New book releases, week of July 23rd: Carniepunk, Lightbringer, and Lore

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this-weeks-new-book-releases

Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy:

Contaminated by Em Garner

Contaminated“Relentlessly horrifying… a bone-chilling, riveting debut.” (Ann Aguirre, USA Today best-selling author)  Gritty and grabbing, Contaminated is a harrowing, emotionally charged dystopic venture into YA.

After the Contamination – an epidemic caused by the super-trendy diet drink SlimPro that turned ordinary citizens into shambling creatures unable to control their violent impulses – the government rounded up the “Connies” to protect the remaining population. But now, two years later, the government’s started sending the rehabilitated back home, complete with shock collars that will either stop the Connies from committing violent acts or kill them before they do any further harm.

Since her parents were taken in the roundup, Velvet Ellis has struggled to care for her ten-year-old sister and maintain a sense of normalcy, despite brutal government rations and curfews. She goes to the “Kennels” every day searching for her parents, and when she finds her mother, she’s eager to bring her home. Maybe, eventually, they’ll be able to get back to the way things were before. But even though it seems that her mother is getting better (something that the government says is impossible), there will be no happy transition. Anti-Connie sentiment is high, and rumor has it that an even worse wave of the Contamination is imminent. And then the government declares that the Connies will be rounded up and neutralized, once and for all.

Sacrificing everything – her boyfriend, her home, and her job – Velvet will do anything to protect her mother. Velvet has to get the collar off her mother before the military comes to take her away. Even if it means risking all of their lives.

Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay

In the beginning was the darkness, and in the darkness was a girl, and in the girl was a secret…

In the domed city of Yuan, the blind Princess Isra, a Smooth Skin, is raised to be a human sacrifice whose death will ensure her city’s vitality. In the desert outside Yuan, Gem, a mutant beast, fights to save his people, the Monstrous, from starvation. Neither dreams that together, they could return balance to both their worlds.

Isra wants to help the city’s Banished people, second-class citizens despised for possessing Monstrous traits. But after she enlists the aid of her prisoner, Gem, who has been captured while trying to steal Yuan’s enchanted roses, she begins to care for him, and to question everything she has been brought up to believe.

As secrets are revealed and Isra’s sight, which vanished during her childhood, returned, Isra will have to choose between duty to her people and the beast she has come to love.

Starglass by Phoebe North

Terra has never known anything but life aboard the Asherah, a city-within-a-spaceship that left Earth five hundred years ago in search of refuge. At sixteen, working a job that doesn’t interest her, and living with a grieving father who only notices her when he’s yelling, Terra is sure that there has to be more to life than what she’s got.

But when she inadvertently witnesses the captain’s guard murdering an innocent man, Terra is suddenly thrust into the dark world beneath her ship’s idyllic surface. As she’s drawn into a secret rebellion determined to restore power to the people, Terra discovers that her choices may determine life or death for the people she cares most about. With mere months to go before landing on the long-promised planet, Terra has to make the decision of a lifetime–one that will determine the fate of her people.

Hunted: A House of Night Novel (House of Night Novels) by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast

Hunted House of NightWhat if the hottest guy in the world was hiding a nameless evil, and all he wanted was you?

At the start of this heart-pounding new installment of the bestselling House of Night series, Zoey’s friends have her back again and Stevie Rae and the red fledglings aren’t Neferet’s secrets any longer.  But an unexpected danger has emerged. Neferet guards her powerful new consort, Kalona, and no one at the House of Night seems to understand the threat he poses.  Kalona looks gorgeous, and he has the House of Night under his spell. A past life holds the key to breaking his rapidly spreading influence, but what if this past life shows Zoey secrets she doesn’t want to hear and truths she can’t face?

On the run and holed up in Tulsa’s Prohibition-era tunnels, Zoey and her gang must discover a way to deal with something that might bring them all down.  Meanwhile, Zoey has a few other little problems.  The red fledglings have cleaned up well – they’ve even managed to make the dark, creepy tunnels feel more like home – but are they really as friendly as they seem?  On the boyfriend front, Zoey has a chance to make things right with super-hot ex-, Erik, but she can’t stop thinking about Stark, the archer who died in her arms after one unforgettable night, and she is driven to try to save him from Neferet’s sinister influence at all costs.  Will anyone believe the power evil has to hide among us?

I am Number Four: The Lost Files: Secret Histories (Lorien Legacies) by Pittacus Lore

The perfect companion book to the New York Times bestselling I Am Number Four series!

I Am Number Four: The Lost Files: Secret Histories is a collection of three action-packed novellas that share stories the Mogadorians don’t want you to know about the inner workings of their regime as well as how they engineered the attack on Lorien. Originally published as e-novellas, now, for the first time ever, they are together in one print volume.

You already know the truth about the Garde and the Mogadorian invasion, yet there is still so much to learn. The stories in Secret Histories will help you get the answers you seek, but they will not help you stop the coming war. Only the Garde can save our planet.

Shadows of Glass by Kassy Tayler

Wren’s world has changed. The thing that she fought for, escaping the dome has come to fruition, but it’s not the paradise she thought it would be. Most of the shiners have died, and according to James, she is to blame for many of the deaths, a burden which sits heavy on her shoulders.  Still some have survived and Wren is determined to keep them safe as they fight to establish a home outside while hiding from the rovers who have weapons that can kill  from far away. But as long as she has Pace she knows everything will be fine. Still Wren wonders, as she sees the smoke that continually pours forth from the dome, how did her friends inside fare? Will they ever find out if Lucy, David, Jill and Harry, along with Pace’s mother survive the explosions?

Meanwhile, someone else has also seen the smoke. A band of explorers from across the sea arrive in an airship, curious about the dome, and offering help to those who survive. When Wren meets the handsome Levi Addison, she suddenly questions her love for Pace as Levi offers to show her the world from his airship. Does she really love Pace? Or was it just the circumstances that made her think she did? Meanwhile, word arrives from inside via Pip, and Wren is forced to go back inside the dome, a thing that terrifies her more than anything else, to save her friends. Once she’s back inside will she be able to escape again? 

A whirlwind of adventure, romance, conspiracy and the struggle to stay alive in a dystopian world where nothing is as it seems.

Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy:

The Age of Ice by J.M. Sidorova

Age of IceThe Empress Anna Ioannovna has issued her latest eccentric order: construct a palace out of ice blocks. Inside its walls her slaves build a wedding chamber, a canopy bed on a dais, heavy drapes cascading to the floor—all made of ice. Sealed inside are a disgraced nobleman and a deformed female jester. On the empress’s command—for her entertainment—these two are to be married, the relationship consummated inside this frozen prison. In the morning, guards enter to find them half-dead. Nine months later, two boys are born.

Surrounded by servants and animals, Prince Alexander Velitzyn and his twin brother, Andrei, have an idyllic childhood on the family’s large country estate. But as they approach manhood, stark differences coalesce. Andrei is daring and ambitious; Alexander is tentative and adrift. One frigid winter night on the road between St. Petersburg and Moscow, as he flees his army post, Alexander comes to a horrifying revelation: his body is immune to cold.

J. M. Sidorova’s boldly original and genrebending novel takes readers from the grisly fields of the Napoleonic Wars to the blazing heat of Afghanistan, from the outer reaches of Siberia to the cacophonous streets of nineteenth-century Paris. The adventures of its protagonist, Prince Alexander Velitzyn—on a lifelong quest for the truth behind his strange physiology—will span three continents and two centuries and bring him into contact with an incredible range of real historical figures, from Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, to the licentious Russian empress Elizaveta and Arctic explorer Joseph Billings.

The Age of Ice is one of the most enchanting and inventive debut novels of the year.

Chimera: A Jim Chapel Mission by David Wellington

Afghanistan veteran Jim Chapel has been enlisted in a new war.

This time it’s in his own backyard . . . and even more deadly.

A small band of fugitives escapes from a secret upstate New York military facility, leaving a trail of bodies in its wake. Each fugitive has a target—an innocent civilian—and will not stop until that target has been eliminated.

Wounded Special Forces veteran Jim Chapel has been stuck behind a desk rather than out in the field, but medical technology has finally caught up with his ambitions. Coupled with his unstoppable determination, it will take him back to where he thrives: the thick of the action.

Drafted into a new war, this time in our homeland, Chapel is tasked with hunting a group of escapees from a top secret military compound—all extremely deadly, genetically modified killers—and unraveling the mystery behind their existence. Aided by an enigmatic woman named Angel and a courageous, beautiful veterinarian, Chapel begins a cross-country hunt to stop the murders. But are the killers really rogues, or are they part of a sinister conspiracy that reaches into the highest levels?

Two Fronts (The War That Came Early, Book Five) by Henry Turtledove

Two FrontsIn 1942, two nations switch sides—and World War II takes a horrifying new course.

In the real world, England and France allowed Adolf Hitler to gobble up the Sudetenland in 1938. Once Hitler finished dismembering Czechoslovakia, he was ready to go to war over Poland a year later. But Hitler had always been eager to seize Czechoslovakia, no matter the consequences. So what if England and France had stood up to the Nazis from the start, and not eleven months later? That is the question behind the War That Came Early series.

Four years later, the civil war in Spain drags on, even after General Franco’s death. The United States, still neutral in Europe, fights the Japanese in the Pacific. Russia and Germany go toe-to-toe in Eastern Europe—yet while Hitler stares east, not everything behind him is going as well as he would like. But nothing feeds ingenuity like the fear of losing. The Germans wheel out new tanks and planes, Japan deploys weapons of a very different sort against China, and the United States, England, and France do what they can to strengthen themselves against imminent danger.

Seen through the eyes of ordinary citizens caught in the maelstrom, this is a you-are-there chronicle of battle on land and sea and in the air. Here are terrifying bombing raids that shatter homes, businesses, and the rule of law. Here are commanders issuing orders that, once given, cannot be taken back. And here are the seeds of rebellion sown in blood-soaked soil.

In a war in which sides are switched and allies trust one another only slightly more than they trust their mortal enemies, Nazi Germany has yet to send its Jews to death camps, and dangerous new nationalist powers arise in Eastern Europe. From thrilling submarine battles to the horror of men fighting men and machines all through Europe, Two Fronts captures every aspect of a brilliantly reimagined conflict: the strategic, the political, and the personal force of leaders bending nations to their wills.

The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirtieth Annual Collection edited by Gardner Dozois

In the new millennium, what secrets lay beyond the far reaches of the universe? What mysteries belie the truths we once held to be self evident? The world of science fiction has long been a porthole into the realities of tomorrow, blurring the line between life and art. Now, in The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirtieth Annual Collection the very best SF authors explore ideas of a new world through their short stories. This venerable collection brings together award winning authors and masters of the field such as Robert Reed, Alastair Reynolds, Damien Broderick, Elizabeth Bear, Paul McAuley and John Barnes. And with an extensive recommended reading guide and a summation of the year in science fiction, this annual compilation has become the definitive must-read anthology for all science fiction fans and readers interested in breaking into the genre.

The multiple Locus Award-winning annual compilation of the year’s best science fiction stories

The Black Prism (Lightbringer) by Brent Weeks

From New York Times Bestselling author Brent Weeks

THE BLACK PRISM begins a brand new action-packed tale of magic and adventure …

Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that preserves a tenuous peace. Yet Prisms never last, and Guile knows exactly how long he has left to live.

When Guile discovers he has a son, born in a far kingdom after the war that put him in power, he must decide how much he’s willing to pay to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.

Blighted Empire (Warhammer Time of Legends) by Clint Lee Werner

Second novel in the Time of Legends: The Black Plague series

The Black Plague spreads across the Empire, followed by a tide of monsters from legend: the skaven. In Altdorf, Emperor Boris’s troops valiantly hold off the ratmen while the corrupt Emperor escapes to safety. In Middenheim, Graf Gunthar and his son Mandred defend their city against a horde of the vile invaders. And in Sylvania, the skaven find more than they had expected in the form of the necromancer Vanhal and his army of the dead… an army that gets larger as the plague worsens.

Carniepunk

CarniepunkCome one, come all! The Carniepunk Midway promises you every thrill and chill a traveling carnival can provide. But fear not! Urban fantasy’s biggest stars are here to guide you through this strange and dangerous world. . . .

RACHEL CAINE’s vampires aren’t child’s play, as a naïve teen discovers when her heart leads her far, far astray in “The Cold Girl.” With “Parlor Tricks,” JENNIFER ESTEP pits Gin Blanco, the Elemental Assassin, against the Wheel of Death and some dangerously creepy clowns. SEANAN McGUIRE narrates a poignant, ethereal tale of a mysterious carnival that returns to a dangerous town after twenty years in “Daughter of the Midway, the Mermaid, and the Open, Lonely Sea.” KEVIN HEARNE’s Iron Druid and his wisecracking Irish wolfhound discover in “The Demon Barker of Wheat Street” that the impossibly wholesome sounding Kansas Wheat Festival is actually not a healthy place to hang out. With an eerie, unpredictable twist, ROB THURMAN reveals the fate of a psychopath stalking two young carnies in “Painted Love.”

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