Joe Abercrombie, Half the World
(Ballantine Del Rey Feb 2015)

This second book in the Shattered Sea series begun in Half a King finds Yarvi minister to the king, while the book’s focus shifts to two teens, a boy and a girl, trained as warriors, in a ‘‘tantalizing world of medieval rivalries and suggestively high-tech ruins of a lost, and oddly familiar, elven civiliza­tion.’’ [Gary K. Wolfe]


Neal Asher, Dark Intelligence
(Skyhorse/Night Shade Feb 2015)

A resurrected man seeks vengeance against the rogue AI Penny Royal in this far-future space opera, the first book in the Transformation series, part of the overall Polity series. ‘‘Something strange and interesting might be happening to the Polity in this new sequence…. Dark Intelligence may be a kind of Wagnerian climax, restating and recombining themes that have run through the whole series. Given the crescendo that ends this volume, I’m bracing myself for a vigorous second act and a noisy finale.’’ [Russell Letson]


Brenda Cooper, Edge of Dark
(Pyr Mar 2015)

The first book in the far-future Glittering Edge series, set in the same universe as The Creative Fire and The Diamond Deep. Undesirables once banished beyond the edge of the solar system have survived, and changed, and are ready to take back the Earth at any cost. ‘‘Edge of Dark brings events on a grand scale down to the level of individuals, por­trayed with an intimacy we can’t deny….’’ [Faren Miller]


Ellen Datlow, ed., The Doll Collection
(Tor Mar 2015)

Noted editor Datlow gathers 17 all-new dark stories about dolls with a twist: no evil dolls allowed. An impressive roster of writers took up this challenge, including Jeffrey Ford, Joyce Carol Oates, Seanan McGuire, and Richard Kadrey.


Kate Elliott, The Very Best of Kate Elliott
(Tachyon Publications Feb 2015)

A selection of 12 stories, one new, plus four essays, showing how Elliott (AKA Alis A. Rasmussen) has tackled issues of feminism, racism, and more through her fiction. ‘‘Only fiction can reveal the extraordinary richness of Elliott’s response.’’ [Faren Miller]


Neil Gaiman, Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances
(HarperCollins/Morrow Feb 2015)

A new collection from one of the genre’s best story­tellers, this presents recent work with five poems and 19 stories, one a new tale set in the world of American Gods. A long introduction discusses the origins of each.


Randy Henderson, Finn Fancy Necromancy
(Tor Feb 2015)

Dark humor fills this offbeat urban fantasy/mystery about a man exiled to an Other Realm for 25 years for a crime he didn’t commit, now back in a much-changed world and framed again for murder, with only days to figure out who wants him gone so bad. The first book in a trilogy, and an impressive first novel. ‘‘Where Henderson really shines, though, is in maintaining a sense of humor and a breakneck pace as the plot careens forward.’’ [Tom Whitmore]


George R. R. Martin & Gardner Dozois, eds., Old Venus
(Bantam Mar 2015)

Celebrated editors Martin & Dozois return to the days of planetary romance and pulp adventure for their latest anthology, a com­panion of sorts to Old Mars, with all-new stories by an impressive line-up of authors, including Joe Haldeman, Matthew Hughes, Gwyneth Jones, Paul McAuley, and Garth Nix. ‘‘Old Venus presents an impressive range of responses to the challenge of producing satisfying fiction while staying within the inhabitable-Venus givens.’’ [Russell Letson]


Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Signal to Noise
(Rebellion/Solaris Us Feb 2015)

In this impressive first novel, a teen witch discovers how to use music to cast spells in this coming-of-age story that also deals with sup­pressed memories years later. ‘‘Moreno-Garcia uses the trope such an ingratiating way, and with such intriguingly conflicted characters that it seems vibrantly new.’’ [Gary K. Wolfe]


Cherie Priest, Jacaranda
(Subterranean Press Jan 2015)

Priest returns to her popular steampunk world of the alternate-history Clockwork Century series for this mordant tale of a haunted hotel on an island off the coast of Texas, and the odd characters that gather there – just in time for a hurricane.


Ian Tregillis, The Mechanical
(Orbit Mar 2015)

The Alchemy Wars series begins with a bang in this tale of a mechanical man, a clockwork slave made intelligent by magic, who dreams of being free, even as war between New France and England looms. Philosophy and action make a potent mix in this thrilling fantasy/alternate-history novel.


Greg van Eekhout, Pacific Fire
(Tor Jan 2015)

The second book in the urban fantasy trilogy begun in California Bones, this picks up ten years later as Sam and Daniel learn they can’t escape their past when word comes of trouble back in their former home, Los Angeles. ‘‘Van Eekhout’s voice has grown stronger in Pacific Fire and he’s locked onto a snappy humor that serves as a foil for the stakes he keeps raising. He manages to do what fantasy should, which is use the unreal to show us truths about how humans work.’’ [Adrienne Martini]