The Iron Dragon’s Mother Is Michael Swanwick’s Triumphant Return to Faerie

“She didn’t know that the dragons were coming for her.” With good reason: Dragons rarely intrude into American hospital wards, but it’s in that incongruous setting that Michael Swanwick begins his new novel, The Iron Dragon’s Mother. We meet Helen V. at the end of an interesting—she’s “gone scuba-diving in the Maldives [and] found herself inexplicably judging an air guitar competition in an unlicensed slum bar in Johannesburg [and] spent a summer trying to convert a rusty old Ferrari to run on vegetable oil because she’d fallen in love with a boy who wanted to save the world”—but ultimately unsatisfied life. She’s dying in a hospital with no visitors, little grace, and few consolations. She derives her scant pleasures from tormenting her caretakers with snark and allusion; they retaliate by delivering sermons or withholding morphine. She’s a lifelong walker-out and escaper-from; since she can’t leave the hospital, she’s immersed in The Tibetan Book of the Dead, which posits “an instant of freedom” at the very moment of death. She doesn’t believe, but she’s willing to try: “Crap and nonsense” it may be, but “still, escape is escape.”

And so Helen dies, and Helen leaps, and Helen finds herself in another person’s head in another person’s world.

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Read an Excerpt from Denver Moon: The Saint of Mars

Earth is dying. Luna is uninhabitable. Mars is our last chance. Denver Moon, P.I., returns in The Saint of Mars, a new adventure from Warren Hammond and Joshua Viola—available July 9th from Hex Publishers. From now until June 28th, you can enter to win a Denver Moon prize pack featuring both books, a graphic novel, and a soundtrack!

Six months have passed since Denver Moon smashed The Minds of Mars into the red planet, destroying the ship’s horrific cargo and delaying the alien danger of human mind control. Now, in the dark underbelly of Mars City, Denver and her faithful AI-installed pistol, Smith, are hot on the trail of a suspect they believe is responsible for the disappearance of numerous citizens in Red Tunnel. But as they close in on the culprit, they uncover an even greater threat. An android revolution is stirring within the ranks of the Church of Mars, and its leader is an old enemy who aims to settle scores and shatter the fragile balance of power on Mars.

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Denver Moon Prize Pack Sweepstakes!

Denver Moon, P.I. faces an android revolution within the Church of Mars in Denver Moon: The Saint of Mars. We want to send you a prize pack featuring book one, Denver Moon: The Minds of Mars, book two, Denver Moon: The Saint of Mars, the graphic novel Denver Moon: Metamorphosis, the Denver Moon comics 1-3, and the Denver Moon CD soundtrack!

Six months have passed since Denver Moon, P.I., smashed The Minds of Mars into the red planet, destroying the ship’s horrific cargo and delaying the alien danger of human mind control. Now, in the dark underbelly of Mars City, Denver and her faithful AI-installed pistol, Smith, are hot on the trail of a suspect they believe is responsible for the disappearance of numerous citizens in Red Tunnel.

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All The New Fantasy Books Coming in July!

Close your eyes. Imagine yourself in a field of tall grass, a sword at your side, a castle in the distance. This is your destiny. This month’s fantasy titles will take you down roads filled with gods and monsters: fearsome dragons awaken in Duncan M. Hamilton’s Dragonslayer; travel to the Mayan Underworld with the god of death in Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia; and enjoy the fourth installment of The Tensorate Series from JY Yang, Ascent to Godhood.

Head below for the full list of fantasy titles heading your way in July!

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Rereading The Ruin of Kings: Chapters 44 and 45

Verily, v’all, a volley of verbiage for vous re: this volume of verbosity! Victory!

This blog series will be covering The Ruin of Kings, the first novel of a five-book series by Jenn Lyons. Previous entries can be found here in the series index.

Today’s post will be covering Chapter 44, “Fencing Lessons”, and Chapter 45, “Riscoria Tea.” Please note that from this point forward, these posts will likely contain spoilers for the entire novel, so it’s recommended that you read the whole thing first before continuing on.

Got that? Great! Click on for the rest!

[Va va va voom]

Series: The Ruin of Kings by Jenn Lyons

Fraught With Destiny: Queering L.M. Montgomery’s Anne Shirley and Diana Barry

Deep in the throes of top surgery recovery, I awoke this morning finally feeling optimistic. My love, Amy Rose, packed our child’s lunch while I brewed dark coffee. After the bus whisked our enchantingly talkative small person towards their daily destiny, we sat out on the back porch, watching June’s citrus sunshine melt the mist off the verdant Vermont mountains.

If you haven’t already gathered by the plethora of adjectives, this is about L.M. Montgomery.

It’s also about the word queer. Like many people in my age range—the quicksand between GenX and Millennial that is somehow both and neither—I grew up with the understanding that queer was a very bad word. It didn’t mean gay. Or different. It meant outcast. Loser. What was more, I never heard it in a plural form and that left young me wondering if queers didn’t come in groups, that the word and therefore the person must be inherently lonely. I’m pretty sure that’s exactly what they wanted me to think.

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Wanderers Sweepstakes!

A ‘magnum opus’ from Sci-Fi superstar Chuck Wendig, Wanderers tells the story of a family surviving against all odds – and we want to send you a copy!

Shana wakes up one morning to discover her little sister in the grip of a strange malady. She appears to be sleepwalking. She cannot talk and cannot be woken up. And she is heading with inexorable determination to a destination that only she knows.

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Download a Free Ebook of The Murders of Molly Southbourne by Tade Thompson Before June 29, 2019!

Every time Molly Southbourne bleeds a murderer is born, identical to her in every way and intent on her destruction.

Each month, the eBook Club gives away one (or two, or five in this case of June!) free sci-fi/fantasy ebook to club subscribers. For June 2019, the Ebook Club pick is Tade Thompson’s horror novella The Murders of Molly Southbourne!

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Reading the Wheel of Time: Darkhounds, the Forsaken, and Fireworks in Robert Jordan’s The Dragon Reborn (Part 18)

Good morning, my darlings, and welcome all to Week 18 of this Read of The Dragon Reborn. This week we’re covering Chapters 41-44, and I do my best to keep the recap a reasonable size. I find it a bit nerve-wracking, trying to cut down on the lengths of the recaps, because there are so many little bits in the narration that seem important, even if I don’t know why they are important yet. That says very good things about the complexity and depth of Jordan’s writing, however, so it’s not at all a bad thing!

In my recaps I generally try to refer to characters and things with the same names and descriptions as the narration gives them in the relevant chapters; in a Nynaeve chapter I would always refer to Siuan as the Amyrlin because that’s what Nynaeve calls her, and I continued to refer to Lanfear as Selene as long as the other characters were calling her that, etc. However, even though Perrin is still calling her Zarine, I am going to call Faile by the name she has asked to be called, because that is a practice I believe in in real life, so I am going to extend it to fictional characters as well.

[And mine is Faile, shaggy-hair.]

Series: Reading The Wheel of Time

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen, Epilogue

The epilogue has us rejoining Cordelia and Jole approximately two years later. Jole is getting ready to retire from the military and pursue his PhD in biology. Little Everard Xav has gone into the incubator. Cordelia is still the Vicereine, but clearly transitioning out of her role as well. Aurelia, aged 18 months, is expecting a younger sister. The story ends where it started—Sergyar—but also someplace new—Gridgrad and the site of Cordelia’s future home nearby. It’s still Sergyar, but it’s the world Cordelia has created, not the one Serg made that everyone else has spent the last 45 years clawing their way out of.

The question here is whether this is the end.

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Series: Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga

The Lesson Sweepstakes!

Caribbean beaches. Relationship sagas. Mysterious intentions. Super-advanced aliens. The perfect summer read. From debut sci-fi novelist Cadwell Turnbull – named by The Verge as “a rising star in the science fiction and fantasy world,” comes The Lesson – and we want to send you a copy!

An alien ship rests over Water Island. For five years the people of the US Virgin Islands have lived with the Ynaa, a race of superadvanced aliens on a research mission they will not fully disclose.

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