The empire is crumbling, there is blood on your hands. You did what you had to do, or so you thought. Are you ready to put it back together, to form the future? This month’s science-fiction titles are a beautiful trip into the great unknown: fight for your family in Mazes of Power by Juliette Wade; join a team of rebellious librarians in Upright Women Wanted by Sarah Gailey; and slip through a portal in a Big Box furniture store with Nino Cipri’s Finna.
Head below for the full list of fantasy titles heading your way in February!
Keep track of all the new releases here. Note: All title summaries are taken and/or summarized from copy provided by the publisher.
WEEK ONE (February 4)
Burn Cycle (Cry Pilot #2)—Joel Dane (ACE)
After cry pilot Maseo Kaytu’s white-knuckled victory over the mysterious lampreys at Ayko Base, military command develops new weapons and a new strategy. The updated mission is simple: pinpoint the Hatchery, the “spawn point” of the lampreys, and blast it into a fine powder. Kaytu’s battle-tested squad tracks the enemy from remote bases to elegant cities to subterranean caverns, but the lampreys start hitting harder and faster. While the squad is winning battles, Earth is losing the war. When the search for the Hatchery shines a light on Kaytu’s insurgent past, he faces a terrible truth. There is no line he won’t cross to protect his squad. Then a vicious counterattack teaches him another lesson: you can’t save everyone. In the end, all you can do is the job.
Mazes of Power (Broken Trust #1)— Juliette Wade (DAW)
The cavern city of Pelismara has stood for a thousand years. The Great Families of the nobility cling to the myths of their golden age while the city’s technology wanes. When a fever strikes, and the Eminence dies, seventeen-year-old Tagaret is pushed to represent his Family in the competition for Heir to the Throne. To win would give him the power to rescue his mother from his abusive father, and marry the girl he loves. But the struggle for power distorts everything in this highly stratified society, and the fever is still loose among the inbred, susceptible nobles. Tagaret’s sociopathic younger brother, Nekantor, is obsessed with their family’s success. Nekantor is willing to exploit Tagaret, his mother, and her new servant Aloran to defeat their opponents. Can he be stopped? Should he be stopped? And will they recognize themselves after the struggle has changed them?
Firmament of Flame (The Universe After #3)—Drew Williams (Tor Books)
For nearly a century, the Justified have been searching for gifted children to help prevent the return of the pulse. Until recently, they thought they were the only ones. Jane Kamali and her telekinetic protégé Esa, now seventeen, barely managed to claim victory against a Cyn—a being of pure energy—hell bent on hunting down the gifted. Now they face an army. The Cyn and their followers will stop at nothing to find Esa and the others. No one knows what they want, but Jane, Esa, and their allies in the Justified are determined to find out. Even if they have to go to the ends of the known universe to do it.
The Resisters—Gish Jen (Knopf)
The time: not so long from now. The place: AutoAmerica. The land: half under water. The Internet: one part artificial intelligence, one part surveillance technology, and oddly human—even funny. The people: Divided. The angel-fair “Netted” have jobs, and literally occupy the high ground. The “Surplus” live on swampland if they’re lucky, on water if they’re not. The story: To a Surplus couple—he once a professor, she still a lawyer—is born a Blasian girl with a golden arm. At two, Gwen is hurling her stuffed animals from the crib; by ten, she can hit whatever target she likes. Her teens find her happily playing in an underground baseball league. When AutoAmerica rejoins the Olympics, though—with a special eye on beating ChinRussia—Gwen attracts interest. Soon she finds herself playing ball with the Netted even as her mother challenges the very foundations of this divided society. A moving and important story of an America that seems ever more possible, The Resisters is also the story of one family struggling to maintain its humanity and normalcy in circumstances that threaten their every value—as well as their very existence.
The Puzzler’s War (Tarakan Chronicles #2)— Eyal Kless (HarperVoyager)
There is nothing out of the ordinary in waking up… unless you’re dead. Sent on a dangerous mission with little hope of succeeding, the man known as “Twinkle Eyes” has beaten the odds and found the key that could save civilization: Rafik, a teenage boy with the power to unlock the invaluable Tarakan technology that can restart their world. But the world might not be ready for what is unleashed, and now Twinkle Eyes must find a needle in a haystack in order to save himself… and perhaps the world. This time, though, he will not go it alone. And while his companions—from the fiery Vincha to the laconic Galinak—have their own motivations, each will be vital in solving the last grand puzzle. One that could bring prosperity and progress to the world or destroy humanity’s last hope for ascension. Now, a lone assassin from another era, two old friends, a dead man, a ruthless rogue mercenary, and a vicious warlord are all hunting for the ultimate prize. But what will happen when the final secret is unlocked, and technology long since buried once again finds its way into the hands of mankind?
Upright Women Wanted— Sarah Gailey (Tor.com Publishing)
Esther is a stowaway. She’s hidden herself away in the Librarian’s book wagon in an attempt to escape the marriage her father has arranged for her―a marriage to the man who was previously engaged to her best friend. Her best friend who she was in love with. Her best friend who was just executed for possession of resistance propaganda. The future American Southwest is full of bandits, fascists, and queer librarian spies on horseback trying to do the right thing.
The Last Day—Andrew Hunter Murray (Dutton)
It is 2059:forty years previously a solar catastrophe began to slow our planet’s rotation. Now it has stopped so that one side of the world permanently faces the sun while the other is stuck in an eternal frozen night. Britain is one of the few fortunate countries. Located in one of the few remaining temperate zones, it should have the means to support itself. In reality though it is struggling, and today it is a land stalked by hunger and violence. It is also home to the American Zone, the last surviving enclave of the United States.
Bone Silence (Revenger Universe #3)— Alastair Reynolds (Orbit)
Quoins are accepted currency throughout the thousands of worlds of the Congregation. Ancient, and of unknown origin and purpose, people have traded with them, fought for them, and stolen quoin hordes from booby-trapped caches at risk to life and limb throughout the Thirteen Occupations. Only now it’s becoming clear they have another purpose, as do the bankers who’ve been collecting them. The Occupations themselves are another puzzle. The rise and fall of civilisation may have been unevenly spaced across history, but there is also a pattern. Could something be sparking the Occupations—or ending them? And if so, what could it be, lurking far beyond the outermost worlds of the Congregation? The Ness sisters are being hunted for crimes they didn’t commit by a fleet whose crimes are worse than their own. If they’re to survive, and stay one step ahead of their pursuers—if they’re to answer the questions which have plagued them—it’s going to require every dirty, piratical trick in the book.
Gravity’s Heir— Sara Bond (Black Rose Publishing)
When her father threw her out, sacrificing his only living daughter for the good of his shipping conglomerate, Lena Lomasky swore she could make it on her own. But now she’s broke and desperate, and pride won’t fuel her spaceship. Her latest job is simple: carry a datastick of state secrets home to her father. The same man who cut her off without a cent. Whatever. She can do this. Pass the whiskey. An ill-timed royal assassination ignites a war and Lena’s crew is blamed. When she thinks to use her cache of state secrets to save them, Lena discovers she’s actually smuggling the only known plans for her father’s invention: a gravity bomb that can vaporize entire cities. Lena must decide: continue on and hope her father can design a defense to save millions of lives, or leverage the plans to save the only people who really matter.
WEEK TWO (February 11)
Annihilation Aria (Space Operas #1)—Michael R. Underwood (Parvus Press)
UPDATE: The publication date for this title has been moved to May 5, 2020
Guardians of the Galaxy meets Ann Leckie’s Provenance in this action-packed space opera with a husband-and-wife pair of artifact hunters (she’s the last scion of a warrior race, he’s an academic from Baltimore), their snarky cyborg pilot, and a desperate rebellion against an empire of tentacle-armed tyrants.
WEEK THREE (February 18)
Bridge 108—Anne Charnock (47North)
Late in the twenty-first century, drought and wildfires prompt an exodus from southern Europe. When twelve-year-old Caleb is separated from his mother during their trek north, he soon falls prey to traffickers. Enslaved in an enclave outside Manchester, the resourceful and determined Caleb never loses hope of bettering himself. After Caleb is befriended by a fellow victim of trafficking, another road opens. Hiding in the woodlands by day, guided by the stars at night, he begins a new journey—to escape to a better life, to meet someone he can trust, and to find his family. For Caleb, only one thing is certain: making his way in the world will be far more difficult than his mother imagined. Told through multiple voices and set against the backdrop of a haunting and frighteningly believable future, Bridge 108 charts the passage of a young boy into adulthood amid oppressive circumstances that are increasingly relevant to our present day.
Gravity of a Distant Sun (Shieldrunner Pirates #3)—R. E. Stearns (Saga/Gallery)
Adda Karpe and Iridian Nassir are on the run—both from the authorities who want to imprison them and the artificial intelligence that want to control their minds. Trapped on a desolate black-market space station on the edge of Jupiter, they’re nearly out of allies—and out of luck. Now, they have one last shot to find a safe haven where they can live together in peace—across the interstellar bridge to another galaxy. Getting onto that mission will take everything they’ve got and more. But on the other side of that bridge lies the life they’ve always dreamed of… if they can survive long enough to reach it.
WEEK FOUR (February 25)
Finna—Nino Cipri (Tor.com Pub)
When an elderly customer at a Swedish big box furniture store—but not that one—slips through a portal to another dimension, it’s up to two minimum-wage employees to track her across the multiverse and protect their company’s bottom line. Multi-dimensional swashbuckling would be hard enough, but those two unfortunate souls broke up a week ago. To find the missing granny, Ava and Jules will brave carnivorous furniture, swarms of identical furniture spokespeople, and the deep resentment simmering between them. Can friendship blossom from the ashes of their relationship? In infinite dimensions, all things are possible.