Monday, March 27, 2017

New Series Coming from Charlaine Harris from Saga Press

Press Release


A new trilogy launches Fall 2018 with TEXOMA

New York, NY, March 27, 2017—Saga Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, announced today that it will publish a new trilogy by the #1 New York Times bestselling author Charlaine Harris, beloved for her Sookie Stackhouse urban fantasy series.

Publication will begin in Fall 2018 with the first novel TEXOMA. Developed from the short story “The Gunnie” in the collection Unfettered II, Harris returns with an alternate history of a broken America weakened by the Great Depression and the assassination of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, which tears the country into five new territories: the re-annexation of the original colonies (sans Georgia) of New Britannia, a Canadian controlled northwest called New America, the southeastern area of Dixie, a colonized California and Oregon is now the Holy Russian Empire, and southwestern Texoma. In TEXOMA, the timely mystery centers on Lizbeth Rose, a fiercely independent mercenary who is hired on a manhunt by Russian sorcerers in a Mexican border town.

"All writers love ‘what if’,” said Charlaine Harris. “I became fascinated by the idea of writing about an alternate America, seen through the eyes of a professional gun-for-hire who happens to be a woman.”

“It’s an absolute joy to work with a master like Charlaine Harris,” said Joe Monti, Editorial Director of Saga Press. “She has created an alternate world filled with denigrated magic, inverted expectations, and characters easy to fall in love with. The Texoma trilogy is classic Harris, playing with the elements she has loved for years, delivered with her signature style and profound revelations that have delighted her millions of readers.”

Monti acquired North American print and e-book rights from Joshua Bilmes at JABberwocky Literary Agency, Inc.

Charlaine Harris is a #1 New York Times bestselling author who has been writing for over thirty years and has been published in more than thirty languages. Harris’ books have worldwide sales in excess of thirty million copies, inspiring HBO’s True Blood, NBC’s Midnight, Texas, and the Aurora Teagarden movies for Hallmark Movies & Mysteries.

Simon & Schuster, a part of CBS Corporation, is a global leader in the field of general interest publishing, dedicated to providing the best in fiction and nonfiction for consumers of all ages, across all printed, electronic, and audio formats. Its divisions include Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing, Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, Simon & Schuster Audio, Simon & Schuster Digital, and international companies in Australia, Canada, India, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit our website at

The IAFA William L. Crawford Fantasy Award Winner - All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders

The William L. Crawford Fantasy Award was presented at the 38th International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts which was held March 22-26, 2017 at Orlando Airport Marriott Lakeside, Orlando, Florida.
The IAFA Crawford Award each year recognizes an outstanding new writer whose first fantasy book was published during the previous calendar year. It is not specifically a first novel award. The award was established with the support of the late Andre Norton, who also helped establish the criteria and who continued to support the award over the years. from the IAFA website
The Crawford Award Winner for a novel published in 2016 is Charlie Jane Anders for All the Birds in the Sky!

Charlie Jane Anders

All the Birds in the Sky
Tor Books, April 11, 2017
Trade Paperback, 336 pages
Hardcover and eBook, January 26, 2016

From the former editor-in-chief of, a stunning novel about the end of the worldand the beginning of our future

Childhood friends Patricia Delfine and Laurence Armstead didn't expect to see each other again, after parting ways under mysterious circumstances during middle school. After all, the development of magical powers and the invention of a two-second time machine could hardly fail to alarm one's peers and families.

But now they're both adults, living in the hipster mecca San Francisco, and the planet is falling apart around them. Laurence is an engineering genius who's working with a group that aims to avert catastrophic breakdown through technological intervention. Patricia is a graduate of Eltisley Maze, the hidden academy for the world's magically gifted, and works with a small band of other magicians to secretly repair the world's every-growing ailments. Little do they realize that something bigger than either of them, something begun years ago in their youth, is determined to bring them together—to either save the world, or plunge it into a new dark ages.

Charlie Jane Anders' All the Birds in the Sky is a deeply magical, darkly funny examination of life, love, and the apocalypse.

My review

It's hard to explain All the Birds in the Sky - it's a story with magic; it's a story with science; it's a story about the impending apocalyptic end of the world. It's all those and a story about love, friendship, and finding your place in the world. It's also an absolute joy to read.

Patricia Delfine and Laurence Armstead are awkward pre-teens with parents who do not understand them. They barely understand themselves. Their lives intersect when they are in middle school (where horrible things happen). They are both captivating and interesting for entirely different reasons. Laurence is a person of science; Patricia is a person of magic. They are friends and not friends, but they always seem to have each other's backs in middle school. For years they don't see each other. They grow up and reconnect as the world is more and more falling apart - superstorms, famine, water wars, disease, etc. Patricia is a powerful witch who doesn't understand everything she can do yet despite her training, but is working to save the world. Laurence is a genius also working to save humanity through science. Obviously they have different approaches to what that means.

All the Birds in the Sky is deeply character-driven. Patricia and Laurence are such vibrant characters it seems that they could have carried the story on their own, but Anders populates their world with wonderful secondary characters that add layers of depth to the story, marvelous magic and cutting edge/weird science.

Anders writing is spellbinding - she transports you deeply into this fabulous story. All the Birds in the Sky has everything I look for in a novel - great writing, wonderful characters and a fascinating, deeply engaging story. I was upset when the book ended because I wanted more! All the Birds in the Sky is an exhilarating, exuberant, magical novel that I very highly recommend.

Originally posted here: Interview with Charlie Jane Anders and review of All the Birds in the Sky

The View From Monday - March 27, 2017

Happy last Monday in March!

There are 2 debuts this week:

Sonora by Hannah Lillith Assadi;


Before This is Over by Amanda Hickie.

Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.

From formerly featured DAC Authors:

Life Debt: Aftermath (Star Wars: The Aftermath Trilogy 2) by Chuck Wendig is out in Mass Market Paperback.

Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.

Debut novels are highlighted in green. Novels, etc. by formerly featured DAC Authors are highlighted in blue.

March 28, 2017
Resurrection Pass Kurt Anderson Th/SF
Sonora (D) Hannah Lillith Assadi MR
The Sorcerer's Daughter (h2mm) Terry Brooks F/SF - The Defenders of Shannara 3
From Ice to Ashes (e) Rhett C. Bruno SF
The Starfishers Trilogy Glen Cook SF/SO - Starfishers Omnibus
Arrow - A Generation of Vipers Susan Griffith
Clay Griffith
CF - Arrow 2
The Mammoth Book of the Mummy Paula Guran (Ed) F - Anthology
The First City Joe Hart SF - The Dominion Trilogy 3
Before This Is Over (D) Amanda Hickie FL
The Murder of Mary Russell (h2tp) Laurie R. King Sus/Psy/M - Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes 10
End of Watch (ri) Stephen King Sus - The Bill Hodges Trilogy 3
Silence (h2mm) Mercedes Lackey
Cody Martin
CF - Serrated Edge 9
The Unyielding Shelly Laurenston PNR - Call Of Crows 3
Long Live the Queen (h2mm) Kate Locke CF - The Immortal Empire 3
Section 31: Control David Mack SF - Star Trek
Blind Salvage Shannon Mayer UF - Rylee Adamson 5
Luna: Wolf Moon Ian McDonald SF/SO - Luna 2
The Morcai Battalion: The Rescue Diana Palmer SFR/Sus - Morcai Battalion 4
Locus Solus Raymond Roussel
Rupert Copeland Cuningham (Tr)
Immortal Unchained Lynsay Sands PNR - An Argeneau Novel 22
Glass Predator Craig Schaefer DF - Harmony Black 3
The Awakening Amanda Stevens GH/Th/PNR - The Graveyard Queen 7
Shooting the Rift (tp2mm) Alex Stewart SF/SO
Life Debt: Aftermath (h2mm) Chuck Wendig SF - Star Wars: The Aftermath Trilogy 2

March 31, 2017
The Mask of Sanity Jacob M. Appel H
Lost Souls Kelley Armstrong UF - Cainsville Novella
Dear Sweet Filthy World Caitlín R. Kiernan F - Collection

April 1, 2017
Pale Guardian Barbara Hambly H - A James Asher Vampire Novel 7
The Breaking Light Heather Hansen SF/Dys - Split City 1
'48 (ri) James Herbert Dys
The Ghosts of Sleath (ri) James Herbert H - David Ash 2
Haunted (ri) James Herbert H - David Ash 1
The Immortal's Unrequited Bride (e) Kelli Ireland PNR
Dead West: Omnibus Two Tim Marquitz
Kenny Soward
H - Dead West Omnibus 2
Horror Stories E. Nesbit H - Collection
All of a Winter's Night Phil Rickman M/Occ/Sup - Merrily Watkins Mysteries 14
Lords of the Underworld: The Darkest Sampler (e) Gena Showalter PNR
Angel Unleashed (e) Linda Thomas-Sundstrom PNR

D - Debut
e - eBook
Ed - Editor
h2mm - Hardcover to Mass Market Paperback
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
ri - reissue or reprint
tp2mm - Trade to Mass Market Paperback
Tr - Translator

AB - Absurdist
AC - Alien Contact
AH - Alternate History
AP - Apocalyptic
CF - Contemporary Fantasy
CulH - Cultural Heritage
CW - Contemporary Women
DF - Dark Fantasy
Dys - Dystopian
F - Fantasy
FairyT - Fairy Tales
FL - Family Life
FolkT - Folk Tales
FR - Fantasy Romance
GH - Ghosts
H - Horror
HC - History and Criticism
Hist - Historical
HistF - Historical Fantasy
HU - Humor
LF - Literary Fiction
LM - Legends and Mythology
M - Mystery
MR - Magical Realism
Occ - Occult
P - Paranormal
PA - Post Apocalyptic
PM - Paranormal Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
PopCul - Popular Culture
PRS - Paranormal Romantic Suspense
Psy - Psychological
PsyTh - Psychological Thriller
SF - Science Fiction
SFR - Science Fiction Romance
SO - Space Opera
Sup - Supernatural
SupTh - Supernatural Thriller
Sus - Suspense
TechTh - Technological Thriller
Th - Thriller
TT - Time Travel
UF - Urban Fantasy
VisMeta - Visionary and Metaphysical

Note: Not all genres and formats are found in the books, etc. listed above.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Melanie's Week in Review - March 26, 2017

Sorry for missing last week. I was a bit behind schedule on quite a few things including the books I had planned on reading. But here I am with 2 books to tell you about.

I didn't think it was possible for Heide Goody and Iain Grant to get any funnier but they do. Beelzebelle - book 5 of the Clovenhoof series - is 100% crazy and 150% hilarious.

In this installment Jeremy ends up with a baby...well not his baby but after a series of ridiculous events he ends up taking care of baby Bea who is quickly renames Beelzebelle. When baby Belle won't stop crying Jeremy calls SCUM - not quite what you think - Sutton Coldfield Union of Mums with what he describes as a 'five boob emergency'. Somehow Jeremy is quite popular with the members of SCUM and when they protest against the local new church kicking them out of their hall for breast feeding it's up to Jeremy to fight for the cause. While Jeremy finds his feet (or in his case hooves) being a dad Michael is busy working for the leader of the aforementioned new church creating apps and basically missing the fact that his new boss isn't a very nice guy. Nerys and Ben are back and feature heavily in the plot especially after Clovenhoof destroys their block of flats and gets them kicked out. All these minor plots threads come together into one hilariously, crazy resolution. I dare you not to laugh all your way through.

I didn't think it was possible to laugh more during a book but I thought I was going to need surgery from busting my guts in nearly every chapter. From chesticles to lady cushions Goody and Grant just keep the laughs coming page after page.

Read number 2 is a gaslamp fantasy novella Brothers Ruin by Emma Newman. This is the first in Newman's Industrial Magic series. Set in a England in the 1850s where children who show magical talent are sold by their family to the Royal Society who use them as an elite force to protect the country. Charlotte is satisfied with her life as an book illustrator waiting to marry her plain but stable fiance. When Charlotte's brother comes to the attention of the Royal Society Charlotte knows she must do something. Charlotte's brother is not a magical talent but she is. In order to save him she combines her magic with his. When she discovers Doctor Ledbetter's evil plot she knows she must act and act quickly to save her family.

If you are looking for a quick read then look no further. I think that Brother's Ruin took only 2-3 hours to read cover to cover. I call this is a 2 commute book. My commute to work gives me about an hour of concentrated reading time and I had this book read in less than 3 trips to work. While it was quick to read I think that Newman left out too much detail and I felt that both Charlotte and the nefarious plot were a bit one dimensional. I was quite disappointed in this first instalment of the series. As with Newman's Split Worlds series the relationships between characters rely heavily on class structure and it takes the plucky but not very high class heroine to save the day. Worth a read if you want a story that isn't going to challenge you and doesn't take ages to read.

That's it for me. The next time you hear from me it will be April! Until then Happy Reading!

Clovenhoof Book 5
Pigeon Park Press, February 2016
      Trade Paperback, 396 pages
Pigeon Park Press, April 2016
      eBook, 396 pages

To the devil a daughter!

Parenthood can come as a shock to some. It’s especially shocking if you are Satan, the Prince of Hell, and are trying to live a quiet life of semi-retirement in suburban England under the name of Jeremy Clovenhoof.

Clovenhoof quickly finds that being a single parent involves more than lullabies and nappies and has to contend with social disapproval, paternity tests and, possibly, the end of the world.

The fifth novel in the Clovenhoof series, Beelzebelle is an anarchic adventure, featuring a psychotic monkey au pair, runaway coffins, badly stuffed animals, strip dominoes, fire-breathing ferrets, pimped-up prams, well-meaning middle-class mums, apocalyptic floods, the largest act of public nudity Birmingham has ever seen and way too much homebrew Lambrini.

Brother's Ruin
Industrial Magic 1, March 14, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 192 pages

The year is 1850 and Great Britain is flourishing, thanks to the Royal Society of the Esoteric Arts. When a new mage is discovered, Royal Society elites descend like buzzards to snatch up a new apprentice. Talented mages are bought from their families at a tremendous price, while weak mages are snapped up for a pittance. For a lower middle class family like the Gunns, the loss of a son can be disastrous, so when seemingly magical incidents begin cropping up at home, they fear for their Ben's life and their own livelihoods.

But Benjamin Gunn isn't a talented mage. His sister Charlotte is, and to prevent her brother from being imprisoned for false reporting she combines her powers with his to make him seem a better prospect.

When she discovers a nefarious plot by the sinister Doctor Ledbetter, Charlotte must use all her cunning and guile to protect her family, her secret and her city.

Brother's Ruin is the first in a new gaslamp fantasy series by Emma Newman.

The 7th Annual Designer Toy Awards Finds A New Home

Press Release


The Designer Toy Awards are super excited to announce a brand new home for the prestigious annual DTA ceremony – Five Points Festival! The antidote to the average con, Five Points brings tastemakers, misfits, and rebels together with the new, retro, and infamous, in a one-of-a-kind gathering.

A collision of toys, comics, and counterculture curated by Clutter Magazine and presented by Midtown Comics, Five Points is two days and nights of comic artists and writers, vinyl and plastic toys, original art, resin, plush, blind boxes, graphic novels, indie comics, blanks, minis, kaiju, Japanese vinyl, posters, prints, apparel, food trucks, and craft breweries.

Taking place May 20th and 21st at Pier 36, in New York City's lower east side, the festival is kicked off by The Designer Toy Awards on Friday, May 19th!

Want to attend the Designer Toy Awards ceremony on Friday, May 19th, 2017?

Get your exclusive ticket, only available with the purchase of a Five Points Fest VIP Ticket, and rub shoulders with the Art Toy luminaries. Limited to 250, they are selling super fast, so make sure you secure yours now!

Open Nominations to begin
March 27th, 2017.

Nominations for this year's awards ceremony will be officially opened on Monday, March 27th, 2017! You can submit their favorite toys and artists from 2016!!

Nominations will be considered for releases between January 1st, 2016 and December 31st, 2016!

Nominations are private and confidential so feel free to self-nominate!

About the Designer Toy Awards

The Designer Toy Awards (DTAs) are the leading awards honoring excellence and innovation in the Designer Toy art field. Established in 2011, the DTAs are presented by Clutter Magazine— a leading informational organization within Designer Toys, a community that after more than a decade has become a prominent and legitimate form of artistic and commercial expression as well as a leader in global trendsetting.

Reflecting the tremendous and ongoing growth of the Designer Toy community, the DTAs celebrate the best of the industry’s artists, designers, and brands, as well as honoring those involved in championing Designer Toys throughout the world. Members of the DTA Board select the majority of finalists and winners in each category from the nominees, however, you — the online community — determine finalists and, in some cases, winners by voting for nominated work, individual or brand that you believe to be the best in each category. Each year, the DTAs bring together the Designer Toy community all over the world.

About Clutter Magazine

Since 2004, Clutter has been the go-to destination for creatives, companies and collectors, providing regular in-depth trend analysis directly from the vinyl frontier where fine art meets fine artifacts.

The world’s premiere source for counterculture and art toy information, Clutter brings neo-pop, dark surrealist, and street artist collectible figures, to our dedicated readership who rely on us to keep them informed on what they care about most.

With a high-quality, FREE, monthly print magazine, dynamic online portals, an art gallery, and the first industry-established annual award ceremony, Clutter is the catalyst for a uniquely active and vocal community engaged in the serious business of work and play.

Friday, March 24, 2017

The 2017 Debuts I Am Most Looking Forward To Reading - Part 2

The 7th year of the Debut Author Challenge commenced on January 1, 2017. I already have a list of nearly 150 debut novels the majority of which will be published in 2017. Here are the 12 debuts being published in April, May and June 2017 that I most looking forward to reading.

Ruthanna Emrys

Winter Tide
The Innsmouth Legacy 1, April 4, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 368 pages
Historical Fantasy, Dark Fantasy

"Winter Tide is a weird, lyrical mystery — truly strange and compellingly grim. It's an innovative gem that turns Lovecraft on his head with cleverness and heart" —Cherie Priest

After attacking Devil’s Reef in 1928, the U.S. government rounded up the people of Innsmouth and took them to the desert, far from their ocean, their Deep One ancestors, and their sleeping god Cthulhu. Only Aphra and Caleb Marsh survived the camps, and they emerged without a past or a future.

The government that stole Aphra's life now needs her help. FBI agent Ron Spector believes that Communist spies have stolen dangerous magical secrets from Miskatonic University, secrets that could turn the Cold War hot in an instant, and hasten the end of the human race.

Aphra must return to the ruins of her home, gather scraps of her stolen history, and assemble a new family to face the darkness of human nature.

Winter Tide is the debut novel from Ruthanna Emrys, author of the Aphra Marsh story, "The Litany of Earth"--included here as a bonus.

Kent Lester

The Seventh Sun
Forge Books, April 18, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 416 pages
Technological Thriller, Political Thriller

In a breathtaking debut, Kent Lester has married fast-paced narrative and cutting-edge, reality-based science to produce an edge-of-the-seat thriller in The Seventh Sun.

A seemingly random murder alerts scientist Dan Clifford to a global conspiracy that stretches from the halls of Washington to the Honduran coast. Illegal, undersea activities have unwittingly uncovered a primordial secret that is wreaking havoc on aquatic life and the local human population.

When the CDC and the full resources of a U.S. “threat interdiction” team fails to uncover the source of the devastation, Dan and a brilliant marine biologist, Rachel Sullivan, must race to unravel an unimaginable, ancient mystery in the murky depths. It's up to them to stop this terror before a determined multi-national corporation triggers a worldwide extinction event, the Seventh Sun of ancient myth.

Deborah A. Wolf

The Dragon's Legacy
The Dragon's Legacy Book 1
Titan Books, April 18, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 320 pages
Epic Fantasy

In the heart of the singing desert, the people are fading from the world. Mothers bear few live children, the warriors and wardens are hard-pressed to protect those who remain, and the vash’ai—the great cats who have called the people kithren for as long as there have been stories— bond with fewer humans each year.

High above, the Sun Dragon sings a song of life and love, while far below, the Earth Dragon slumbers as she has since the beginning of time. Her sleep is fitful, and from the darkness of her dreams come whispers of war… and death.

Sulema is a newly minted warrior of the people and a true Ja’Akari—a daughter of the unforgiving desert. When a mysterious young man appears in her home of Aish Kalumm, she learns that the Dragon King is dying in distant Atualon. As the king fades, so does the magic that sings the Earth Dragon to sleep.

There are those who wish to keep the dragon trapped in endless slumber. Others would tap her power to claim it for their own. And there are those who would have her wake, so they might laugh as the world burns.

Robyn Bennis

The Guns Above
A Signal Airship Novel 1
Tor Books, May 2, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages
Epic Fantasy, Steampunk, Humorous Fantasy, Military SF

In the tradition of Honor Harrington and the high-flying Temeraire series, Bennis’s THE GUNS ABOVE is an adventurous military fantasy debut about a nation's first female airship captain.

They say it’s not the fall that kills you.

For Josette Dupre, the Corps’ first female airship captain, it might just be a bullet in the back.

On top of patrolling the front lines, she must also contend with a crew who doubts her expertise, a new airship that is an untested deathtrap, and the foppish aristocrat Lord Bernat, a gambler and shameless flirt with the military know-how of a thimble. Bernat’s own secret assignment is to catalog her every moment of weakness and indecision.

So when the enemy makes an unprecedented move that could turn the tide of the war, can Josette deal with Bernat, rally her crew, and survive long enough to prove herself?

“Full of sass and terrific characters. Great storytelling. Loved it.” —Patricia Briggs

Chelsea Mueller

Borrowed Souls
A Soul Charmer Novel 1
Talos, May 2, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 320 pages
Urban Fantasy, Dark Fantasy, Paranormal

Callie Delgado always puts family first, and unfortunately her brother knows it. She’s emptied her savings, lost work, and spilled countless tears trying to keep him out of trouble, but now he’s in deeper than ever, and his debt is on Callie’s head. She’s given a choice: do some dirty work for the mob, or have her brother returned to her in tiny pieces.

Renting souls is big business for the religious population of Gem City. Those looking to take part in immoral—or even illegal—activity can borrow someone else’s soul, for a price, and sin without consequence.

To save her brother, Callie needs a borrowed soul, but she doesn’t have anywhere near the money to pay for it. The slimy Soul Charmer is willing to barter, but accepting his offer will force Callie into a dangerous world of magic she isn’t ready for.

With the help of the guarded but undeniably attractive Derek—whose allegiance to the Charmer wavers as his connection to Callie grows—she’ll have to walk a tight line, avoid pissing off the bad guys, all while struggling to determine what her loyalty to her family’s really worth.

Losing her brother isn’t an option. Losing her soul? Maybe.

Isabelle Steiger

The Empire's Ghost
Thomas Dunne Books, May 16, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 432 pages
Epic Fantasy

Isabelle Steiger has crafted a powerful and masterful debut with The Empire's Ghost, the first book in a haunting new epic fantasy series.

The empire of Elesthene once spanned a continent, but its rise heralded the death of magic. It tore itself apart from within, leaving behind a patchwork of kingdoms struggling to rebuild. But when a new dictator, the ambitious and enigmatic Imperator Elgar, seizes power in the old capital and seeks to recreate the lost empire anew, the other kingdoms have little hope of stopping him. Prince Kelken of Reglay finds himself at odds with his father at his country’s darkest hour; the marquise of Esthrades is unmatched in politics and strategy, but she sits at a staggering military disadvantage. And Issamira, the most powerful of the free countries, has shut itself off from the conflict, thrown into confusion by the disappearance of its crown prince and the ensuing struggle for succession.

Everything seems aligned in Elgar’s favor, but when he presses a band of insignificant but skilled alley-dwellers into his service for a mission of greatest secrecy, they find an unexpected opportunity to alter the balance of power in the war. Through their actions and those of the remaining royals, they may uncover not just a way to defeat Elgar, but also a deeper truth about their world’s lost history.

Katie Khan

Hold Back the Stars
Gallery Books, May 23, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 320 pages
Literary Fiction

A startling and evocative novel, harkening to both One Day and Gravity, a man and a woman revisit memories of their love affair on a utopian Earth while they are trapped in the vast void of space with only ninety minutes of oxygen left.

After the catastrophic destruction of the Middle East and the United States, Europe has become a utopia and, every three years, the European population must rotate into different multicultural communities, living as individuals responsible for their own actions. While living in this paradise, Max meets Carys and immediately feels a spark of attraction. He quickly realizes, however, that Carys is someone he might want to stay with long-term, which is impossible in this new world.

As their relationship plays out, the connections between their time on Earth and their present dilemma in space become clear. When their air ticks dangerously low, one is offered the chance of salvation—but who will take it? An original and daring exploration of the impact of first love and how the choices we make can change the fate of everyone around us, this is an unforgettable read.

Dan Moren

The Caledonian Gambit
Talos, May 23, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 312 pages
Space Opera, Military SF, SF Action & Adventure

The galaxy is mired in a cold war between two superpowers, the Illyrican Empire and the Commonwealth. Thrust between this struggle are Simon Kovalic, the Commonwealth’s preeminent spy, and Kyle Rankin, a lowly soldier happily scrubbing toilets on Sabea, a remote and isolated planet. However, nothing is as it seems.

Kyle Rankin is a lie. His real name is Eli Brody, and he fled his home world of Caledonia years ago. Simon Kovalic knows Caledonia is a lit fuse hurtling towards detonation. The past Brody so desperately tried to abandon can grant him access to people and places that are off limits even to a professional spy like Kovalic.

Kovalic needs Eli Brody to come home and face his past. With Brody suddenly cast in a play he never auditioned for, he and Kovalic will quickly realize it’s everything they don’t know that will tip the scales of galactic peace. Sounds like a desperate plan, sure, but what gambit isn’t?

The Caledonian Gambit is a throwback to the classic sci-fi adventures of spies and off-world politics, but filled to the brim with modern sensibilities.

Andy Davidson

In the Valley of the Sun
Skyhorse Publishing, June 6, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 384 pages
Horror, Westerns, Occult & Supernatural

Deftly written and utterly addictive, this Western literary horror debut will find a home with fans of authors like Joe Hill, Cormac McCarthy, and Anne Rice.

One night in 1980, a man becomes a monster.

Haunted by his past, Travis Stillwell spends his nights searching out women in West Texas honky-tonks. What he does with them doesn’t make him proud, just quiets the demons for a little while. But after Travis crosses paths one night with a mysterious pale-skinned girl, he wakes weak and bloodied in his cabover camper the next morning—with no sign of a girl, no memory of the night before.

Annabelle Gaskin spies the camper parked behind her motel and offers the cowboy a few odd jobs to pay his board. Travis takes her up on the offer, if only to buy time, to lay low and heal. By day, he mends the old motel, insinuating himself into the lives of Annabelle and her ten-year-old son. By night, in the cave of his camper, he fights an unspeakable hunger. Before long, Annabelle and her boy come to realize that this strange cowboy is not what he seems.

Half a state away, a grizzled Texas Ranger is hunting Travis for his past misdeeds, but what he finds will lead him to a revelation far more monstrous. A man of the law, he’ll have to decide how far into the darkness he’ll go for the sake of justice.

When these lives converge on a dusty autumn night, an old evil will find new life—and new blood.

Anne Corlett

The Space Between the Stars
Berkley, June 13, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 368 pages
Literary Fiction, Dystopian, Science Fiction, Apocalyptic & Post-Apocalyptic

When the world ends, where will you go?

In a breathtakingly vivid and emotionally gripping debut novel, one woman must confront the emptiness in the universe—and in her own heart—when a devastating virus reduces most of humanity to dust and memories.

All Jamie Allenby ever wanted was space. Even though she wasn’t forced to emigrate from Earth, she willingly left the overpopulated, claustrophobic planet. And when a long relationship devolved into silence and suffocating sadness, she found work on a frontier world on the edges of civilization. Then the virus hit…

Now Jamie finds herself dreadfully alone, with all that’s left of the dead. Until a garbled message from Earth gives her hope that someone from her past might still be alive.

Soon Jamie finds other survivors, and their ragtag group will travel through the vast reaches of space, drawn to the promise of a new beginning on Earth. But their dream will pit them against those desperately clinging to the old ways. And Jamie’s own journey home will help her close the distance between who she has become and who she is meant to be…

Nicky Drayden

The Prey of Gods
Harper Voyager, June 13, 2017
Trade Paperback and eBook, 400 pages
Contemporary Fantasy

From a new voice in the tradition of Lauren Beukes, Ian McDonald, and Nnedi Okorafor comes The Prey of Gods, a fantastic, boundary-challenging tale, set in a South African locale both familiar and yet utterly new, which braids elements of science fiction, fantasy, horror, and dark humor.

In South Africa, the future looks promising. Personal robots are making life easier for the working class. The government is harnessing renewable energy to provide infrastructure for the poor. And in the bustling coastal town of Port Elizabeth, the economy is booming thanks to the genetic engineering industry which has found a welcome home there. Yes—the days to come are looking very good for South Africans. That is, if they can survive the present challenges:

A new hallucinogenic drug sweeping the country . . .

An emerging AI uprising . . .

And an ancient demigoddess hellbent on regaining her former status by preying on the blood and sweat (but mostly blood) of every human she encounters.

It’s up to a young Zulu girl powerful enough to destroy her entire township, a queer teen plagued with the ability to control minds, a pop diva with serious daddy issues, and a politician with even more serious mommy issues to band together to ensure there’s a future left to worry about.

Fun and fantastic, Nicky Drayden takes her brilliance as a short story writer and weaves together an elaborate tale that will capture your heart . . . even as one particular demigoddess threatens to rip it out.

Callie Bates

The Waking Land
Del Rey, June 27, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages
Epic Fantasy, Action & Adventure

In the lush and magical tradition of Naomi Novik’s award-winning Uprooted comes this riveting debut from brilliant young writer Callie Bates—whose boundless imagination places her among the finest authors of fantasy fiction, including Sarah J. Maas and Sabaa Tahir.

Lady Elanna is fiercely devoted to the king who raised her like a daughter. But when he dies under mysterious circumstances, Elanna is accused of his murder—and must flee for her life.

Returning to the homeland of magical legends she has forsaken, Elanna is forced to reckon with her despised, estranged father, branded a traitor long ago. Feeling a strange, deep connection to the natural world, she also must face the truth about the forces she has always denied or disdained as superstition—powers that suddenly stir within her.

But an all-too-human threat is drawing near, determined to exact vengeance. Now Elanna has no choice but to lead a rebellion against the kingdom to which she once gave her allegiance. Trapped between divided loyalties, she must summon the courage to confront a destiny that could tear her apart.

Barnes & Noble Celebrates Disney’s Live-Action Adaptation of Beauty and the Beast Movie April 1

Press Release

Barnes & Noble Celebrates Disney’s Live-Action Adaptation of Beauty and the Beast Movie April 1

Stores Nationwide to Feature Fun Activities for Children Including a Storytime, Themed Activities, Sing-Along, and Special Giveaways

NEW YORK, NY – March 23, 2017 – Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), the nation’s largest retail bookseller and a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products, today announced in collaboration with Disney a celebration of the live-action adaptation of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast that will take place at stores nationwide on Saturday, April 1, starting at 11 AM. The event in honor of Disney’s hugely successful live-action Beauty and the Beast movie, which was released on March 17, will feature fun activities for children including a reading of Cynthia Rylant’s Beauty and the Beast picture book, a sing-along to the beloved movie soundtrack, themed activities and giveaways, while supplies last.

On April 1, fans of Disney Beauty and the Beast are invited to their local Barnes & Noble store to celebrate the release of the live-action movie with a special Storytime reading of Cynthia Rylant’s Beauty and the Beast picture book, a classic tale of bravery, transformation and love. After the Storytime portion of the event, fans are encouraged to join in a sing-along to the beloved movie soundtrack featuring popular songs “Beauty and the Beast,” “Something There” and “Be Our Guest.”

Additionally, children will have the opportunity to develop their own story ideas by creating scenes with stickers of characters from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast or writing and drawing a book cover for their own original story. Customers will also receive special giveaways, including mini-posters featuring the Enchanted Rose and Lost in a Book, as well as bookmarks, while supplies last.

Customers are encouraged to check out Barnes & Noble’s wide selection of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast product offerings, including a variety of books, toys and gifts. Featured books include Beauty and the Beast Big Golden Book (Disney Beauty and the Beast); Beauty and the Beast (B&N Exclusive Edition); Disney Book Group’s Beauty and the Beast: The Story of Belle; Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book; Beauty and the Beast: Belle's Library: A Collection of Literary Quotes and Inspirational Musings; Beauty and the Beast Novelization; and The Beast Within: A Tale of Beauty’s Prince. Featured toys include Jakks Pacific’s Beauty and the Beast Enchanted Objects Tea Set; Hasbro’s Beauty and the Beast Enchanting Melodies Belle Doll; Hasbro’s Beauty and the Beast Castle Friends Collection Playset; Jakks Pacific’s Enchanted Rose Jewelry Box; Hasbro’s Beauty and the Beast Belle Village Dress Doll; Hasbro’s Beauty and the Beast Grand Romance Playset; and Hasbro’s Beauty and the Beast Enchanted Rose Scene Playset. Customers should contact their local store for more details on what products are available for purchase.

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast is a live-action adaptation of the studio’s animated classic which refashions the classic characters from the tale as old as time for a contemporary audience, staying true to the original music while updating the score with several new songs. Beauty and the Beast is the fantastic journey of Belle, a bright, beautiful and independent young woman who is taken prisoner by a beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart and soul of the true Prince within. The film stars: Emma Watson as Belle; Dan Stevens as the Beast; Luke Evans as Gaston, the handsome, but shallow villager who woos Belle; Oscar® winner Kevin Kline as Maurice, Belle’s eccentric, but lovable father; Josh Gad as Lefou, Gaston’s long-suffering aide-de-camp; Golden Globe® nominee Ewan McGregor as Lumiere, the candelabra; Oscar nominee Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, the harpsichord; Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Plumette, the feather duster; six-time Tony Award® winner Audra McDonald as Madame Garderobe, the wardrobe; Oscar nominee Ian McKellen as Cogsworth, the mantel clock; and two-time Academy Award® winner Emma Thompson as the teapot, Mrs. Potts.

Directed by Oscar winner Bill Condon and based on the 1991 animated film, the film is produced by Mandeville Films’ David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman with eight-time Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken, who won two Academy Awards (Best Original Score and Best Song) for the 1991 animated film, providing the score. The score will include new recordings of the original songs written by Menken and Howard Ashman, as well as several new songs written by Menken and three-time Oscar winner Tim Rice. Beauty and the Beast was released in U.S. theaters on March 17.

About Barnes & Noble, Inc.
Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) is a Fortune 500 company, the nation’s largest retail bookseller, and a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products.  The Company operates 634 Barnes & Noble bookstores in 50 states, and one of the Web’s premier e-commerce sites, (  The Nook Digital business offers a lineup of popular NOOK® tablets and eReaders and an expansive collection of digital reading and entertainment content through the NOOK Store®. The NOOK Store features more than 4.5 million digital books in the US (, plus periodicals and comics, and offers the ability to enjoy content across a wide array of popular devices through Free NOOK Reading Apps available for Android, iOS® and Windows®.

General information on Barnes & Noble, Inc. can be obtained by visiting the Company's corporate website at

Barnes & Noble®, Barnes & Noble Booksellers® and Barnes &® are trademarks of Barnes & Noble, Inc. or its affiliates. NOOK® and the NOOK logos are trademarks of Nook Digital, LLC or its affiliates.

For more information on Barnes & Noble, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat (bnsnaps), and like us on Facebook. For more information on NOOK, follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Interview with Elan Mastai, author of All Our Wrong Todays

Please welcome Elan Mastai to The Qwillery as part of the 2017 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. All Our Wrong Todays was published on February 7th by Dutton.

TQWelcome to The Qwillery. When and why did you start writing?

Elan:  As a kid I loved telling stories, so I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. But professionally I’ve been writing as my job since I was twenty-five and, through a series of misunderstandings, somehow got hired to write my first movie. I’ve been screenwriting ever since, both independently and for the Hollywood studios, but All Our Wrong Todays is my first novel.

TQAre you a plotter, a pantser or a hybrid?

Elan:  I’m a hybrid. I tend to marinate on an idea for a long time before I begin writing and a big part of that is working out the main turns of the plot. And I never start the writing process until I feel I’ve got a strong ending in place. Otherwise it’s like going on a road trip with no destination. I need my ending so I can plan the best route to get there. But I also leave a lot of open space to explore the territory and discover the unexpected. I never want a story to be so tightly plotted that the characters don’t have room to surprise me. Some of my favorite moments in All Our Wrong Todays were totally unplanned, but once I found them I couldn’t imagine the book any other way. Also, I’ve never heard either of these terms before—plotter and pantser—and had to look them up before I could answer. So this Q&A has been highly educational already.

TQWhat is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

Elan:  Curtailing my use of adverbs.

TQWhat has influenced / influences your writing? How does being a screenwriter influence or not your novel writing?

Elan:  Mostly I’m influenced by other novelists. Off the top of my head: Kurt Vonnegut, Philip K Dick, Aldous Huxley, JK Rowling, Audrey Niffenegger, Junot Diaz, Kazuo Ishiguro, David Mitchell, Dave Eggers, Neal Stephenson, Sheila Heti, Michel Houellebecq, Miranda July, Joseph Heller, Michael Ende, Katherine Paterson, and Daniel Quinn.

Screenwriting definitely influences my novel-writing, in large part because I’ve been a screenwriter for fifteen years and my first novel only came out last month! Screenwriting has a very specific style and it’s a style I’m very comfortable with after all these years. Scripts are always written in the third person, present-tense, with a lean but visually dynamic use of language, and an external perspective on the characters, defining them by what they say and do because there’s no access to their inner thoughts. Now, All Our Wrong Todays isn’t written like that at all. It’s in the first person, it jumps around in time, both figuratively and literally, it explores character interiority with a casual, funny, self-effacing narrative voice. But despite those stylistic differences, I still drew off my screenwriting experience to make sure the novel offer readers a strong visual experience, characters defined by what they say and do, and a pervading sense that every word matters. I was writing a novel, not a movie, but I wanted the book to feel as vivid as a movie being projected into the reader’s brain.

TQDescribe All Our Wrong Todays in 140 characters or less.

Elan:  What if our world is actually a dystopian alternate reality caused by an accident with a stolen prototype time machine?

TQTell us something about All Our Wrong Todays that is not found in the book description.

Elan:  Despite all the fun Jetsons-like technology of the book’s alternate version of the present day, the flying cars and robot maids and teleporters, this is really a book about how the people we’re closest to define us and give our life its meaning and purpose. At its heart, my novel is about figuring out who you are and what kind of future you want to live in.

TQWhat inspired you to write All Our Wrong Todays?

Elan:  When I was growing up, my grandfather had an extensive collection of vintage sci-fi from the 1950s and 1960s, and I loved the pulpy stories but also the wild painted covers of mad scientists, robots, rocketships, and futuristic cityscapes. But even as a kid in the 1980s, I knew there was something off. The future wasn’t turning out the way these authors and artists imagined it would. So I’ve been interested in that notion since childhood—what happened to the future we were supposed to have? More recently, I’ve noticed how much dystopia has been part of our pop culture (and political climate too). It occurred to me that someone of my grandparents’ generation transported to the present day might think our world is just as dystopian as anything in our books and movies. So I was inspired to take my childhood interest in abandoned utopias and marry it with a funny, critical, but still hopeful and compassionate look at the world we live in today, through the fresh eyes of a character who finds himself unexpectedly stranded here. Which, let’s face it, we all are.

TQWhat sort of research did you do for All Our Wrong Todays?

Elan:  I did a bunch of scientific research into various futuristic technologies, how they might work but also why they haven’t yet happened. I also explored ideas of quantum theory, orbital mechanics, radiation, and the nature of time. But I didn’t include the vast majority of my research in the book. My approach is to do way more research than I need to tell the story and only include the most interesting bits for the reader.

TQPlease tell us about All Our Wrong Todays' cover.

Elan:  The cover was designed by Christopher Lin and Zak Tebbal. Because the story explores a character who is propelled out of one version of the world and finds himself stranded in a very different version, we loved the idea of showing two images of the same skyline, one right-side up and one upside-down, so it feels both familiar and disorienting. The skyline itself is from San Francisco, a city that plays an important role in the book, particularly on a crucial day in 1965 when a stolen time machine causes all kinds of havoc. The design in the background is also a sly reference to the image of the “whorl”—which looks nifty but makes a lot more sense once you’ve read the book.

TQIn All Our Wrong Todays who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

Elan:  Well, the narrator, Tom, was the easiest because, as a first-person memoir, his perspective defined the book. Once I figured out how Tom saw the world and expressed himself, his voice flowed quite naturally. Also, since it’s my first novel, I chose a narrative voice that I was comfortable writing. I’m not Tom, but there are a lot of similarities between us. Tom is like me, ten years ago, if I hadn’t made some major decisions that took my life in a very different direction than his. I can’t really answer the question about the hardest character to write because it’s a huge spoiler for the book. But later on a significantly different voice narrates a key piece of the story and I found that character very challenging to write, because the point of view is so opposed to mine. It’s not how I see the world and spending time channeling that character’s voice was tough. But it was a necessity for the story I had to tell.

TQWhy have you chosen to include or not chosen to include social issues in All Our Wrong Todays?

Elan:  Well, I’m writing about a character from a version of the world where the last five decades played out very differently, who then finds himself stuck in our version of the world and is often appalled by what he finds. Without delving into some thorny and complex modern issues, the story wouldn’t be as dynamic, authentic, or deeply felt. Which is not to say that Tom’s utopian world is without its own blind-spots. Part of Tom’s journey as a character is realizing what he takes for granted, personally and also on a social level. Certain contemporary issues are touchstones for the evolution of his character through the story.

TQGive us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery quotes from All Our Wrong Todays.


“The problem with knowing people too well is that their words stop meaning anything and their silences start meaning everything.”

“So he did what you do when you’re heartbroken and have a time machine—something stupid.”

Actually, that last one is kind of spoilery, but that’s OK, since it’s also the premise of the novel.

TQWhat's next?

Elan:  I sold the movie rights to All Our Wrong Todays, so right now I’m writing the screenplay adaptation of the book for Paramount Pictures. I’m also about halfway through a second novel. It’s unrelated to my first but shares a similar tone and style.

TQThank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Elan:  Thanks for having me and asking such thoughtful questions!

All Our Wrong Todays
Dutton, February 7, 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 384 pages

“Entertainingly mixes thrills and humor.”—Entertainment Weekly

“[An] amazing debut novel…Dazzling and complex…Fearlessly funny storytelling.”—Washington Post

“Instantly engaging…a timeless, if mind-bending, story about the journeys we take, populated by friends, family, lovers and others, that show us who we might be, could be—and maybe never should be—that eventually leads us to who we are.”—USA Today

A Skimm Reads Selection

You know the future that people in the 1950s imagined we’d have? Well, it happened. In Tom Barren’s 2016, humanity thrives in a techno-utopian paradise of flying cars, moving sidewalks, and moon bases, where avocados never go bad and punk rock never existed…because it wasn’t necessary.

Except Tom just can’t seem to find his place in this dazzling, idealistic world, and that’s before his life gets turned upside down. Utterly blindsided by an accident of fate, Tom makes a rash decision that drastically changes not only his own life but the very fabric of the universe itself. In a time-travel mishap, Tom finds himself stranded in our 2016, what we think of as the real world. For Tom, our normal reality seems like a dystopian wasteland.

But when he discovers wonderfully unexpected versions of his family, his career, and—maybe, just maybe—his soul mate, Tom has a decision to make. Does he fix the flow of history, bringing his utopian universe back into existence, or does he try to forge a new life in our messy, unpredictable reality? Tom’s search for the answer takes him across countries, continents, and timelines in a quest to figure out, finally, who he really is and what his future—our future—is supposed to be.

All Our Wrong Todays is about the versions of ourselves that we shed and grow into over time. It is a story of friendship and family, of unexpected journeys and alternate paths, and of love in its multitude of forms. Filled with humor and heart, and saturated with insight and intelligence and a mind-bending talent for invention, this novel signals the arrival of a major talent.

About Elan

Photo by David Leyes
Elan Mastai was born in Vancouver and lives in Toronto with his wife and children. He is an award-winning screenwriter. This is his first novel.

Website  ~  Twitter @elanmastai

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