New Books: 17 January 2023

Albo, Mike: Another Dimension of Us

(Penguin Random House/Penguin Workshop 978-0593223765, $18.99, 320pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Young-adult gay fantasy romance novel of alternate dimensions and time travel. Teens accidentally swap minds and bodies across the astral plane, between 1986 and 2044, and one needs to be rescued from a demon.


Boey, Brandon Ying Kit: Karma of the Sun

(CamCat Books 978-0-7443-0760-3, $25.99, 352pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Apocalyptic fantasy novel set in a Tibet struggling with nuclear winter, haunted by spirits, and facing prophecies of doom. Karma, young man with prophetic powers, seeks his missing father and a mountain said to connect the physical world with the spirit world, offering a way to save the planet.


Calvino, Italo: The Written World and the Unwritten World

(HarperCollins/Mariner 978-0-544-14699-0, $11.99, 288pp, format: ebook, January 17, 2023)

Non-fiction collection of essays, book reviews, and letters on many topics, including reading, writing, and publishing, with musings on “the fantastic tale.”  Translated from the Italian by Ann Goldstein.


Carroll, Jonathan: Mr. Breakfast

(Melville House 978-1-61219-992-4, $27.99, 272pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, January 17, 2023)

Contemporary fantasy novel. A comedian-turned-photographer gets a tattoo and starts seeing mirror versions of himself, and is told he can choose one of three versions of his life.

The story is framed by a journalist interviewing an elderly woman named Ruth Murphy about her relationship with world-famous photographer Graham Patterson, whose best-known work is a photo of an abandoned roadside diner with a faded sign reading “MR. BREAKFAST.” (Carroll’s descriptions of Patterson’s photos, a couple of which sound vaguely like Gregory Crewdson, are so compelling that I’d love to see them, but at the same time I hope that no one actually tries to duplicate them. That’s the magic of imaginary art.) We then shift to Patterson’s own narrative in which, as a failing comedian, he wanders into a tattoo parlor in rural North Carolina and impulsively decides to get a strange tattoo – a bee inside a frog inside a hawk inside a lion.

—Gary Wolfe, Locus, December 2022

Crane, Marisa: I Keep My Exoskeletons to Myself

(Catapult 978-1-64622-129-5, $27.00, 352pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Fantasy novel set in a surveillance state where wrongdoers are given an extra shadow for every transgression, including children whose mothers die in childbirth.


Elliott, Kate: The Keeper’s Six

(Tordotcom 978-1-250-76907-7, $19.99, 208pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Fantasy novel about a group of trekkers who travel the shifting landscapes of the Beyond, and their leader who breaks the rules to rescue her son, kidnapped by a dragon.

Esther Green is 60, and a Lantern: part of one of the six-people “Hexes” that can navigate between realms through the inimical emptiness of the Beyond. Most people on Earth know nothing about the Beyond, but it runs in Esther’s family. Her son, Daniel, is Keeper for their Hex: he holds the Keep that forms an entry and exit point from Earth to the Beyond, and which acts as a safe zone in that perilous space. There’s an inter-realm body that regulates Hexes, known as the Concilium: we don’t learn exactly what powers and dominions make up this body, but it certainly includes dragons.

—Liz Bourke, Locus, January 2023

Hendrix, Grady: How to Sell a Haunted House

(Penguin Random House/Berkley 978-0-593201268, $28.00, 432pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Darkly humorous Southern gothic/haunted house horror novel. Louise, cleaning out her parents’ house after their deaths, discovers the house doesn’t want to be sold.

Hendrix’s sublime character work is also the main source of the novel’s humour, particularly Mark and Louise’s extended family on their mother’s side. I particularly loved their “take-no-shit” cousin Mercy, a real estate agent who, having checked out the property, informs the siblings their “house is haunted, and I’m not selling it until you deal with that,” and the larger-than-life Aunt Gail, who spends her days “blast[ing demons] back to hell” and “once battled a Warlock in Summerville.”

—Ian Mond, Locus, January 2023

Livingston, Lesley: Queen Among the Dead

(Zando 978-1-63893-018-1, $19.99, 404pp, formats: trade paperback, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Celtic fantasy novel. Neve, daughter of the king of Eire, would rather be a warrior than a princess, and fight the greedy druids and unjust court.


Long, H.M.: Barrow of Winter

(Titan Books UK 978-1803360027, $15.95, pp, formats: trade paperback, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Fantasy novel set in the world of Hall of Smoke. Thray travels to the land her father once ruled, where her siblings are worshiped as gods.


Long, Meg: Swift the Storm, Fierce the Flame

(St. Martin’s/Wednesday Books 978-1-250-78512-1, $19.99, 416pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Young-adult SF novel about a genetically engineered young woman trained as a corporate spy, searching for a missing friend on a doomed planet.


Mao, Xian: Apollo Weeps

(Aqueduct Press 978-1-61976-230-5, $12.00, 163pp, formats: trade paperback, ebook, January 15, 2023)

Short horror novel, a modern retelling The Phantom of the Opera while talking about race and social injustice. Book 86 in the Conversation Pieces series.


Martinez, Juan: Extended Stay

(University of Arizona Press 978-0-8165-4797-5, $19.95, 320pp, formats: trade paperback, ebook, January 17, 2023)

Horror novel. Undocumented immigrants, a pair of grieving siblings fleeing rebel violence in Colombia, end up in a rundown Las Vegas hotel and casino, not realizing the building is part of a vast subterranean entity.  Part of the press’s Camino del Sol series spotlighting Lantinx authors.


O’Clover, Ellen: Seven Percent of Ro Devereux

(HarperTeen 978-0-06-325503-6, $18.99, 320pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

YA SF novel. Ro creates an app that can predict a person’s future with 93% accuracy.


Riedel, Joah: Please Report Your Bug Here

(Macmillan/Holt 9781250813794, $26.99, 288pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Fantasy novel. A dating app employee discovers a glitch that transports him to other worlds.


Wigmore, Rem: Wolfpack

(Queen of Swords Press 979-8-986754307, $22.00, 326pp, formats: trade paperback, ebook, January 12, 2023)

SF novel, sequel to Foxhunt. Orfeus risks her life in the Cloud Forest to get a gift for her beloved, but the mechanized guardian threatens to destroy the world to track her down.


Zhao, Amélie Wen: Song of Silver, Flame Like Night

(Penguin Random House/Delacorte 978-0-593-48750-1, $19.99, 480pp, formats: hardcover, ebook, audio, January 17, 2023)

Young-adult fantasy novel based on Chinese traditions, first in a new xianxia series.

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