Fiction Affliction: March Releases in Fantasy

Nineteen new fantasies make epic journeys to bookshelves in March, although most stop off in the Young Adult department. Look for series additions from, among others, Lili St. Crow (Tales of Beauty and Madness), L.E. Modesitt Jr. (Imager Portfolio), Claudia Gray (Spellcaster), Gillian Philip (Rebel Angels), Peter V. Brett (Demon Cycle), and Marie Brennan (A Natural History of Dragons).

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

The Mermaid’s SisterCarrie Ann Noble (March 1, Skyscape)

Young Adult. In a cottage high atop Llanfair Mountain, sixteen-year-old Clara lives with her sister, Maren, and guardian Auntie. They gather herbs for Auntie’s healing potions. Auntie spins tales of faraway lands and wicked fairies. Clara’s favorite story tells of three orphan infants, Clara, who was brought to Auntie by a stork; Maren, who arrived in a seashell; and their best friend, O’Neill, who was found beneath an apple tree. Clara discovers shimmering scales just beneath her sister’s skin. She realizes that Maren is becoming a mermaid, and knows that no mermaid can survive on land. .Clara and O’Neill place the mermaid-girl in their gypsy wagon and set out for the sea. The trio encounters trouble around every bend. Clara and O’Neill must find a way to save themselves and the ever-weakening mermaid. Clara wonders, if my sister is a mermaid, then what am I?

Kin (Tales of Beauty & Madness #3)Lili St. Crow (March 3, Razorbill)

Young Adult. In the kin world, girls Ruby de Varre’s age are expected to play nice, get betrothed, and start a family. After a childhood of running wild in the woods, it’s hard to turn completely around and be demure. Even if your Gran is expecting it. Then Conrad, handsome and charming, from a clan across the Waste, comes to New Haven to seal alliance between their two families. The sparks fly immediately. Conrad is smart, dominant, and downright gorgeous. Yet as Ruby gets to know him more, she starts to realize something’s off. Then, the murders start. A killer stalks the city streets, and just when Ruby starts to suspect the unimaginable, she becomes the next target. Now Ruby’s about to find out that Conrad’s secrets go deeper than she ever could have guessed, and it’s up to Ruby to save her Gran, her clan, and maybe even herself.

Madness in Solidar (Imager Portfolio #9)L.E. Modesitt, Jr. (March 3, Tor)

Solidar’s Collegium of Imagers is in decline. The Collegium is so lacking in leadership that the dying Maitre must summon Alastar, an obscure, talented imager from Westisle who has little knowledge of politics in the capital, as his successor. When Alastar arrives in L’Excelsis, he finds disarray and lack of discipline within the Collegium, and the ruler of Solidar so hated by the High Holders that they openly refer to him as being mad. Neither Rex Ryen, ridiculed as Rex Dafou, nor the High Holders have any respect for the Collegium, and Alastar finds himself in the middle of a power struggle, with Ryen demanding that the Collegium remove the strongest High Holders and the military leadership in turn plotting to topple Ryen and destroy the Collegium. Ryen is demanding the High Holders pay a massive increase in taxes. All that, Alastar discovers, is only a fraction of the problems he and the Collegium face.

Operation Arcana—edited by John Joseph Adams (March 3, Baen)

In the realms of fantasy, the battlefield is where heroism comes alive, magic is unleashed, and legends are made and unmade. These fantastical conflicts reflect our highest hopes and darkest fears, bringing us mesmerizing visions of silver spears shining in the sun and vast hordes of savage beasts who threaten to destroy all that we hold dear. Sixteen of today’s top authors spin never-before-published, spellbinding tales of military fantasy. Contributing authors include: Elizabeth Moon, Tobias Buckell & David Klecha, Myke Cole, Jonathan Maberry, Genevieve Valentine, Django Wexler, Yoon Ha Lee, Weston Ochse, Ari Marmell, Tanya Huff, Carrie Vaughn, TC McCarthy, Glen Cook, Simon R. Green, Seanan McGuire and Linda Nagata.

Sorceress (Spellcaster #3)Claudia Gray (March 3, HarperTeen)

Young Adult. To save the lives of countless people in Captive’s Sound, Nadia has sworn herself to the One Beneath, to black magic. Her plan, and the town’s only hope, is for Nadia to learn enough sorcery to strike back against the forces of darkness. But now that she’s separated from her friends, her family, and her Steadfast, Mateo, Nadia is more vulnerable than ever to darkness. And as the sorceress Elizabeth summons torrential rains and brings the One Beneath closer to the mortal world, Nadia is running out of time to stop her. The final battle lines are drawn, surprising alliances are made, and true love is tested.

The Curse of the King (Seven Wonders #4)Peter Lerangis (March 3, HarperCollins)

Young Adult. Thirteen-year-old Jack McKinley and his friends have already defeated the Colossus of Rhodes, visited Ancient Babylon, and outfoxed legions of undead all to recover three of the lost Loculi. But if they don’t unearth the last four Loculi soon, the powers that made these victories possible will overwhelm the Select, and destroy the world. Not only do Jack and his friends have to battle these seven ancient wonders, but they also have to contend with the Massa, who have taken over the Karai Institute and convinced Marco to switch sides. Jack, Cass, and Aly soldier on to find the long-lost Statue of Zeus. But as time is running out, our heroes must confront gods, relive old battles, and face down their greatest enemy yet, their destiny. Old enemies become new friends and sudden victories turn to certain defeats as the time nears for everything to change.

The Storyspinner (The Keepers’ Chronicles #1)Becky Wallace (March 3, Margaret K. McElderry)

Young Adult. In a world where dukes plot their way to the throne, a Performer’s life can get tricky. In Johanna Von Arlo’s case, it can be fatal. Expelled from her troupe after her father’s death, Johanna is forced to work for the handsome Lord Rafael DeSilva. While Johanna’s father’s death was deemed an accident, the Keepers aren’t so sure. The Keepers, a race of people with magical abilities, are on a quest to find the princess, the same princess who is supposed to be dead and whose throne the dukes are fighting over. They aren’t the only ones looking for her. In the wake of their search, murdered girls keep turning up. With dukes, Keepers, and a killer all after the princess, Johanna finds herself caught up in political machinations for the throne, threats on her life, and an unexpected romance that could change everything.

The Winner’s Crime (The Winner’s Trilogy #2)Marie Rutkoski (March 3, Farrar, Straus & Giroux)

Young Adult. The engagement of Lady Kestrel to Valoria’s crown prince means one celebration after another. But to Kestrel it means living in a cage of her own making. As the wedding approaches, she aches to tell Arin the truth about her engagement, if she could only trust him. Yet can she even trust herself? For, unknown to Arin, Kestrel is becoming a skilled practitioner of deceit: an anonymous spy passing information to Herran, and close to uncovering a shocking secret. As Arin enlists dangerous allies in the struggle to keep his country’s freedom, he can’t fight the suspicion that Kestrel knows more than she shows. In the end, it might not be a dagger in the dark that cuts him open, but the truth. And when that happens, Kestrel and Arin learn just how much their crimes will cost them.

 

WEEK TWO

Fall of the Fair IsleRowena Cory Daniells (March 10, Solaris)

Six hundred years have passed since the events of The Outcast Chronicles occurred and much T’En knowledge has been lost, hidden or cloaked by lies. This is the story of Imoshen, named for her ancestor, Imoshen the First. The last pure T’En woman, she is a throwback to the mystics who settled Fair Isle. When the Ghebite invader, General Tulkhan, conquers her island she is torn between her duty to smooth the transition of power and her betrothal to Reothe, last throwback T’En male who leads the rebellion against Tulkhan.

Shadow Scale (Seraphina #2)Rachel Hartman (March 10, Random House BYR)

Young Adult. The kingdom of Goredd: a world where humans and dragons share life with an uneasy balance, and those few who are both human and dragon must hide the truth. Seraphina is one of these, part girl, part dragon, who is drawn into the politics of her world. When war breaks out between the dragons and humans, she must travel the lands to find those like herself, and together they will be able to fight the dragons in powerful, magical ways. As Seraphina gathers this motley crew, she is pursued by humans who want to stop her. The most terrifying is another half dragon, who can creep into people’s minds and take them over. Seraphina has kept her mind safe from intruders, but that also means she’s held back her own gift. It is time to make a choice: Cling to the safety of her old life, or embrace a powerful new destiny.

Tether (Many-Worlds Trilogy #2)Anna Jarzab (March 10, Delacorte)

Young Adult. Sasha expected things to go back to normal once she got back on Earth. Now that she knows parallel worlds are real, and that an alternate version of herself exists in a world called Aurora, her old life no longer seems to make sense, and her heart breaks daily for Thomas, the boy she left behind. Sasha makes the difficult decision to journey once more through the tandem. Thomas is waiting for her on the other side, and so is strange, otherworldly Selene, Sasha’s analog from a third universe. Sasha, Selene, and their other analog, Juliana, have a joint destiny, and a new remarkable power, one that could mean salvation for Selene’s dying planet. With Thomas’s help, Sasha and Selene search for the missing Juliana. Even if they can locate her, is Sasha willing to turn her back on love to pursue a fate she’s not sure she believes in?

The Orphan Queen (The Orphan Queen #1)Jodi Meadows (March 10, Katherine Tegen Books)

Young Adult. Wilhelmina has a hundred identities. She is a princess. When the Indigo Kingdom conquered her homeland, Wilhelmina and other orphaned children of nobility were taken to Skyvale, the Indigo Kingdom’s capital. Ten years later, they are the Ospreys, experts at stealth and theft. She is a spy. Wil and her best friend, Melanie, infiltrate Skyvale Palace to study their foes. They assume the identities of nobles from a wraith-fallen kingdom. Enemies fill the palace and Melanie’s behavior grows suspicious. Wil can’t trust anyone. Wraith is the toxic by-product of magic, and using magic has been forbidden. Still the wraith pours across the continent, reshaping the land and animals into fresh horrors. Wilhelmina’s magic might be the key to stopping the wraith. If the vigilante Black Knife discovers Wil’s magic, she will vanish like all the others.

 

WEEK THREE

No new titles.

 

WEEK FOUR

Icefall (Rebel Angels #4)Gillian Philip (March 24, Tor)

Death stalks Seth MacGregor’s clan in their otherworld exile. Kate NicNiven is close to ultimate victory, and she is determined that nothing will keep her from it. Not even the thing that took her soul: the horror that lurks in the sea caves. But Kate still needs Seth’s son Rory, and his power over the Veil. And she’ll go to any lengths to get him. Seth’s own soul is rotting from the wound inflicted by Kate, and survival for his loved ones seems all he can hope for. But might a mortal threat to his brother’s daughter force him to return to his own world to challenge Kate? And will Rory go with him? Because Rory suspects there’s a darkness trapped in the Veil, a darkness that wants to get out. But only one Sithe knows how near it is to getting its way: Seth’s bound lover, the witch Finn. Nobody gets forever. But some are willing to try. (U.S.)

In the Time of Dragon Moon (Wilde Island Chronicles #3)Janet Lee Carey (March 24, Kathy Dawson Books)

Young Adult. On the southernmost tip of Wilde Island, far from the Dragonswood sanctuary and the Pendragon Castle, live the native Euit people. Uma, who is half Euit and half English, and not fully accepted by her tribe, wants to become a healer like her Euit father. The mad English queen in the north, desperate for another child, kidnaps Uma and her father and demands that he cure her barrenness. After her father dies, Uma must ensure that the queen is with child by the time of the Dragon Moon, or be burned at the stake. Uma reaches out to her only possible ally: the king’s nephew Jackrun, a fiery dragonrider with dragon, fairy, and human blood. Together, they must navigate through a sea of secrets, unveil a dark plot spawned long ago in Dragonswood, and find a way to accept all the elements, Euit, English, dragon, and fairy, that make them who they are.

The Door in the Moon (Obsidian Mirror #3)Catherine Fisher (March 24, Dial)

Young Adult. It’s Midsummer Eve, and as Wintercombe Abbey is under siege by the Shee and their heartless faery queen, Jake and Sarah are snatched by a gang of time-traveling thieves and thrust into the chaos of the Reign of Terror. Meanwhile Janus, the tyrant of a dystopian future, is reaching back through the magical, inscrutable obsidian mirror to secure his power. They endure loyalty and loss, bravery and betrayal, triumph and terror; but the hard-won victory of the final pages is clearly only a brief respite before they must put aside differences and distrust to unite against their formidable enemies.

King (The Dragon King Chronicles #3)Ellen Oh (March 31, HarperTeen)

Young Adult. Girl warrior, demon slayer, Tiger spirit of the Yellow Eyes, Kira is ready for her final quest. All eyes are on her. Kira, once an outcast in her home village of Hansong, is now the only one with the power to save her kingdom. She must save her cousin, the boy fated to be the future king, uncover the third lost treasure, and face innumerable enemies in order to fulfill the famed prophecy. Kira braves a sea of tigers and battles armies of demons as she musters her inner strength and learns to trust herself, the romantic feelings for Jaewon that are growing within her, and the destiny that must be hers.

The Skull Throne (Demon Cycle #4)Peter V. Brett (March 31, Del Rey)

The Skull Throne of Krasia stands empty. Built from the skulls of fallen generals and demon princes, it is a seat of honor and ancient, powerful magic, keeping the demon corelings at bay. Ahmann Jardir was meant to conquer the known world. Arlen Bales, the Warded Man, stood against this course, challenging Jardir to a duel he could not in honor refuse. Arlen cast them both from a precipice. Inevera, Jardir’s first wife, must find a way to keep their sons from killing each other and plunging their people into civil war. Leesha Paper and Rojer Inn struggle to forge an alliance between the duchies of Angiers and Miln against the Krasians before it is too late. Caught in the crossfire is the duchy of Lakton, ripe for conquest. The corelings have been growing stronger, and without Arlen and Jardir there may be none strong enough to stop them.

Throne of Darkness (Something Red #3)Douglas Nicholas (March 31, Atria/Emily Bestler)

It’s 1215 in northwest England, and mystical Irish queen Maeve and her unlikely band of warriors must protect the region from a chilling fate. Word of a threat reaches the Northern barons: King John has plotted to import an African sorcerer and his sinister clan of blacksmiths, whose unearthly powers may spell destruction for the entire kingdom. Along with her lover, Jack, her gifted niece, Nemain, and Nemain’s newlywed husband, Hob (whose hidden talents will soon be revealed), Maeve must overcome a supernatural threat unlike any she’s seen before.

Voyage of the Basilisk: A Memoir by Lady Trent (A Natural History of Dragons #3)Marie Brennan (March 31, Tor)

Six years after her perilous exploits in Eriga, Isabella embarks on her most ambitious expedition yet: a two-year trip around the world to study all manner of dragons in every place they might be found. From feathered serpents sunning themselves in the ruins of a fallen civilization to the mighty sea serpents of the tropics, these creatures are a source of both endless fascination and frequent peril. Accompanying her is not only her young son, Jake, but a chivalrous foreign archaeologist whose interests converge with Isabella’s in ways both professional and personal. Science is the primary objective of the voyage, but Isabella’s life is rarely so simple. She must cope with storms, shipwrecks, intrigue, and warfare, even as she makes a discovery that offers a revolutionary new insight into the ancient history of dragons.


Suzanne Johnson is the author of the Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series, including the upcoming book four, Pirate’s Alley. You can find Suzanne on Facebook and on her website.

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