Mon
Jan 23 2012 4:00pm

Fiction Affliction: February Releases in Fantasy

Fantasy fans can look forward to sixteen new titles in February, including the U.S. release of The Order of the Scales, the final book in Stephen Deas’ Memory of Flames series; Echoes of Betrayal, third in Elizabeth Moon’s Paladin Legacy series; and The Scar, the first U.S., English-language release of this popular novel from the best-selling Ukrainian husband-and-wife writing team of Sergey and Marina Dyachenko. Fans of Young Adult fantasy will be snapping up The Wood Queen, third in Karen Mahoney’s Iron Witch series.

Fiction Affliction details releases in science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and “genre-benders.” Keep track of them all here.

WEEK ONE

The Dread, by Gail Z. Martin (Feb. 1, Orbit)

Still reeling from plague and civil war, the Winter Kingdoms face an invasion force from across the Northern Sea led my a dark spirit mage in the name of ancient, vanquished gods. Summoner-King Martris Drayke and an untested generation of new rulers must stand against an alliance of shadowy invaders. To prevail, Tris must win the support of the Dread, spirit-beings that stand guard within the barrows over an even more fearsome threat imprisoned within. In the balance lies not only the freedom of the Winter Kingdoms, but Tris’s life and the soul of his young son.Second in the Fallen Kings Cycle.

Throne of the Crescent Moon, by Saladin Ahmed (Feb. 7, DAW)

The Crescent Moon Kingdoms, land of djenn and ghuls, holy warriors and heretics, Khalifs and killers, is at the boiling point of a power struggle between the iron-fisted Khalif and the mysterious master thief known as the Falcon Prince. In the midst of this brewing rebellion a series of brutal supernatural murders strikes at the heart of the Kingdoms. It is up to a handful of heroes to learn the truth behind these killings. When they learn that the murders and the Falcon Prince’s brewing revolution are connected, the companions must race against time before Dhamsawaat, and the world itself, turns into a blood-soaked ruin.

The Order of the Scales, by Stephen Deas (Feb. 7, Roc)

As the various factions fight for control of the Adamatine Palace, mankind’s nemesis approaches. The realms dragons are awakening from their alchemical sedation and returning to their native fury. They can remember why they were created and they now know what mankind has done to them. And their revenge will be brutal. As hundreds of dragons threaten a fiery apocalypse only the Adamantine Guard stand between humanity and extinction. Can Prince Jehal fight off the people who want him dead and unite their armies in one final battle for survival? Third and final in The Memory of Flames series. U.S. release.

City of Dragons, by Robin Hobb (Feb. 7, Harper Voyager)

Continuing the journey she began in Dragon Keeper and Dragon Haven, Hobb rejoins a small group of weak, half-formed and unwanted dragons and their displaced human companions as they search for a legendary sanctuary. Now, as the misfit band approaches its final destination, dragons and keepers alike face a challenge so insurmountable that it threatens to render their long, difficult odyssey utterly meaningless. Book three in the Rain Wild Chronicles.

Born Wicked, by Jessica Spotswood (Feb. 7, Putnam Juvenile)

Everybody knows Cate Cahill and her sisters are eccentric. Too pretty, too reclusive, and far too educated. But the truth is even worse: they’re witches. And if their secret is discovered by the priests of the Brotherhood, it would mean an asylum, a prison ship—or an early grave.Before her mother died, Cate promised to protect her sisters. But with only six months left to choose between marriage and the Sisterhood, she might not be able to keep her word, especially after she finds her mother’s diary, uncovering a secret that could spell her family’s destruction. Young Adult.

 

WEEK TWO

The Wood Queen, by Karen Mahoney (Feb. 8, Flux)

Donna Underwood is in deep trouble. An ancient alchemical order is holding her accountable for destroying the last precious drops of the elixar of life. Never mind the fact that Donna was acting to free her friend, Navin, from the dangerous clutches of the Wood Queen at the time. But what the alchemists have in store is nothing compared to the wrath of the fey. The Wood Queen has been tricked and Donna must pay. Get ready for all hell—literally—to break loose. Second in the Iron Witch series. Young Adult.

Quest for the Secret Keeper, by Victoria Laurie (Feb. 14, Delacorte)

Delphi Keep is awash in activity, and for Ian, Theo, and Carl, their safe haven might be nearing its end. The Royal Navy has taken the keep to use as a hospital and the tunnels running under the keep and the castle are ideal to set up a central communications outpost for the approaching war. The earl is happy to help the effort, but now the keep is no longer safe for the orphans and they must be evacuated to his winter residence. Ian, Theo, and Carl know that if they’re sent away, they’ll no longer be protected. But more important than their safety is deciphering the third prophecy. Middle Grade.

 

WEEK THREE

Echoes of Betrayal, by Elizabeth Moon (Feb. 21, Del Rey)

All is not well in the Eight Kingdoms. In Lyonya, King Kieri is about to celebrate marriage to his beloved, the half-elf Arian. But uncanny whispers from the spirits of his ancestors continue to warn of treachery and murder. A finger of suspicion has been pointed toward his grandmother, the queen of the Ladysforest elves, and that suspicion has only intensified with time and the Lady’s inexplicable behavior. Clearly, she is hiding something. But what? And why?Meanwhile, in Tsaia, the young king Mikeli must grapple with unrest among his own nobility over his controversial decision to grant the title and estates of a traitorous magelord to a Verrakaien who not only possesses the forbidden magic but is a woman besides: Dorrin, once one of Kieri’s most trusted captains. Third in the Paladin Legacy series.

 

WEEK FOUR

Ad Eternum, by Elizabeth Bear (Feb. 28, Subterranean)

For centuries, the wampyr has drifted from one place to another. From one life to another. It’s 1962, and he’s returned to New Amsterdam for the first time since he fled it on pain of death some sixty years before. On the eve of social revolution, on the cusp of a new way of life, he’s nevertheless surrounded by inescapable reminders of who he used to be.For a thousand years, he’s chosen to change rather than to die. Now, at last, he faces a different future.

The Ruined City, by Paula Brandon (Feb. 28, Spectra)

Reality is wavering. Soon, its delicate balance will shift and an ancient force will return to overwhelm the Veiled Isles. The otherworldly change has begun. The streets of the city are rife with chaos, plague, and revolt. And it is here that Jianna Belandor, once a pampered daughter of privilege, returns to face new challenges.The dead walk the streets. The docile amphibian slaves of humanity have taken up arms. Jianna’s home lies in ruins. Her only happiness resides in her growing attraction to Falaste Rione, a brilliant nomadic physician whose compassion and courage have led him to take dangerous risks. Second in the Veiled Isles trilogy.

Songs of the Earth, by Elspeth Cooper (Feb. 28, Tor)

The Book of Eador, Abjurations 12:14, is very clear: Suffer ye not the life of a witch. For a thousand years, the Church Knights have obeyed that commandment, sending to the stake anyone who can hear the songs of the earth. There are no exceptions, not even for one of their own.Novice Knight Gair can hear music no one else can, beautiful, terrible music: music with power. In the Holy City, that can mean only one thing: death by fire—until an unlikely intervention gives him a chance to flee the city and escape the flames. With the Church Knights and their witchfinder hot on his heels, Gair hasn’t time to learn how to use the power growing inside him, but if he doesn’t master it, that power will tear him apart. U.S. release.

The Kingdoms of Dust, by Amanda Downum (Feb. 28, Orbit)

With her master dead and her oaths foresworn, necromancer and spy Isyllt Iskaldur finds herself in exile. Hounded by assassins, she seeks asylum in Assar, the empire she so recently worked to undermine.Warlords threaten the empire’s fragile peace, and the empress is beset by enemies within the court. Even worse, darkness stirs in the deep desert. Ancient spirits long held captive are waking—spirits that can destroy Assar faster than any army. Third in the Necromancer Chronicles.

The Scar, by Sergey Dyachenko and Marina Dyachenko (Feb. 28, Tor)

Egert is a brash, confident member of the elite guards and an egotistical philanderer. But after he kills an innocent student in a duel, a mysterious man known as “The Wanderer” challenges Egert and slashes his face with his sword, leaving Egert with a scar that comes to symbolize his cowardice. Unable to end his suffering by his own hand, Egert embarks on an odyssey to undo the curse and the horrible damage he has caused, which can only be repaired by a painful journey down a long and harrowing path.

Allegiance, by Cayla Kluver (Feb. 28, Harlequin)

Bound to a man she cannot love, Queen Alera of Hytanica must forget Narian, the young man who holds her heart. For Narian is destined to conquer Hytanica at the behest of his master, the powerful magic-user known as the Overlord. Alera doesn’t truly believe Narian will fight against Hytanica—until Cokyrian troops attack with Narian commanding the charge. Faced with the greatest betrayal a heart can know, Alera must set aside personal feelings and lead her kingdom through its darkest time. Young Adult.

Darkening Skies, by Juliet E. McKenna (Feb. 28, Solaris)

Captain Corrain is hailed as a hero but he knows all such praise would turn to anger if certain people knew what had really happened. The wizard who supposedly saved him and his comrades has merely claimed the island of the corsairs for his own. No one knows what this enigmatic newcomer intends to do next.Corrain has good reason to fear the worst, as he confides in Lady Zurenne of Halferan. He knows he can trust her now that still more perilous secrets bind the two of them together. This disastrous turn of events cannot be concealed from Hadrumal’s powerful mages. The Chief Mage Planir’s leadership is now openly questioned. Surely he will enforce his authority by crushing this upstart? But the Aldabreshin warlords act first. Second in the Hadrumal Crisis series.

Touchstone, by Melanie Rawn (Feb. 28, Tor)

Cayden Silversun is part Elven, part Fae, part human Wizard—and all rebel. His aristocratic mother would have him follow his father to the Royal Court, to make a high society living off the scraps of kings. But Cade lives and breathes for the theater, and he’s good—very, very good. With his company, he’ll enter the highest reaches of society and power, as an honored artist—or die trying. Young Adult.


Author Suzanne Johnson is a book geek with a fondness for a good dystopia. Her new urban fantasy series, scheduled to begin with the release of Royal Street on April 10 by Tor Books, is set in New Orleans during and after Hurricane Katrina. Find Suzanne on Twitter.

3 comments
Hatts
1. Hatts
You've got your Elizibeth's confused in your opening paragraph, It's Elizibeth Moon's Paladin Legacy.
Suzanne Johnson
2. Susannah Sandlin
@Hatts--good catch! I'll see if the Powers-that-be can change it.
Bob Milne
3. BobMilne
So many series here that I need to catch up on, but I'm really looking forward to Melanie Rawn's Touchstone and Elspeth Cooper's Songs of the Earth.

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