Fiction Affliction: December Releases in Fantasy

I guess the elven hordes are busy helping Santa this month, since only ten new fantasies debut in December. Series fans are in luck, though, with new additions from David Dalglish (Shadowdance, both a novella and a novel), Ari Marmell (Widdershins), John R. Fultz (Books of the Shaper), and K.J. Taylor (Risen Sun). Also look for new series starts from John Gwynne and Andy Remic.

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.


A Dance of Mirrors (Shadowdance #3)David Dalglish (December 3, Orbit)

Haern is the King’s Watcher, protector against thieves and nobles who would fill the night with blood. Yet hundreds of miles away, an assassin known as the Wraith has begun slaughtering those in power, leaving the symbol of the Watcher in mockery. When Haern travels south to confront this copycat, he finds a city ruled by the corrupt, the greedy and the dangerous. Rioters fill the streets, and the threat of war hangs over everything. To forge peace, Haern must confront the deadly Wraith, a killer who would shape the kingdom’s future with the blade of his sword.

Cloak and Spider: A Shadowdance NovellaDavid Dalglish (December 3, Orbit)

“Every king must have his heirs, and I will have heirs worthy of my legend…” Thren Felhorn is a legend of the underworld, the leader of the powerful Spider Guild, father to the Watcher of Veldaren, and the most feared man in a city flooded with crime and death. Cloak and Spider contains six stories chronicling Thren’s tutelage under the fearsome Darkhand, his bloody rise to fame, the creation of his infamous guild, and the birth of his son, Aaron, who would grow up to be a legend all his own. Digital.

Lost Covenant (Widdershins Adventures #3)Ari Marmell (December 3, Pyr)

It’s been six months since Widdershins and her own “personal god” Olgun fled the city of Davillon. During their travels, Widdershins unwittingly discovers that a noble house is preparing to move against the last surviving bastion of the Delacroix family. Determined to help the distant relatives of her deceased adopted father, Alexandre Delacroix, she travels to a small town at the edge of the nation. There, she works at unraveling a plot involving this rival house and a local criminal organization, all while under intense suspicion from the very people she’s trying to rescue. Along the way she’ll have to deal with a traitor inside the Delacroix family, a mad alchemist, and an infatuated young nobleman who won’t take no for an answer.

Malice (The Faithful and the Fallen #1)John Gwynne (December 3, Orbit)

Corban wants nothing more than to be a warrior under King Brenin’s rule. That day will come all too soon. The price he pays will be in blood. Evnis has sacrificed, too much it seems. But what he wants, the power to rule, will soon be in his grasp. Veradis is the newest member of the warband for the High Prince, Nathair. He is one of the most skilled swordsman to come out of his homeland. Nathair has ideas, and a lot of plans. Many of them don’t involve his father, the High King Aquilus. The Banished Lands has a violent past. Now giants are seen, the stones weep blood and giant wyrms are stirring. Those who can still read the signs see a threat far greater than the ancient wars. For if the Black Sun gains ascendancy, mankind’s hopes and dreams will fall to dust. (U.S.)

Rebel Spring (Falling Kingdoms #2)Morgan Rhodes and Michelle Rowen (December 3, Razorbill)

Young Adult. Auranos has fallen and the three kingdoms, Auranos, Limeros, and Paelsia, are now united as one country called Mytica. But still, magic beckons, and with it the chance to rule not just Mytica, but the world. When the evil King Gaius announces that a road is to be built into the Forbidden Mountains, formally linking all of Mytica together, he sets off a chain of events that will forever change the face of this land, forcing Cleo the dethroned princess, Magnus the reluctant heir, Lucia the haunted sorceress, and Jonas the desperate rebel to take steps they never could have imagined.

Shannivar: Volume Two of the Seven-Petaled ShieldDeborah J. Ross (December 3, DAW)

Shannivar is a warrior, skilled in horsemanship and archery and raised by her uncle, the clan chieftain. Desperate to resist the imperialistic arm of the nearby growing empire, all of the clans of her nation are gathering to propose an alliance with each other. They encounter a stranger, Zevaron, heir to the magical Seven-Petaled Shield. Zevaron also seeks to halt the empire’s expansion and joins forces with Shannivar. The clan gathering is ready, except for the absence of the clan from the north. When the missing delegates arrive, they tell stories of wolves running mad, reindeer turning cannibal, and man-sized, upright lizards, called stone-drakes. Zevaron and Shannivar set out on a journey to discover the source of these dangers, a quest even the prophets believe will fail.



Seven Sorcerers (Books of the Shaper #3)John R. Fultz (December 10, Orbit)

The Almighty Zyung drives his massive armies across the world to invade the Land of the Five Cities. So begins the final struggle between freedom and tyranny. The Southern Kings D’zan and Undutu lead a fleet of warships to meet Zyung’s aerial armada. Vireon the Slayer and Tyro the Sword King lead Men and Giants to defend the free world. So begins the great slaughter of the age. Iardu the Shaper and Sharadza Vodsdaughter must awaken the Old Breed to face Zyung’s legion of sorcerers. So begins a desperate quest beyond the material world into strange realms of magic and mystery. Yet already it may be too late.



No new releases.



The Bread We Eat in DreamsCatherynne M. Valente (December 28, Subterranean Press)

A major new collection by Catherynne M. Valente, author of The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making and other acclaimed novels, now brings readers a treasure trove of stories and poems. In the novelette “White Lines on a Green Field,” an old story plays out against a high school backdrop as Coyote is quarterback and king for a season. A girl named Mallow embarks on an adventure of memorable and magical politicks in “The Girl Who Ruled Fairyland—For a Little While.” The novella “Silently and Very Fast” is an ancient epic set in a far-flung future, the intimate autobiography of an evolving A.I. And in the title story, the history of a New England town and that of an outcast demon are irrevocably linked.

The Iron Wolves: Book 1 of the Rage of KingsAndy Remic (December 31, Angry Robot)

Thirty years ago, the Iron Wolves held back mud-orc hordes at the Pass of Splintered Bones, and led a brutal charge that saw the sorcerer Morkagoth slain. This ended the War of Zakora, and made the Iron Wolves heroes. Now, a new terror stalks the realm. It is claimed the Horse Lady, Orlana the Changer, has escaped from the Chaos Halls and is building an army. Aged General Dalgoran searches to reunite the heroes of old for what he believes will be the final battle. Dalgoran discovers the Iron Wolves are no longer heroes of legend. The Iron Wolves travel to the Pass of Splintered Bones. General Dalgoran realizes his grave error. The Iron Wolves hold a terrible secret which has tortured them for three decades. Now, they only wish to be human again.

The Shadowed Throne (The Risen Sun #2)K.J. Taylor (December 31, Ace)

Arenadd Taranisäii, infamous leader of the Northern people, has vanished. Only his half-breed daughter Laela knows what happened to him. Left to rule her father’s Kingdom, Laela is all that stands in the way of the war her cousin Saeddryn wants to declare. But Laela faces a far more dangerous enemy: the Night God herself wants Laela dead. Faced by enemies on all sides, Laela must learn to rule, and survive, with her griffin partner Oeka by her side. As allies come from unexpected places, someone new will enter Laela’s life: the mysterious shapeshifter Kullervo. But soon the Night God will send the most dangerous enemy of all, the deadly Shadow That Walks, an invincible murderer created to fulfill only one mission: kill Laela.

Suzanne Johnson is the author of the Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series. You can find Suzanne on Facebook and on her speculative fiction blog, Preternatura.


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