Spring is a time of rebirth and renewal, so what better season for a dark tale of the zombie-plague in Helen Marshall’s The Migration? If urban fantasy is more your thing, dive into a mystery with an inter-dimensional gumshoe in Graham Edwards’s String City. And if short fiction is your jam, then you’re in luck—this month has eight new SFF anthologies and collections, including stories from Sarah Pinsker and a dazzling selection of cross-genre work featured in New Suns from editor Nisi Shawl.
Which will you read first?
Keep track of all the new releases here. Note: All title summaries are taken and/or summarized from copy provided by the publisher.
String City—Graham Edwards (March 5, Solaris)
It’s a tough job being a gumshoe in an interdimensional city full of gods, living concepts and weirder things. Good thing I’m a stringwalker, able to jump between realities.
It started when I was hired to investigate an explosion at a casino. A simple heist, I thought, but it turned into a race to stop the apocalypse. So I rolled the dice, and now I’m up against the ancient Greek Titans, an interdimensional spider god and a mysterious creature known as the Fool. I’m going to need more than just luck to solve this one.
If I fail, all things—in all realities—could be destroyed. Just another day in String City.
The Migration—Helen Marshall (March 5, Random House)
Storms and flooding are worsening around the world, and a mysterious immune disorder has begun to afflict the young. Sophie Perella is about to begin her senior year of high school in Toronto when her little sister, Kira, is diagnosed. Their parents’ marriage falters under the strain, and Sophie’s mother takes the girls to Oxford, England, to live with their Aunt Irene. An Oxford University professor and historical epidemiologist obsessed with relics of the Black Death, Irene works with a Centre that specializes in treating people with the illness. She is a friend to Sophie, and offers a window into a strange and ancient history of human plague and recovery.
Sophie just wants to understand what’s happening now; but as mortality rates climb, and reports emerge of bodily tremors in the deceased, it becomes clear there is nothing normal about this condition—and that the dead aren’t staying dead. When Kira succumbs, Sophie faces an unimaginable choice: let go of the sister she knows, or take action to embrace something terrifying and new.
If This Goes On: The Science Fiction Future of Today’s Politics—Cat Rambo (Ed.) (March 5, Parvus Press)
Some of today’s most visionary writers of science fiction project us forward to the world of the future; a world shaped by nationalism, isolationism, and a growing divide between the haves and have nots. This anthology sits at the intersection of politics, speculative fiction, and American identity. The choices we make today; the policies of our governments and the values that we, as people, embrace are going to shape our world for decades to come. Or break it.
Edited by Cat Rambo, the current President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, the stories of If This Goes On invite you to worlds very like this one— but just a little different. Including:
- “Green Glass: A Love Story” by Lily Yu, Hugo and World Fantasy Award nominee, and winner of the 2012 John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer, filters the future of now through a wholly relatable lens: relationships and marriage.
- Hugo-winning editor Scott Edelman’s “The Stranded Time Traveler Embraces the Inevitable” expertly employs an age-old science fiction convention to tell a deeply human tale of love, loss, and desperate hope.
- Streaming our everyday lives has become commonplace, but in “Making Happy” Zandra Renwick examines a very uncommon consequence of broadcasting your every experience.
- Former Minnesota Viking and noted equal rights advocate Chris Kluwe’s “The Machine” deals with one of the most important and hotly contested questions of the day: what truly defines citizenship and American identity?
- Nebula winner Sarah Pinsker’s “That Our Flag Was Still There” uses possibly the most powerful symbol in American iconography to create a frightening and darkly illuminating vision of freedom of speech.
- NAACP Image Award winner for Outstanding Literary Work Steven Barnes offers up the consequences of integrating technology and surveillance into our daily lives with his detective story “The Last Adventure of Jack Laff: The Dayveil Gambit”
And two dozen more of today’s best authors offer If This Goes On, the science fiction future of today.
Voices of the Fall (Black Tide Rising #7)—John Ringo and Gary Poole (Eds.) (March 5, Baen)
Civilization had fallen. Everyone who survived the plague lived through the Fall, that terrible autumn when life as they had known it ended in blood and chaos.
Nuclear attack submarines facing sudden and unimaginable crises. Paid hunters on a remote island suddenly cut off from any hope of support. Elite assassins. Never-made-it retirees. Bong-toting former soldiers. There were seven and a half billion stories of pain and suffering, courage, hope and struggle crying out from history: Remember us.
These are their stories. These are the Voices of the Fall.
Mars: Stories—Asja Bakic (March 12, Feminist Press at CUNY)
Mars showcases a series of unique and twisted universes, where every character is tasked with making sense of their strange reality. One woman will be freed from purgatory once she writes the perfect book; another abides in a world devoid of physical contact. With wry prose and skewed humor, an emerging feminist writer explores twenty-first century promises of knowledge, freedom, and power.
Tor.com Publishing Editorial Spotlight #3: A Selection of Novellas—Ellen Datlow (Ed.) (March 12, Tor.com Publishing)
Tor.com Publishing Editorial Spotlight #3 is a curated selection of novellas by editor Ellen Datlow.
This collection includes:
The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle
The Twilight Pariah by Jeffrey Ford
Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones
Gods, Monsters, and the Lucky Peach by Kelly Robson
New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction by People of Color—Nisi Shawl (Ed.) (March 12, Solaris)
New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction by People of Color showcases emerging and seasoned writers of many races telling stories filled with shocking delights, powerful visions of the familiar made strange. Between this book’s covers burn tales of science fiction, fantasy, horror, and their indefinable overlappings. These are authors aware of our many possible pasts and futures, authors freed of stereotypes and clichés, ready to dazzle you with their daring genius. Including stories by Indrapramit Das, E Lily Yu, Rebecca Roanhorse, Anil Menon, Jaymee Goh and many others. Introduction by Levar Burton.
Sooner or Later Everything Falls Into the Sea—Sarah Pinsker (March 19, Small Beer Press)
The baker’s dozen stories gathered here (including a new, previously unpublished story) turn readers into travelers to the past, the future, and explorers of the weirder points of the present. The journey is the thing as Pinsker weaves music, memory, technology, history, mystery, love, loss, and even multiple selves on generation ships and cruise ships, on highways and high seas, in murder houses and treehouses. They feature runaways, fiddle-playing astronauts, and retired time travelers; they are weird, wired, hopeful, haunting, and deeply human. They are often described as beautiful but Pinsker also knows that the heart wants what the heart wants and that is not always right, or easy.
Black Moon: The Complete Tales of Jules de Grandin, Volume Five—Seabury Quinn (March 19, Night Shade)
Today the names of H. P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, August Derleth, and Clark Ashton Smith, all regular contributors to the pulp magazine Weird Tales during the first half of the twentieth century, are recognizable even to casual readers of the bizarre and fantastic. And yet despite being more popular than them all during the golden era of genre pulp fiction, there is another author whose name and work have fallen into obscurity: Seabury Quinn.
Quinn’s short stories were featured in well over half of Weird Tales’s original publication run. His most famous character, the French supernatural detective Dr. Jules de Grandin, investigated cases involving monsters, devil worshippers, serial killers, and spirits from beyond the grave, often set in the small town of Harrisonville, New Jersey. In de Grandin there are familiar shades of both Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot, and alongside his assistant, Dr. Samuel Trowbridge, de Grandin’s knack for solving mysteries—and his outbursts of peculiar French-isms (Grand Dieu!)—captivated readers for nearly three decades.
Unfettered III—Shawn Speakman (Ed.) (March 19, Grim Oak Press)
Lacking health insurance when he was diagnosed with cancer, Shawn Speakman asked friends in the science fiction and fantasy writing community to donate short stories he could use to counter mounting medical debt. The result was Unfettered , an anthology offering tales from some of the best authors working today. Now, in Unfettered III, Speakman continues to pay forward the aid he received, raising money to combat medical debt for SF&F artists and authors. He has gathered together a great mix of new and favorite writers—free to write what they like—the result a powerful new anthology perfect for all readers.
A Parliament of Bodies (Maradaine Constabulary #3)—Marshall Ryan Maresca (March 26, DAW)
The city of Maradaine is vexed by the Gearbox Murders: a series of gruesome deaths orchestrated by a twisted mechanical genius. With no motive and no pattern, Inspectors Satrine Rainey and Minox Welling—the retired spy and untrained mage—are at a loss to find a meaningful lead in the case. At least, until the killer makes his most audacious exhibit yet: over a dozen victims in a clockwork deathtrap on the floor of the Druth Parliament.
The crime scene is a madhouse, and political forces conspire to grind their investigation to a halt. The King’s Marshals claim jurisdiction of the case, corruption in the Constabulary thwarts their efforts, and a special Inquest threatens to end Minox’s career completely. Their only ally is Dayne Heldrin, a provisional member of the Tarian Order, elite warriors trained in the art of protection. But Dayne’s connection to the Gearbox Murders casts suspicion on his motives, as he might be obsessed with a phantom figure he believes is responsible.
While Satrine and Minox struggle to stop the Gearbox from claiming even more victims, the grinding gears of injustice might keep them from ever solving these murders, and threaten to dismantle their partnership forever.