We’re thrilled to highlight 9 stunning covers from Saga Press’ Spring 2023 lineup—including titles from Jack McDevitt, G. R. Macallister, Dr. Robin R. Means Coleman & Mark H. Harris, Chana Porter, Kat Howard, Nathan Ballingrud, Stina Leicht, Stephen Graham Jones, and Jason Heller. Get the full details below!
The Village in the Sky by Jack McDevitt
Available January 31, 2023
In Nebula Award–winning author Jack McDevitt’s ninth installment in the beloved Alex Benedict science fiction mystery series, humanity discovers new intelligent life lightyears away—only for it to disappear without a trace.
Centuries after a war with the Mutes, the first aliens to be encountered by humankind, a startling new discovery in the far reaches of the Orion Nebula appears. On a planet with conditions favorable to life, explorer vessel The Columbia comes across a small town seemingly inhabited by an intelligent species not yet discovered.
But when a highly publicized follow-up mission is sent to make contact mere months later, the entire town has vanished, leaving no trace—or such is presumed to be the case until Alex Benedict and his archaeological crew show up to investigate. Officially, their mission is to find concealed artifacts that may have been left behind, but the team’s real goal is to solve the mystery of how these aliens disappeared so rapidly—and why. In turns terrifying and miraculous, the answers raise the stakes for every member on board as they look to make their mark on history.
Nebula Award–winning author Jack McDevitt, whom Stephen King has called “the logical heir to Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke,” brings back Alex, Chase, and Gabe for another brilliantly crafted science fiction mystery.
Jack McDevitt is the Nebula Award–winning author of The Academy series, including The Long Sunset. He attended La Salle University, then joined the Navy, drove a cab, became an English teacher, took a customs inspector’s job on the northern border, and didn’t write another word for a quarter-century. He received a master’s degree in literature from Wesleyan University in 1971. He returned to writing when his wife, Maureen, encouraged him to try his hand at it in 1980. Along with winning the Nebula Award in 2006, he has also been nominated for the Hugo Award, the Nebula Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, the John W. Campbell Memorial Award, and the Philip K. Dick Award. In 2015, he was awarded the Robert A. Heinlein Award for Lifetime Achievement. He and his wife live near Brunswick, Georgia.
Arca by G. R. Macallister
Available February 21, 2023
Return to the Five Queendoms in the sequel to Scorpica, a sweeping epic fantasy that Rebecca Roanhorse called “ambitious and engaging,” in which a centuries long peace is shattered in a matriarchal society when decades pass without a single girl being born.
In the sequel to Scorpica, a few years have passed within The Drought of Girls, an odd plague which has caused no girls to be born across the Queendoms. In these matriarchal societies, having the monarchy pass onto a prince is causing rifts and stressing long-buried tensions between the Queendoms.
Now, we find Scorpicae upon the borders of Arca, setting camp within the desolate red stones of this haunted land the Arcans shunned. The Scorpican queen, Tamura, has become vicious and eager for war, and yet there are larger stirrings. The undead shades of the Underworld roaming, and dark magics are gaining power. The passage between worlds is opening, and something terrible is coming.
G.R. Macallister, author of the Five Queendoms series, beginning with Scorpica, and also writes bestselling historical fiction under the name Greer Macallister. Her novels have been optioned for film and television. A regular contributor to Writer Unboxed and the Chicago Review of Books, she lives with her family in Washington, DC.
The Black Guy Dies First by Dr. Robin R. Means Coleman & Mark H. Harris
Available February 7, 2023
A definitive and surprising exploration of the history of Black horror films, after the rising success of Get Out, Candyman, and Lovecraft Country from creators behind the acclaimed documentary on Shudder, Horror Noire.
The Black Guy Dies First explores the Black journey in modern horror cinema, from the fodder epitomized by Spider Baby to the Oscar-winning cinematic heights of Get Out and beyond. This eye-opening book delves into the themes, tropes, and traits that have come to characterize Black roles in horror since 1968, a year in which race made national headlines in iconic moments from the enactment of the 1968 Civil Rights Act and Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination in April. This timely book is a must-read for cinema and horror fans alike.
Dr. Robin R. Means Coleman is Northwestern’s vice president and associate provost for diversity and inclusion. An internationally prominent and award-winning scholar, Dr. Coleman’s work focuses on media studies and the cultural politics of Blackness. Dr. Coleman is the author of Horror Noire: Blacks in American Horror Films from the 1890s to Present and African American Viewers and the Black Situation Comedy: Situating Racial Humor. She is coauthor of Intercultural Communication for Everyday Life. She is the editor of Say It Loud: African American Audiences, Media, and Identity and coeditor of Fight the Power: The Spike Lee Reader. She is also the author of a number of other academic and popular publications. Dr. Coleman is featured in, and executive produced, the critically acclaimed documentary film Horror Noire which is based on her book.
Mark H. Harris is an entertainment journalist who has written about cinema and pop culture for over twenty years for New York magazine, Vulture, Rotten Tomatoes, About.com, PopMatters, Salem Horror Fest, Napster, MadAtoms, Pretty Scary, Ugly Planet, and THEiNDI. A lifelong horror fan, he created the website BlackHorrorMovies.com in 2005 as the premier online source chronicling the history of Black representation and achievement in horror cinema. He was a featured commentator in the acclaimed documentary Horror Noire and the Shudder series Behind the Monsters.
The Thick and the Lean by Chana Porter
Available April 18, 2023
In Lambda Award finalist Chana Porter’s highly anticipated new novel, an aspiring chef, a cyberthief, and a kitchen maid each fight to break free of a society that constrains them at every turn.
In the quaint religious town of Seagate, abstaining from food brings one closer to God.
But Beatrice Bolano is hungry. She craves the forbidden: butter, flambé, marzipan. As Seagate takes increasingly extreme measures to regulate every calorie its citizens consume, Beatrice must make a choice: give up her secret passion for cooking or leave the only community she has known.
Elsewhere, Reiko Rimando has left her modest roots for a college tech scholarship in the big city. A flawless student, she is set up for success…until her school pulls her funding, leaving her to face either a mountain of debt or a humiliating return home. But Reiko is done being at the mercy of the system. She forges a third path outside of the law.
With the guidance of a mysterious cookbook written by a kitchen maid centuries ago, Beatrice and Reiko each grasp for a life of freedom—something more easily imagined than achieved in a world dominated by catastrophic corporate greed.
A startling fable of the entwined perils of capitalism, body politics, and the stigmas women face for appetites of every kind, Chana Porter’s profound new novel explores the reclamation of pleasure as a revolutionary act.
Chana Porter is a playwright, teacher, MacDowell fellow, and cofounder of The Octavia Project, a STEM and fiction-writing program for girls and gender nonconforming youth from underserved communities. She lives in Los Angeles, California, and is also the author of The Seep, a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award.
A Sleight of Shadows by Kat Howard
Available April 25, 2023
Return to Kat Howard’s Alex Award–winning world begun in An Unkindness of Magicians, a secret society of power-hungry magicians in New York City.
After taking down the source of the corruption of the Unseen World, Sydney is left with almost no magical ability. Feeling estranged from herself, she is determined to find a way back to her status as one of the world’s most dangerous magicians. Unfortunately, she needs to do this quickly: the House of Shadows, the hell on earth that shaped her into who she was, the place she sacrificed everything to destroy, is rebuilding itself.
“The House of shadows sits on bones. All of the sacrifices, all of the magicians who died in Shadows, they’re buried beneath the foundations. Bones hold magic.”
The magic of the Unseen World is acting strangely, faltering, bleeding out from the edges. Determined to keep the House of Shadows from returning to power and to defeat the magicians who want nothing more than to have it back, Sydney turns to extremes in a desperate attempt to regain her sacrificed magic. She is forced to decide what she will give up and what she will lose and whether what must be destroyed is not only the House of Shadows, but the Unseen World itself.
World Fantasy Award finalist Kat Howard has written a sequel that asks how you have a happily ever in a world that doesn’t want it, where the cost of that happiness may be too much to bear.
Kat Howard’s short fiction has been nominated for the World Fantasy Award, anthologized in best of and annual best of collections, and performed on NPR. You can find it in her collection, A Cathedral of Myth and Bone. She is the author of the critically acclaimed Roses and Rot and the Alex Award–winning An Unkindness of Magicians. She is also one of the writers of the Books of Magic series, set in the Sandman Universe. She lives in St. Paul, Minnesota, and you can find her on twitter at @KatWithSword.
The Strange by Nathan Ballingrud
Available March 21, 2023
1931, New Gavleston, Mars: Fourteen-year-old Anabelle Crisp sets off through the wastelands of the Strange to find Silas Mundt’s gang who have stolen her mother’s voice, destroyed her father, and left her solely with a need for vengeance.
Since Anabelle’s mother left for Earth to care for her own ailing mother, her days in New Gavleston have been spent at school and her nights at her laconic father’s diner with Watson, the family Kitchen Engine and dishwasher as her only companion. When the Silence came, and communication and shipments from Earth to its colonies on Mars stopped, life seemed stuck in foreboding stasis until the night Silas Mundt and his gang attacked.
At once evoking the dreams of an America explored in Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles and the harder realities of frontier life in Charles Portis True Grit, Balingrud’s novel is haunting in its evocation of Anabelle’s quest for revenge amidst a spent and angry world accompanied by a domestic Engine, a drunken space pilot, and the toughest woman on Mars.
Nathan Balingrud’s stories have been adapted into the film Wounds and the Hulu series Monsterland, The Strange is his first novel.
Nathan Ballingrud was born in Massachusetts in 1970, but spent most of his life in the South. Ballingrud is the author of the collections North American Lake Monsters and Wounds: Six stories From the Border of Hell. He’s been awarded two Shirley Jackson Awards, and have shortlisted for the World Fantasy, British Fantasy, and Bram Stoker Awards. Among other things, he has been a cook on oil rigs and barges, a waiter, and a bartender in New Orleans. He now lives in North Carolina.
Loki’s Ring by Stina Leicht
Available March 28, 2023
Gita Chithra embarks on a mission through space to save the robot she loves as a daughter—or risk losing her in the depths of Loki’s Ring—in this intergalactic space adventure from beloved author Stina Leicht.
Gita Chithra, the captain of the intergalactic ship The Tempest, is used to leading her crew on simple retrieval and assistance missions. But when she receives a frantic distress call from Ri, the AI she trained from inception—making her like a daughter to Gita—she knows she’s in for something much more dangerous.
Ri is trapped in the depths of Loki’s Ring, an artificial alien-made solar system, with nearly all of her crew infected and killed by a mysterious contagion. When Gita and her team investigate, they discover danger at every turn, and are soon attacked and stranded themselves.
Forced to call on an old friend to help her out of this mess, Gita must succeed or risk losing everyone she’s ever loved.
Stina Leicht is a science fiction and fantasy writer living in central Texas. Her second novel, And Blue Skies From Pain, was on the Locus Recommended Reading list for 2012. She was an Astounding Award for Best New Writer finalist in 2011 and in 2012. In 2011 she was also shortlisted for the Crawford Award. She is also the author of Persephone Station.
Don’t Fear the Reaper by Stephen Graham Jones
Available February 7, 2023
December 12th, 2019, Jade returns to the rural lake town of Proofrock the same day as convicted Indigenous serial killer Dark Mill South escapes into town to complete his revenge killings, in this riveting sequel to My Heart Is a Chainsaw from New York Times bestselling author Stephen Graham Jones.
Four years after her tumultuous senior year, Jade Daniels is released from prison right before Christmas when her conviction is overturned. But life beyond bars takes a dangerous turn as soon as she returns to Proofrock. Convicted Serial Killer, Dark Mill South, seeking revenge for thirty-eight Dakota men hanged in 1862, escapes from his prison transfer due to a blizzard, just outside of Proofrock, Idaho.
Dark Mill South’s Reunion Tour began on December 12th, 2019, a Thursday.
Thirty-six hours and twenty bodies later, on Friday the 13th, it would be over.
Don’t Fear the Reaper is the page-turning sequel to My Heart Is a Chainsaw from New York Times bestselling author Stephen Graham Jones.
Stephen Graham Jones is the New York Times bestselling author of The Only Good Indians and My Heart Is a Chainsaw. He has been an NEA fellowship recipient and been recipient of several awards including: the 2021 Mark Twain American Voice in Literature award, the Ray Bradbury Award from the Los Angeles Times, the Bram Stoker Award, the Shirley Jackson Award, the Jesse Jones Award for Best Work of Fiction from the Texas Institute of Letters, the Independent Publishers Award for Multicultural Fiction, and the Alex Award from American Library Association. He is the Ivena Baldwin Professor of English at the University of Colorado Boulder.
Repeater by Jason Heller
Available February 14, 2023
High Fidelity meets The Magicians in this ‘90s punk rock fantasy by triple threat guitarist, author, and Hugo Award–winning editor Jason Heller.
Peter, a punk rock guitar player with OCD tendencies—It’s why everyone calls him rePeter—works at The Wax Rack, a record store in Denver. Pete has a talent he couldn’t understand until he attends a by-invitation-only concert at a secret warehouse location.
Pete can do things if he performs a ritual that dives into his OCD, you can call it magic if you want, and this band, Order of Organs, are all magicians, and they need Pete as much as he needs them, if they’re going to save Denver from what’s coming.
Filled with the anti-mainstream and DIY ethos of the movement, Repeater is the heartbreaking punk rock fantasy we need.
Jason Heller is the author of Strange Stars, Taft 2012, and numerous short stories in magazines and anthologies. He’s also a Hugo Award–winning editor for his work in Clarkesworld Magazine. Jason has written about pop culture for The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, NPR, Entertainment Weekly, The A.V. Club, and many others. In his spare time, he plays guitar in the post-punk band Weathered Statutes and is a resident DJ at Funk Club and Mile High Soul Club. He lives in Denver with his wife, Angie.