Thirty-seven new releases in these mega-genres rain down on readers in April—although readers should have their digital readers and young adult filters at the ready. Look for new adult series starts or additions from, among others, Faith Hunter (Jane Yellowrock), Chris Marie Green (Jensen Murphy), Kristen Painter (Crescent City), Nicole Peeler (The Jinni), Diana Rowland (Kara Gillian), and that familiar-sounding Suzanne Johnson (Sentinels of New Orleans).
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 contemporary fairy tale about a young man, who with his eleven brothers, have been cursed to remain in a rock club for their bad behavior. Their only shot at freedom might be the twelve sisters who one day enter the club. (Digital)
Young Adult. Mr. Quincrux is dead. Armistead Lucius Priest, founder of the Society of Extranaturals, is now seated uneasily in his protégé’s flesh, and though Priest’s powers are not inconsiderable, the Conformity will not settle for the second-brightest flame in the etheric heights. It will confront Shreve. But it will have to find him first. Under the protection of Mr. Negata, Jack, and the rest of the Irregulars, Shreve retreats to the wild to face his demons and prepare his mind for one more battle.
Young Adult. Desiree Six (because she was born on a Friday) believes in everything the Protectorate stands for. She likes the safety and security of having her entire life planned out: her career, her mate, even the date of her death. She doesn’t even think to question when Darian, her childhood friend and neighbor, is convicted of murdering his parents. They had seemed like such a loving family. But if he was convicted, then he must have done it. Then Darian shows up in her room late one night. He has escaped from the Terrorscape, a nightmare machine used to punish all Noncompliants, and needs Desiree’s help. What he tells her rocks her world to its core and makes her doubt everything she’s ever been told. With this new information, will Desiree and Darian be able to escape the Protectorate before it’s too late?
For centuries, the extremely powerful and ruthless vampire witches of the European Council have wandered the Earth, controlling governments, fostering war, creating political conflict, and often leaving absolute destruction in their wake. One of the strongest of them is set to create some havoc in the city of New Orleans, and it’s definitely personal. Jane is tasked with tracking him down. With the help of a tech wiz and an ex-Army ranger, her partners in Yellowrock Securities, she’ll have to put everything on the line and hope it’s enough. Things are about to get real hard in the Big Easy.
When Tokyo falls victim to a terrorist attack, Detective Sergeant Mariko Oshiro knows who is responsible. She urges her commanding officers to arrest the perpetrator, a zealot who was just released from police custody. When her pleas fall on deaf ears, she loses her temper and then her badge. Mariko must work outside the system to stop a terrorist mastermind. Going rogue draws the attention of an underground syndicate known as the Wind. They have controlled Japanese politics from the shadows, using mystical relics to achieve their nefarious ends, relics like Mariko’s own sword and the iron demon mask whose evil curse is bound to the blade. Mariko is left with a perilous choice: Join an illicit insurgency to thwart a deadly villain, or remain true to the law. As sure as the blade will bring her to victory, it also promises to destroy her.
Disturbed Earth (Ritual Crime Unit #2)—E.E. Richardson (April 7, Abaddon)
A hard-nosed career officer in the male-dominated world of British policing, DCI Claire Pierce of North Yorkshire Police heads Northern England’s underfunded and understaffed Ritual Crime Unit. Pierce returns to work to find her new Detective Inspector has brought in a self-proclaimed necromancer to question the victim of a murder, there’s a coven of druids outside protesting the sale of their sacred site, and an old iron lantern in the evidence room has just sent out a signal. A suspected ritual murder and a string of puzzling artefact thefts initially seem unconnected, but signs point to something bigger: buried skulls possessed by evil spirits start turning up. Someone is planning something big, and the consequences could be catastrophic. Pierce has to make the connections and stop the ritual before it’s too late.
Young Adult. Ever since a car accident killed her father and put Lisa and her mother into the hospital, Lisa can’t think straight. She’s plagued by nightmares and hallucinations that force her to relive the accident over and over again in vivid detail. When Lisa finds out that a neighbor is looking for a babysitter for her young son, she takes the job immediately, eager to keep busy and shake these disturbing images from her head. But what promised to be an easy gig turns terrifying when Lisa begins to question exactly who, or what, she is babysitting.
I never accomplished much when I was alive. As an average eighties California beach bum, I, Jensen Murphy, didn’t have any direction. But since I’ve joined Boo World, I’ve found a calling. Now, I’m a supernatural investigator, using my ghostly skills to spook confessions out of bad guys. But being a paranormal PI is taking its toll. Spirits are hounding me for justice day and night, and, now, a ghost-hunting TV show is digging up dirt on my unsavory demise that I’d rather keep buried. Worst of all, a seriously evil specter is making my afterlife hell by hurting the people and ghosts I care about. To stop him, I’ll need assistance from a higher power, only the price I’ll have to pay for that help could be my very soul.
Tourists are disappearing at an alarming rate. While Augustine and his lieutenants attempt to find them, Harlow and the evil spirit possessing her remain Augustine’s true focus. Freeing her from the spirit’s grasp is all he can think about, especially with no real solution on the horizon. Then he discovers the tourists are disappearing because the witches are stealing souls to cast a dangerous chaos spell. Before he can stop them, Harlow becomes their victim. Now he must race the clock to set her free and end the witches’ machinations before the chaos spell strips every fae in New Orleans of their power and bring fae rule to an end.
Born in ancient Persia, Leila turned to her house Jinni, Kouros, for help escaping an arranged marriage. Kouros did make it impossible for her to marry, by cursing Leila to live a thousand years as a Jinni herself. If she can remain unBound, Leila’s curse will soon be over. But Ozan Sawyer, a Magi with the ability to See, Call, and Bind jinn has other plans. Oz needs Leila to help him penetrate Pittsburgh’s steel-soaked magic, a juice potent but poisonous to supernatural creatures, in order to find a missing girl with her own mysterious connection to Kouros. Unfortunately for Leila, becoming Bound to Oz may risk more than just her chance to be human once more, it could risk her very soul.
Young Adult. Life is almost back to normal for Harper Price. The Ephors have been silent after their deadly attack at Cotillion months ago, and best friend Bee has returned after a mysterious disappearance. Now Harper can return her focus to the important things in life: school, canoodling with David, her nemesis-turned-ward-slash-boyfie, and even competing in the Miss Pine Grove pageant. Unfortunately, supernatural chores are never done. The Ephors have decided they’d rather train David than kill him. The catch: Harper has to come along for the ride, but she can’t stay David’s Paladin unless she undergoes an ancient trial that will either kill her, or connect her to David for life.
Demon summoner Kara Gillian is on the wrong side of the law, and there’s evidence to prove it. Too bad the courts don’t accept “fighting demonic forces” as justification for murder and mayhem. Kara has problems that go way beyond her legal woes. When the enemy demonic lords spur their human accomplices into high gear, master summoner Katashi aggressively pursues their goal to establish a permanent gate between Earth and the demon realm. The line between ally and enemy blurs as Kara gathers the remnants of her posse to prevent a devastating demonic incursion, but a shattered trust may cost them the war and put Kara behind bars. With treachery rife, and her loved ones in danger, Kara must call upon the essence of who she truly is in order to rally back from a crushing loss. And if she can’t, the world is going straight to hell.
While Section 37 Agent Toby Greene’s honeymoon takes an unexpected, and potentially deadly turn, back in London, Section Chief August Shining has troubles of his own. Dragged in by his fellow agents from M-16, Shining is forced to relive an old mission from the ’80s and pick up where he left off all those years ago to face an old and deadly foe. As Toby and his new wife Tamar dodge an unstoppable killer across Asia and Europe, August must fight, not just for the future of The Clown Service, but for his very existence.
Young Adult. Something is wrong with Esmé. Kicked out of school in New York, she’s sent to live with her grandmother in a small Appalachian town. But something is wrong with the grandmother Ez hasn’t seen for years; she leaves at midnight, carrying a big black bag. Something is wrong with her grandmother’s house, a decrepit mansion full of stray cats, stairs that lead to nowhere, beds that unmake themselves. Something is wrong in the town where a kid disappears every year, and where a whistle sounds at night but no train arrives. And something is wrong with the friendly neighbor Ez’s age with black curls and blue eyes: He’s dead. (Digital)
Young Adult. Sixteen-year-old Kadee is proud to be a part of the Obsidian guild, whose members refuse to bow to anyone in Midnight, including the vampires who claim to rule this world and the shapeshifter royals who obey them. She knows firsthand what it’s like to live with the Shantel and serpiente, and she’ll never forgive these shapeshifters for taking her from her real father as a sick and frightened human child. Fortunately, Kadee is the master of her own life and decisions now, but some of the choices she’s made to protect her Obsidian family, and one of her peers in the guild, have begun to haunt her. How much is one life worth, and when is the price too much to pay?
The complete novel that comprises Demon’s Fury, Demon’s Vow and Inner Demon.
Powerful warlock and tattoo artist Gage has managed to escape the magical Ivory Towers who terrorize the rest of humans and monsters, but at a price. Now he must join forces with his nemesis, Gideon, to stop an entity that is using forbidden Death Magic to commit gruesome murders across the nation. And if that’s not keeping him busy enough, an investigator recruits Gage to help her track a killer, who might be targeting tattoo artists. When Gage discovers a demon locked away, it offers him access to dark magic in exchange for its freedom, a dangerous opportunity, but one that could save his loved ones. Gage must choose between what is right and what is easy. (Digital)
Young Adult. Mysterious doors with lizard-head knobs. Talking stone statues. A crazy girl with a hatchet. Yep, Liv’s dreams have been pretty weird lately. Especially this one where she’s in a graveyard at night, watching four boys perform dark magic rituals. The really weird thing is that Liv recognizes the boys in her dream. They’re classmates from her new school in London, the school where’s she’s starting over because her mom has moved them to a new country (again). But they seem to know things about her in real life that they couldn’t possibly know, which is mystifying. Then again, Liv could never resist a good mystery. (U.S. Release)
Young Adult. The Order is building an unstoppable army, with every generation of Forgeries harder to detect and deadlier than the one before. It’s time for Gray and his fellow rebels to end the Order’s world of lies. But when the most familiar faces, and even the girl he loves, can’t be trusted, Gray will have to tread carefully if he wants to succeed. Or survive.
A terror-filled story of one family and their friends as they struggle to survive in a world overrun by ravenous creatures that hunt purely by sound.
Young Adult. Since the Waverlys arrived in Paris, the streets have grown more fearsome by the day. As Ingrid learns to master her lectrux gift, she must watch Axia’s power grow strong enough to extend beyond her Underneath hive. The fallen angel’s Harvest is near, and the timing couldn’t be worse. Targeted by vengeful gargoyles, Gabby has been exiled to London for her own protection. Meanwhile, the gargoyle castes are in disarray, divided between those who want Luc to lead them and those who resent him and his fondness for humans. The Alliance is crumbling from the inside as well, its members turning against one another, and possibly against the Waverlys, too. Axia has promised that the world will burn. And now, unable to trust the Alliance, separated from Luc, Gabby, and her twin, Grayson, Ingrid is left to face the demon uprising alone.
Wizard sentinel DJ Jaco thought she had gotten used to the chaos of her life in post-Katrina New Orleans, but a new threat is looming, one that will test every relationship she holds dear. Caught in the middle of a rising struggle between the major powers in the supernatural world, the Wizards, Elves, Vampires and the Fae, DJ finds her loyalties torn and her mettle tested in matters both professional and personal. Her relationship with enforcer Alex Warin is shaky, her non-husband, Quince Randolph, is growing more powerful, and her best friend, Eugenie, has a bombshell that could blow everything to Elfheim and back. And that’s before the French pirate, Jean Lafitte, newly revived from his latest “death,” returns to New Orleans with vengeance on his mind. DJ’s assignment? Keep the sexy leader of the historical undead out of trouble. Good luck with that. Duty clashes with love, loyalty with deception, and friendship with responsibility as DJ navigates passion and politics in the murky waters of a New Orleans caught in the grips of a brutal winter that might have nothing to do with Mother Nature.
The tattooed plus sign on Finnegan’s hand marks him as a Positive. At any time, the zombie virus could explode in his body, turning him from a rational human into a ravenous monster. His only chance of a normal life is to survive the last two years of the potential incubation period. If he reaches his twenty-first birthday without an incident, he’ll be cleared. Until then, Finn must go to a special facility for positives, segregated from society to keep the healthy population safe. When the military caravan transporting him is attacked, Finn becomes separated. To make it to safety, he must embark on a perilous cross-country journey across an America transformed, a dark and dangerous land populated with heroes, villains, madmen, and hordes of zombies. And though the zombies are everywhere, Finn discovers that the real danger may be his fellow humans.
Welcome to Terrifitemps, a temp agency with a difference. Employees neither file nor type. Instead, they fight the good fight against the Forces of Evil. It takes a certain kind of person to do the job. A person like Lenny Hodge, who has a wild talent that even he doesn’t understand, a talent that has helped him save the world, twice already. Now, faced with yet another assignment on which rests the fate of everything, our hero begins to realize that the biggest threat of all may be, Lenny Hodge. Can he learn to control his awesome power before that strange ability destroys all of Terrifitemps, and maybe the Earth as well? Or will it take the combined efforts of his noble team of ghosts, werevoles, vampires and the fearsome Pooka Patrol to save him from himself? (Digital)
Young Adult. When a family member falls deathly ill, 14-year-old Piper turns to her classmate Tad for comfort. Tad, an amateur botanist, tells her there’s a Seminole legend of a cure-all flower found only in an unexplored section of Georgia’s Okefenokee Swamp. Desperate for any glimmer of hope, Piper convinces Tad to accompany her on a hunt for the flower. What awaits them in the country’s largest black water swamp is an entity the Creek Indians, now long gone, spoke of in hushed, fearful tones. The Seminole believed that the swamp’s first settlers, the mystical Tasketcha tribe, still existed as evil spirits, forever tethered to their burial mounds found in the dark heart of the waterlogged forest. If Piper has any chance of saving her loved one, she’ll have to do the impossible, find the miracle flower, face her past, and overcome an ancient evil.
A year after her husband’s sudden death, ceramic artist Tilda Fordwells moves into the secluded Welsh cottage that was to be their new home. The lake in the valley below her cottage seems to spark something dormant in her, a sensitivity, and a power of some sort. She sees a new vision; a boatful of ancient people approaching her across the water. On this same lake in Celtic times lived Seren, a witch and shaman. When a vision came to her of the Prince amid a nest of vipers she warned of betrayal from one of his own. When Tilda explores the lake’s ancient magic and her own she discovers Seren, the woman in her vision of the boat. Their two lives mirror each other’s, suggesting a strong connection between the women. As Tilda comes under threat from a dark power, one reminiscent of Seren’s prophecy, she must rely on Seren and ancient magic if death and disaster are not to shatter her life once more.
Young Adult. After being on the run, Ariane Tucker finds herself back where she started, under the cruel control of Dr. Jacobs, head of the research facility that created her. Now she must participate in the upcoming trials; a deadly competition pitting her against other alien hybrids, each representing a rival corporation. But Ariane is no one’s weapon. She is prepared to die if it means taking down those involved in Project Paper Doll. They destroyed all that she holds dear, including Zane Bradshaw, the one person she trusted and cared for the most, the person she was forced to leave behind, bleeding and alone. As her plan takes shape Ariane will need to depend on, now more than ever, the other side of her heritage, the cold, calculated instincts born from her alien DNA. With Zane gone she has nothing left to lose.
When Lumen Fowler looks back on her childhood, she wouldn’t have guessed she would become a kind suburban wife, a devoted mother. In fact, she never thought she would escape her small and peculiar hometown. As a well-behaved and over-achieving teenager, she fell beneath the sway of her community’s darkest, strangest secret. For one year, beginning at puberty, every resident “breaches” during the full moon. On these nights, adolescents run wild, destroying everything in their path. Lumen resists. Promising her father she will never breach, she investigates the mystery of her community’s traditions and the stories erased from the town record. But the more we learn about the town’s past, the more we realize that Lumen’s memories are harboring secrets of their own.
His marriage on the rocks and his life in shambles, washed up crime writer Lucas Graham is desperate for a comeback. When he’s promised exclusive access to notorious cult leader and death row inmate Jeffrey Halcomb, the opportunity is too good to pass up. Lucas leaves for the scene of the crime, a split-level farmhouse on the beach of Washington State, a house whose foundation is steeped in the blood of Halcomb’s diviners; runaways who, thirty years prior, were drawn to his message of family, unity, and unconditional love. Lucas wants to tell the story of Halcomb’s faithful departed. When Halcomb goes back on his promise to grant Lucas exclusive information on the case, he’s left to put the story together on his own. Except he is not alone. Jeffrey Halcomb promised his devout eternal life, and within these walls, they’re far from dead.
Young Adult. Sixteen-year-old Marci Guerrero is one of the best teen hackers in Seattle. She’d give up all her talents to know she isn’t crazy. Marci feels possessed by what she perceives as shadowy spectres that take control of her body and make her do crazy things. While spying on the clandestine group known as IgNiTe, she’s confronted by the leader, James McCray. His presence stirs the spectres inside her brain into a maddening frenzy. Her symptoms and ability to control them don’t go unnoticed by James, who soon recruits her and shows her the awful truth. Half of the world’s population is infected by sentient parasites. They bind themselves to the human brain and replace the pathways for all thoughts and actions. The creatures then morph their hosts into grotesque monsters with extraordinary strengths. Winged, clawed, fanged half-humans become living nightmares. Now Marci wishes she was crazy, because the truth is worse. She’s infected. (Digital)
Young Adult. Marin spends a lot of time avoiding things. She avoids thinking about her mother’s suicide and what she could have done to prevent it. She avoids looking at people directly—because she can see their pain as bright, colorful shapes. And she avoids Cassie Jackson, who used her in a sinister ritual months ago, although Marin’s not exactly sure why. When Cassie stands up at school, screaming, raking her nails down her cheeks, and pointing a finger at Marin, whispering “YOU,” Marin’s days of avoidance come to an abrupt end. Cassie’s older brother believes that Marin holds the secret to Cassie’s illness. So they team up to solve the mystery of what Cassie has unleashed. But as they look deeper into the darkness and things begin to go bump in the night, can Marin trust what she sees?
Young Adult. It’s not as great as you’d think, living in a tourist town that’s known as “the most magical place in America.” Same boring high school, just twice as many monsters under the bridges and rival Families killing each other for power. I try to keep out of it. I’ve got my mom’s blood-iron sword and my slightly illegal home in the basement of the municipal library. And a couple of Talents I try to keep quiet, including very light fingers and a way with a lock pick. But then some nasty characters bring their Family feud into my friend’s pawn shop, and I have to make a call, get involved, or watch a cute guy die because I didn’t. I guess I made the wrong choice, because now I’m stuck putting everything on the line for Devon Sinclair. My mom was murdered because of the Families, and it looks like I’m going to end up just like her.
Dave Hooper has a hangover from hell, a horrible ex-wife, and the fangs of the IRS deep in his side. The last thing he needs is an explosion at work. A real explosion. On his off-shore oil rig. But this is no accident, and despite the news reports, Dave knows that terrorists aren’t to blame. He knows because he killed one of the things responsible. When he wakes up in a hospital bed guarded by Navy SEALs, he realizes this is more than just a bad acid trip. Yeah, Dave’s had a few. This trip is way weirder. Killing a seven-foot-tall, tattooed demon has transformed the overweight, balding safety manager into something else entirely. A foul-mouthed, beer-loving monster slayer, and humanity’s least worthy Champion. (U.S. Release)
When Stephanie moves to the notoriously cheap Perry Bar neighborhood of Birmingham, she’s just happy to find an affordable room for rent that’s large enough not to deserve her previous room’s nickname, “the cell.” The landlord seems nice and welcoming enough. She impulsively hands over enough money to cover the first month’s rent and decides to give it a go. Soon after she becomes uneasy about her rash decision. She hears things in the night. Feels them. Things, or people, who aren’t there in the light. Her door is locked every night, and the key is still in place in the morning. Concern soon turns to terror when the voices she hears and presence she feels each night become hostile. It’s clear that something very bad has happened in this house. Stephanie has to find a way out, before whatever’s going on in the house finds her first. (U.S. Release)
When the Imagine Network commissioned a documentary on mermaids, to be filmed from the cruise ship Atargatis, they expected what they had always received before: an assortment of eyewitness reports that proved nothing, some footage that proved even less, and the kind of ratings that only came from peddling imaginary creatures to the masses. They didn’t expect actual mermaids. They certainly didn’t expect those mermaids to have teeth. This is the story of the Atargatis, lost at sea with all hands. Some have called it a hoax; others have called it a maritime tragedy. Whatever the truth may be, it will only be found below the bathypelagic zone in the Mariana Trench, and the depths are very good at keeping secrets.
Agent Samantha Rose has been exiled to a backwater assignment for the Commonwealth Bureau of Investigation, a death knell for her career. But then Sam catches a break, a murder, that could give her the boost she needs to get her life back on track. There’s a snag, though: the body is a clone, and technically that means it’s not a homicide. And yet, something about the body raises questions, not only for her, but for coroner Linsey Mackenzie. The more they dig, the more they realize nothing about this case is what it seems, and for Sam, nothing about Mac is what it seems, either. This case might be the way out for her, but that way could be in a body bag. (Digital)
Young Adult. Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she’s ever known. Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but she’s fiercely loyal. When a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it’s time to act. Legend has it that there is a way to end the conflict once and for all: find the Firebird, a mythical entity believed to possess power the likes of which the world has never seen. If life as a thief has taught Echo anything, it’s how to hunt down what she wants, and how to take it. This job might just set the world on fire.
Sebastian Grey always thought he was a fairly normal teenager—good friends, decent grades, and a pretty sweet job in his foster brother’s tattoo shop.But when strangers arrive in town, Sebastian soon realizes that his world is nothing at all what it seemed. Secretive gypsies surround him, shadowy figures stalk him, and the girl he’s been dreaming about turns up at school. Now Sebastian must protect this girl at all costs, even if it means he will never be normal again. (Digital)