Fiction Affliction: September Releases in Paranormal and Urban Fantasy

Take a deep, deep breath, haul out your wallet, and get ready for forty-nine new titles in paranormal fantasy, urban fantasy, and fantastical horror this month.

Topping the wish list this month is the final novel (number thirteen, of course) in Kim Harrison’s Hollows series, a story collection in Patricia Briggs’ Mercy Thompson world, and a new series from Cherie Priest, but also look for series additions from, among others, Jonathan Maberry (Dead of Night), Robin D. Owens (Ghost Seer), Kay Hooper (Bishop/Special Crimes Unit), Benedict Jacka (Alex Verus), Tad Williams (Bobby Dollar), Seanan McGuire (October Daye), Wen Spencer (Elfhome), Amanda Carlson (Jessica McClain), Faith Hunter (Jane Yellowrock), Sarah Rees Brennan (Lynburn Legacy), Anton Strout (Spellmason Chronicles), and Yasmine Galenorn (Otherworld).

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.

WEEK ONE

Caught Dead Handed (A Witch City Mystery)Carol J. Perry (September 2, Kensington)

Most folks associate the city of Salem, Massachusetts, with witches, but for Lee Barrett, it’s home. She’s returned to her hometown, where her beloved Aunt Ibby still lives, to interview for a job as a reporter at WICH-TV. The only opening is for a call-in psychic to host the late-night horror movies. The previous host, Ariel Constellation, never saw her own murder coming. Lee takes the job, but when she starts seeing real events in the obsidian ball she’s using as a prop, she wonders if she might really have psychic abilities. It’s starting to look like Ariel may have been an actual practicing witch, when O’Ryan, the cat Lee and Aunt Ibby inherited from her, exhibits some strange powers of his own. With Halloween fast approaching, Lee must focus on unmasking a killer, or her career as a psychic may be very short-lived.

Celtic Fire (Rogue Angel #50)Alex Archer (September 2, Gold Eagle)

The theft of a whetstone from a Welsh museum and the murder of a curate during a grave robbery seem like random crimes. The troubling deeds are linked by a precarious thread. A collection of rare and scattered British antiquities has become a target, and the relics’ value lies in something more dangerous than money. Annja Creed, archaeologist and host of TV’s Chasing History’s Monsters, is in the U.K. when her mentor, Roux, interrupts her with news of the thefts. He’s certain that the thirteen Treasures of Britain are wanted for their rumored power. Roux tasks Annja with locating and protecting the treasures before the wrong person finds them. She must stand against a woman fueled by the fires of her ancient Celt blood, and a sword as powerful and otherworldly as Annja’s own.

Fall of Night (Dead of Night #2)Jonathan Maberry (September 2, St. Martin’s Griffin)

Stebbins Little School is full of bodies. It’s unthinkable to Desdemona Fox. Children are sobbing as panicked teachers and neighbors beat down their family members outside of the school, or the things that used to be their family members. Officers Fox and Hammond, along with journalist Billy Trout, are calling it the beginning of the end. This is the zombie apocalypse. An insane escaped serial killer is infecting Stebbins County with a deadly virus, and now the whole world is watching while Fox, Trout, and the remaining inhabitants of Stebbins fight for their life against…The undead? The President and the National Guard are ready to nuke Stebbins, PA off the map and cut their losses. The scientist who created the virus is missing. Fox has to contain the infected and evacuate the living before it’s too late, and the clock is ticking.

Ghost Layer (Ghost Seer #2)Robin D. Owens (September 2, Berkley)

Clare Cermak’s adjusting to a new man in her life, and a lot of ghosts. The passing of Clare’s aunt gave way to a sizeable inheritance of not only money, but also the ability to communicate with the dead. At the same time, she met Zach Slade, a private detective with a rough past, and just like Clare, he’s not yet ready to accept her gift, or his own. But Clare has another matter to look into. A multimillionaire needs her help after relocating an old ghost town to his mountain estate. The bones of a murdered prospector are making nightly appearances in his guests’ beds. When the gold miner’s ghost contacts Clare, she promises to help find the name of his killer, but someone doesn’t want the past revealed and might find her first.

Haunted (Bishop/Special Crimes Unit #15)Kay Hooper (September 2, Berkley)

When Deacon James’s younger sister Melanie calls him, terrified, he goes to her aid in the Georgia town of Sociable. What he finds is a scared young woman in the grip of a paranormal nightmare, and murder. Two local men have been killed under mysterious circumstances. Melanie is the prime suspect. Trinity Nichols left a high-stress job for quiet, small-town life. Her investigation is yielding more than she bargained for, including a group of strangers who have descended on Sociable, some with abilities Trinity finds hard to believe, and agendas she refuses to trust. They know a lot more than they should about what’s happening in town. Trinity, Deacon, and this odd band of FBI agents must work together to solve a series of disturbances so incredible that Trinity, and the town of Sociable, will be changed forever.

Hidden (Alex Verus #5)Benedict Jacka (September 2, Ace)

Alex Verus should have foreseen his friends’ reactions to the revelations about his previous life. Anne Walker no longer trusts him, and has cut all ties with the mage community after getting kicked out of the apprentice program. As a favor to Luna, Alex’s own apprentice and Anne’s best friend, he checks in on her only to be told to leave her alone. Anne gets kidnapped. The Council Keepers of the Order of the Star believe Dark mages from her past may be involved. Working with the Keepers, Alex and Luna discover that Anne has been taken into the shadow realm of Sagash, her former Dark mage mentor. They must find a way to rescue her. Another shadow from the past has resurfaced, Alex’s former master may be back in London, and Alex has no idea what his agenda is.

House Immortal (House Immortal #1)Devon Monk (September 2, Roc)

Matilda Case isn’t like most folk. She’s unique in the world, the achievement of her father’s experiments, a girl pieced together from bits. Or so she believes, until Abraham Seventh shows up at her door, stitched with life thread just like her and insisting that enemies are coming to kill them all. Tilly is one of thirteen incredible creations known as the galvanized, stitched together beings immortal and unfathomably strong. For a century, each House has fought for control over the galvanized. Now the Houses are also tangled in a deadly struggle for dominion over death, and Tilly and her kind hold the key to unlocking eternity. The secrets that Tilly must fight to protect are hidden within the very seams of her being. Her enemies are willing to tear her apart piece by piece.

Hunter’s Trail (Scarlett Bernard #3)Melissa F. Olson (September 2, 47North)

Actions have consequences, a lesson Scarlett Bernard is learning the hard way. As a “null,” Scarlett has always been able to negate the powers of the supernatural beings that surround her. Her decision to permanently change Eli from a werewolf to a human has left the Los Angeles werewolf pack in shambles, and upset the balance of power among the city’s supernatural factions. Scarlett’s employers discover that a newly changed werewolf is running amok in the city. Scarlett will need help from both Eli and Detective Jesse Cruz of the LAPD. Scarlett and her friends aren’t the only ones on the hunt, someone else is chasing the wolf. Scarlett and her allies must stop both the rogue wolf and the deadly hunter before the full moon rises and all hell breaks loose.

Maplecroft (The Borden Dispatches #1)Cherie Priest (September 2, Roc)

The people of Fall River, Massachusetts, fear me. Perhaps rightfully so. I remain a suspect in the brutal deaths of my father and his second wife despite the verdict of innocence at my trial. With our inheritance, my sister, Emma, and I have taken up residence in Maplecroft, a mansion near the sea and far from gossip and scrutiny. But it is not far enough from the affliction that possessed my parents. Their characters, their very souls, were consumed from within by something that left malevolent entities in their place. It originates from the ocean’s depths, plaguing the populace with tides of nightmares and madness. This evil cannot hide from me. No matter what guise it assumes, I will be waiting for it. With an axe.

Mary: The Summoning (Bloody Mary #1)Hillary Monahan (September 2, Disney-Hyperion)

Young Adult. There is a right way and a wrong way to summon her. Success requires precision: a dark room, a mirror, a candle, salt, and four teenage girls. Jess, Shauna, Kitty, and Anna, must link hands, follow the rules, and never let go. A thrilling fear spins around the room the first time Jess calls her name: A ripple of terror follows when a shadowy silhouette emerges through the fog, a specter trapped behind the mirror. Mary is called again. And again. When their summoning circle is broken, Bloody Mary slips through the glass with a taste for revenge. As the girls struggle to escape Mary’s wrath, loyalties are questioned, friendships are torn apart, and lives are forever altered. A haunting trail of clues leads Shauna on a search to uncover the legacy of Mary Worth. What she finds will change everything, but will it be enough to stop Mary, and Jess, before it’s too late?

Shifting Shadows: Stories from the World of Mercy Thompson (Mercy Thompson)Patricia Briggs (September 2, Ace)

Mercy Thompson’s world just got a whole lot bigger. A collection of all-new and previously published short stories featuring Mercy Thompson, “one of the best heroines in the urban fantasy genre today”, and the characters she calls friends. Includes the new stories: “Silver”, “Roses in Winter”, “Redemption” and “Hollow”. Also includes reader favorites: “Fairy Gifts”, “Gray”, “Alpha and Omega”, “Seeing Eye”, “The Star of David” and “In Red, with Pearls”.

Sleeping Late on Judgement Day (Bobby Dollar #3)Tad Williams (September 2, DAW)

Renegade angel Bobby Dollar does not have an easy afterlife. After surviving the dangers Hell oh-so-kindly offered him, Bobby has returned empty-handed, his demon girlfriend Casmira, the Countess of Cold Hands, is still in the clutches of Eligor, Grand Duke of Hell. Bobby ends up back at his job as an angel advocate. Until Walter, an old angel friend whom Bobby never thought he’d see again, shows up at the local bar. The last time he saw Walter was in Hell, when Walter had tried to warn him about one of Bobby’s angel superiors. There’s corruption hidden within the higher ranks of Heaven and Hell, but the only proof Bobby has is a single feather. He’s in the High Hall of Heavenly Judgment, no longer a bastion for the moral high ground, if it ever was, but instead just another rigged system, on trial for his immortal soul.

Spells at the Crossroads (Maggie Graham #3)Barbara Ashford (September 2, DAW)

Maggie Graham was having a very bad summer. She lost her job and then the bathroom ceiling in her apartment collapsed. That was when Maggie decided it was time to run away from home. On the road to Vermont for her weekend away, she impulsively took the exit for a town called Dale. The area felt familiar, especially the big white barn she passed on the way to town. Her experience as an actor landed her a job in the summer stock company of the Crossroads Theatre, housed in that same white barn., but none of her professional credits could prepare her for the magic that happened on this stage. Or for the theatre’s unorthodox staff. That staff and stage will soon become family to Maggie, but all the magic in the world might not be enough to keep them safe, with threats ranging from interfering board presidents to imprisonment in the realm of Faerie.

The Alliance (The Registry #3)Shannon Stoker (September 2, William Morrow)

Mia Morrissey fled to Mexico to escape the government marrying her to someone she did not love. She’s going risk everything so that the rest of America can be free. Mia returns to America. Life there is more dangerous than ever as the walls grow ever taller, and the forgotten country faces its most ruthless leader yet, Grant Marsden, a shadow from Mia’s past. With the help of Andrew, Carter, and members of the subversive group Affinity, she embarks on a journey to defeat Grant, bring down the government, and destroy the Registry once and for all. Mia discovers that her enemies have used her, and so have her friends. She’s uncertain who to trust, or whether the mission is worth what she’s sacrificing. Mia knows that her next step may be the last for her, and America.

The Dolls (Dolls #1)Kiki Sullivan (September 2, Balzer + Bray)

Young Adult. Eveny Cheval just moved back to Louisiana after spending her childhood in New York. Eveny hasn’t seen her hometown since her mother’s suicide fourteen years ago. Her memories couldn’t have prepared her for what she encounters. Pristine, perfectly manicured Carrefour has a dark side, and Eveny quickly finds herself at the center of it all. Enter Peregrine Marceau, Chloe St. Pierre, and their group of rich, sexy friends known as the Dolls. Peregrine and Chloe have everything, including an explanation for what’s going on in Carrefour. After murder strikes and Eveny discovers that everything she believes about herself, her family, and her life is a lie, she must turn to the Dolls for answers. It’s up to Eveny, Chloe, and Peregrine to save Carrefour and make it right.

The Fatal Tree (Bright Empires #5)Stephen R. Lawhead (September 2, Thomas Nelson)

What do you do when you’re faced with The End of Everything? The evidence is compelling, not only is The End of Everything approaching, it’s approaching rapidly. Desperation sends the Questors to the four corners of the universe in search of answers. Tony and Gianni are in Rome gathering additional data on the collapse of the universe, and Haven and Giles are captured by Huns and taken to Byzantium. Mina travels to Egypt to recruit Dr. Thomas Young, “the last man in the world who knows everything.” But when he accompanies Mina, Kit, and Cass to the ley guarded by the giant tree, he manages to activate the ley and he and Mina disappear. Before disappearing, Dr. Young dubbed the giant Yew the Fatal Tree, but what fate is it leading these Questors toward?

The Winter Long (October Daye #8)Seanan McGuire (September 2, DAW)

Toby thought she understood her own past; she thought she knew the score. She was wrong. It’s time to learn the truth.

The Winter PeopleRebekah L. Purdy (September 2, Entangled Teen)

Salome Montgomery fears winter. Most of all, she fears the frozen pond she fell through as a child. Haunted by the voices and images of the strange beings that pulled her to safety, she hasn’t forgotten their warning to “stay away.” When failing health takes her grandparents to Arizona, she is left in charge of maintaining their estate. This includes the “special gifts” that must be left at the back of the property. At the center of this world is the strange and beautiful Nevin, who she finds trespassing on her family’s property. His interactions with Salome take her life in a new direction. A direction where she’ll have to decide between her longtime crush Colton, or Nevin who protects her from the darkness that swirls in the snowy backdrop. An evil that, given the chance, will kill her.

Trial By Fire (The Worldwalker Trilogy #1)Josephine Angelini (September 2, Feiwel & Friends)

Young Adult. This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan. After a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear. Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem, one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian, Lily’s other self in this alternate universe. What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. Lily is torn between responsibilities she can’t hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected.

Wickedly Dangerous (Baba Yaga #1)Deborah Blake (September 2, Berkley)

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. Older than she looks and powerful beyond measure, Barbara Yager no longer has much in common with the mortal life she left behind long ago. She travels the country with her faithful dragon-turned-dog in an enchanted Airstream, fulfilling her duties as a Baba Yaga. When she is summoned to find a missing child, Barbara suddenly finds herself caught up in a web of deceit and an unexpected attraction to the charming but frustrating Sheriff Liam McClellan. As Barbara fights both human enemies and Otherworld creatures to save the lives of three innocent children, she discovers that her most difficult battle may be with her own heart.

Wood Sprites (Elfhome #4)Wen Spencer (September 2, Baen)

Even though they attend a school of gifted students in New York City, child geniuses Louise Mayer and her twin sister Jillian have always felt alone in the world. Before their ninth birthday, they make an amazing discovery. They’re not alone. Their real mother was astronaut Esme Shenske and their father was the inventor, Leonardo Dufae. They have an older sister, Alexander, living on the planet of Elfhome, and four siblings still in cryogenic storage at the fertility center. The frozen embryos are scheduled to be destroyed within six months. As a war breaks out on Elfhome and riots start in New York City, the twins use science and magic to plow over everything standing in their way. When they come face to face with an ancient evil force, they’re soon in over their heads.

Zombies: More Recent Dead—edited by Paula Guran (September 3, Prime Books)

The living dead are more alive than ever. Zombies have become more than an iconic monster for the twenty-first century: they are now a phenomenon constantly revealing as much about ourselves, and our fascination with death, resurrection, and survival, as our love for the supernatural or post-apocalyptic speculation. Our most imaginative literary minds have been devoured by these incredible creatures and produced exciting, new works of zombie fiction. This anthology should feed your insatiable hunger. Contributing authors include: Mike Carey, Neil Gaiman, Kathleen Tierney, Stephen Graham Jones, Joe R. Lansdale, Jonathan Maberry and Carrie Vaughn.

 

WEEK TWO

All Those Broken AngelsPeter Adam Salomon (September 8, Flux)

Young Adult. Comforted by a shadow. Haunted by the truth. Richard Anderson was the last person to see his friend Melanie alive. She vanished when they were six and while the police never found Melanie, a part of her remained, a living shadow that is now Richard’s closest friend. For ten years, Richard has never questioned the shadow that keeps him company, until a new girl moves to town, claiming to be Melanie. Desperate to prove the girl is a fake, the shadow leads Richard to the place where her killer buried her bones. But Richard finds skeletons from several different children, and evidence suggesting that perhaps the shadow isn’t who she says she is.

The LonelyAinslie Hogarth (September 8, Flux)

Young Adult. After she discovers The Terrible Thing, Easter Deetz goes looking for her sister, Julia, but ends up pinned under a giant boulder with her legs crushed into tomato paste. Bored, disappointed, and thoroughly dismembered, Easter slowly bleeds to death in The Woods with only sinister squirrels to keep her company. As The Something Coming draws closer, memories of Easter’s family surface like hallucinations: a mumbling father who lives alone in the basement; a terrifying grandmother who sits in her enclosed porch all day; an overly loving mother who plays dead in the bathtub on Sunday nights. Easter realizes she’s being stalked, making it very difficult for her to bleed to death in peace. Will The Something Coming save her? Or will it do her in entirely?

Red Blooded (Jessica McClain #4)Amanda Carlson (September 9, Orbit)

Jessica is going to Hell. After settling a fragile truce between the vampires, werewolves and witches, the last thing Jessica wants to do is face the demons head on. But when the Prince of Hell kidnapped her brother, he set into motion a chain of events that even Jessica doesn’t have the power to stop. Now, Jessica must go into battle again. But Hell is a whole new beast, new rules, more dangerous demons, and an entirely foreign realm. And when Jessica is dropped into the Underworld too soon, without protection or the help of her friends, she must figure out just how powerful she can be, or she will never make it out alive.

The Witch with No Name (The Hollows #13)Kim Harrison (September 9, Harper Voyager)

Rachel Morgan’s come a long way from her early days as an inexperienced bounty hunter. She’s faced vampires and werewolves, banshees, witches, and soul-eating demons. She’s crossed worlds, channeled gods, and accepted her place as a day-walking demon. She’s lost friends and lovers and family, and an old enemy has become something much more. But power demands responsibility, and world-changers must always pay a price. That time is now. To save Ivy’s soul and the rest of the living vampires, to keep the demonic ever after and our own world from destruction, Rachel Morgan will risk everything.

Vampires of Manhattan (Vampires of Manhattan #1)Melissa de la Cruz (September 9, Hyperion)

Oliver Hazard-Perry, former human conduit, and Manhattan’s only human-turned-vampire, is now the head of the Blue Bloods Coven. When his all-too-human lover is found murdered on the eve of the coven’s annual Four Hundred Ball, a celebration meant to usher in a new era in vampire society, and to mark the re-unification of the Coven after decades of unrest and decay, Oliver is devastated. Not only is he trying to create a new world order for the immortal elite, he’s the prime suspect and is stalked by the newly installed head of the vampire secret police. Because according to the new rules, vampires who take human life can now be executed. Burned. How can an immortal sentenced to die fight back? He has to find the killer, and the answers lie deep in vampire lore.

 

WEEK THREE

Black Water (Jane Yellowrock #6.3)Faith Hunter (September 16, Penguin/Intermix) Three stories starring shapeshifting skinwalker Jane Yellowrock. In Snafu, a young Jane shows up for her internship with a securities firm. Before she even gets her foot in the door, she’s accosted by two street toughs and is forced to draw on her Beast-magic to defend herself. In Black Water, Jane encounters a dire situation involving an escaped prisoner and endangered hostages. With a helpful werewolf, Jane goes after the criminals, but can she stop them in time to bring the kidnapped women home alive? In Off the Grid, Jane goes on what looks like a simple mission for the Knoxville blood-master, finding a missing Mithran. Her search leads Jane to a young woman named Nell, a woman with a scarred past and a strange power, a woman who may hold the key to saving the missing vampire, if Jane can convince her to assist. (Digital)

Broken MonstersLauren Beukes (September 16, Mulholland)

Detective Gabriella Versado has seen a lot of bodies. This one is unique even by Detroit’s standards; half-boy, half-deer, somehow fused. The cops nickname him “Bambi,” but as stranger and more disturbing bodies are discovered, how can the city hold on to a reality that is tearing at its seams? If you’re Detective Versado’s teenage daughter, Layla, you commence a dangerous flirtation with a potential predator online. If you are the disgraced journalist, Jonno, you do whatever it takes to investigate what may become the most heinous crime story in memory. If you’re Thomas Keen, you’ll do what you can to keep clean, keep your head down, and try to help the broken and possibly visionary artist obsessed with setting loose The Dream, tearing reality, assembling the city anew. (U.S.)

Made For YouMelissa Marr (September 16, HarperCollins)

When Eva Tilling wakes up in the hospital, she’s confused, who in her sleepy little North Carolina town could have hit her with their car? And why? But before she can consider the question, she finds that she’s awoken with a strange new skill: the ability to foresee people’s deaths when they touch her. While she is recovering from the hit-and-run, Nate, an old flame, reappears, and the two must traverse their rocky past as they figure out how to use Eva’s power to keep her friends, and themselves, alive. But while Eva and Nate grow closer, the killer grows increasingly frantic in his attempt to get to Eva.

The Way InnWill Wiles (September 16, Harper Perennial)

Neil Double is a “conference surrogate,” hired by his clients to attend industry conferences so that they don’t have to. His latest job will radically transform him and everything he believes as it unexpectedly draws him into a bizarre and speculative mystery. In a brand new Way Inn, a global chain of identikit mid-budget motels, in an airport hinterland, he meets a woman he has seen before in strange and unsettling circumstances. She hints at a truth about this mundane world filled with fake smiles and piped muzak and then vanishes. He tries to find her, a search that will lead him down the rabbit hole, into an eerily familiar place where he will discover a dark and disturbing secret about the Way Inn. Caught on a metaphysical Mobius strip, Neil discovers that there may be no way out. (U.S.)

 

WEEK FOUR

AfterworldsScott Westerfeld (September 23, Simon Pulse)

Young Adult. Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she’s made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings. Told in alternating chapters is Darcy’s novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the ’Afterworld’ to survive a terrorist attack. The Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved, and terrifying, stories need to be reconciled. When a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.

Daring (Pax Arcana #2)Elliott James (September 23, Orbit)

Something is rotten in the state of Wisconsin. Werewolf packs are being united and absorbed into an army of super soldiers by a mysterious figure who speaks like an angel and fights like a demon. And every Knight Templar, keepers of the magical peace between mankind and magickind, who tries to get close to this big bad wolf winds up dead. No knight can infiltrate a group whose members can smell a human from a mile away, no knight except one. John Charming. Ex knight. Current werewolf. Hunted by the men who trained him, he now might be their only salvation. But animal instincts are rising up to claim John more powerfully than ever before, and he must decide if this new leader of wolves is a madman, or a messiah.

Firebug (Firebug #1)Lish McBride (September 23, Henry Holt)

Ava is a firebug, she can start fires with her mind. Which would all be well and good if she weren’t caught in a deadly contract with the Coterie, a magical mafia. She’s one of their main hitmen, and she doesn’t like it one bit. Not least because her boss, Venus, killed Ava’s mother. When Venus asks Ava to kill a family friend, Ava rebels. She knows very well that you can’t say no to the Coterie and expect to get away with it, though, so she and her friends hit the road, trying desperately to think of a way out of the mess they find themselves in. Preferably keeping the murder to a minimum.

Messenger of Fear (Messenger of Fear #1)Michael Grant (September 23, Katherine Tegen)

Young Adult. Mara wakes in a field of dead grass. She is terrified, afraid that she is dead. There is a boy in that mist, a beautiful young man dressed in black and able to move effortlessly through space and time. He is the Messenger of Fear. The Messenger sees the darkness in human hearts. He sees the evils done. If the world does not bring justice to those who do evil, the Messenger will. He offers the wicked a game. If they win, they go free. If they lose, they will live their greatest fear. Their sanity will be challenged. It is a world of fair but harsh justice. Of retribution and redemption. Why was Mara chosen to be the Messenger’s apprentice? What has she done to deserve this terrible fate? She won’t find out until three of the wicked receive justice. And when she does, she will be shattered. (U.S.)

RoomsLauren Oliver (September 23, Ecco)

Richard Walker has just died, leaving behind his country house full of rooms packed with the detritus of a lifetime. His family, bitter ex-wife Caroline, troubled teenage son Trenton, and unforgiving daughter Minna, have arrived for their inheritance. The Walkers are not alone. Prim Alice and the cynical Sandra, long dead former residents bound to the house, linger within its claustrophobic walls. They observe the family, trading barbs and reminiscences about their past lives. Though their voices cannot be heard, Alice and Sandra speak through the house itself, in the hiss of the radiator, a creak in the stairs, the dimming of a light bulb. The living and dead are each haunted by painful truths that will soon surface with explosive force. When a new ghost appears, and Trenton begins to communicate with her, the spirit and human worlds collide, with cataclysmic results.

The Hawley Book of the DeadChrysler Szarlan (September 23, Ballantine)

Revelation “Reve” Dyer grew up with her grandmother’s stories, stretching back centuries to Reve’s ancestors, who founded the town of Hawley Five Corners, Massachusetts. Few know that an ancient magic runs in the Dyer women’s blood. Reve and her husband are Las Vegas illusionists. Reve’s world is shattered when an intruder alters her trick pistol and she accidentally shoots and kills her husband onstage. Reve flees with her daughters to the place she has always felt safest, a farmhouse in the forest of Hawley Five Corners. Reve discovers The Hawley Book of the Dead, an ancient journal holding mythic power. Reve will have to shield herself and her daughters against an increasingly dangerous fate. It becomes clear that the stranger who upended Reve’s life in Las Vegas has followed her to Hawley, and that she has something he wants.

Unmade (The Lynburn Legacy #3)Sarah Rees Brennan (September 23, Random House)

Kami has lost the boy she loves, is tied to a boy she does not, and faces an enemy more powerful than ever before. With Jared missing for months and presumed dead, Kami must rely on her new magical link with Ash for the strength to face the evil spreading through her town. Rob Lynburn is now the master of Sorry-in-the-Vale, and he demands a death. Kami will use every tool at her disposal to stop him. Together with Rusty, Angela, and Holly, she uncovers a secret that might be the key to saving the town. But with knowledge comes responsibility, and a painful choice. A choice that will risk not only Kami’s life, but also the lives of those she loves most.

BelzharMeg Wolitzer (September 30, Dutton Juvenile)

Young Adult. If life were fair, Jam Gallahue would still be at home in New Jersey with her sweet British boyfriend, Reeve Maxfield. She’d be watching old comedy sketches with him. She’d be kissing him in the library stacks. She certainly wouldn’t be at The Wooden Barn, a therapeutic boarding school in rural Vermont, living with a weird roommate, and signed up for an exclusive, mysterious class called Special Topics in English. But life isn’t fair, and Reeve Maxfield is dead. Until a journal-writing assignment leads Jam to Belzhar, where the untainted past is restored, and Jam can feel Reeve’s arms around her once again. But there are hidden truths on Jam’s path to reclaim her loss

Die and Stay Dead (Trent #2)Nicholas Kaufmann (September 30, St. Martin’s Griffin)

A brutal murder in Greenwich Village puts Trent and the Five-Pointed Star on the trail of Erickson Arkwright, the last surviving member of a doomsday cult. The Aeternis Tenebris cult thought the world would end on New Year’s Eve of 2000. When it didn’t, they decided to end it themselves by summoning Nahash-Dred, a powerful demon known as the Destroyer of Worlds. The demon massacred the cult, leaving Arkwright the sole survivor. Hiding somewhere in New York City with a new identity, Arkwright plans to summon the demon again and finish the job he started over a decade ago. As Trent rushes to locate a long-lost magical artifact that may be the only way to stop him, the clues begin to mount. Trent’s past and Arkwright’s might be linked somehow. If they are, it means the truth of who Trent really is may lie buried in the twisted mind of a madman.

Fire Fall (Dark Star #3)Bethany Frenette (September 30, Disney-Hyperion) Young Adult. Audrey Whitticomb is faced with a tough decision: save her people from the demons known as Harrowers, or save her best friend from certain death? Audrey Whitticomb wants to be a Guardian like her superhero mom, Morning Star, and her superhot boyfriend, Leon. But at seventeen, Audrey still hasn’t been called, unlike reluctant Tink, who’d rather not deal with all those scaly-skinned, red-eyed demons. The truth: Audrey can no longer fight her fate. She has a different role to play. The Beneath is waking. Demons are rising. Friends are falling. And the future is waiting. Will Audrey stop the Harrowing in time to save the Kin? Or will she save her best friend, Gideon, from certain death? Can Audrey find the power and the courage to act before it’s too late? (ebook only, print available January 2015)

FlexFerrett Steinmetz (September 30, Angry Robot)

FLEX: Distilled magic in crystal form. The most dangerous drug in the world. Snort it, and you can create incredible coincidences to live the life of your dreams. FLUX: The backlash from snorting Flex. The universe hates magic and tries to rebalance the odds; maybe you survive the horrendous accidents the Flex inflicts, maybe you don’t. PAUL TSABO: The obsessed bureaucromancer who’s turned paperwork into a magical Beast that can rewrite rental agreements, conjure rented cars from nowhere, track down anyone who’s ever filled out a form. When all of his formulaic magic can’t save his burned daughter, Paul must enter the dangerous world of Flex dealers to heal her. The punishment for brewing Flex is army conscription and a total brain-wipe.

Generation 18 (Spook Squad #2)Keri Arthur (September 30, Dell)

A serial killer strikes every twelve hours. A vampire takes lives at random. These tragic incidents seem unrelated. But Special Investigations Unit agents Sam Ryan and Gabriel Stern trace them both back to a military base known as Hopeworth. The investigation takes an eerie, personal turn when Sam discovers a connection between herself and the victims, and a clue to her own mysterious origins. The stakes are raised and the mission changes from seeking justice to ensuring Sam and Gabriel’s own survival. The one person who seems to hold all the answers, about Hopeworth, about Sam’s past, is a mystery man she isn’t sure she can trust. They share a psychic link through her dreams, and he once saved her life. He may just be the greatest enemy humankind has known. (U.S. Release)

Incarnate (The Spellmason Chronicles #3)Anton Strout (September 30, Ace)

When Alexandra Belarus discovered her family’s secret ability to breathe life into stone, she uncovered an entire world of magic hidden within New York City, a world she has accidentally thrown into chaos. A spell gone awry has set thousands of gargoyles loose upon Manhattan, and it’s up to Lexi and her faithful protector, Stanis, to put things right. The stress of saving the city is casting a pall over Lexi and Stanis’s relationship. As Stanis struggles to unite the gargoyle population, Lexi forges unlikely alliances with witches, alchemists and New York’s Finest to quell an unsettling uprising led by an ancient and deadly foe long thought vanquished. Lexi must wield more power than ever before with the added hope of recovering a mysterious artifact that could change her world, and bring her closer to Stanis than she ever thought possible.

Love is the DrugAlaya Dawn Johnson (September 30, Arthur A. Levine)

Emily Bird was raised not to ask questions. A chance meeting with Roosevelt David, a homeland security agent, at a party for Washington DC’s elite leads to Bird waking up in a hospital, days later, with no memory of the end of the night. The world has fallen apart: A deadly flu virus is sweeping the nation. Roosevelt is certain that Bird knows something. Something she shouldn’t know. The only one Bird can trust is Coffee, a quiet, outsider genius who deals drugs to their classmates and is a firm believer in conspiracy theories. He believes in Bird. As Bird and Coffee dig deeper into what really happened that night, Bird finds that she might know more than she remembers. And what she knows could unleash the biggest government scandal in US history.

Party Games: A Fear Street Novel (Fear Street)R.L. Stine (September 30, St. Martin’s Griffin)

Her friends warn her not to go to Brendan Fear’s birthday party at his family’s estate on mysterious Fear Island. But Rachel Martin has a crush on Brendan and is excited to be invited. Brendan has a lot of party games planned. But one game no one planned intrudes on his party, the game of murder. As the guests start dying one by one, Rachel realizes to her horror that she and the other teenagers are trapped on the tiny island with someone who may want to kill them all. How to escape this deadly game? Rachel doesn’t know whom she can trust. She should have realized that nothing is as it seems on Fear Island.

Priestess Dreaming (Otherworld #16)Yasmine Galenorn (September 30, Jove)

We’re the D’Artigo sisters: half-human, half-Fae operatives for the Otherworld Intelligence Agency. My sister Delilah is a two-faced werecat and a Death Maiden. Menolly is a vampire married to a werepuma. I’m a Moon witch married to three husbands, and I’m about to journey through the veils to search for a long lost legend. With the war in Otherworld raging, the Queen of Shadow and Night summons me to her court. Aeval orders me to embark on a hunt through the mists to find an ancient ally. I must seek out The Merlin. Morgaine and Bran are along for the journey, and the pair pose a threat to both me and my quest. I must pray they are allies rather than enemies, as we undertake a perilous search through the labyrinth of time.

Summer Moon (Celtic Wolves #2)Jan DeLima (September 30, Ace)

Rosa Alban has been obedient her entire life. But when her alpha husband dies, she seizes the opportunity to flee the oppressive Guardians, the rulers of the secret shapeshifter world. Her flight instantly brands her as a pack traitor, and she has no choice but to seek protection from a neighboring tribe by marrying one of their sons. Known as the Beast of Merin, Luc Black loyally plays the part of unwanted son and devoted brother. He realizes marrying Rosa will strengthen his tribe’s territory, but he has no intention of loving ever again. Still, he’s unprepared for the intense physical need the wild she-wolf awakens in him. When the Guardians hone in on Rosa, Luc must fight to protect his new bride. And as war descends, the unlikely allies discover their destinies are irrevocably entwined.

The Brothers Cabal (Johannes Cabal #4)Jonathan L. Howard (September 30, Thomas Dunne)

Horst Cabal has risen from the dead. Again. Horst, the most affable vampire one is ever likely to meet, is resurrected by an occult conspiracy that wants him as a general in a monstrous army. Their plan: to create a country of horrors, a supernatural homeland. As Horst sees the lengths to which they are prepared to go and the evil they cultivate, he realizes that he cannot fight them alone. What he really needs on his side is a sarcastic, amoral, heavily armed necromancer. As luck would have it, this exactly describes his brother. Join the brothers Cabal as they fearlessly lie quietly in bed, fight dreadful monsters from beyond reality, make soup, feel slightly sorry for zombies, banter lightly with secret societies that wish to destroy them, and, in passing, set out to save the world.


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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