Jun 24 2014 11:00am

Sleeps With Monsters: Books To Look Forward To, July-December 2014

The second half of 2014 is upon us! (Already? Where did this first half of the year go? Seriously, I want some of that time back.) Which means it’s time for my semi-regular post about which books* I’m looking forward to seeing in the latter part of the year.

*By persons who aren’t blokes. Though as always: yes, there are books by guys which I’m looking forward to, too.

July has five interesting books. I’m really looking forward to Elizabeth Bear’s One-Eyed Jack, her long-awaited return to her Promethean Age universe—it promises notorious fictional assassins and magic turf wars!—and to Michelle Sagara’s continuation of her long-running Chronicles of Elantra series, Cast in Flame. But there are two writers making their fantasy debuts this month, and both of them sound entertaining: Erika Johansen, with The Queen of the Tearling, about a princess who has to reclaim her throne; and Carrie Patel, with The Buried Life, whose cover copy makes it sound like a really attractive gaslamp-fantasy murder mystery. Also this month, acclaimed Young Adult author Mary E. Pearson (author of The Adoration of Jenna Fox) is opening a new fantasy series with The Kiss of Deception.

Next up’s August, which is nearly as full of books. It has four relevant to my interests. The stand-out to look forward to is Kameron Hurley’s The Mirror Empire, first in a new and brutal epic fantasy series. I’m excited: are you? August’s second offering is Livia Blackburne’s Young Adult debut, The Midnight Thief, whose cover copy involves thieves and assassins and makes the book sound like a lot of fun. Then there’s Karina Sumner-Smith’s Radiant, which looks like it could be really, really interesting. And to wrap things up, Lilith Saintcrow continues her Bannon and Clare series of steampunk adventures with The Ripper Affair.

What about September? Well, September brings us a new book from Karen Miller. The Falcon Throne is the first volume in a new epic fantasy series, and advance buzz is pretty positive. Sarah Rees Brennan is wrapping up her heart-rending Lynburn Legacy gothic-English-country-town trilogy with Unmade (I have marked my calendar). Debut author Erin Lindsey brings us a fantasy novel that sounds entertainingly full of derring-do, with The Bloodbound. Jean Johnson’s third space opera novel, Hardship (sequel to An Officer’s Duty), should also hit the shelves, and so should Susan Murray’s fantasy debut out of Angry Robot, The Waterborne Blade. And Cherie Priest’s novel starring Lizzie Borden, Maplecroft, is also due out. And last but not least of the things that’ve caught my eye: Legends of Red Sonja, the trade paperback collection from Dynamic of Red Sonja stories, including by Tamora Pierce and Gail Simone and Marjorie Liu and a long list of other excellent names. (Yes, after reading Red Sonja: Queen of Plagues, I am a Red Sonja fan. MORE SONJA!)

Which brings us to October! October brings us MORE SONJA, in the form of Red Sonja: The Art of Blood and Fire, written by Gail Simone. October also brings us the highly-anticipated Ancillary Sword, by Ann Leckie, sequel to the multiple-award-winning Ancillary Justice and a book I’m willing to commit murder to read. Then there’s Jacqueline Carey’s Poison Fruit, the third instalment in her Agent of Hel urban fantasy series. There’s also Beth Bernobich’s The Time Roads, which involves alternate history and time travel and mathematics. And Madeline Ashby adds another to her lengthening list of science fiction novels with standalone Company Town, set on an oil rig in the Canadian Maritimes.

October also brings us three more debuts: Chrysler Szarlan’s creepy-sounding The Hawley Book of the Dead, Rebecca Alexander’s century-spanning mystery The Secrets of Life and Death, and Ishbelle Bee’s The Singular & Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath—which involves, according to its cover copy, shapeshifters, lords of the underworld, and people being locked inside clocks.

Now we’re to November. Fans of Mira Grant will be happy to note that Symbiont is due out this month—but so are other books in which I’m personally more interested. Like Tanya Huff’s The Future Falls, the next book in her loosely-connected Enchantment Emporium series, which I’m really looking forward to. Sarah Zettel’s Dangerous Deceptions, the second book in her new Young Adult series, following on from last year’s Palace of Spies. Tomb Raider: Season of the Witch, written by Gail Simone, the trade paperback collection of the comics that form a sequel to the (excellent) videogame. And last but not least, Jacey Bedford’s debut novel from DAW, Empire of Dust, a science fiction novel of psi powers and betrayal that sounds like a whole hell of a lot of fun.

Which brings us, at last, to December. I haven’t managed to identify many novels-relevant-to-my-interests due out this month. Alas, just one. But that one’s an excellent capstone to the year: with Undercity, Catherine Asaro begins a new series in her Skolian Empire universe. A new series about Major Bhaajan, Private Investigator, in the dark streets of the capital. And you know what? I’m really looking forward to reading it.


So, people! Let’s hear it: are there any books by women you’re particularly looking forward to? Any from the books I’ve mentioned you want to talk about? So many books! So little time!


Liz Bourke is a cranky person who reads books. Her blog. Her Twitter.

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Liz Bourke
1. hawkwing-lb
And it turns out I missed a few: Rachel Pollack's The Child Eater comes out from Jo Fletcher Books in July, and also from JFB - in September - is Lisa Tuttle's The Mysteries. And Beth Cato's interesting-sounding The Clockwork Dagger is out from HarperCollins in October...

What else have I missed?
Steven Halter
2. stevenhalter
That's a lot of good books! I'll certainly be reading The Mirror Empire, Ancillary Sword and The Ripper Affair. The Waterbourne Blade and Empire of Dust sound quite interesting.
Andrew Liptak
3. JediTrilobite
I would check in on a lot of those dates: Elizabeth Bear’s One-Eyed Jack is listed as a December release on BN, and an August release on Prime's website. Midnight Thief is listed as coming out in July, Radiant is due out in September, while Hardship is listed as coming out at the end of July.
Paul Weimer
4. PrinceJvstin
I'll take all four of the "headline ones" , thank you :)
Robert H. Bedford
5. RobB
I'll be diving into The Mirror Empire for sure in the nearish future. Another one I've been hearing good things about (especially from the author's agent) is The Midnight Queen by Sylvia Izzo Hunter.

That Jacey Bedford (No relation) book, Empire of Dust looks quite interesting, too.
Jenny Kristine
6. jennygadget
More? That's not enough? * looks at dangerously high to-read pile *

I'm SO EXCITED for Ancillary Sword. Also Mirror Empire, Unmade, and Pearson's new series. Gail Simone and Beth Bernobich's also sound good - and I've heard very good things about Zettel's series, which I haven't started yet.

AND I know it's not sff, but Elizabeth Wein has a new book coming out this year and I can't wait. Celine Kiernan's latest book is also coming out in the US this year, same with Justine Larbelestier's most recent.

I already have a copy of Midnight Thief! and I'm very much looking forward to starting it. :)

(Blackburne attended the Ontario Teen Book Fest, and Disney-Hyperion was nice enough to provide early copies for her to sign.)
Robert H. Bedford
7. RobB
Also worth noting is that Orbit Books is omnibifying N.K. Jemisin's Inheritance Trilogy. In addition, a sequel novella The Awakened Kingdom e-publishes in December
8. Toohey
The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss, Fool's Assassin by Robin Hobb and The Broken Eye by Brent Weeks! Pre-ordered all of them in ebook form. Can't wait.
Eugene Myers
9. ecmyers
Rajan Khanna's Falling Sky is due in October from Pyr Books, and it's terrific. A post-apocalyptic world with airships!
10. AO
I'm of course looking forward to Michelle Sagara's Cast in Flame. And the Shadow Throne by Django Wexler, which happens to costar a lesbian protagonist, for those looking for that. Rachels Aaron's Nice Dragons Finish Last is yet another July release I'm excited for.

I'm intrigued by Dust & Light by Carol Berg, though I'm not as caught up on her work as I want to be. I know little about Karen Miller, but that cover for The Falcon Throne caught my eye, and the premise sounds promising.

I was mixed on Jacqueline Carey's second Agent of Hel novel, but I'll give at least one more a try. And I actually just read Huff's Enchantment Emporium, but have heard some mixed things on the second, so I'll see how that goes before commiting to the third.
Pamela Adams
11. PamAdams
Oooh, the new Sarah Rees Brennan! Also, I've got to start reading Michelle Sagara.
12. Sussura
Would you just pack up all of these and send them to me? I'd like to subscribe to the Sleeps With Monsters bi-annual book club.
13. AMG
I'm excited because Dru Pagliassotti supposedly has the third Clockwork Heart book coming out in September!
14. filkferengi
Andre Norton's _Tales From High Hallack Vol. 3_ is due out in October. It collects her short stories and poems, some of which haven't been in print since initial publication. Woot!
Kenneth La Rocque
15. kjtherock
You also missed Willful Child by Steven Erikson in November.
16. mxlm
Mr. Picky would note that Hardship is the sequel to Hellfire and it is the fourth installment in the Johnson space opera.
Derek Broughton
17. auspex
OK, I'm only commenting here because of your post on "Between the devil...".

I want you to know, I read this column precisely because you focus on women, which despite the fact that many of my favorite authors are women (Cherryh, Walton, Moon, Norton, Clayton all come to mind immediately), is still a serious deficiency in my reading. I read Jemisin (loved her), Sagara & Kameron Hurley (not so much - love their writing, not so much the stories they were telling) and Kate Elliott (not thrilled at all) on your suggestion, and everything in this column gets serious consideration. I finally bought a copy of Ancillary Justice last week, so that's next on the list!

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