Joe Abercrombie, Red Country
(Orbit Nov 2012)
Fantasy novel, a sequel to the First Law series set some 15 years later in frontier country in almost Wild West style, only with swords and spears instead of rifles, and a female protagonist bent on revenge, fueled by grit and determination. First published in the UK by Gollancz (10/12).
William Alexander, Goblin Secrets
(McElderry Mar 2012)
A child serving a witch runs away to join a theatrical troupe – of goblins – in this middle-grade fantasy novel (the first in a series), winner of the National Book Award. ‘‘The mythic resonance in Alexander’s storytelling, coupled with his smart, graceful writing, maket this novel feel both pleasantly old and thoroughly new.’’ [Gwenda Bond]
Stephen Baxter, Bronze Summer
(Roc Nov 2012)
The Bronze Age provides the backdrop for this second book in the Northland alternate history SF series, in which England remained connected to Europe. First published in the UK by Gollancz (9/11).
Lois Mcmaster Bujold, Captain Vorpatril’s Alliance
(Baen Nov 2012)
The latest novel in Bujold’s ever-entertaining Vorkosigan series shift focus from Miles to his hapless cousin Ivan, who tries to rescue a damsel in distress and ends up entangled in intrigue – and romance.
Felix Gilman, The Rise of Ransom City
(Tor Nov 2012)
This Wild West Steampunk fantasy novel, sequel to The Half-Made World, purports to be the memoir of the inventor Harry Ransom, a fascinating fellow whether genius or charlatan, and his plans for a utopian city.
Mira Grant, When Will You Rise: Stories to End the World
(Subterranean Press Oct 2012)
This collection combines the novella ‘‘Countdown’’ in Grant’s acclaimed Newsflesh series, plus an unrelated story, both previously published as e-books.
Stephen Jones, ed., The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror: 23
(Running Press Oct 2012)
The latest volume in this celebrated year’s best anthology series presents 26 stories by authors including Joan Aiken, Steve Rasnic Tem, Michael Marshall Smith, Joe R. Lansdale, and John Ajvide Lindqvist. Jones provides his usual indispensible in-depth overview of the year 2011.
Ursula K. Le Guin, The Unreal and the Real: Selected Stories Volume One: Where on Earth and Volume Two: Outer Space, Inner Lands
(Small Beer Press Dec 2012)
These two volumes present stories selected by Le Guin herself from previous collections, with commentary by Le Guin on why she selected the stories – many less familiar but still deserving of attention. Volume One presents 18 stories set on Earth, with varying degrees of realism and magic realism; Volume Two takes off into the realms of SF and fantasy with 20 stories. ‘‘The experience of reading any retrospective as excellent as the Selected Stories reduces you, if not to babbling, to just delighting in some of your favorites… discovering some new treasures, and recognizing that a few old favorites might not stand up as well as you’d expected.’’ [Gary K. Wolfe]
Helen Marshall, Hair Side, Flesh Side
(Chizine Publications Nov 2012)
Original collection of 15 stories, one a reprint, mixing fantasy and horror as they look at history, memory, and the price of creating art. The first prose collection from an up-and-coming author already known for her poetry.
Jack McDevitt & Mike Resnick, The Cassandra Project
(Ace Nov 2012)
SF novel loosely based on the eponymous story by McDevitt, involving secrets from a NASA moon mission that surface 50 years later, leading to puzzles within puzzles that unwind with steady suspense. ‘‘It’s a rather old-fashioned story… I found myself turning the pages as quickly as I could, even though there was nary a dead body or superweapon or car chase to be found.’’ [Russell Letson]
Hannu Rajaniemi, The Fractal Prince
(Tor Oct 2012)
This sequel to Rajaniemi’s impressive first novel The Quantum Thief returns to that far-future post-singularity world, this time for a series of tales within tales. ‘‘Some of these tales are spectacularly well-done as adventure set pieces… while others are genuinely moving… Rajaniemi can and does write beautifully about characters trapped within their own stories…’’ [Gary K. Wolfe]
Ekaterina Sedia, Moscow But Dreaming
(Prime Books Dec 2012)
The first collection from award-winning author/editor Sedia presents 21 stories, two original.
Allen Steele, Apollo’s Outcasts
(Pyr Nov 2012)
A handicapped boy gets sent to the moon, where the lower gravity lets him overcome his physical handicap and join Lunar Search and Rescue in this ‘‘classically Heinleinian’’ young-adult SF adventure, ‘‘well crafted and engaging in a way that has nothing to do with nostalgia….’’ [Russell Letson]
Jonathan Strahan, ed., Edge of Infinity
(Solaris Dec 2012)
An impressive roster of authors including Elizabeth Bear, Paul McAuley, Gwyneth Jones, and Alastair Reynolds explore the possibilities of human expansion into the Solar System in this anthology of 13 original all-SF stories. ‘‘Easily the best original science fiction anthology of the year, by a good margin….’’ [Gardner Dozois]
James Van Pelt, Flying in the Heart of the Lafayette Escadrille and Other Stories
(Fairwood Press Nov 2012)
The latest collection from a noted author of short fiction presents 23 stories, a wide-ranging mix of SF, fantasy, and horror.