Thu
Jan 26 2012 5:40pm

Fiction Affliction: February Releases in Urban Fantasy

A lot of reader favorites are among the 21 urban fantasy releases coming in February, including new series additions from Rachel Caine, Kim Harrison, Walter Jon Williams, Jennifer Estep, Christina Henry, Ben Aaronovitch, Jana Oliver, and Allison Pang. But tucked in the middle of this cornucopia of demons and vampires is Anne Rice, who with The Wolf Gift attempts a cerebral take on the werewolf. Will it do for the shifter set what her 1970s-80s fiction did for the vampire?

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

WEEK ONE

Unbroken, by Rachel Caine (Feb. 7, Roc)

As the world begins to fall apart around her, Cassiel finds herself fighting those she once called her own—the Djinn. With Weather Warden Luis Rocha and the rescued child Ibby by her side, Cassiel struggles to find a way to protect those that are in her charge and come to terms with the leadership role she never asked for. Cassiel is opposed by a powerful Djinn bent on raising an army of kidnapped Warden children to bring about nothing less than the end of the world. It will take everything Cassiel has to stop the Djinn from starting a war that will wipe all of humanity from the face of the earth.. Fourth in the Outcast Season series.

Vengeance Born, by Kylie Griffin (Feb. 7, Berkley)

There is no mercy in the demon realm. Until an unlikely champion is born—Annika, half-blood daughter of the Na’Reish King, longs for more than her tormented life among her fathe’s people. With the Na’Reish vastly outnumbering them, Kalan, a Light Blade warrior, knows the future of humankind depends on him alone. When Annika learns Kalan is a prisoner in her father’s dungeon, her dream of escape seems within reach. She must learn to trust him as they face not only the perilous journey to the border but enemies within the Council—and discover a shocking truth that could throw the human race into civil war.

Apocalypse to Go, by Katharine Kerr (Feb. 7, DAW)

Nola O’Grady has enough trouble when a were-leopard accuses her of receiving stolen property. But when her younger brother Michael goes searching for their missing father, he lands himself and his brother, Sean, in a world of hurt—literally—in a deviant world version of San Francisco. Can Nola and her partner in the Apocalypse Squad, Israeli Interpol agent Ari Nathan, find her brothers in time to save them from death by radiation poisoning? The search will lead them through a city of secrets, but the worst secret of all lurks at the heart of the only thing Nola loves more than Ari: her family.

Blood and Bullets, by James R. Tuck (Feb. 7, Kensington)

He lives to kill monsters. He keeps his city safe. And his silver hollow-points and back-from-the-dead abilities help him take out any kind of supernatural threat. But now an immortal evil has this bad-ass bounty hunter dead in its sights. Ever since a monster murdered his family, Deacon Chalk hunts any creature that preys on the innocent. So when a pretty vampire girl “hires” him to eliminate a fellow slayer, Deacon goes to warn him—and barely escapes a vampire ambush. Now he’s got a way-inexperienced newbie hunter to protect and everything from bloodsuckers to cursed immortals on his trail. First in a new series. 

 

WEEK TWO

The Fourth Wall, by Walter Jon Williams (Feb. 13, Orbit)

Dagmar Shaw got out of the game—and into the movies.Sean is a washed-up child actor reduced to the lowest dregs of reality television to keep himself afloat. His life was a downward spiral of alcoholism, regret, and failure... until he met Dagmar.Except Sean has secrets, dark even for the Hollywood treadmill of abuse, addiction, and rehab. And Dagmar is a cipher. There are dark rumors about her past, the places she’s been, the things she was involved in. People tend to die around her and now, she wants Sean for something. A movie, she says, but with her history, who’s to say what her real game is? Third in the Dagmar series.

Arcadia Awakens, by Kai Meyer (Feb. 14, Balzer + Bray)

To Rosa Alcantara, the exotic world of Sicily, with its network of Mafia families and its reputation for murder and intrigue, is just that—exotic and wholly unknown. But when her life in Brooklyn begins to fall apart, she must travel to her family’s ancestral home. Once there, Rosa falls for Alessandro Carnevare, the son of a Sicilian Mafia family, both fascinates and unsettles her. But their families are sworn enemies, and her aunt and sister believe Alessandro is only using Rosa to infiltrate the Alcantara clan. And when Rosa encounters a tiger one night—a tiger with very familiar eyes—she can no longer deny that neither the Carnevares nor the Alcantaras are what they seem. Young Adult

Wings of the Wicked, by Courtney Allison Moulton (Feb. 14, Katherine Tegen)

Life as the Preliator is harder than Ellie ever imagined. Balancing real life with the responsibility of being Heaven’s warrior is a challenge. And now that the secret of who she really is has come out, so are Hell’s strongest reapers. Grown bold and more vicious, the demonic threaten her in the light of day and stalk her in the night. Treachery comes even from those whom she loves, and Ellie is broken by the deaths of those who stood beside her in this Heavenly war. Still, she must find a way to save the world, herself, and her love for Will. If she fails, there will be hell to pay. Second in the Angelfire series. Young Adult.

The Wolf Gift, by Anne Rice (Feb. 14, Knopf)

Anne  Rice takes on werewolves along the rugged coast of northern California, in a grand mansion set against a towering redwood forest. A young reporter on assignment to interview an older woman who must sell her historic home meets with violence—and a terrifying, seductive transformation. As the young man resists the paradoxical pleasure and enthrallment of his wolfen savagery and delights in the power and (surprising) capacity for good, he is caught up in a strange and dangerous rescue and is desperately hunted as “the Man Wolf” by authorities, the media and scientists.

 

WEEK THREE

A Good and Useful Hurt, by Aric Davis (Feb. 21, 47North)

Mike is a tattoo artist running his own shop, and Deb is the piercing artist he hires to round out the motley crew at his studio of four. The last thing either expects is romance, but that’s exactly what happens when they follow their off-kilter careers and love lives into disaster. When Mike follows a growing trend and tattoos the ashes of deceased loved ones into several customers’ tattoos, he has no idea that it will one day provide the solution—and solace—he will sorely need. And when the life of a serial killer collides with the lives of those in the tattoo shop, Mike and Deb will stop at nothing in their quest for revenge, even if it means stepping outside the known boundaries of life and death.

Perfect Blood, by Kim Harrison (Feb. 21, Harper Voyager)

Ritually murdered corpses are appearing across Cincinnati, terrifying amalgams of human and other. Pulled in to help investigate by the FIB, former witch turned day-walking demon Rachel Morgan soon realizes a horrifying truth — a would-be creator is determined to make his (or her) own demons. But it can’t be done without Rachel’s blood. As a bounty hunter, Rachel has battled vampires, witches, werewolves, demons, and more. But humanity itself might be her toughest challenge. Tenth in the Hollows series.

Faery Tales and Nightmares, by Melissa Marr (Feb. 21, HarperCollins)

Dangerous promises and beguiling threats swirl together in a dozen stories of enchantments dark and light. Uncanny and unexpected creatures appear from behind bushes, rise from beneath the seas, or manifest from seasonal storms to pursue the objects of their attention—with amorous or sinister intent—relentlessly. From the gentle tones of a storyteller’s cadences to the terror of a blood sacrifice, tales of favorite characters from Marr’s Wicked Lovely novels mix with accounts of new characters in this story collection.Young Adult.

Raven Calls, by C.E. Murphy (Feb. 21, Luna)

Suddenly, being bitten by a werewolf is the least of Joanne Walker’s problems.Her personal life in turmoil, her job as a cop over, she’s been called to Ireland by the magic within her. And though Joanne’s skills have grown by leaps and bounds, Ireland’s magic is old and very powerful. In fact, this is a case of unfinished business. Because the woman Joanne has come to Ireland to rescue is the woman who sacrificed everything for Joanne—the woman who died a year ago. Now, through a slip in time, she’s in thrall to a dark power and Joanne must battle darkness, time, and the gods themselves to save her.

 

WEEK FOUR

Whispers Under Ground, by Ben Aaronovitch (Feb. 28, Del Rey)

It begins with a dead body at the far end of Baker Street tube station, all that remains of American exchange student James Gallagher—and the victim’s wealthy, politically powerful family is understandably eager to get to the bottom of the gruesome murder. The trouble is, the bottom—if it exists at all—is deeper and more unnatural than anyone suspects—except, that is, for London constable and sorcerer’s apprentice Peter Grant. With Inspector Nightingale, the last registered wizard in England, tied up in the hunt for the rogue magician known as “the Faceless Man,” it’s up to Peter to plumb the haunted depths of the oldest, largest, and—as of now—deadliest subway system in the world. Third in the Peter Grant series.

How to Be Death, by Amber Benson (Feb. 28, Ace)

All Calliope Reaper-Jones ever wanted out of life was a fabulous job in New York City and a really hot boyfriend. But now, she’s the brand-new President of Death, Inc. With the Board of Death breathing down her neck and her dad’s copy of How to be Death (A Fully Annotated Guide) unopened, Callie’s really feeling the tension. And when the guide book is stolen at a fancy formal dinner, Callie has to figure out how to be the boss—before the powers held within the book get out and destroy humanity forever. Fourth in the Calliope Reaper-Jones series.

By a Thread, by Jennifer Estep (Feb. 28, Pocket)

When killing people is your job, there’s no such thing as a vacation. Then again, how often does an assassin live long enough to enjoy her retirement? In this line of work, you either get lucky or you get dead. And since I destroyed my nemesis Mab Monroe a few weeks ago, all of Ashland’s lowlifes are gunning to make a name for themselves by taking out the lethal Spider—me, Gin Blanco. So I’m leaving behind my beloved barbecue joint and heading south with my baby sister, Bria, to cool my heels in a swanky beach town. Call it a weekend of fun in the sun. But when a powerful vampire with deadly elemental magic threatens an old friend of Bria’s, it looks like I’ll have to dig my silverstone knives out of my suitcase after all. Sixth in the Elemental Assassin series.

Unafraid, by Michael Griffo (Feb. 28, Kensington)

The boarding school known as Archangel Academy possesses a legacy of secrets known only to a privileged few. For in this peaceful, charming part of England lives a population of vampires at war with one another—and Michael Howard is caught in the middle. When Michael left his small Nebraska hometown to enroll at Archangel Academy, he couldn’t have imagined how much the experience would change him. Once mortal, Michael is now a vampire with a destiny that was foretold long ago, and a group of friends with their own mysterious abilities. But there are enemies too, some of them hiding in plain sight. Third in the Archangel Academy series. Young Adult.

Black Howl, by Christina Henry (Feb. 28, Ace)

Agent of Death Madeline Black is finding out that some of the spirits of Chicago aren’t ready to cross over. Ghosts are walking the streets, and Madeline’s exasperating boss wants her to figure out why. And while work is bad enough, Maddy has a plethora of personal problems, too. Now that Gabriel has been assigned as her thrall, their relationship has hit an impasse. At least her sleazy ex-fiancé Nathaniel is out of the picture—or so she thinks. Third in the Madeline Black series.

Dead Harvest, by Chris F. Holm (Feb. 28, Angry Robot)

Meet Sam Thornton. He collects souls. Sam’s job is to collect the souls of the damned, and ensure they are dispatched to the appropriate destination. But when he’s sent to collect the soul of a young woman he believes to be innocent of the horrific crime that’s doomed her to Hell, he says something no Collector has ever said before. “No.”

Fated, by Benedict Jacka (Feb. 28, Ace)

Alex Verus is part of a world hidden in plain sight, running a magic shop in London. And while Alex’s own powers aren’t as showy as some mages, he does have the advantage of foreseeing the possible future—allowing him to pull off operations that have a million-to-one-chance of success. But when Alex is approached by multiple factions to crack open a relic from a long-ago mage war, he knows that whatever’s inside must be beyond powerful. And thanks to his abilities, Alex can predict that by taking the job, his odds of survival are about to go from slim to none. First in the Alex Verus series. 

Forgiven, by Jana Oliver (Feb. 28, St. Martin’s Griffin)

The days are growing darker for seventeen-year-old demon trapper Riley Blackthorne. With her father’s reanimated body back safely, Beck barely speaking to her because of a certain hunky Fallen angel, and a freshly-made deal with Lucifer, she has enough on her hands to last a normal teenage lifetime. Though she bargained with Heaven to save his life, her ex-boyfriend Simon has told the Vatican’s Demon Hunters that she’s working with Hell. So now she’s in hiding, at the top of everyone’s most-wanted list.But it’s becoming clear that this is bigger than Riley, and rapidly getting out of control:  something sinister is happening in Atlanta… or someone. Third in the Demon Trappers series. Young Adult.

A Sliver of Shadow, by Allison Pang (Feb. 28, Pocket)

Just when her new life as a TouchStone—a mortal bound to help OtherFolk cross between Faery and human worlds—seems to be settling down, Abby Sinclair is left in charge when the Protectorate, Moira, leaves for the Faery Court. And when the Protectorate’s away…let’s just say things spiral out of control when a spell on Abby backfires and the Faery Queen declares the Doors between their worlds officially closed. The results are disastrous for both sides: OtherFolk trapped in the mortal world are beginning to fade, while Faerie is on the brink of war with the daemons of Hell. Second in the Abby Sinclair series.



 

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.

Fiction Affliction | Suzanne Johnson | new releases | February 2012 | fantasy

 

4 comments
Natasa Charlotte
1. Natasa
Forgiven by Jana Oliver is probably my most anticipated release. Thank you for doing these lists Ms Suzanne! I was wondering, would it be possible to add the series and # next to the title of the book, like the Goodreads format? It makes it easier when looking for new series to read :)
Suzanne Johnson
2. SuzanneJohnson
@Astarael...Actually, that's a good idea! I've been putting them at the end of each listing but making the series number more visible by putting them at the beginning would probably be helpful.
Bryant Durrell
3. Bryant
The Walter Jon Williams book is either SF or genre-bender -- very near future, no fantasy elements. Sorry to nit pick, and thanks for doing this every month!
NullNix
5. NullNix
I'm particularly unimpressed by the way that _Whispers Under Ground_, a novel set in London, written by a Londoner and concerned intimately with London and the Tube system, is being released four months later in the UK than in the US. Way to ruin the initial sales figures, guys.

Subscribe to this thread

Receive notification by email when a new comment is added. You must be a registered user to subscribe to threads.
Post a comment