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Thursday, January 1, 2009

SPOTLIGHT: Books of January 2009

Welcome to the January 2009 edition of Fantasy Book Critic’s monthly SPOTLIGHT which covers fantasy, science fiction, horror, thrillers, YA, and more. Happy Holidays everyone! Notable titles this first month of the new year include new releases from Margaret Weis & Tracy Hickman, Lois McMaster Bujold, Charlie Huston, Bernard Cornwell, R. Scott Bakker, Michael Marshall, Simon R. Green, Carrie Vaughn and Jonathan Stroud; a couple of books celebrating Edgar Allen Poe’s 200th birthday; and some exciting debuts such as Jasper Kent’s Twelve, Josh Bazell’s Beat the Reaper, Daniel Suarez’s Daemon, and Elissa Elliott’s Eve. Other titles worth noting are Dragon in Chains, The Map of Moments, The Steel Remains, The Domino Men, Flight Into Darkness, and many others. Enjoy and Happy New Years!!! (NOTE: Previous spotlights are listed at the end of this article Also, unless stated otherwise, all release dates are for the US. Finally, providing valuable assistance with the Spotlight as usual is Liviu C. Suciu):

Songs of the Dying Earth” edited by
George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois. Release Date: January 1, 2009. Half a century ago, Jack Vance—winner of the Hugo, Nebula, Edgar, Grand Master, and several World Fantasy Awards, including the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award—created the world of the Dying Earth, and fantasy has never been the same. Now, for the first time ever, Jack has agreed to open this bizarre & darkly beautiful world to other fantasists, to play in as their very own. The result is the tribute anthology, Songs of the Dying Earth
Official Jack Vance Wikipedia Website
Order “Songs of the Dying EarthHERE
NOTE:Songs of the Dying Earth” is published by Subterranean Press in three unique editions: 1) A Signed Lettered Edition which is Sold Out; 2) A Signed Numbered Edition, Housed in a Custom Slipcase and limited to 500 copies; 3) and an Unsigned Clothbound Hardcover. Also includes artwork and cover by Tom Kidd, an original Preface by Jack Vance, and an Appreciation by Dean Koontz.

Twelve” by Jasper Kent. UK Release Date: January 1, 2009. For Aleksei Ivanonvich Danilov, the voordalak is a legend that has long been forgotten. But when Aleksei and his comrades enlist the help of the Oprichniki, twelve mercenaries who claim they can turn the tide of the war against the Grande Armée of Napoleon Bonaparte, he inevitably remembers those childhood stories. And as he comes to understand the true, horrific nature of these twelve strangers, he realizes that they’ve unleashed a nightmare in their midst…
Official Jasper Kent Website
Order “TwelveHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Reviews via Dave Brendon, Fantasy Book Critic, Fantasy Book Review + SFF World

Heroes of the Valley” by Jonathan Stroud. UK Release Date: January 1, 2009. US Release Date: January 27, 2009. Halli Sveinsson has grown up listening to legends of heroes as all his forefathers did. His is a peaceful society though where the violence of the past has been outlawed and disputes are settled by the Council. Bored with the everyday chores and sheep herding, Halli can't help himself from playing practical jokes on everyone. But then he goes too far, setting in motion a chain of events that force him to leave home and go on a hero's quest. Along the way, he will discover the truth about legends, his family, and himself…
Official Jonathan Stroud Website
Official Heroes of the Valley Website
Order “Heroes of the ValleyHERE

The Eye of the Forest” by P.B. Kerr. Release Date: January 1, 2009. When a collection of Incan artifacts goes missing, the Blue Djinn of Babylon dispatches John and Philippa Gaunt and their Uncle Nimrod to recover them. Along the way, though, the twins encounter their friend Dybbuk, who was drained of his djinn powers but is determined to get them back . . . even if it means destroying the rain forest, opening a cursed portal, and disturbing the enBoldchanted kingdom of the Incas that has slept for thousands of years…
Official P.B. Kerr Website
Order “The Eye of the ForestHERE
NOTE:The Eye of the Forest” is the fifth book in P.B. Kerr’s New York Times-bestselling Children of the Lamp series after “The Day of the Djinn Warriors”. The UK edition will be published April 6, 2009.

The True Adventures of Charley Darwin” by Carolyn Meyer. Release Date: January 1, 2009. At the age of twenty-one, Charley Darwin boarded a ship called HMS Beagle and spent five thrilling but dangerous years sailing around the world, studying plant and animal life that was beyond anything he could have imagined. Here, historical novelist Carolyn Meyer tells the story of his unconventional adventures. It’s the story of a restless childhood, unrequited teenage love, and a passion for studying nature that was so great, Darwin would sacrifice everything to pursue it…
Official Carolyn Meyer Website
Order “The True Adventures of Charley DarwinHERE
NOTE:The True Adventures of Charley Darwin” is just in time for Darwin’s 200th birthday and the 150th anniversary of the publication of his groundbreaking On the Origin of Species.

Heartsinger” by Karlijn Stoffels, translated by
Laura Watkinson. Release Date: January 1, 2009. Smee was born with a great gift: the ability to sing other people's stories and heal their pain. But Smee also carries his own pain—his failure to reach his deaf mother and heal her grief at his father's death. Mitou also has a gift: spreading joy through a few notes from her accordion. When she hears about Smee—who was born on the same day she was—she knows that surely they belong together, each of them helping others through their music. They finally meet on the way to the king's castle to sing for the beautiful Princess Esperanza. But will Mitou's hopes be fulfilled—or is the pain of the past too great?
Official Karlijn Stoffels Website
Order “HeartsingerHERE

City of the Dead” by Tony Abbott. Release Date. January 1, 2009. The Haunting of Derek Stone is a series unlike any other. It is a dark, and darkly comic, tale of ghosts and haunting in the great Southern Gothic tradition. It’s a fast-moving story of the underside of life, a black comedy, and a hauntingly realistic fable in which an ordinary boy discovers the horrifying truth that the road to the afterlife just may be a two-way street…
Official Tony Abbott Website
Order “City of the DeadHERE
Read Reviews via Armchair Interviews + The Trade
NOTE: The Haunting of Derek Stone launches in January with “City of the Dead”, followed by “Bayou Dogs” in March, “The Red House” in June, and “The Ghost Road” in September.

Echoes of the Dark” by Robin D. Owens. Release Date: January 1, 2009. Deep in another dimension, a disillusioned young singer is summoned as Lladrana's last hope. Uncertain of her future, unaware of her extraordinary magical talent, Jikata will be the sixth and final outsider—Exotique—to step through a dangerous portal of prophecy and magic. Survival will require her to forge closer friendships than she has ever known. The price of those bonds will threaten the very fate of Lladrana: a world where music holds the key to an ancient mystery—and six women will wage the ultimate battle against the forces of Dark…
Official Robin D. Owens Website
Order “Echoes of the DarkHERE
NOTE:Echoes of the Dark” is the fifth book in The Summoning series after “Keepers of the Flame”.

The Hoard of Mhorrer” by M.F.W. Curran. UK Release Date: January 2, 2009. In 1820, a fearless cohort of soldier-monks led by William Saxon, has been dispatched to Egypt on the most important mission in history: to find and destroy the Hoard of Mhorrer before the demonic agents of the evil Count Ordrane of Draak locate it. If William and his men succeed, the clandestine war between Heaven and Hell will at last begin to favor the forces of light. But if they fail, and the agents of Hell claim the Hoard, then they will unleash an army of invincible daemons, and humankind—what is left of it—will come to know the true meaning of evil…
Official M.F.W. Curran Website
Order “The Hoard of MhorrerHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE

Kingdom” by Tom Martin. UK Release Date: January 2, 2009. A monastery in Tibet is overrun with Chinese soldiers searching for a sacred relic. The monks flee to seek refuge in hidden caves, but their progress is hampered by an injured stranger, whose presence threatens them all. Meanwhile, journalist Nancy Kelly receives a parcel containing a mysterious trumpet made of bone, and hears an account of a Westerner penetrating into a hidden kingdom in Tibet, where orchids cover the earth, pagodas hug the hills and soaring cathedrals hide underground. Soon she embarks on a dangerous journey into an ancient land of myth and legend, in search of a secret older than time itself…
Order “Kingdom

Gullstruck Island” by Frances Hardinge. UK Release Date: January 2, 2009. In the village of the Hollow Beasts live two sisters. Arilou is a Lost—a child with the power to depart her body and mind-fly with the winds—and Hathin is her helper. Together they hide a dangerous secret. Until sinister events threaten to uncover it. With a blue-skinned hunter on their trail and a dreadlocked warrior beside them, they must escape. Can the fate of two children decide the future of Gullstruck Island?
Official Frances Hardinge Website
Order “Gullstruck IslandHERE

Bad Things” by Michael Marshall. UK Release Date: January 5, 2009. On a beautiful summer's afternoon, four-year-old Scott Henderson walked out onto a jetty over a lake in Black Ridge, Washington. He never came back. John Henderson's world ended that day, but three years later he's still alive. Living a life, of sorts. Getting by. Until one night he receives an email from a stranger who claims to know what happened to his little boy. Against his better judgment, Henderson returns to Black Ridge, unleashing a terrifying sequence of events that threatens to destroy what remains of everything he once held dear…
Official Michael Marshall Website
Order “Bad ThingsHERE

Hammer of God” by Karen Miller. Release Date: January 5, 2009. In Ethrea, Rhian sits upon a precarious throne. Defiant noblemen who won't accept her rule threaten the stability of her kingdom. Zandakar—a man she thought was her friend—has been revealed as the son of a woman sworn to destroy her world. And Rhian's husband, King Alasdair, is unsure of her love. Rhian's most grave problem, however, lies outside the borders of her realm as the murderous warhost of Mijak advances…
Official Karen Miller Website
Order “Hammer of GodHERE (US) + HERE (UK-January 15, 2009)
Read An Extract
NOTE:Hammer of God” is the stunning finale in the Godspeaker trilogy after “Empress” and “The Riven Kingdom”. It was originally published in Australia/New Zealand in June 2008.

The Accidental Sorcerer” by K.E. Mills. Release Date: January 5, 2009. Gerald Dunwoody is a wizard. Just not a particularly good one. He's blown up a factory, lost his job, and there's a chance that he's not really a Third Grade wizard after all. So it's off to New Ottosland to be the new Court Wizard for King Lional. With a Princess in danger, a talking bird who can't stay out of trouble, and a kingdom to save, Gerald soon suspects that he might be out of his depth. And if he can't keep this job, how will he ever become the wizard he was destined to be...
Official K.E. Mills Website
Order “The Accidental SorcererHERE (US) + HERE (UK-January 15, 2009)
Read An Extract
Read Reviews via Green Man Review + The Specusphere
NOTE:The Accidental Sorcerer” is the first book in the Rogue Agent trilogy by K.E. Mills—a pseudonym for Australian author Karen Miller. It was originally published in Australia/New Zealand in September 2008.

One More Bite” by Jennifer Rardin. Release Date: January 5, 2009. “It's Jaz Parks. I've already smoked the guy who was the pain in the CIA's you-know-what for the past few years. But now, in the power vacuum left by the death of Edward “The Raptor” Samos, a struggle for supremacy has begun between his former allies. The CIA feels the balance must be maintained. So when an agent planted among the Weres discovers a plot to assassinate the Coven's leader, my vampire boss and I are brought in to take out the woman hired to do the deed, a killer who might be as wily and Gifted as ourselves. So it's off to the Scottish Highlands for some twisted fun among murderers, demons and half-crazed relatives…”
Official Jennifer Rardin
Order “One More BiteHERE (US) + HERE (UK-January 29, 2009)
NOTE:One More Bite” is the fifth Jaz Parks novel after “Bitten To Death”.

Poe” edited by Ellen Datlow. Release Date: January 5, 2009. Compiled by multiple award-winning editor
Ellen Datlow (Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror, Inferno, The Del Rey Book of Science Fiction & Fantasy), this collection commemorates the second centenary of Edgar Allen Poe's birth and features nineteen brand new Poe-inspired tales by some of the finest talents in the field, including Kim Newman, Pat Cadigan, Sharyn McCrumb, Lucius Sheppard, Laird Barron, Suzy McKee Chamas, Gregory Frost and many others…
Official Ellen Datlow Website
Order “PoeHERE (US) + HERE (UK)

In the Shadow of the Master” edited by Michael Connelly. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Few have crafted stories as haunting as those by Edgar Allan Poe. Collected here to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Poe's birth are sixteen of his best tales accompanied by twenty essays from beloved authors, including
Jeffrey Deaver, Nelson DeMille, Sue Grafton and Stephen King among others, on how Poe has changed their life and work. Powerful and timeless, “In the Shadow of the Master” is a celebration of one of the greatest literary minds of all time…
Official Michael Connelly Website
Order “In the Shadow of the MasterHERE

Haunted Heart: The Life and Times of Stephen King” by Lisa Rogak. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Stephen King is one of the most prolific and popular authors in the world today. But who is the man behind those tales of horror, grief, and the supernatural? Where do these ideas come from? And what drives him to keep writing at a breakneck pace after a thirty year career? In this unauthorized biography, Lisa Rogak reveals the troubled background and lifelong fears that inspire one of the twentieth century's most influential authors…
Official Stephen King Website
Official Lisa Rogak Website
Order “Haunted HeartHERE

Bones of the Dragon” by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Skylan Ivorson becomes the Chief of Chiefs of all Vindras clans, an honor he feels he deserves as one who has been blessed by Skoval, the god of war. But Skoval and the other ancient gods are under siege from a new generation of gods who are challenging them for the powers of creation. The only way to stop these brash interlopers lies within the mysterious and hidden Five Bones of the Vektan Dragons and it will be up to the Vindras, the dragongoddess’s champion, to to claim all Five—a quest to save the world…
Official Margaret Weis Website
Official Tracy Hickman Website
Order “Bones of the DragonHERE
Read Excerpts HERE + HERE

Regenesis” by C. J. Cherryh. Release Date: January 6, 2009. The direct sequel to the Hugo Award- winning novel “Cyteen”, “Regenesis” continues the story of Ariane Emory PR, the genetic clone of one of the greatest scientists humanity has ever produced, and of her search for the murderer of her progenitor—the original Ariane Emory. Murder, politics, deception, and genetic and psychological manipulation combine against a backdrop of interstellar human societies at odds to create a mesmerizing and major work in “Regenesis”…
Official C. J. Cherryh Website
Order “RegenesisHERE

The God Stalker Chronicles” by P.C. Hodgell. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Jame is a Kencyrath, the chosen people of the Three-Faced God, who fight the demonic being called Perimal Darkling. At the same time, she fights an internal battle for their honor because the leader of the Kencyrath betrayed his people to the Darkness for his own immortality 3000 years ago. If that is not enough, Jame must also find her ten-year older brother Tori, kill a god, and resurrect another…
Official P.C. Hodgell Website
Order “The God Stalker ChroniclesHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
NOTE:The God Stalker Chronicles” has been previously published as two separate novels, “God Stalk” (1982) and its sequel “Dark of the Moon” (1985).

The Fire Gospel” by Michael Faber. Release Date: January 6, 2009 (US Debut). Academic Theo Griepenkerl finds nine papyrus scrolls that prove to be a fifth Gospel. But when Theo decides to share this sensational discovery with the world, it has incendiary consequences… “The Fire Gospel” is an enthralling novel about the power of words to resonate across centuries, and inspire and disrupt in equal measure. Wickedly provocative, hilarious and shocking by turns, the book is a revelatory piece of storytelling…
Order “The Fire Gospel
Read Reviews via
Bookgeeks, Reading Matters + Times Online
NOTE:The Fire Gospel” was first released in the UK on November 6, 2008.

Just Another Judgement Day” by Simon R. Green. Release Date: January 6, 2009. It is The Walking Man’s mission to exorcise sinners—with extreme prejudice. Problem is, the Nightside was built on sin and corruption, and The Walking Man makes no distinction between evildoers and those simply indulging themselves. He’ll leave the place a wasteland unless someone stops him, and P.I. John Taylor has been handed the job. No known magic or science can affect The Walking Man, and if John can’t discover his weakness, he’ll be facing the very Wrath of God…
Official Simon R. Green Wikipedia Website
Order “Just Another Judgement DayHERE

In Shade & Shadow” by Barb & J.C. Hendee. Release Date: January 6, 2009. After her adventures with Magiere & Leesil, Wynn Hygeorht has returned to the Guild of Sagecraft, bearing texts supposedly penned by vampires from the time of the Forgotten History and the Great War. Seized by the Guild’s scholars and sent out for copying without Wynn’s consent, several pages disappear—and the two sages charged with conveying these pages are murdered. Suspicious of the Guild, separated from the only friends she fully trusts, and convinced the Noble Dead are responsible for the killings, Wynn embarks on a quest to uncover the secrets of the texts…
Official Barb & J.C. Hendee Website
Order “In Shade & ShadowHERE
NOTE:In Shade & Shadow” is the seventh Noble Dead novel and the first in the new series.

Mean Streets” by Jim Butcher, Kat Richardson, Simon R. Green, and Thomas E. Sniegoski. The best paranormal private investigators have been brought together in a single volume—and cases don’t come any harder than this:

New York Times bestselling author Jim Butcher delivers a hard-boiled tale in which Harry Dresden’s latest case may be his last…

Nightside dweller John Taylor is hired by a woman to find something she lost—her memory—in a thrilling noir tale from New York Times bestselling author Simon R. Green

National bestselling author Kat Richardson’s Greywalker finds herself in too deep when a “simple job” goes bad and Harper Blaine is enmeshed in a tangle of dark secrets and revenge from beyond the grave…

For centuries, the being that we know as Noah lived among us. Now he is dead, and fallen-angel-turned-detective Remy Chandler has been hired to find out who killed him in a whodunit by national bestselling author Thomas E. Sniegoski
Official Jim Butcher Website
Simon R. Green @ Wikipedia
Official Kat Richardson Website
Official Thomas E. Sniegoski Website
Order “Mean StreetsHERE
Read Reviews via Darque Reviews

The Stepsister Scheme” by Jim C. Hines. Release Date: January 6, 2009. What would happen if an author went back to the darker themes (Brothers Grimm) of the original fairy tales for his plots, and then crossed the Disney versions of the princesses Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White with Charlie’s Angels? What’s delivered is “The Stepsister Scheme”—a whole new take on what happened to Cinderella and her prince after the wedding. And with Jim C. Hines penning the tale readers can bet it won’t be ‘and they lived happily ever after’…
Official Jim C. Hines Website
Order “The Stepsister SchemeHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE

Princess of the Sword” by Lynn Kurland. Release Date: January 6, 2009. The stirring conclusion to the Nine Kingdoms Trilogy—after Star of the Morning and The Mage’s Daughter—from the USA Today bestselling and RITA Award-winning author Lynn Kurland (Stardust of Yesterday, Another Chance to Dream), “Princess of the Sword” explodes with the fiercest battle yet as the fate of a kingdom lies with a man and woman bound by love, magic, and a legendary—and perilous—sword…
Official Lynn Kurland Website
Order “Princess of the SwordHERE

What Time Devours” by A.J. Hartley. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Thomas Knight, the protagonist from “On the Fifth Day” by the New York Times-bestselling author A.J. Hartley (Act of Will, The Mask of Atreus), returns and is faced with a centuries-old mystery surrounding a long-lost—and now priceless—Shakespearean play. To find it, Thomas will have to enter a story which drags loss and death after it like one of Shakespeare’s tragedies, a story bound to time and all it devours…
Official A.J. Hartley Website
Order “What Time DevoursHERE
Read Reviews via Darque Reviews

We Think, Therefore We Are” edited by
Pete Crowther. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Artificial intelligence has captured the imaginations of writers, readers, and scientists alike, from Isaac Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics to The Terminator, The Bicentennial Man, and Arthur C. Clarke’s Hal 9000. Now some of the most innovative thinkers in science fiction offer an intriguing variety of tales featuring the many forms of AI. These authors confront one of contemporary mankind’s deepest concerns—what do we do when the machines we created evolve beyond us?
Order “We Think, Therefore We Are
Read Reviews via Flamingnet
NOTE: Features fifteen original stories about our fear of and fascination with artificial intelligence.

The Jennifer Morgue” by Charles Stross. Release Date. January 6, 2009. Bob Howard—a computer geek and field agent for the super-secret British government agency The Laundry—must save the world from eldritch horrors, codenamed Jennifer Morgue. Bob's current mission is to stop the evil Ellis Billington from achieving world domination, but he must overcome obstacles including the Gravedust device, which permits communication with the dead; banishment weapons; and Ramona Random, a lethal but beautiful U.S. secret agent…
Official Charles Stross
Order “The Jennifer MorgueHERE
Read Reviews via Graeme’s Fantasy Book Review, NextRead, Strange Horizons + The Book Swede
NOTE:The Jennifer Morgue” is a sequel to “The Atrocity Archives” and was originally published in 2006 by Golden Gryphon Press.

Night Huntress” by Yasmine Galenorn. Release Date: January 6, 2009. In this fifth Sisters of the Moon novel after “Dragon Wytch”, Karvanak—the demon general who stole the third spirit seal—is back. In order to get his hands on both the fourth spirit seal and his former associate, Vanzir, he kidnaps Delilah’s boyfriend Chase. Now the D’Artigo sisters—half-human, half-Fae operatives for the Otherworld Intelligence Agency—must find a way to rescue Chase without risking the safety of both Otherworld and Earth…
Official Yasmine Galenorn Website
Order “Night HuntressHERE

Witch Heart” by Anya Bast. Release Date: January 6, 2009. As part of a mission with the Coven, Adam Tyrell rescues Claire from her enslavement—and finds himself immediately taken with the beautiful witch. But this charming playboy soon learns that it’s easier to steal Claire from demons than win her heart, for her life as a servant has ravaged her spirit. But with Adam determined to protect her from the warlocks who want to harness her magick for evil, Claire’s resistance starts to give way—and they find themselves in the heat of danger…
Official Anya Bast Website
Order “Witch HeartHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
NOTE:Witch Heart” is the third Elemental Witches novel after “Witch Fire” and “Witch Blood”.

Lord of Misrule” by Rachel Caine. Release Date: January 6, 2009. In the college town of Morganville, vampires and humans coexist in—relatively—bloodless harmony. Then comes Bishop, the master vampire who threatens to abolish all order, revive the forces of the evil dead, and let chaos rule. But Bishop isn’t the only threat. Violent black cyclone clouds hover, promising a storm of devastating proportions as student Claire Danvers and her friends prepare to defend Morganville against elements both natural and unnatural…
Official Rachel Caine Website
Order “Lord of MisruleHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Reviews via Darque Reviews
NOTE:Lord of Misrule” is the fifth book in The Morganville Vampires series after “Feast of Fools”.

Night of the Loving Dead” by Casey Daniels. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Pepper Martin, heiress-turned-cemetery-tour-guide, often has her hands full with two hotties and the ghosts who won’t let her rest in peace. Now the specter of a young woman in a lab coat wants Pepper’s help. Before the woman died, she worked with a sexy, mysterious doctor who coincidentally once saved Pepper’s life—and who the woman claims is now in danger. But Pepper doesn’t know that there’s more to the story, including a devious doctor—and an obsessive, crazy love…
Official Casey Daniels Website
Order “Night of the Loving DeadHERE
Read Reviews via Darque Reviews
NOTE:Night of the Loving Dead” is the fourth Pepper Martin novel after “Don of the Dead”, “The Chick and the Dead” and “Tombs of Endearment”.

Stay the Night: A Novel of the Darkyn” by Lynn Viehl. Release Date: January 6, 2009. Outlaw, immortal vampire, and art thief, Darkyn Lord Robin of Locksley has evaded authorities for the last 700 years. At the moment, he’s falling for undercover federal agent Christina Renshaw, who has no time for an affair. She hopes to snag an elusive art thief, but soon has no choice other than to join forces with Robin. When the chase becomes dangerous, both will have to choose between losing each other and losing everything they value...
Official Lynn Viehl Blog
Order “Stay the NightHERE
NOTE:Stay the Night” is the seventh Darkyn novel after “Twilight Fall”. Lynn Viehl is just one of many pseudonyms for Sheila Kelly including S.L. Viehl.

Beat the Reaper” by Josh Bazell. Release Date: January 7, 2009. Dr. Peter Brown’s morning begins with the quick disarming of a would-be mugger, followed by a steamy elevator encounter. From there Peter’s day gets a whole lot worse when a new patient recognizes Peter from his other life . . . when he had a different name and a very different job. The only reason he’s a doctor now is thanks to the Witness Protection Program—and even that can’t protect him from the long reach of the New Jersey mob. Now he’s got to do whatever it takes to beat the reaper…
Official Beat the Reaper Website
Order “Beat the ReaperHERE (US) + HERE (UK)

Honor of the Clan” by John Ringo and Julie Cochrane. Release Date: January 8, 2009. Duty. Honor. Country. Three words that resound in the heart of the warrior. But what is duty when country is gone? Where does honor lie when allies are revealed as enemies, when friends are not who they seem and when enemies are the ones we love? For Cally O'Neal and the O'Neal Bane Sidhe, duty lies in the overthrow of the established order. For Major General Michael O'Neal, her father, duty lies in maintaining that order to prevent a reinvasion by the dreaded Posleen. When O'Neal battles O'Neal, the only sure outcome is fireworks…
Official John Ringo Website
Official Julie Cochrane Website
Order “Honor of the ClanHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Reviews via Baltimore Science Fiction Society
NOTE:Honor of the Clan” is the third novel in the Cally’s War Posleen spinoff series after “Cally’s War” and “Sister Time”.

Daemon” by Daniel Suarez. Release Date: January 8, 2008. Already an underground sensation, “Daemon” is a high-tech thriller for the wireless age that explores the unthinkable consequences of a computer program running without human control—a daemon—designed to dismantle society and bring about a new world order. Blending haunting high-tech realism with gripping suspense, “Daemon” is an authentic, complex read in the tradition of Michael Crichton, Neal Stephenson, and William Gibson
Official Daemon Website
Order “DaemonHERE
Read Reviews via Crime Critics
NOTE:Daemon” was originally published by Verdugo Press in 2006 under the author name Leinad Zeraus.

The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death” by Charlie Huston. Release Date: January 13, 2009. A white-knuckle thriller set in Los Angeles and introducing another one-of-a-kind character in Webster Filmore Goodhue (a disaffected slacker who joins a crime scene clean-up crew), “The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death” is vintage Charlie Huston—funny, violent, surprising and populated by the author’s trademark mile-a-minute dialogue―and is sure to satisfy old fans and draw in new ones…
Official Charlie Huston Website
Order “The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of DeathHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Reviews via Blood of the Muse + The Book Frog
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s Review of “The Shotgun Rule
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s
Review of the Joe Pitt Casebooks
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s
Interview with Charlie Huston

The Judging Eye” by R. Scott Bakker. UK Release Date: January 15, 2009. Set twenty years after the end of The Thousandfold Thought—the conclusion to the Prince of Nothing trilogy—Bakker reintroduces us to a world that is at once familiar but also very different from the one readers thought they knew. Delving even further into his richly imagined universe of myth, violence, and sorcery, and fully remolding the fantasy genre to broaden the scope of intricacy and meaning, R. Scott Bakker has once again written a fantasy novel that defies all expectations and rewards the reader with an experience unlike any to be had in the canon of today’s literature…
Official R. Scott Bakker Website
Order “The Judging EyeHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Reviews via Graeme’s Fantasy Book Review, Neth Space, Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist + The Wertzone
NOTE:The Judging Eye” will be published in Canada on January 20, 2009 via Penguin and in the U.S. on February 5, 2009 via Overlook Press.

The Destiny of the Dead” by Ian Irvine. UK Release Date: January 15, 2008. Nish and his few remaining allies are trapped on the Range of Ruin, surrounded by the relentless army of his father, the God-Emperor. Nish’s only choices are a humiliating surrender or a suicidal fight to the death. Yet Nish has to fight, and somehow he has to win, for the world of Santhenar faces a much more colossal threat—the shape-shifting being Stilkeen. But even if Nish can win the battle with his father, there may be no way to stop Stilkeen before everything is consumed…
Official Ian Irvine Website
Order “The Destiny of the DeadHERE
NOTE:The Destiny of the Dead” is the conclusion to Ian Irvine’s The Song of the Tears trilogy after “The Torments of the Traitor” and “The Curse on the Chosen”.

Agincourt” by Bernard Cornwell. Release Date: January 20, 2009. One of the most dramatic victories in British history, the battle of Agincourt—October 25, 1415—pitted undermanned and overwhelmed English forces against a French army determined to keep their crown out of Henry's hands. An epic of redemption, “Agincourt” follows a commoner, a king, and a nation's entire army on an improbable mission to test the will of God and reclaim what is rightfully theirs. From the disasters at the siege of Harfleur to the horrors of the field of Agincourt, this exhilarating story of survival and slaughter is at once a brilliant work of history and a triumph of imagination—Bernard Cornwell at his best…
Official Bernard Cornwell Website
Order” AgincourtHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Watch the Book Trailer HERE
Watch a Conversation with Bernard Cornwell HERE
Bernard Cornell on the History of Agincourt HERE
NOTE:Agincourt” was published in the UK on October 1, 2008 under the title “Azincourt”.

The Steel Remains” by Richard K. Morgan. Release Date: January 20, 2009 (US Debut). As rumors of ghosts and demons spread throughout the Empire, three veterans of the War against the Scaled FolkRingil Eskiath, Egar the Dragonbane and Archeth—are about to meet a new, even more terrifying enemy and fight again for a world that owes them everything and has given them nothing… Thus begins a new fantasy saga from the author of Altered Carbon and the Arthur C. Clarke Award-winning Black Man/Thirteen
Official Richard K. Morgan Website
Order “The Steel RemainsHERE
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s Review of “The Steel Remains
NOTE:The Steel Remains” was originally published August 7, 2008 via

The Horsemen’s Gambit” by David B. Coe. Release Date: January 20, 2009. David B. Coe created a richly textured, unique world in his “Winds of the Forelands”, and topped himself with “The Sorcerer's Plague”, his first novel set in the Southlands of the same world. Now in “The Horsemen’s Gambit”, Coe weaves together engagingly complex characters, unique, unusual magic, political intrigue and a compelling, unpredictable story into a captivating epic that will enthrall fantasy readers…
Official David B. Coe Website
Order “The Horsemen’s GambitHERE
Read Excerpts HERE
Read Reviews via Fantasy Book News & Reviews

Mind Over Ship” by David Marusek. Release Date: January 20, 2009. The year is 2135, and the international program to seed the galaxy with human colonies has stalled as greedy powerbrokers park their starships in Earth’s orbit and begin to convert them into space condos. Ellen Starke’s head, rescued from the fiery crash that killed her mother, struggles to regrow a new body in time to restore her dead mother’s financial empire. And Pre-Singularity AIs conspire to join the human race just as human clones want nothing more than to leave it…
Official David Marusek Website
Order “Mind Over ShipHERE
NOTE: “Mind Over Ship” is the sequel to David Marusek’s stunning debut novel, “Counting Heads”.

The Illumination” by Jill Gregory and Karen Tintori. Release Date: January 20, 2009. Natalie Landau, a museum curator with an expertise in Mesopotamian protective amulets and magical beliefs, receives a necklace with a blue evil eye pendant on it from her sister only hours before she was murdered. The Evil Eye is a symbol of protection common throughout the world, with a history connecting it to many religions. As Natalie races to discover the origin of the pendant, she is sucked into an international battle between powerful religious factions, each battling for the eye, which turns out to be far more valuable than she could ever imagine…
Official Jill Gregory Website
Official Karen Tintori Website
Order “The IlluminationHERE

The Comet’s Curse” by Dom Testa. Release Date: January 20, 2009. When the tail of a comet flicks through the Earth’s atmosphere, mankind is confronted with a virus that devastates the adult population. Only those under the age of eighteen seem to be immune. Desperate to save humanity, a scientist proposes a plan to create a ship that will carry 251 teenagers to a home in a distant solar system. Two years later, the Galahad and its crew—none over the age of sixteen—is launched. But soon after departing Earth, they discover that a saboteur is hiding on the Galahad. Faced with escalating acts of vandalism and terrorized by threatening messages, the teens must find a way to neutralize their enemy or it could mean the end of the human race…
Official Dom Testa Website
Order “The Comet’s CurseHERE
NOTE:The Comet’s Curse” is the first volume in a proposed six-volume Galahad series.

Princess of the Midnight Ball” by Jessica Day George. Release Date: January 20, 2009. Galen is a young soldier returning from war; Rose is one of twelve princesses condemned to dance each night for the King Under Stone. Together Galen and Rose will search for a way to break the curse that forces the princesses to dance at the midnight balls. All they need is one invisibility cloak, a black wool chain knit with enchanted silver needles, and that most critical ingredient of all—true love—to conquer their foes in the dark halls below…
Official Jessica Day George Website
Order “Princess of the Midnight BallHERE
Read Reviews via Wands & Worlds
NOTE: Captivating from start to finish, Jessica Day George’s take on the Grimms’ tale, “The Twelve Dancing Princesses”, demonstrates yet again her mastery at spinning something entirely fresh out of a story you thought you knew.

Yellow Blue Tibia” by Adam Roberts. UK Release Date: January 22, 2009. After the Nazis were defeated in 1946, Stalin gathers some of the top Soviet science fiction authors and tells them to concoct a story about aliens poised to invade earth—a story so convincing that the whole world will believe it. But then they are told to drop the project. So they do and they get on with their lives. However, in the aftermath of Chernobyl, the survivors gather again, because something strange has started to happen. The story they invented in 1946 is starting to come true…
Official Adam Roberts Website
Order “Yellow Blue TibiaHERE
Read Reviews via The Wertzone

Eagle Rising” by David Devereux. UK Release Date: January 22, 2009. A neo-Nazi magical sect—which includes some of the most high-powered city executives in the country—is intent on reviving a dark and terrifying evil from the 1940s. And only one man is bad enough to stop them: the musician/magician called Jack. Described as a mix of Dennis Wheatley and Ian Fleming, David Devereux lives up to the billing with his new novel which is the exciting sequel to “Hunter’s Moon”…
Official David Devereux Website
Order “Eagle RisingHERE

The Fall of the Templars” by Robyn Young. Release Date: January 22, 2009. Robyn Young’s Brethren Trilogy has topped international bestseller lists and won praise from the likes of Raymond Khoury, Steve Berry, and Alison Weir. In the cataclysmic conclusion, “The Fall of the Templars” chronicles an era few people know about—what happened when the Templars returned from the Crusades and found that the monarchs of Europe did not want an army of religious warriors back on European soil…
Official Robyn Young Website
Order “The Fall of the TemplarsHERE
NOTE:The Fall of the Templars” was published in the UK on October 16, 2008 under the title “Requiem”.

You Are So Undead to Me” by Stacey Jay. Release Date: January 22, 2009. Megan Berry is a Zombie Settler by birth, which means she’s part-time shrink to a bunch of semi-dead people with killer issues. All Megan really wants is to go to homecoming, but when you’re always trailed by a bunch of slobbering corpses, it’s kinda hard to score a date. Megan’s convinced her life can’t get any worse—until someone in school starts using black magic to turn average, angsty Undead into scary, flesh-eating Zombies. Now it’s up to Megan to stop the Zombie apocalypse…
Official Stacey Jay Website
Order “You Are So Undead to MeHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Reviews via Simply Books, The Bookbag + The Book Reader

The Sharing Knife: Horizon” by Lois McMaster Bujold. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Fawn and Dag see that their world is changing, and that traditional Lakewalker practices cannot hold every malice at bay forever. Yet for all the customs that the couple has challenged thus far, they will soon be confronted by a crisis that threatens their Lakewalker and farmer followers alike. Now the pair must answer the question they've grappled with since they killed their first malice together: When the old traditions fail disastrously, can their untried new ways stand against their world's deadliest foe?
Official Lois McMaster Bujold Website
Order “The Sharing Knife: HorizonHERE
Read Reviews via Waiting For Faires

The Map of Moments” by Christopher Golden & Tim Lebbon. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Barely six months after leaving New Orleans, history professor Max Corbett is returning to a place he hardly recognizes. The girl he’d loved—and lost—is dead, and the once-enchanted city has been devastated by Hurricane Katrina. Max has not thought much beyond Gabrielle’s funeral—then he meets a strange old man who offers him a map, and an insane proposition that just might open a door to the past and give Gabrielle another chance at life…
Official Hidden Cities Website
Official Christopher Golden Website
Official Tim Lebbon Website
Order “The Map of MomentsHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s Review of “Mind the Gap

Flight Into Darkness” by Sarah Ash. Release Date: January 27, 2009. From Sarah Ash—acclaimed author of the Tears of Artamon trilogy—comes the conclusion to the Alchymist's Legacy story begun in “Tracing the Shadow”, a fantasy masterpiece of truly epic proportions. In a clash of kingdoms and rebels, of magicians and inquisitors, two young mages in Rieuk Mordiern and Celestine must find the resolution and courage they need to save both the world . . . and themselves…
Official Sarah Ash Website
Order “Flight Into DarknessHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE

Dragons In Chain” by Daniel Fox. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Deposed by a vicious usurper, a young emperor flees with his court to the island of Taishu where he prepares for his last stand alongside a local fishergirl-turned concubine. In the mountains of Taishu, a young miner finds himself changing into something more than human, something forbidden. Meanwhile, a great dragon lies beneath the strait that separates Taishu from the mainland, bound by magical chains. Now the prisoner beneath the sea and the men and women above it will shatter old bonds of loyalty & love and forge a common destiny from the ruins of an empire…
Official Daniel Fox Website
Official Daniel Fox Blog
Order “Dragon In ChainsHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
NOTE:Dragon In Chains” is the opening volume in the Moshui, the Books of Stone and Water trilogy.

Dark Haven” by Gail Z. Martin. Release Date: January 27, 2008. Matris Drayke, king of Margolan, is faced with the challenge of rebuilding his shattered kingdom with his wedding only weeks away. Meanwhile, Jonmarc Vahanian, the new Lord of Dark Haven, and one of Tris' allies, faces trouble with the Blood Council, where there is defiance against the prospect of a mortal lord. And beneath Dark Haven, the Flow—the vast river of power damaged when Arontala wrested the Soulcatcher from Dark Haven’s foundation—is becoming unstable, threatening the balance of magic itself, and the future of the Winter Kingdoms
Official Gail Z. Martin Website
Order “Dark HavenHERE (US)
Read Excerpts
Read Gail Z. Martin’s Guest Blog on Fantasy Book Critic
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s Reviews of The Summoner + The Blood King
NOTE:Dark Haven” is the third Chronicles of the Necromancer novel after “The Summoner” and “The Blood King”.

Last Watch” by Sergei Lukyanenko. Release Date: January 27, 2009 (US Debut). Part fantasy, and part detective potboiler, the Night Watch series is the most successful science fiction series of all time in Russia, and a true international sensation. Now, in the breathtaking final novel in the series, Anton is sent on a mission that takes him from Edinburgh to Uzbekistan to Moscow and back again, as a murder investigation spirals into a larger, more complex, and more terrifying threat than the world has ever faced…
Official Sergei Lukyanenko Website
Order “Last WatchHERE (US) + HERE (UK)
NOTE:The Last Watch”, first published in 2006 in Russia, was released in the UK on November 6, 2008 and Canada on November 25, 2008. It’s the fourth Night Watch novel.

Three Unbroken” by Chris Roberson. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Three Unbroken is the next epic novel in the Celestial Empire sequence and details the explosive war between the Chinese and Aztec empires as they battle for control of the red planet, Fire Star. Based on the sixty-four elements of the I-Ching, this novel follows the lives of three soldiers from their induction into the armed forces to their eventual fight for survival on the front line… “Three Unbroken” was originally serialized on
Solaris Books’ website HERE.
Official Chris Roberson Website
Order “Three UnbrokenHERE (US) + HERE (UK)

End of the Century” by Chris Roberson. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Three people. Three eras. One city. Endless possibilities. “End of the Century” is a novel of the distant past, the unimaginable future, and the search for the Holy Grail. Set in the city of London, the narrative is interlaced between three ages, in which a disparate group of heroes, criminals, runaways, and lunatics are drawn into the greatest quest of all time. And lurking behind it all is the entity known only as Omega
Official Chris Roberson Website
Order “End of the CenturyHERE

The Book of the Wars” by Mark Geston. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Complete in one volume for the first time: Lords of the Starship, Out of the Mouth of the Dragon and The Siege of Wonder make up a saga of the distant future, when the Earth and its inhabitants have transformed almost beyond recognition, science has all but become sorcery, and humanity is threatened by creatures out of the past’s darkest legends. “The Book of the Wars” is a critically-praised epic trilogy of science and sorcery and the twilight realm between them…
Official Mark Geston Wikipedia Website
Order “The Book of the WarsHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE

The Domino Men” by Jonathan Barnes. Release Date: January 27, 2009 (US Debut). More than a century ago, Queen Victoria made a Faustian bargain with a nefarious entity. Now the bill—all the souls of London—is due. When young filing clerk Henry Lamb is pulled into the Directorate’s secret war against the House of Windsor, nothing is as it seems. His grandfather was a spy, his office mate has a nefarious agenda, and something evil lurks in the cellar beneath 10 Downing Street. And then things get really odd…
Order “The Domino Men
Read Reviews via Bookgeeks + Strange Horizons
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s Review of “The Somnambulist
Read Fantasy Book Critic’s
Interview with Jonathan Barnes
NOTE:The Domino Men” is a sequel to Jonathan Barnes’ debut novel, “The Somnambulist”.

Nuclear Jellyfish” by Tim Dorsey. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Serge, that loveable collector of trivia, souvenirs, and murder methods is back with a new A‑Tour of Florida. And this time he's out to set the record straight! Along the way, expect guns, drugs, bloody crime scenes, historically relevant sex, library quiet time, glow‑in‑the dark deformities, hotel drink coupons, a naked woman in a shark cage, and John Travolta. It's time to sign on with Serge and see where the twisting, sun‑splashed trail leads in . . . Nuclear Jellyfish!
Official Tim Dorsey Website
Official Serge Storm Website
Order “Nuclear JellyfishHERE
NOTE:Nuclear Jellyfish” is the eleventh Serge Storm novel after “Atomic Lobster”.

Eve: A Novel of the First Woman” by Elissa Elliott. Release Date: January 27, 2009. It is the world’s oldest tale: the story of Eve, her husband, Adam, and the tragedy that would overcome her sons. In this luminous debut novel, Elissa Elliott puts a powerful twist on biblical narrative, boldly reimagining Eve’s journey. From a woman’s first awakening to a mother’s innermost hopes and fears, from moments of exquisite tenderness to a climax of shocking violence, Eve takes us on a breathtaking journey of the imagination. A novel that has it all—romantic love, lust, cruelty, heroism, envy, sacrifice, murder—Eve is a work of mesmerizing literary invention by a singular new voice in fiction…
Official Elissa Elliott Website
Order “EveHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE

Castaways” by Brian Keene. Release Date: January 27, 2009. They came to the lush, deserted island to compete on a popular reality TV show. Each one hoped to be the last to leave. Now they’re just hoping to stay alive. It seems the island isn’t deserted after all. Contestants and crew members are disappearing, being taken by the monstrous half-human creatures that live in the jungle. The men will be slaughtered. The women will be kept alive as captives. Night is falling, the creatures are coming, and rescue is so far away…
Official Brian Keene Website
Order “CastawaysHERE
Read Reviews via Graeme’s Fantasy Book Review + The Horror Review

The Dead Man's Brother” by Roger Zelazny. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Once an art smuggler, now a respectable art dealer, Ovid Wiley awoke to find his former partner stabbed to death on his gallery floor. That was strange enough—but when a CIA agent showed up to spring him from NYPD custody, things got a lot stranger. Now the CIA is offering to clear up the murder charge, but only in return for a favor: They want Ovid to fly to Vatican City and trace the trail of a renegade priest who has gone missing with millions in church funds…
Official Roger Zelazny Wikipedia Website
Order “The Dead Man's BrotherHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
NOTE:The Dead Man's Brother” was first completed in 1971, but this is the first time that the book has been published.

Kitty and the Dead Man’s Hand” by Carrie Vaughn. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Already the alpha pair of Denver's werewolf pack, Kitty and Ben plan to tie the knot human-style by eloping to Vegas, but her hotel is stocked with werewolf-hating bounty hunters. Elsewhere on the Strip, an old-school magician might be wielding the real thing; the vampire community is harboring a dark secret; and the irresistible star of a suspicious animal act is determined to seduce Kitty. Sin City has never been so wild, and this werewolf has never had to fight harder to save not only her wedding, but her very life…
Official Carrie Vaughn Website
Order “Kitty and the Dead Man’s HandHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
Read Reviews via Darque Reviews
NOTE:Kitty and the Dead Man’s Hand” is the fifth Kitty Norville novel after “Kitty and the Silver Bullet”. Book six, “Kitty Raises Hell”, comes out February 24, 2009.

Men of the Otherworld” by Kelley Armstrong. Release Date: January 27, 2009. New York Times bestselling author Kelley Armstrong (Darkest Powers, Nadia Stafford series) has captivated readers with her spellbinding
Women of the Otherworld series. Now, for the first time, in this collection of four tales she gives center stage to the men who love these sexy, supernatural women—the men who live on the other side of humanity . . . the wild side…
Official Kelley Armstrong Website
Order “Men of the OtherworldHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE

Unfallen Dead” by Mark Del Franco. Release Date: January 27, 2009. For a century since the Convergence of Faerie and modern reality, the Ways between this world and the next have been closed. But now signs point to the chance that the veil may lift again. Connor Grey has enough problems with a vengeful Queen of Faerie and the return of his old Guild partner. Add an occult string of murders, and it’s another case that just may kill him… “Unfallen Dead” is the third Connor Grey novel after “Unshapely Things” and “Unquiet Dreams”.
Official Mark Del Franco Website
Order “Unfallen DeadHERE

Seraph of Sorrow” by Mary Janice Davidson & Anthony Alongi. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Jennifer Scales is launching a new era—a time when dragons, werachnids, and the beaststalkers who hate each other will learn cooperation and trust. Unfortunately, something else is also hatching a plan which involves a complete decimation of everything Jennifer knows and loves. Alone in a strange world, Jennifer has to reach out to an unlikely series of allies to find her way back to family, friends, and the increasingly dwindling hope that things can ever be right again…
Official Mary Janice Davidson Website
Official Jennifer Scales Website
Order “Seraph of SorrowHERE
Read Excerpts HERE
NOTE:Seraph of Sorrow” is the fourth Jennifer Scales novel after “The Silver Moon Elm”.

Blood Blade” by Marcus Pelegrimas. Release Date: January 27, 2009. There is a world you don't know about, inhabited by supernatural creatures of darkness—vampires, werewolves, and other impossible beast—that live for terror, slaughter and blood. They are all around us but you cannot see them, for knowledge of their presence would surely drive any ordinary human insane. But for centuries a special breed of hunter has kept the monsters at bay, preventing them from breaking through the increasingly fragile barriers protecting our mortal realm. These guardians are called skinners . . . and there are very few of them left…
Official Marcus Pelegrimas Website
Order “Blood BladeHERE

Bones of Faerie” by Janni Lee Simner. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Nothing has been seen or heard from Faerie since the war between humanity and Faerie, and Liza’s world bears the scars of its encounter with magic: Corn resists being harvested; dandelions have thorns; and trees move with sinister intention. To survive, her father has laid down strict rules including the destruction of any magic. Then Liza discovers she has the Faerie ability to see—into the past, into the future—and she has no choice but to flee her town. Liza’s quest will take her into Faerie and back again, and what she finds along the way may be the key to healing both worlds…
Official Janni Lee Simner Website
Order “Bones of FaerieHERE
Read An Excerpt HERE
NOTE: Janni Lee Simner’s first novel for young adults is a dark fairy-tale twist on apocalyptic fiction—as familiar as a nightmare, yet altogether unique.

Chasing the Secret” by Maya Snow. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Kimi and her sister, Hana, disguised themselves as boys to study at Master Goku's dojo—and to prepare themselves to take revenge on the uncle who murdered their father and older brothers. They have become masters of the sword, and their combat skills are deadly. But after Master Goku's death, the sisters' future is uncertain. Now, the young warriors must withstand terrible battles, treachery, shadowy ninja, and their own fear, on a journey that may lead them to their loved ones . . . and to the most dangerous choice of Kimi's life…
Order “Chasing the Secret
NOTE:Chasing the Secret” is a sequel to “Sisters of the Sword”.

Spiral Hunt” by Margaret Ronald. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Some people have the Sight. Genevieve Scelan has the Scent. Called the “Hound”, Evie can track nearly anything—lost keys, vanished family heirlooms, missing people—with her unique supernatural sense. And though she knows to stay out of the magical undercurrent that runs beneath Boston's historic streets, a years-old debt will force Evie to venture into the shadowy world that lies between myth and reality, where she will find betrayal, conspiracies, and shattering revelations…
Official Margaret Ronald Blog
Order “Spiral HuntHERE

Pendragon: Before the War” by Carla Jablonski. Created by
D.J. MacHale. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Every territory of Halla has a Traveler. What was life like for Bobby Pendragon's fellow Travelers before they joined him in the fight to save every time and place that has ever existed? In this first of three thrilling Pendragon prequels, read about Vo Spader's death-defying adventures in the underwater world of Cloral, Gunny Van Dyke's race to find a murderer in 1930's Manhattan on First Earth, and the tough challenges Kasha faced on Eelong well before Bobby Pendragon arrived…
Official Carla Jablonski Website
Official Pendragon Website
Order “Pendragon: Before the WarHERE

The Lightning Key” by Jon Berkeley. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Now that Miles Wednesday has discovered his link to a magical Tiger's Egg, he's suddenly at the wheel of a great voyage. Determined to recover the stolen stone and free the trapped soul within, Miles sets off with Little, a Song Angel, and the wisecracking blind explorer Baltinglass of Araby. Their destination points far across sea and desert to the home of Miles's aunt Nura, who may be their only hope in releasing the Egg's true power… Jon Berkeley's masterful, witty finale to The Wednesday Tales completes the spectacular adventure of Miles Wednesday and his remarkable search to uncover the secrets of his own identity…
Official Jon Berkeley Website
Order “The Lightning KeyHERE

Soultaker” by Bryan Smith. Release Date: January 27, 2009. Jake McAllister knows that his brother’s new girlfriend is a bad influence, but he doesn't know what Myra's really after—Trey's soul. Trey is just a pawn in her centuries-long game. One by one, Myra has seduced and enslaved the young men of the town. The women have joined her cult as eager priestesses, lured by promises of sex and power. But Myra's unholy plan is almost complete. Can one man hope to battle such seductive evil? Will he be able to resist the Soultaker
Official Bryan Smith Blog
Order “SoultakerHERE

A Is For Alien” by Caitlin R. Kiernan. Release Date: January 30, 2009. A is for Alien is award-winning author Caitlín R. Kiernan’s first collection devoted entirely to her science-fiction work. It includes the critically acclaimed novelette “Riding the White Bull” (chosen for The Year’s Best Science Fiction, 22nd Annual Collection), along with seven other tales of a less-than-utopian future. Ranging from the wastelands and mountains of Mars to the streets of a late 21st-Century Manhattan, from the moons of Europa and Saturn to an iceless Antarctica, these tales bring Kiernan’s trademark brand of the eco-gothic to bear on what it means to be human and the paths and decisions that may face mankind only a little farther along.
Official Caitlin R. Kiernan Website
Order “A Is For AlienHERE
NOTE:A Is For Alien” will be available from Subterranean Press in two formats: 1) a Fully Clothbound Hardcover and 2) a Signed Numbered Edition that will be limited to 250 copies and comes with a chapbook of bonus fiction.

Previous Spotlights:

June 2007
July 2007
August 2007
September 2007
October 2007
November 2007
December 2007
January 2008
February 2008
March 2008
April 2008
May 2008
June 2008
July 2008
August 2008
September 2008
October 2008
November 2008
December 2008


Unknown said...

Oh man, there are SO many exciting books coming out in 2009 - and this is just the first month! It's like Christmas all over again!

Robert said...

I agree! Just wait until you see February though :D

ediFanoB said...

I love posts like this one. Some of these books are on my list but only some. Anyway I still have some days off. So I have enough time to put more books on my list for 2009. And I have to send a link to my wife. So many urban fantasy books...

Anyway excellent piece of work.

Wish you ALL THE BEST for 2009.

RobB said...

Songs of the Dying Earth isn't publishing until August; Martin just finished his story contribution within the last month.

Robert said...

Thanks ediFanoB! I appreciate it and Happy New Years to you and your family!!!

Rob, thanks for the heads up :) Last time I checked, the anthology was supposed to be coming out at the end of the year/early 2009 but I admit that was a while back and I know it wasn't a firm release date. At least readers should have plenty of time to put in their preorders!!!

Anonymous said...

Sweet Earth that's a hell of a start to the year!!

Highlights for me include:

Heroes of the Valley
The Hoard of Mhorrer
The Accidental Sorcerer
Yellow Blue Tibia

And I can recommend:

The Jennifer Morgue
The Domino Men

Now what do I do with the books I didn't read in 2009? Burn 'em?

Anonymous said...

i feel lack of sleep piling up over the next few months...every monthly entry is like another host of great locusts comng for my night time free time! :P

Mulluane said...

Wow! I almost missed this post, it doesn't show up on my google reader for some strange reason.

Robert do you know off hand if Dragons in Chains is a debut? Delrey calls Daniel Fox an award winning author but I can't find anything else that he has written.

Thanks again for all the work you all put into this list, I look forward to it every month!

Robert said...

Nice list Gav! I just got a copy of The Jennifer Morgue last week and look forward to reading that, but I definitely need to get a hold of The Domino Men :)

I feel the same way Raul :D Plus, what little free time I have is now competing with my PS3!

Mullane, Dragon In Chains is not a debut. Daniel Fox is a pseudonym, although the publisher is trying to keep that under wraps. I've already read and written a review for Dragon In Chains and it's a very impressive, character-driven, Asian-influenced fantasy. Definitely recommended...

Mulluane said...


Harry Markov said...

Is it just me or are these cover art really getting better and better with each month? A new year brinsg so much to read, it's beyond me and at tehs ame time I feel such joy. Flawless as ever Robert.

Anonymous said...

Never ceases to amaze me how much quality literature is released month in and month out.

Thanks for the list it must be a massive undertaking to gather all that information into something sensible.

I'm also looking forward to seeing how Richard Morgan does in his first foray in the realm of Fantasy.

Anonymous said...

New to your blog, added link to mine after seeing post! It must have cost quite a bit of time to compile that list! I'm not new to LKH graphic novels, after reading the books, had to see the comics. There is so much coming out and so little time. Plus, other projects too :-)
Have a great 2009!

Robert said...

Harry, there are definitely some really great covers out there this month...and some not so good. Personally, I think publishers of urban fantasy titles need to try and be more creative. I know if it works why change it, but still...

Harrison, thanks and you're welcome! As to Richard K. Morgan's first fantasy novel, I really dug it although some readers were disappointed by it...

Dottie, great to meet you! And thanks for the linkage :) I just checked out your blog and I'd be more than happy to add you in return :D Happy New Year as well!!!

Tia Nevitt said...

A treasure of information, as always!

Anonymous said...

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