Fresh Meat: July 17 to 23 — 16 Speculative Fiction Releases

Posted July 18, 2016 by Carmel in Fresh Meat / 3 Comments

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Urban Fantasy

Jamie Schultz
Things get a little demonic in the latest Arcane Underwold novel from the author of Splintered.
 
Thanks to their recent involvement with a magus crimelord and his demonic partner in mayhem, occult thieves Anna Ruiz and Karyn Ames are both stuck sharing head space with a demon. But while Karyn’s possession has had the unexpected benefit of focusing her visions of the future, Anna’s demon is spurring on her darkest urges, and it’s only a matter of time before she acts on them—and hurts someone in the process.
 
To save their skins, the two need to find a mysterious relic. But with their search taking them into some of the darkest places in the arcane underworld, Anna and Karyn will have to ally themselves with a group no self-respecting thief would be caught dead with—the Federal Bureau of Investigation…

Jennifer Estep
The New York Times bestselling Elemental Assassin series continues with a new e-novella—from the point of view of Finnegan Lane, the foster brother of Gin Blanco, and a fan favorite of readers of the series.

The fallout from his disastrous “family reunion” in Bitter Bite has left Finn feeling hurt, angry, and depressed. He can barely stand to look at himself in the mirror, much less eat any of the delicious barbecue from Gin’s famed Pork Pit restaurant.

But when the funeral for a slain security guard at his bank turns into a showdown with some nasty underworld giants, Finn knows that he must act in order to protect an innocent family.

Finnegan Lane might be the most unwanted man in Ashland these days, but he’s determined to try to make amends for his past mistakes…

Melissa F. Olson
Alex McKenna is the new Special Agent in Charge of the Chicago office of the Bureau of Paranormal Investigations–the division tasked with investigating crimes involving shades.
Or vampires, as they’re more widely known.
Children have been going missing, and agents are routinely being slaughtered. It’s up to McKenna, and some unlikely allies, to get to the bottom of the problem, and find the kids before it’s too late.
Nightshades is a new gritty urban fantasy from Melissa F. Olson.

At the Publisher’s request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.



Paranormal Romance

Eve Langlais
Stalking is only a crime among humans. In a lioness’s world, it’s called dating.

Jeoff, is a bit of a killjoy, a super cute one who gets furry on full moons.

But so does she.

Luna is everything Jeoff is not. Outrageous, outgoing, and violent. Very violent, and unafraid to go after what she wants—and she wants Jeoff.

Silly man, he thinks he can resist, but once a lioness sets her sights on a man, paws off! And if anyone thinks to try and take him… There’s a reason why the ladies of the pride win the yearly award for Baddest Biatches.

Fear the claw. *Snarl*.

Sharon Lynn Fisher
You’ve never read bedtime stories like these. RITA Award finalist Sharon Lynn Fisher blends dark erotic romance, fantasy, and science fiction in these bold tales of seduction and sensual awakening. . . .
 
THE GARDEN RULES
After swallowing an acorn sweetmeat, Sylva is transported to a fantastical forest and begins training as a nymph at the behest of her faun master. But before she earns the right to please him, she must complete three tantalizing trials.
 
THE DRAGONMAID’S SECRET
On the king’s orders, a mercenary has come to ransack the village of Roussillon. But when he confronts the town’s defender, the dragonmaid Isabeau, he is overwhelmed by the most fiery passions—for this rogue is, in fact, a dragon-shifter.
 
RAVEN TAKES A PEARL
Pearl is a captive of Master Raven—part man, part crow, part machine. And as she submits to the curious probing of the dark-winged inventor, Pearl discovers that her body responds with an all-too-human demand: desire.
 
THE KELPIE’S PRIZE
Dragged beneath a fairy pool by a mechanical horse, Vivi finds herself held prisoner by an alchemist claiming to be Merlin himself. Now, to escape an ancient curse, she must play the wanton seductress—and use her body to secure the release she craves.
 
WILLA AND THE WISP
In the bayou that covers the long-ago flooded city of New Orleans, Willa uses light to keep her safe from the creepers. She never expected that light to take the form of a brightly glowing man—an enigmatic lover who ignites the flame within.
 
THE DRAGONFLY PRINCE
In post-apocalyptic Ireland, a virgin gives her hand in marriage to broker peace with a genetically modified race. But when a human rival challenges the dark prince’s claim, so begins a duel that will push the fair maiden to the limits of pleasure.
 
Before She Wakes is intended for mature audiences. This ebook includes a special message from the editor, as well as an excerpt from another Loveswept title.



Science Fiction / Fantasy

M. J. Rose
As World War I rages and the Romanov dynasty reaches its sudden, brutal end, a young jewelry maker discovers love, passion, and her own healing powers in this rich and romantic ghost story, the perfect follow-up to M.J. Rose’s “brilliantly crafted” (Providence Journal) novel The Witch of Painted Sorrows.

Nestled within Paris’s historic Palais Royal is a jewelry store unlike any other. La Fantasie Russie is owned by Pavel Orloff, protégé to the famous Faberge, and is known by the city’s fashion elite as the place to find the rarest of gemstones and the most unique designs. But war has transformed Paris from a city of style and romance to a place of fear and mourning. In the summer of 1918, places where lovers used to walk, widows now wander alone.

So it is from La Fantasie Russie’s workshop that young, ambitious Opaline Duplessi now spends her time making trench watches for soldiers at the front, as well as mourning jewelry for the mothers, wives, and lovers of those who have fallen. People say that Opaline’s creations are magical. But magic is a word Opaline would rather not use. The concept is too closely associated with her mother Sandrine, who practices the dark arts passed down from their ancestor La Lune, one of sixteenth century Paris’s most famous courtesans.

But Opaline does have a rare gift even she can’t deny, a form of lithomancy that allows her to translate the energy emanating from stones. Certain gemstones, combined with a personal item, such as a lock of hair, enable her to receive messages from beyond the grave. In her mind, she is no mystic, but merely a messenger, giving voice to soldiers who died before they were able to properly express themselves to loved ones. Until one day, one of these fallen soldiers communicates a message—directly to her.

So begins a dangerous journey that will take Opaline into the darkest corners of wartime Paris and across the English Channel, where the exiled Romanov dowager empress is waiting to discover the fate of her family. Full of romance, seduction, and a love so powerful it reaches beyond the grave, The Secret Language of Stones is yet another “spellbindingly haunting” (Suspense magazine), “entrancing read that will long be savored” (Library Journal, starred review).

Nina Allan
A child is kidnapped with consequences that extend across worlds… A writer reaches into the past to discover the truth about a possible murder… Far away a young woman prepares for her mysterious future…

In a future scarred by fracking and ecological collapse, Jenna Hoolman’s world is dominated by illegal smartdog racing: greyhounds genetically modified with human DNA. When her young niece goes missing that world implodes… Christy’s life is dominated by fear of her brother, a man she knows capable of monstrous acts and suspects of hiding even darker ones. Desperate to learn the truth she contacts Alex, who has his own demons to fight… And Maree, a young woman undertaking a journey that will change her world forever.

J. L. Bourne
The acclaimed and eagerly anticipated fourth thriller in the zombie apocalypse series from the author of Day by Day Armageddon and Day by Day Armageddon: Beyond Exile, for fans of the smash hit show The Walking Dead.

In a desperate bid to survive as hordes of bloodthirsty undead now dominate the ravaged U.S. population, a Navy commander discovers an incredible secret about the pandemic in this fourth novel in the acclaimed Day by Day Armageddon series.

Task Force Phoenix may be humanity’s final hope, and the narrator’s agonizing decisions could mean living one more day—or surrendering to the eternal hell that exists between life and death.

Ghost Run is a suspenseful, gripping, and intelligent thriller that will terrify die-hard horror fans and reinforce J.L. Bourne’s reputation as “the new king of hardcore zombie action” (Brad Thor, author of Act of War).

Stephen S. Power
For fans of Scott Lynch and Naomi Novik comes a high fantasy epic that blends swashbuckling adventure with a dark tale of vengeance–when a ship captain is stranded on a deserted island by his mutinous crew, he finds a rare dragon egg that just might be the key to his salvation and his revenge.

He only wanted justice. Instead he got revenge.

Jeryon has been the captain of the Comber for over a decade. He knows the rules. He follows the rules. He likes the rules. But not everyone on his ship agrees. When a monstrous dragon attacks the Comber, his surviving crew, vengeful and battle-worn, decide to take the ship for themselves and give Jeryon and his self-righteous apothecary “the captain’s chance:” a small boat with no rudder, no sails, and nothing but the shirts on their backs to survive.

Marooned and fighting for their lives against the elements, Jeryon and his companion discover that the island they’ve landed on isn’t quite as deserted as they originally thought. They find a rare baby dragon that, if trained, just might be their ticket off the island. But as Jeryon and the dragon grow closer, he begins to realize that even if he makes it off the island, his life will never be the same again. In order for justice to be served, he’ll have to take it for himself.

Harry Turtledove
The novels of Harry Turtledove show history balancing on single moments: One act of folly. One poor decision. One moment of rage. In this astounding new series, the unthinkable has come to pass. The Cold War turns hot—and the United States and the Soviet Union unleash their nuclear arsenals upon each other. Millions die. Millions more are displaced. Germans battle side by side with Americans, Polish freedom fighters next to Russian fascists. The genie is out of the bottle. And there’s no telling what fresh hell will come next.
 
At the heart of Fallout are Harry Truman and Josef Stalin. Even as Joe McCarthy rises in power, the U.S. president is focused elsewhere, planning to cut off the head of the Soviet threat by taking out Stalin. It’s a daring gambit, but the Soviets have one of their own. Meanwhile, Europe’s weak sisters, France and Italy, seem poised to choose the winning side, while China threatens to overrun Korea. With Great Britain ravaged and swaths of America in ruins, leaders are running out of options. When the United States drops another series of bombs to slow the Russian advance in Europe, Stalin strikes back—with horrifying results.
 
These staggering events unfold through the eyes of a sprawling cast of characters: a Holocaust survivor in a displaced persons camp in Washington; the wife of a bomber pilot and her five-year-old daughter starting a new existence; a savage Soviet fighter waging war by his own rules; a British pub owner falling in love with an American pilot. In the masterly hands of Harry Turtledove, this epic chronicle of war becomes a story of human struggle. As the armies of the world implode, the next chapter will be written by the survivors—those willing to rise up for an uncertain future.
 
From the Hardcover edition.

Jon Hollins
Guardians of the Galaxy meets TheHobbit in this rollicking fantasy adventure.
It’s not easy to live in a world ruled by dragons. The taxes are high and their control is complete. But for one group of bold misfits, it’s time to band together and steal back some of that wealth.
No one said they were smart.

Evan Currie

Battle-weary after a desperate fight to save Earth from the Drasin alien onslaught, Confederation Captain Eric Weston is tasked with a perilous new mission. He and the crew of the Odysseus must hunt down those who unleashed the hellish attack on his homeworld and that of Earth’s Priminae allies.

But the situation turns dire when they catch sight of a ship belonging to the mysterious beings who orchestrate the fearsome Drasin’s depredations. This powerful Empire, it seems, has two primary aims: to conquer new worlds and settle old scores. Weston’s ultimate objective: keep humanity from becoming collateral damage as the Drasin war expands to engulf the galaxy.

Jenni Fagan
The stunning new novel from the highly-acclaimed author of The Panopticon

It’s November of 2020, and the world is freezing over. Each day colder than the last.
There’s snow in Israel, the Thames is overflowing, and an iceberg separated from the Fjords in Norway is expected to drift just off the coast of Scotland. As ice water melts into the Atlantic, frenzied London residents evacuate by the thousands for warmer temperatures down south. But not Dylan. Grieving and ready to build life anew, he heads north to bury his mother’s and grandmother’s ashes on the Scottish islands where they once lived. 

Hundreds of miles away, twelve-year-old Estella and her survivalist mother, Constance, scrape by in the snowy, mountainous Highlands, preparing for a record-breaking winter. Living out of a caravan, they spend their days digging through landfills, searching for anything with restorative and trading value. When Dylan arrives in their caravan park in the middle of the night, life changes course for Estella and Constance. Though the weather worsens, his presence brings a new light to daily life, and when the ultimate disaster finally strikes, they’ll all be ready. 

Written in incandescent, dazzling prose, The Sunlight Pilgrims is a visionary story of courage and resilience in the midst of nature’s most violent hour; by turns an homage to the portentous beauty of our natural world, and to just how strong we can be, if the will and the hope is there, to survive its worst. 

– NPR “Best Books of 2016” – Family Matters, Identity & Culture, Science Fiction & Fantasy, and Tales from Around the World



Young Adult

Gail Carriger
From New York Times bestselling author Gail Carriger comes the delightful sequel to Prudence.

Rue and the crew of the Spotted Custard return from India with revelations that shake the foundations of England’s scientific community. Queen Victoria is not amused, the vampires are tetchy, and something is wrong with the local werewolf pack. To top it all off, Rue’s best friend Primrose keeps getting engaged to the most unacceptable military types.

Rue has family problems as well. Her vampire father is angry, her werewolf father is crazy, and her obstreperous mother is both. Worst of all, Rue’s beginning to suspect what they really are… is frightened.

Carrie Jones

New York Times bestselling author Carrie Jones introduces sassy alien-hunting cheerleader Mana in Flying, the launch of a sparkling new YA Science Fiction series.

People have always treated seventeen-year-old Mana as someone in need of protection. She’s used to being coddled, being an only child, but it’s hard to imagine anything could ever happen in her small-town, normal life. As her mother’s babying gets more stifling than ever, she’s looking forward to cheering at the big game and getting out of the house for a while.

But that night, Mana’s life goes haywire.

First, the hot guy she’s been crushing on at school randomly flips out and starts spitting acid during the game. Then they get into a knockdown, drag-out fight in the locker room, during which Mana finds herself leaping around like a kangaroo on steroids. As a flyer on the cheerleading squad, she’s always been a good jumper, but this is a bit much. By the time she gets home and finds her house trashed and an alien in the garage, Mana starts to wonder if her mother had her reasons for being overprotective.

It turns out, Mana’s frumpy, timid mom is actually an alien hunter, and now she’s missing–taking a piece of technology with her that everyone wants their hands on, both human and alien. Now her supposed partner, a guy that Mana has never met or heard of (and who seems way too young and way too arrogant to be hunting aliens), has shown up, ordering Mana to come with him. Now, on her own for the first time, Mana will have to find a way to save her mother–and maybe the world–and hope she’s up to the challenge.

At the Publisher’s request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

Brandon Sanderson

The Shattered Lens is the fourth action-packed fantasy adventure in the Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians series for young readers by the #1 New York Times bestselling author Brandon Sanderson. These fast-paced and funny novels are now available in deluxe hardcover editions illustrated by Hayley Lazo.

Alcatraz Smedry is up against a whole army of Evil Librarians with only his friend Bastille, a few pairs of glasses, and an unlimited supply of exploding teddy bears to help him. This time, even Alcatraz’s extraordinary talent for breaking things may not be enough to defeat the army of Evil Librarians and their giant librarian robots.

“An excellent choice to read aloud to the whole family. It’s funny, exciting, and briskly paced.” —Nancy Pearl on NPR’S Morning Edition

At the Publisher’s request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.



Carmel Signature

Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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