Fiction Affliction: April Releases in Science Fiction

April showers bring May flowers 21 new science fiction titles, including the latest in C.J. Cherryh’s Foreigner series; a novel from musician Tom DeLonge and author A.J. Hartley; Scott Sigler’s sequel to Alive; and three volumes of Greg Bear’s short works.

Fiction Affliction details releases in science fiction, fantasy, 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

Visitor (Foreigner #17)—C.J. Cherryh (April 5, DAW)
It’s been a year of upheaval, since Bren Cameron’s return from space—a year since he and the aiji-dowager, one of his most powerful atevi allies, returned home from their two-year interstellar mission to find the government overthrown and their world in chaos. Now, at last, things on the atevi world seem to be on the right track, and Bren hopes that life may soon become much more tranquil. But something is coming, quietly, stealthily—just the first ominous twinkle of a new star in the heavens….

Dominion (Chronicles of the Invaders #3)—John Connolly & Jennifer Ridyard (April 5, Atria/Emily Bestler Books)
Syl Hellais and Paul Kerr have traveled through Derith, the mysterious wormhole from which no traveler has ever returned. Yet Derith’s secrets are darker than they imagined, and trapped in a dimension beyond their own, they finally emerge to discover a universe that has moved on without them. Years have passed, and Civil War rages among the Illyri. It is whispered that the Earth is lost, prey to the alien parasites known as the Others, and other worlds will soon follow. Most shocking of all, the sinister Archmage Syrene of the Nairene Sisterhood has disappeared into the bowels of the Sisterhood’s lair. Syl and Paul, teenagers in a deadly adult world, must find a way to change the course of history and save the lives of billions.

Chasing Shadows (Sekret Machines #1)—Tom DeLonge & A.J. Hartley (April 5, To the Stars)
The witnesses are legion, scattered across the world and dotted through history, people who looked up and saw something impossible lighting up the night sky. What those objects were, where they came from, and who—or what—might be inside them is the subject of fierce debate and equally fierce mockery, so that most who glimpsed them came to wish they hadn’t. Most, but not everyone. Among those who know what they’ve seen, and—like the toll of a bell that can’t be unrung—are forever changed by it, are a pilot, an heiress, a journalist, and a prisoner of war. From the waning days of the 20th century’s final great war to the fraught fields of Afghanistan to the otherworldly secrets hidden amid Nevada’s dusty neverlands—the truth that is out there will propel each of them into a labyrinth of otherworldly technology and the competing aims of those who might seek to prevent—or harness—these beings of unfathomable power.

Of Treasons Born (Treasons Cycle)—J.L. Doty (April 5, Open Road)
As a lifer in the Imperial Navy fighting in a war that has lasted for generations, York Ballin’s only hope for an honorable discharge is the grave.York rarely recalls his childhood, which began with a mystery and ended at age eleven when he was given a harsh choice: Join the navy or face certain death on a prison asteroid. The navy has its own code of justice, but a youngster with curiosity and grit is able to rise in the ranks … if he’s given a fair shot. A few rigorous years later, as a newly commissioned ensign, York is assigned to the hunter-killer ship The Fourth Horseman. But when an unexpected foe kills his superior officer and leaves the crew stranded in enemy territory, the young ensign must do whatever he can to save the ship—even if it means he’ll be court-martialed for treason.

ArenaHolly Jennings (April 5, Ace)
Every week, Kali Ling fights to the death on national TV. She’s died hundreds of times. And it never gets easier. The RAGE tournaments are the Virtual Gaming League’s elite competition where the best gamers in the world compete in a no-holds-barred fight to the digital death. Every bloody kill is broadcast to millions. Every player is a modern gladiator—leading a life of ultimate fame, responsible only for entertaining the masses. And though their weapons and armor are digital, the pain is real. Chosen to be the first female captain in RAGE tournament history, Kali Ling is at the top of the world—until one of her teammates overdoses. Now, she must confront the truth about the tournament. Because it is much more than a game—and even in the real world, not everything is as it seems. The VGL hides dark secrets. And the only way to change the rules is to fight from the inside…

Silence (Serrated Edge #9)—Mercedes Lackey & Cody Martin (April 5, Baen)
Teenager Staci’s father has just remarried, and now she finds herself being shunted aside by her new stepmother. Shunted all the way to the run-down and dying Maine town of Silence, in fact, and the custody of her alcoholic mother. Silence seems to be stuck in the proverbial stone age. There’s no cell phone service except at the very top of a bluff outside of town, no internet except dialup, and not one familiar franchise or business. Staci’s mom seems to have gotten worse. The only bright spots in the whole place are a friendly waitress at the diner, and a bookstore where she meets a gaggle of geeks and gamers. But all is not as it seems in Silence. There are strange things moving beneath the shabby surface, terrible plots in play, and deadly players in the game, and Staci is about to find herself caught up in the middle of it all.

The Kasari Nexus (Rho Agenda Assimilation #1)—Richard Phillips (April 5)
Jennifer Smythe escapes Earth’s invasion by the insidious Kasari race, hijacks an alien starship, and survives the deadly passage through a wormhole. But escape is short-lived. When Jennifer emerges on the new world of Scion, she is confronted by the same deadly enemy. When Jennifer is captured by the brutish Koranthians, her alien-enhanced abilities make her a crucial asset in battling the Kasari and their winged allies, the planet’s angel-like elite. Back on a divided Earth, Jennifer’s brother, Mark, and Jack “the Ripper” Gregory wage their own war against the Kasari. As the global government welcomes the extraterrestrials, Mark, Jack, and their rebel faction seek to use the powerful mind-altering skills gained from the Kasari’s sworn enemies to repel the would-be conquerors. But faced with the might of Earth’s ruling forces, has the cause already been lost?

Quantum Break: Zero StateCam Rogers (April 5, Tor)
Jack Joyce spent six years trying to escape—escape his life, escape time, escape the madness of his brother, Will. But when he finally returns home, it turns out his brother isn’t quite so mad. Will has created a time machine, one with the potential to save humanity. War? Preventable. Natural disasters? Stoppable. Except for one tiny problem… his machine will also cause the end of the time as we know it. Now Jack has just one chance to turn back time, to fix what was broken, to save the world. Cam Rogers’ Quantum Break: Zero State is the official tie-in to Quantum Break, the brand new video game from Remedy Entertainment about a time travel experiment gone wrong.

Alight (Generations #2)—Scott Sigler (April 5, Del Rey)
Young adult. M. Savage—or Em, as she is called—has made a bewildering and ominous discovery. She and the other young people she was chosen to lead awoke in strange coffins with no memory of their names or their pasts. They faced an empty, unknown place of twisting tunnels and human bones. They searched for answers and found the truth about their terrifying fate. The planet Omeyocan may be the sanctuary Em and her comrades seek. But the planet for which they were created turns out not to be a pristine, virgin world. Vestiges of a lost civilization testify to a horrifying past that may yet repeat itself. And when a new enemy creeps from the jungle shadows, Em and her young refugees learn there’s nowhere left to run. In the midst of this desperate struggle, their unity is compromised from within—and a dangerous zealot devoted to a bloodthirsty god moves to usurp Em’s command, threatening to lead them all down a path to violent doom.

Trident’s Forge (Children of a Dead Earth #2)—Patrick S. Tomlinson (April 5, Angry Robot)
Against all odds, the Ark and her thirty-thousand survivors have reached Tau Ceti G to begin the long, arduous task of rebuilding human civilization. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, Tau Ceti G’s natives, the G’tel, are coming to grips with the sudden appearance of what many believe are their long-lost Gods. But first contact between humans and g’tel goes catastrophically wrong, visiting death on both sides. The Ark’s greatest hero, Bryan Benson, partners with native ‘truth-digger’ Kexx, against both of their better judgment. Together, Benson and Kexx will have to find enough common ground and trust to uncover a plot that threatens to plunge both of their peoples into an apocalyptic war that neither side can afford to fight.

 

WEEK TWO

DissensionStacey Berg (April 12, Harper Voyager)
For four hundred years, the Church has led the remnants of humanity as they struggle for survival in the last inhabited city. Echo Hunter 367 is exactly what the Church created her to be: loyal, obedient, lethal. A clone who shouldn’t be able to care about anything but her duty. When rebellious citizens challenge the Church’s authority, it is Echo’s duty to hunt them down before civil war can tumble the city back into the dark. But Echo hides a deadly secret: doubt. And when Echo’s mission leads her to Lia, a rebel leader who has a secret of her own, Echo is forced to face that doubt. For Lia holds the key to the city’s survival, and Echo must choose between the woman she loves and the purpose she was born to fulfill.

New Charity BluesCamille Griep (April 12, 47North)
In the wake of a devastating plague, two communities emerge as bastions of survival. One is called the City, and its people scrabble for scraps in the wasteland. The other, New Charity, enjoys the bounty of its hydroelectric dam and refuses City denizens so much as a drop of precious water. When City-dweller Cressyda inherits her father’s ranch within New Charity, she becomes intent on opening the dam to all—no matter the cost. But when Syd reunites with her old best friend, Casandra, a born seer and religious acolyte, she realizes that her plans could destroy the fragile lives they’ve built in order to survive. What’s more, the strange magic securing the dam’s operations could prove deadly if disturbed. In this intense and emotional reimagining of the Trojan War epic, two women clash when loyalty, identity, community, and family are all put to the ultimate test.

 

WEEK THREE

Chains of Command (Frontlines #4)—Marko Kloos (April 19, 47North)
The assault on Earth was thwarted by the destruction of the aliens’ seed ship, but with Mars still under Lanky control, survivors work frantically to rebuild fighting capacity and shore up planetary defenses. Platoon sergeant Andrew Grayson must crash-course train new volunteers—all while dulling his searing memories of battle with alcohol and meds. Knowing Earth’s uneasy respite won’t last, the North American Commonwealth and its Sino-Russian allies hurtle toward two dangerous options: hit the Lanky forces on Mars or go after deserters who stole a fleet of invaluable warships critical to winning the war. Assigned to a small special ops recon mission to scout out the renegades’ stronghold on a distant moon, Grayson and his wife, dropship pilot Halley, again find themselves headed for the crucible of combat—and a shattering new campaign in the war for humanity’s future.

JoinSteve Toutonghi (April 19, Soho Press)
What if you could live multiple lives simultaneously, have constant, perfect companionship, and never die? That’s the promise of Join, a revolutionary technology that allows small groups of minds to unite, forming a single consciousness that experiences the world through multiple bodies. But as two best friends discover, the light of that miracle may be blinding the world to its horrors. Chance and Leap are jolted out of their professional routines by a terrifying stranger—a remorseless killer who freely manipulates the networks that regulate life in the post-Join world. Their quest for answers—and survival—brings them from the networks and spire communities they’ve known to the scarred heart of an environmentally ravaged North American continent and an underground community of the “ferals” left behind by the rush of technology.

 

WEEK FOUR

Just Over the HorizonGreg Bear (April 26, Open Road)
Greg Bear’s ability to transform challenging scientific concepts into gripping fiction has won him numerous awards and an avid following. He has written novels about interstellar war, human evolution, intelligent bacteria, international terrorism, and the exploration of deep space—but he doesn’t stop there. This brilliant collection of Bear’s stories, each newly revised by the author, proves he is a master of the short form as well. Just Over the Horizon offers 13 mind-bending explorations of the near future … or just beyond the border of conventional reality.

Far Thoughts and Pale GodsGreg Bear (April 26, Open Road)
Greg Bear is the author of more than 30 books, from thrillers (Darwin’s Radio, Vitals) to science fiction (Blood Music, Eon, Hull Zero Three) to pure fantasy (The Infinity Concerto, The Serpent Mage). He has won 5 Nebula and 2 Hugo Awards, his works have been translated into more than 20 languages, and his titles have sold millions of copies worldwide. But his skills are not confined to writing at full-length novels: He is also the author of dozens of brilliant short stories, novellas, and novelettes. Far Thoughts and Pale Gods contains 6 highly acclaimed stories, each newly revised by the author, that illustrate Bear’s abundant breadth of talent.

Beyond the Farthest SunsGreg Bear (April 26, Open Road)
Whether penning science fiction (Moving Mars, Queen of Angels, War Dogs), alternate history (the Mongoliad series with Neal Stephenson), or fantasy (Sleepside, The Infinity Concerto), Greg Bear tells stories that engage the reader’s intellect while gripping the imagination. His short fiction is no exception. Beyond the Farthest Suns takes readers to the far end of the universe and the borders of scientific understanding.

Leviathan (Lost Fleet: Beyond the Frontier #1)—Jack Campbell (April 26, Ace)
Two Syndicate Worlds star systems have fallen prey to a mysterious fleet of warships—a fleet controlled entirely by artificial intelligence—that is now targeting Alliance space. The warships are no mystery to Admiral John “Black Jack” Geary. They were developed by his government to ensure security, but malfunctioned. If the Syndics learn the truth, the war with the Alliance will resume with a vengeance. As the government attempts to conceal the existence of the AI warships—and its role in their creation—Geary pursues them, treading a fine line between mutiny and obedience. With the help of the Dancer species of aliens, Geary has tracked the AI ships to their secret base in the supposedly mythical Unity Alternate star system, where his fleet, the last hope for the Alliance’s future, will end the conflict at any cost…

Alien Invasion: The Rage War 2Tim Lebbon (April 26, Titan)
For centuries Weyland-Yutani has tried to weaponize the aliens. Now someone has beaten them to it, sweeping through Yautja space and turning predator into prey. Faced with the overwhelming forces of the Rage, Earth envoys forge an unprecedented alliance with the Predators. Yet even the combined might of two races may not be enough to stop the carnage, as an unstoppable swarm of Xenomorphs topples planet after planet, penetrating ever deeper into the Human Sphere.

Sleeping GiantsSylvain Neuvel (April 26, Del Rey)
A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near her home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings. But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand. Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved—its origins, architects, and purpose unknown. Rose Franklin is now a highly trained physicist leading a top secret team to crack the hand’s code. Along with her colleagues, she is being interviewed by a nameless interrogator whose power and purview are as enigmatic as the provenance of relic. What’s clear is that Rose and her compatriots are on the edge of unraveling history’s most perplexing discovery—and figuring out what it portends for humanity.

Elusive Salvation (Star Trek: The Original Series)—Dayton Ward (April 26, Pocket Books)
The Arctic Circle, 1845: Escaping the tyranny under which their people have lived for generations, aliens from a distant planet crash land on Earth’s inhospitable frozen wastes. Over time the aliens will migrate to more populated areas, with decades passing as they work to conceal their presence from their former oppressors, who continue to hunt them at any cost. San Francisco, 2283: When a mysterious craft is detected entering the solar system, Admiral James Kirk is dispatched by Starfleet to confront the vessel. He meets with an emissary from the Iramahl, a previously unknown alien race who have come in search of their brothers and sisters thought to have gone missing in this area of space centuries earlier. New York, 1970: Roberta Lincoln, young protégé of the mysterious agent Gary Seven, is shocked when she receives the oddest request for help—from the future…

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