Urban fantasy fans better take a month of vacation and stock up on the snack food, with thirty-four new urban fantasies heading our way this month in some of the genre’s most popular series. Look for new titles from Laurell K. Hamilton (Anita Blake); Jess Haines (H&W Investigations); Yasmine Galenorn (Indigo Court); Diana Rowland (White Trash Zombie); Darynda Jones (Charley Davidson); Jennifer Estep (Elemental Assassin); Richard Kadrey (Sandman Slim); Carrie Vaughn (Kitty Norville); Kristen Painter (House of Comarre); and Ilona Andrews (Kate Daniels).
Fiction Affliction details releases in science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and “genre-benders.” Keep track of them all here.
Note: All title summaries are taken and/or summarized from copy provided by the publisher.
After Celia Wird and her sisters help master vampire Misha save his family, their powers are exposed to the supernatural community of the Lake Tahoe region. Fame comes at a price, and being “weird” isn’t always welcome. Celia desires the love of Alpha werewolf Aric, but his pack is bent on destroying their relationship to preserve his pureblood status. Once weres start turning up dead, with evidence pointing to the vampires, she must face the prospect of losing Aric. An evil known as the Tribe has risen, and their sights are set on Celia and her sisters.
Micah is called back home by his estranged family, because his father, a county sheriff, has been attacked and is terribly injured. Anita and Nathaniel are going with him for moral support and to meet his family. Micah has been estranged from his family for a decade, deliberately turning his back on them to protect them from the sadistic killer who once led his leopard pack. But now Micah’s father lies dying, rotting away inside from some strange ailment that has his doctors whispering about “zombie disease.” Anita, who understands zombies better than anyone, knows there’s more to it than that. While zombies have unlovable traits, being one doesn’t cause human beings to rot in agony. She needs to solve that mystery. Micah’s father may have only five days to live.
As her wedding day approaches, Abby Cooper has a disturbing premonition of her fiancé’s murder. Her husband-to-be, FBI agent Dutch Rivers, has been assigned to a suicide bombing case, and Abby’s spirit guides warn her of imminent danger. Abby vows to do everything in her power to keep Dutch safe and get him to the altar. But on the morning of the ceremony, she finds herself in a dire situation with time running out.
The Others, vampires, werewolves, things that go chomp in the night don’t just live in nightmares anymore. They’ve joined with he mortal world. For private investigator Shiarra Waynest, that means mayhem. P.I. Shiarra Waynest is an expert on the Others. Here she is, waking up beside charismatic vamp Alec Royce with an aching head, and neck. Luckily, Shia has the perfect excuse for getting out of town, namely, a couple of irate East Coast werewolf packs who’d like to turn her into a chew toy. On Royce’s suggestion, Shia temporarily relocates to Los Angeles. Local vampires are being attacked by zombies. Who could be reckless enough to target the immortal? Following the trail will lead Shia to a terrifying truth, and to an ancient enemy with a personal grudge.
The righting of an ancient wrong. A future foretold. The bands tattooed around her wrists are laced with a dragon’s green and more, destiny preordained. Mind Thief. Gift Thief. Feared for an ability to seize another’s thoughts and powers with a touch, San Francisco tattoo artist Etaín is such an elf, and the time has come for her to learn it. Etaín once thought intimacy and permanence were impossible. Now she’s bound to Cathal, the son of an Irish mobster. And claimed by Eamon, an Elven lord with powerful gifts of his own. Eamon is determined to keep her safe, from others as well as herself. But a quest for justice is more than it seems, leaving their future to hinge on choice and magic. On promises made and dangerous bargains.
Eons ago, vampires tried to turn the dark Fae in order to harness their magic, only to create a powerful demonic enemy. Even with Myst, the Queen of the Indigo Court, temporarily out of action, the new Queens of the Golden Wood finds themselves facing incredible danger. Destined to become the Fae Queens of Winter and Summer, Wind Witch Cicely and her cousin Rhiannon are eager to assume their roles. While Myst hides in the shadows, regrouping her forces, a closer danger is lurking. Renegade vampires Geoffrey and Leo manage to free the Blood Oracle and set him upon New Forest, Washington. Leo ups the ante by kidnapping Rhiannon. Cicely must lead her forces in a bloody battle to save her cousin before everything they’ve worked for crumbles to dust.
Chloe walks into a bar and blows five years of sobriety. When she wakes, she finds herself in an unfamiliar world, The Wasteland. She discovers people from all times and places have also arrived there: Kitty and Jack, a brother and sister from the Wild West; Edgar, a prohibition bootlegger; Francis, a one-time hippie; Melody, a mentally unbalanced 1950s housewife; and Hector, a former carnival artist. None know why they arrived there, or if there is way out of a world populated by monsters and filled with corruption. The Arrivals is a thoroughly original and wildly imagined tale about making choices in a life where death is unpredictable and often temporary.
Zoe Adams and her grandmother Irma are witches who have been banished from Boston. With nowhere to go, they accept an invitation to come to Chicago, but what they don’t realize is that their new space puts them right in the heart of the most dangerous spot of all: Vamptown. Damon Thornheart is just that, virtually untouchable when it comes to love. As Vamptown’s highest-ranking demon hunter, he sees red flags when he meets Zoe and Irma, who unwittingly unleashed a brutal evil upon the community. The more Damon gets to know Zoe, the less he understands about his own true nature. Vamps and witches have always been archrivals in the entity world. Is their desire worth the risk? Only one thing is for certain: Damon will make it his mission to find out.
Ex-soldier and earth witch Nyx Ianira is working as a PI in San Francisco when she sees the last thing she ever wants to see: the Sisters of Justice, the mysterious earth witch police force. A Triad of Sisters usually means an execution mission, but the Sisters’ only goal is to capture and escort Nyx across the country. Nyx is badly needed back in Twitch Crossing, Georgia. She wanted a life of her own. Now she’s being dragged back to her swampy hometown because another life is in danger: Her little sister is missing, and Nyx is the only one who can track her down in Duivel, Missouri. But the key to finding her may lie with dark and tempting Etienne, a sinister criminal with a fearsome reputation, a ruthless attitude, and a total immunity to magic.
White Trash Zombie Apocalypse (White Trash Zombie #3), by Diana Rowland, (July 2, DAW)
Angel Crawford has enough problems of her own, what with dealing with her alcoholic, deadbeat dad, issues with her not-quite boyfriend, the zombie mafia, industrial espionage and evil corporations. Oh, and it’s raining, and won’t let up. But things get even crazier when a zombie movie starts filming in town, and Angel begins to suspect that it’s not just the plot of the movie that’s rotten. Soon she’s fighting her way through mud, blood, bullets and intrigue, even as zombies, both real and fake, prowl the streets. Angel’s been through more than her share of crap, but this time she’s in way over her head. She’ll need plenty of brainpower to fit all the pieces, and body parts, together in order to save herself, her town, and quite possibly the human race.
Rhian, a girl from the Welsh valleys on the run from tragedy and herself, finds a new home in the modern East End of London. Beneath the digital façade lurks the old East End where the layers of two thousand years of dramatic and violent history slide over one another, spilling out in avalanches that warp the real world. As bodies begin to litter the East End streets, The Commission dispatches its best enforcers to deal with the situation: Karla is not human, and Jameson left his humanity behind in pieces in Northern Ireland and Afghanistan. Rhian makes new friends, dangerous friends; and where Rhian goes, the wolf is always in her shadow, just a heartbeat away. Among the bankers and traders of the East End walk demons in human form and who is to say which are the monsters?
“This is a war. The war. There is no stopping; no getting out. You’re in this, just like the rest of us, to the end.” Driven out of hell and with nothing to lose, the Fallen wage open warfare against the angels on the streets. And they’re winning. As the balance tips towards the darkness, Alice, barely recovered from her own ordeal in hell and struggling to start over, once again finds herself in the eye of the storm. But with the chaos spreading and the Archangel Michael determined to destroy Lucifer whatever the cost, is the price simply too high. And what sacrifices will Alice and the angels have to make in order to pay it? The Fallen will rise. Trust will be betrayed. And all hell breaks loose.
Charley Davidson may not look like your everyday, run-of-the-mill grim reaper. Sadly, she gets sidetracked when son of Satan, Reyes Farrow, moves in next door. As he is the main suspect in her arson case, she is determined to stay away from him until she can find out the truth. When dead women start appearing in her apartment, lost, confused and terrified beyond reason, Charley has no choice but to ask for Reyes’s help, especially when it becomes apparent that her sister Gemma is the serial killer’s next target. With his ability to observe incorporeally, surely he can find out who’s responsible. He is the one man alive who could protect Gemma no matter who or what came at her. He wants something in return: Charley. To keep her sister safe, it is a price she is willing to pay.
It’s normal for Charles Bainbridge, Chief Inspector of Scotland Yard, to be called to the scene of a crime, but this is the third murder in quick succession where the victim’s chest has been cracked open and their heart torn out. Bainbridge suspects there’s a symbolic reason for the stolen hearts, so he sends for supernatural specialist Sir Maurice Newbury and his determined assistant, Miss Veronica Hobbes. Veronica has been hunting for some way to alleviate the mysterious forces that have been hounding her family of late, and Newbury has been retained by a private client. However, the two detectives pull together long enough to determine that the killings may be the work of a mercenary known as the Executioner. (U.S. Release)
Sharon Li: apprentice shaman and community support officer for the magically inclined.
It wasn’t the career Sharon had in mind, but she’s getting used to running Magicals Anonymous and learning how to Be One With The City. When the Midnight Mayor goes missing, leaving only a suspiciously innocent-looking umbrella behind him, Sharon finds herself promoted. Her first task: find the Midnight Mayor. The only clues she has are a city dryad’s cryptic message of doom and several pairs of abandoned shoes. Suddenly, Sharon’s job feels a whole lot harder.
Young Adult. After spending the last few months wandering around London, a city filled with the dead, B Smith has given up hope for any sign of normal human existence. But then B finds strange signs all over the city, a “Z” plus red arrows. Following them, B finds The Angels, a group gathered in the hopes of combating the evil dead and the forces that introduced them. But all is not as it seems and it’s up to B to find out: what battle are they truly waging?
Ree Reyes gets her big screenwriting break, only to discover just how broken Hollywood actually is. She’s using her love of pop culture to fight monsters and protect her hometown as a Geekomancer, and now a real-live production company is shooting her television pilot script. When an invisible figure attacks the leading lady of the show, former-child Jane Konrad, Ree begins an education in the power of Celebromancy. Attempting to help Jane Geekomancy-style, Ree learns more about movie magic than she ever intended. She also learns that real life has the craziest plots: not only must she lift a Hollywood-strength curse, but she needs to save her pilot, negotiate a bizarre love rhombus, and fight monsters straight out of the silver screen. (ebook)
Still trapped in the bureaucratic inferno known as Hell, Kirsty d’Arc redoubles her efforts to escape back to the Mortal Coil when she learns Conrad is after the soul of her beloved aunt. To save Aunt Carey, Kirsty must enroll at the Reaper Academy and earn a scythe of her own. Studying topics like Exor-scything 101, Riding the Death Cycle, and Reincarnation for Dummies is strange. So are her classmates: a fallen angel, the Death Valley girls, and Kali, the ancient god of death, destruction, and those little earring backs that always go missing. Now time is running out thanks to a temporal crisis she may have accidentally created. Can she graduate, rescue her aunt, take down Conrad, and save Hell and every other dimension, before the clock stops ticking? (ebook)
Centuries ago, all was lost in the Last Battle when the Norse gods and goddesses went to war. The elves, the giants, and the gods and goddesses themselves were all destroyed, leaving the Valkyrie Mist one of the only survivors. When a snowy winter descends upon San Francisco in June, Mist’s existence starts to feel all too familiar. Mist is attacked by a frost giant in a public park and runs into an elf disguised as a homeless person on the streets. The man Mist believed was her boyfriend reveals himself to be the trickster god, Loki. Loki has big plans for the modern world, and he’s been hanging around Mist for access to a staff that once belonged to the god Odin. Loki must be stopped if there is to be any hope for Earth. The fight is even bigger because Loki wasn’t the only god to survive.
Young Adult. Nadia Lake comes from a high-class Executive family in the Corporate States. Her marriage has been arranged with the most powerful family in her state. Her future is assured, as long as she can maintain her flawless public image. Nathan Hayes is the heir of Paxco, controller of the former state of New York, and creator of human replication technology, science that everyone in the world would kill to have. Though Nadia and Nate aren’t in love, they’ve grown up close. Then Nate turns up dead. When the new Nate wakes up in the replication tanks, he has memory that only reaches to his last memory backup, he doesn’t know what killed him. Nadia and Nate must discover what happened without revealing the secrets those who run their world would kill to protect.
The Elemental Assassin series continues with a new e-novella, from the hero’s point of view. Owen Grayson is bound and determined to get Gin back, if her enemies don’t get her first. When you have a history of dating an assassin, a night out on the town can turn deadly. Owen Grayson is still wracked with guilt over the end of his love affair with Gin Blanco, and there aren’t enough gin and tonics in all of Ashland to ease his heartache. When Gin happens to show up at the same nightclub, he isn’t the only one hoping to get her alone. Some shadowy figures will do anything to take down the Spider, Gin’s assassin alter ego, and Owen will do anything to protect her. It could be the way to win her back, or at least give her a night off from fighting for her life, if Owen can survive. (ebook).
A star-studded urban fantasy anthology featuring authors Rachel Caine, Rob Thurman, Seanan McGuire, Jennifer Estep, and Kevin Hearne, whose stories explore the creepy, mysterious, and, yes, sometimes magical world of traveling carnivals. Featuring stories grotesque and comical, outrageous and action-packed, Carniepunk is the first anthology to channel the energy and attitude of urban fantasy into the bizarre world of creaking machinery, twisted myths, and vivid new magic.
Young Adult. New York City embraces the different and the bizarre. Still, the supernatural and monstrous might be a bit too much. It’s been six months since the members of “Club Monstrosity” overcame the most recent spate of anti-monster violence and they’ve reestablished their routine of meeting in a church basement once a week. Still, they also know a war against them is brewing. Natalie and Alec (the werewolf) have begun dating, and the mummies Kai and Rehu are tighter than a bug in a, well, bandage. But when modern means (YouTube, Twitter, bits and bytes) are used to chip away at the solidarity of these ancient monsters, it’s up to Natalie to save the day. #MonstersInNewYork may be trending on Twitter, but this girl’s trending toward saving the day, somehow. (ebook)
Private Investigator Nikki James grew up on the tough streets of Lyndhurst and believes there’s nothing left to surprise her. All that changes the night she follows teenager Monica Trevgard into the shadows, and becomes a pawn caught in a war between two very different men. If she wants to survive, she must place her trust in a man who could easily destroy her. Michael Kelly is determined to end the war between himself and another brother of the night. For 300 years he has existed in shadows, gradually learning to control the cravings of a vampire. Will his love be enough to protect her from a madman hell-bent on revenge? Only together can they overcome the evil threatening to destroy them both. The secrets they keep from each other might prove to be the greatest threat. (U.S.)
Young Adult. Tavia Michaels is the sole survivor of the plane crash that killed her parents. When she starts to see strange visions of a boy she’s never spoken with in real life, she begins to suspect that there’s much about her past that she isn’t being told. Tavia will soon discover that she’s an Earthbound, someone with the ability to create matter out of nothing, and that she alone holds the key to stopping the Reduciata, an evil society that manipulates global events for its own shadowy purposes. Tavia will ultimately have to make a choice: to come into her powers and save the world from the evil Reduciata or to choose free will and a love of her own.
Young Adult. Some things are permanent. Indelible. And they cannot be changed back. Joy Malone learns this the night she sees a stranger with all-black eyes across a crowded room, right before the mystery boy tries to cut out her eye. Instead, the wound accidentally marks her as property of Indelible Ink, and this dangerous mistake thrusts Joy into an incomprehensible world, a world of monsters at the window, glowing girls on the doorstep, and a life that will never be the same. Now, Joy must pretend to be Ink’s chosen one, his helper, his love, his something for the foreseeable future...and failure to be convincing means a painful death for them both. Swept into a world of monsters, illusion, immortal honor and revenge, Joy discovers that sometimes, there are no mistakes.
James Stark, aka Sandman Slim, has managed to get out of Hell, renounce his title as the new Lucifer, and settle back into life in LA. But he’s not out of trouble yet. Somewhere along the way he misplaced the Qomrama Om Ya, a weapon from the banished older gods who are also searching for their lost power. The hunt leads Stark to an abandoned shopping mall, a multi-story copy of LA-infested with Lurkers and wretched bottom feeding Sub Rosa families, squatters who have formed tight tribes to guard their tiny patches of this fake LA. Somewhere in the kill zone of the former mall is a dead man with the answers Stark needs. All Stark has to do is find the dead man, get back out alive, and outrun some angry old gods-and a few killers-on his tail.
As Denver adjusts to a new master vampire, Kitty gets word of an intruder in the Denver werewolf pack’s territory, and she investigates the challenge to her authority. She follows the scent of the lycanthrope through the mountains where she is lured into a trap, tranquilized, and captured. When she wakes up, she finds herself in a defunct silver mine: the perfect cage for a werewolf. Her captors are a mysterious cult seeking to induct Kitty into their ranks in a ritual they hope will put an end to Dux Bellorum. Though skeptical of their power, even Kitty finds herself struggling to resist joining their cause. Whatever she decides, they expect Kitty to join them in their plot, willingly or otherwise.
In the final showdown between the forces of dark and light, Mal and Chrysabelle face not only Tatiana, but the ancient evil that now controls her: the Castus Sanguis. Chrysabelle gathers her friends and family around her, forming a plan to bring an end to the chaos surrounding them. But the Castus is the most powerful being they’ve ever come up against. Defeating such evil will require a great sacrifice from someone on the side of light. One of them will change sides. One of them will die. No one will survive unscathed. Can Chrysabelle save those she cares about or will that love get her killed? What price is she willing to pay to draw last blood?
Mercenary Kate Daniels and her mate, Curran, the Beast Lord, are struggling to solve a heartbreaking crisis. Unable to control their beasts, many of the Pack’s shapeshifting children fail to survive to adulthood. While there is a medicine that can help, the secret to its making is closely guarded by the European packs, and there’s little available in Atlanta. Kate can’t bear to watch innocents suffer, but the solution she and Curran have found threatens to be even more painful. The European shapeshifters who once outmaneuvered the Beast Lord have asked him to arbitrate a dispute, and they’ll pay him in medicine. Kate and Curran know they must accept the offer, but they have little doubt that they’re heading straight into a trap.
The Cree called the area Oscana, “pile of bones,” a fertile hunting ground where game abounded. The white settlers changed that to Wascana. And centuries later, it became Wascana Park. For a select few, who stay in the park until midnight, the land reverts into a magical kingdom, populated by heroes and monsters. They become warriors, bards, archers, gladiators. In the city called Anfractus, they live out a real-life role playing game. All harmless fun, until they find themselves in the middle of an assassination plot which threatens to upset the balance of everything. The magic of Anfractus is bleeding into the real world, an incursion far more dangerous than the students suspect. Only they know what is happening, and only they can stop it.
June Cryer is a shopaholic suburban housewife trapped in a lousy marriage. After discovering her husband’s infidelity with her flight attendant neighbor, she loses her home, her husband and her credit rating. Then her best pal Lou offers a solution; a mutual friend needs someone reliable to act as caretaker in a spectacular London high-rise apartment. June moves into the penthouse only to find that there’s no electricity and the phones don’t work. When a terrified girl breaks into the flat and June asks the neighbors for help, she finds herself embroiled in an escalating nightmare, trying to prove that a murderer exists. Over the next 24 hours she must survive on the streets without friends or money, solve an impossible crime, and fight off the urge to buy a new wardrobe.
Who Collects the Collectors? Sam Thornton has had many run-ins with his celestial masters, but he’s always been sure of his own actions. However, when he’s tasked with dispatching the mythical Brethren, a group of former Collectors who have cast off their ties to Hell, is he still working on the side of right?
In the never-ending saga that is my love-hate relationship with Robson Trowbridge, I, half-Were Hedi Peacock, have had a change of heart. Ever since I shoved Trowbridge through the Gates of Merenwyn, I’ve been the leader of the pack. I’m half-Fae. So even though my Were side is ready to heed the call of the wild, the other part of me is desperate to take flight. Life without Trowbridge is really starting to were me down. The wolves of Creemore want my blood, and the North American Council of Weres wants me dead. I’m counting the days until Trowbridge returns and comes to my rescue, and becomes my alpha mate. Given all the mess I’ve been through, what’s the harm in doing a little bit of daisy-plucking? Besides, Trowbridge owes me big-time. A girl can dream.
Author Suzanne Johnson is a book geek with a fondness for a good dystopia. Her Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series is published by Tor Books. You can find Suzanne on Facebook and on her daily speculative fiction blog, Preternatura.