akins! When not writing or reading, she loves taking care of her son and hanging out with her husband. And watching Downton Abbey. Karen has been many things in her life: an archery instructor, drummer for the shortest-lived garage band in history, and a shockingly bad tic-tac-toe player. Karen’s debut novel, Loop, is available now from St. Martin’s Press. At a school for time travelers, sixteen-year old Bree botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage... Read an excerpt here on Tor.com!

Karen may just be the smartest person to have around in our hypothetical SFF duel. Find out why below!

[Read More]

Mon
Oct 20 2014 5:00pm

The YA Roundup: Predicting Con Artists and Road Trips in 2015

young adult road trips

Welcome to the YA Roundup, the best source of movie news, bookish gossip, new releases and cover reveals from the YA genre!

This week covers predictions for upcoming trends in YA, more casting news for the film adaptation of Paper Towns, the Black Widow YA novel announcement, a new clip from Mockingjay, and more!

[Read More]

Wed
Oct 15 2014 5:00pm
Excerpt

The Accidental Highwayman (Audio Excerpt)

Ben Tripp

The Accidental Highwayman Ben Tripp audio excerpt Listen to a free excerpt from The Accidental Highwayman, Ben Tripp’s swashbuckling adventure for young adults! The audiobook—available now from Macmillian Audio—is read by Steve West.

In eighteenth-century England, young Christopher “Kit” Bristol is the unwitting servant of notorious highwayman Whistling Jack. One dark night, Kit finds his master bleeding from a mortal wound, dons the man’s riding cloak to seek help, and changes the course of his life forever. Mistaken for Whistling Jack and on the run from redcoats, Kit is catapulted into a world of magic and wonders he thought the stuff of fairy tales.

Bound by magical law, Kit takes up his master’s quest to rescue a rebellious fairy princess from an arranged marriage to King George III of England. But his task is not an easy one, for Kit must contend with the feisty Princess Morgana, gobling attacks, and a magical map that portends his destiny: as a hanged man upon the gallows….

[Listen to an excerpt below!]

Mon
Oct 13 2014 5:00pm

YA Roundup: J.K. Rowling’s Twitter Riddle

Welcome to the YA Roundup, the best source of movie news, bookish gossip, new releases and cover reveals from the YA genre!

This week covers J.K. Rowling’s riddle, the revival of the Mortal Instruments series, and Lena Dunham's foray into YA, plus a teaser trailer for the latest Diary of a Wimpy Kid book.

[Read More]

Mon
Oct 13 2014 4:00pm

A Failed Tragedy: Clariel by Garth Nix

Clariel Garth Nix review It has been nearly twenty years since the first publication of Australian author Garth Nix’s acclaimed Sabriel, the first of the “Old Kingdom” novels: more than ten since the publication of the well-received second pair, Lirael (2001) and Abhorsen (2003), which together form a tightly-connected duology. It’s hardly to be wondered at that Nix should chose to return to a world that has in the past been the site of such triumphantly entertaining stories.

The wonder is that Clariel is less a triumphant success than an interesting failure.

[Read More]

Mon
Oct 13 2014 9:00am

The Doubt Factory by Paolo Bacigalupi

The Doubt Factory Paolo Bacigalupi review

Disclaimer: I’ve been a fan of Paolo Bacigalupi’s writing for years, starting with his multi-award winning novel The Windup Girl.

I’ve particularly enjoyed his previous YA novels, Shipbreaker and The Drowned Cities. I’ve laughed and whole-heartedly agreed with the smart, funny middle grade novel he wrote last year, Zombie Baseball Beatdown. I’ve interviewed him a number of times and have previously found him to be a writer of solid prose whose books are always on the ball thematically—whether it’s a sociopolitical comment about child soldiers and war, a bio-punk exploration of climate change or a hilarious comic adventure centred around a meat processing plant.

So I went into his new YA novel The Doubt Factory with excitement. What a great title! ‘You Believe What They Want You To Believe’—what a great tag line! Perhaps I was expecting too much, perhaps I was expecting more of what I was familiar with and perhaps that was wrong, but The Doubt Factory left me disappointed.

[Read More]

Fri
Oct 10 2014 4:00pm

Freefall: TimeBomb by Scott K. Andrews

TimeBomb Scott K Andrews review

Three teens from three times run rampant in 17th century Cornwall in the frenetic first volume of Scott K. Andrews’ TimeBomb trilogy, a paradoxical romp which, whilst engaging and entertaining, promises a little more than it delivers.

To wit, TimeBomb begins quite brilliantly, with a fleeting glimpse of future New York: a sprawling city in which forty-storey superstructures are “dwarfed by the looming organic skytowns that twined sinuously up into the cloud base.” Here, we meet Yojana Patel, the determinedly independent daughter of... a powerful politician, I think? We can’t be certain because Andrews doesn’t dally. In a matter of moments, rather than give her pursuers the satisfaction of catching her, Jana has thrown herself off the roof of a great skyscraper.

[Read More]

Mon
Oct 6 2014 5:00pm

The YA Roundup: More Twilight Films on the Way. Yay?

Welcome to the YA Roundup, keeping you in the know with the latest YA news, book deals, releases and cover reveals!

This week covers the banning of The Fault in Our Stars, the largest Harry Potter Memorabilia collection in the world, and more stories from the world of Twilight, coming to a computer near you!

[Read More]

Wed
Oct 1 2014 12:30pm

It’s Dark Down Under

James Smythe

Pay attention, people: James Smythe is one of the most exciting new science fiction writers to debut in decades. He’s also been amongst the most productive, releasing two books a year since The Testimony in 2012. In between volumes of the ongoing Anomaly Quartet the English author has treated readers to The Machine—a darkly fantastic Frankenstein story for the 21st century—and No Harm Can Come to a Good Man—a paranoid power play about predictive politics.

Alongside The Explorer and The Echo, these superlative speculative texts demonstrate the breadth and depth of Smythe’s abilities, so I wasn’t surprised to hear that his next book would be something unusual too. This was back in January, when Hodder & Stoughton announced that they’d acquired the rights to a three part Young Adult series by said.

The song remains the same this week, but the lyrics are significantly different. First and foremost, the novel formerly known as The Burning Depths has a new title. Coming up: Way Down Dark’s incredible cover art, plus comments about the book from its Arthur C. Clarke shortlisted author and editor extraordinaire Anne Perry.

[Read More]

Mon
Sep 29 2014 5:00pm

YA Round Up: Villain Cast for The Maze Runner Sequel

Aidan Gillen

Welcome to the YA Roundup, keeping you in the know with the latest YA news, book deals, releases and cover reveals!

This week covers more YA news for the follow-up to The Maze Runner, plus casting rumors for Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and some Harry Potter fan fiction with a Christian twist. Yup. We couldn’t make this stuff up even if we tried.

[Read More]

Mon
Sep 29 2014 11:45am

The YA Book Prize

YA Book prize

Late last week, following an article examining the array of awards on offer to Young Adult authors, The Bookseller—in association with Movellas, a “story-sharing start-up”—announced another: the YA Book Prize.

Its unique selling point? It’s only open to authors who have lived for six months or more in the UK or Ireland.

Nigel Roby, publisher and chief executive of The Bookseller Group, explained that the YA Book Prize came into being after close consultation with a number of publishers: “We have one simple desire that underpins everything we do: we want more readers reading more books. The YA Book Prize gives us a wonderful opportunity to put that desire into practice.”

[But as we all know by now, the devil’s in the details...]

Thu
Sep 25 2014 10:40am

Amtrak Residency Writers Include Fables Creator Bill Willingham and Other Sci-Fi/Fantasy Authors

Amtrak Residency Program writers Bill Willingham

Amtrak has announced the winners of its inaugural Amtrak Residency Program. Over the next year, these lucky 24 residents will get a free Amtrak train ride during which they can compose their next (or, in some cases, first) great work.

While the full list includes a BuzzFeed editor and a former CIA agent, we took special note of the five writers representing for sci-fi/fantasy and geek culture. That’s about one-fifth of the writers—not too shabby. Read on to learn more about the Amtrak residents—one of whom has already decided what she’s writing about, and it sounds amazing.

[All aboard!]

Thu
Sep 25 2014 10:30am

Scripted: Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

Scott Westerfeld Afterworlds review

As someone somewhen almost certainly said, the story is the thing... and it is, isn’t it? Most readers read in order to know what happens next—to these characters or that narrative—rather than out of interest in much of anything outwith a given fiction; assuredly not the particular process of authors, though after Afterworlds, I’ve begun to wonder whether we mightn’t be missing a trick.

A twofold story about storytelling, Scott Westerfeld’s insightful new novel alternates between a pair of coming of age tales. In one, we meet Lizzie: a typical teenager, to begin with, who’s too busy texting to notice the start of a terrorist attack.

[Read More]

Wed
Sep 24 2014 4:00pm
Excerpt

Loop (Excerpt)

Karen Akins

Loop Karen Akin excerpt After sixteen year-old time traveler Bree Bennis botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage (a teensy snafu), she stands to lose her scholarship. But when Bree sneaks back to talk the kid into keeping his yap shut, she doesn’t go back far enough. The boy, Finn, now three years older and hot as a solar flare, is convinced he’s in love with Bree, or rather, a future version of her that doesn’t think he’s a complete pain in the arse. To make matters worse, she inadvertently transports him back to the 23rd century with her.

Once home, Bree discovers that a recent rash of accidents at her school are anything but accidental. Someone is attacking time travelers. As Bree and her temporal tagalong uncover seemingly unconnected clues—a broken bracelet, a missing data file, the art heist of the millennium—that lead to the person responsible, she alone has the knowledge to piece the puzzle together. Knowledge only one other person has. Her future self.

Debut author Karen Akins introduces the intricate world of Shifters in Loop, available October 21st from St. Martin’s Griffin.

[Read an excerpt]

Wed
Sep 24 2014 10:00am

Hunting for Pop Culture References in Kendare Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood

Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake

Sometimes one sentence changes a book for me. When I read Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake, and because I’m such a huge Stephen King fan, a particular sentence hit me like a dump truck of awesomeness:

“I rifle through the cabinet to chew some aspirin, a habit I picked up after reading Stephen King’s The Shining.”

This sentence really took Anna Dressed in Blood to a whole new level for me. I loved how it mentioned the literary work The Shining and not the screen version, since Kubrick’s Jack Torrence is sans chewing pills. And I started to think of this as much more than a young adult novel, since I doubt most of Blake’s target audience has read The Shining. I immediately had to return to the beginning and start the novel over again.

[Read More]

Tue
Sep 23 2014 2:00pm

All That’s Gold Does Not Glitter: Unmade by Sarah Rees Brennan

Sarah Rees Brennan UnmadeFirst up, let me warn you that it’s impossible to talk about Sarah Rees Brennan’s Unmade without revealing some of what went down in the two previous books of The Lynburn Legacy. Consider yourself warned for SPOILERS.

We zoom in on Sorry-in-the-Vale after the cliffhanger of Untold with Jared buried alive in his priest hole and everyone but Kami convinced he’s dead. Repeated forays to the Lynburn evil layer result in rescues, deadly plans, ritual sacrifice, and of course some great quips. Kami and the gang have a modicum of time available to save their town, or to convince the town to save themselves, before Rob Lynburn’s nefarious plotting can be put into action. Can they do it before their hormones take control?

Unmade is rife with broken hearts, broken homes, and a few broken bones, and Sarah Rees Brennan delivers fist pumping moments of awesomeness in a series ending that’ll keep readers glued to the page.

[Why be broken when you can be gold?]

Mon
Sep 22 2014 5:00pm

The YA Roundup: John Green’s “Very Exciting Announcement”

Cara Delevingne John Green

Welcome to the YA Roundup, keeping you in the know with the latest YA news, book deals, releases and cover reveals!

This week covers YA movie news (featuring—who else?—John Green), the lack of diversity in YA books, and the effect of film adaptations on childrens’ reading habits.

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Mon
Sep 22 2014 3:00pm

Book Two, Make Out: Untold by Sarah Rees Brennan

Sarah Rees Brennan Untold reviewOh Sarah Rees Brennan, you wily little fox, you. Here I thought reading Untold would be safe. Because I had waited. Waited until I also had Unmade in my hands and could reasonably expect to forgo the emotional torture that was sure to come at the end of such a book if I had to wait for the third, but nooooo.

No, you couldn’t let me have that solace. Instead you had to wring my heart out like the emotional equivalent of a Brawny paper towel throughout the entirety of Untold. It’s a miracle my heart’s not full of holes yet. The truly frightening thing is that you still have plenty of time to torture me further.

[Read More]

Tue
Sep 16 2014 5:00pm
Excerpt

Centaur Rising (Excerpt)

Jane Yolen

Centaur Rising Jane Yolen One night during the Perseid meteor shower, Arianne thinks she sees a shooting star land in the fields surrounding her family’s horse farm. About a year later, one of their horses gives birth to a baby centaur.

The family has enough attention already as Arianne’s six-year-old brother was born with birth defects caused by an experimental drug—the last thing they need is more scrutiny. But their clients soon start growing suspicious. Just how long is it possible to keep a secret? And what will happen if the world finds out?

Jane Yolen imagines what it would be like if a creature from another world came to ours in this thoughtfully written, imaginative novel, Centaur Rising—available October 21st from Henry Holt & Co.

[Read an excerpt]

Tue
Sep 16 2014 2:00pm

Vincit Qui Patitur: The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

The Infinite Sea 5th Wave Rick Yancey review Following the first phases of the invasion revealed in Rick Yancey’s breakthrough book, the world of The 5th Wave “is a clock winding down,” with each tick of which, and every tock, what little hope there is left is lost.

No one knows exactly how long the last remnants of humanity have, but they’re looking at a matter of months, at most... unless someone, somewhere, can conceive of a means of driving the aliens away—aliens who, as the big bad of the series says, have nowhere else to go.

“You’ve lost your home,” Vosch asks The Infinite Sea’s central character—not Cassie, as it happens—to imagine. “And the lovely one—the only one—that you’ve found to replace it is infested with vermin. What can you do? What are your choices? Resign yourself to live peaceably with the destructive pests or exterminate them before they can destroy your new home?”

[Read More]