Fresh Meat: February 25 to March 3 — 20 Speculative Fiction Releases

Posted February 26, 2018 by Carmel in Fresh Meat / 2 Comments

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Urban Fantasy / Mystery / Horror

Laura Bickle

In the backcountry of Yellowstone, evil moves below the surface . . .

Following Nine of Stars comes the next chapter in Laura Bickle’s critically acclaimed Wildlands series

As the daughter of an alchemist, Petra Dee has battled supernatural horrors and experienced astonishing wonders. But there’s no magic on earth that can defeat her recent cancer diagnosis, or help find her missing husband, Gabriel. Still, she would bet all her remaining days that the answer to his disappearance lies in the dark subterranean world beneath the Rutherford Ranch on the outskirts of Temperance, Wyoming.

Gabe is being held prisoner by the sheriff and heir to the ranch, Owen Rutherford. Owen is determined to harness the power of the Tree of Life—and he needs Gabe to reveal its magic. Secretly, the sheriff has also made a pact to free a creature of the underground, a flesh-devouring mermaid. Muirenn has vowed to exact vengeance on Gabe, who helped imprison her, but first . . . she’s hungry. Once freed, she will swim into Yellowstone—to feed.

With her coyote sidekick Sig, Petra must descend into the underworld to rescue Gabe before it’s too late . . . for both of them.

K.D. Keenan
K.D. Keenan returns with the action-packed second installment in the Gods of the New World series, Fire in the Ocean, a paranormal fantasy steeped in Ancient Hawaiian lore perfect for fans of Patricia Briggs and C.E. Murphy.

After saving the world once, Sierra’s earned a vacation. She’s thinking Hawaii: sun, surf, sand. With her boyfriend called away for work, she’ll make do with the company of her friends Chaco, also known as Coyotl the trickster, and Fred, a mischievous mannegishi with the power to disappear and reappear at will. When the motley crew is swept overboard during a whale watching trip and encounter a mysterious white octopus, they are plunged into a whole new adventure that will test their magical mettle.

Pulled ashore on the island of Molokai, Sierra finds hospitality and powerful friends. When she is asked to prevent the construction of a potentially disruptive energy plant, she is drawn into a tangle of godly proportions. But the machinations of the gods can be opaque at best—and sometimes downright lethal for mortals.

For Sierra, the sun, surf, and sand are still there, but Hawaii is far more than a day at the beach.

Michael Andreasen
An astonishing fiction debut from a UC Irvine MFA graduate and recent contributor to The New Yorker.

Bewitching and playful, with its feet only slightly tethered to the world we know, The Sea Beast Takes a Lover explores hope, love, and loss across a series of surreal landscapes and wild metamorphoses. Just because Jenny was born without a head doesn’t mean she isn’t still annoying to her older brother, and just because the Man of the Future’s carefully planned extramarital affair ends in alien abduction and network fame doesn’t mean he can’t still pine for his absent wife. Romping through the fantastic with big-hearted ease, these stories cut to the core of what it means to navigate family, faith, and longing, whether in the form of a lovesick kraken slowly dragging a ship of sailors into the sea, a small town euthanizing its grandfathers in a time-honored ritual, or a third-grade field trip learning that time travel is even more wondrous–and more perilous–than they might imagine.

Andreasen’s stories are simultaneously daring and deeply familiar, unfolding in wildly inventive worlds that convey our common yearning for connection and understanding. With a captivating new voice from an incredible author, The Sea Beast Takes a Lover uses the supernatural and extraordinary to expose us at our most human.

Seth Patrick

The third in Seth Patrick’s genre-bending trilogy, following Reviver and Lost Souls, delivers chilling twists as a forensic detective revives the dead to exhume a world-changing conspiracy.

Opening with The Reviver and continuing in Lost Souls, this genre-bending series has been described as CSI meets The Sixth Sense. The trilogy takes place in our world, but with a chilling twist: certain people have the ability to wake the recently dead for testimony that is accepted in courts worldwide. The use of these so-called Revivers has long been a routine part of police investigation. But things are changing…something vast and dangerous is hiding in the dark, just waiting to wreak havoc on our world.

The Dead Road is where it all comes to an end—maybe literally.

Carol J. Perry
There’s a new witch-hunt in Salem, Massachusetts . . .
When Lee Barrett joins a former student’s bridal party as maid of honor, she expects cake tastings and dress fittings. But wedding planning becomes more peculiar than Lee’s scrying talents could ever predict. There’s a magical baker, a best man with a checkered past, and a talking crow named Poe as the ring bearer. There’s also a kindly old man dead under his apple tree—one of a series of unexplained deaths hanging over the Wiccan community . . .
With witches dropping dead before they even come out of the proverbial broom closet, Lee’s best friend, River, fears she might have somehow unleashed a terrible curse on the city. Now, aided by Poe and her clairvoyant cat, Lee sets out to investigate. Are lives being claimed by vengeful supernatural forces—or by something more shocking? She soon discovers, casting light on the wicked truth can be one killer commitment . . .  
Praise for the Witch City Mysteries
“This rewarding paranormal cozy series debut will have Victoria Laurie fans lining up to follow.”
Library Journal on Caught Dead Handed
“Perfectly relaxing and readable.” —Kirkus Reviews on Look Both Ways


Larissa Ione
From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Larissa Ione comes a new story in her Demonica Underworld series…

As a special class of earthbound guardian angel called Memitim, Hawkyn is charged with protecting those whose lives are woven into the fabric of the future. His success is legendary, so when he’s given a serial killer to watch over, he sees no reason for that to change. But Hawkyn’s own future is jeopardized after he breaks the rules and rescues a beautiful woman from the killer’s clutches, setting off an explosive, demonic game of cat and mouse that pits brother against brother and that won’t end until someone dies.

Aurora Mercer is the half-wytch lone survivor of a psychopath who gets off on the sadistic torture of his victims. A psychopath whose obsessive psyche won’t let him move on until he kills her. Now she’s marked for death, her fate tied to that of a murderer…and to a sexy angel who makes her blood burn with desire…

**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you’ll enjoy each one as much as we do.**

Alyssa Day
WARNING: CLIFFHANGER!!! This book has a MAJOR cliffhanger that is wrapped up in March in Atlantis! If you don’t like cliffhangers, wait till March in Atlantis and read both!!

Poseidon’s Warrior Jake spent years exploring the world and developing a cool, laid-back exterior to mask the turmoil of emotion he’s fighting so hard to control. But when he rescues what his boat-mates think is a mermaid (she’s a Sea Fae; mermaids don’t exist) and Poseidon himself hurls him into the middle of missions to protect humanity, Jake’s surfer-boy disguise won’t last for long.

And when he meets human-turned-falcon-shifter Savannah in the middle of a deadly hostage situation, the protective instincts–and perhaps the madness–that Jake has held bottled up for so long is about to explode.

Fighting his own instincts, his soul’s longing for his mate, and a dangerous group of human nationalists who want to destroy everything–and everyone–supernatural, Jake will have to discover what is most important to him. And he’ll have to do all of this–while falling in love–in FEBRUARY IN ATLANTIS.

Warning: This book contains magic, Atlantis, Poseidon, warriors, human nationalists, falcon shifters, an armed standoff, a surfer boy, a king and queen, the FBI Paranormal Operations division, a black sheep, bad boys, paranormal romance, fantasy, matchmaking, laughter, danger, kisses, and a happily ever after. Read at your own risk!

Other Books by Alyssa:

Halloween in Atlantis
Christmas in Atlantis
January in Atlantis
February in Atlantis
March in Atlantis
April in Atlantis
May in Atlantis
June in Atlantis
July in Atlantis
August in Atlantis
September in Atlantis
October in Atlantis
November in Atlantis
December in Atlantis

Dead Eye
Private Eye
Travelling Eye (a short story)
Evil Eye

Alejandro’s Sorceress (a novella)
William’s Witch (a short story)
Damon’s Enchantress (a novella)
Jake’s Djinn (a short story in the Second Chances anthology, later to be available as a stand-alone)

Atlantis Rising
Wild Hearts in Atlantis (a novella; originally in the WILD THING anthology)
Atlantis Awakening
Shifter’s Lady (a novella; originally in the SHIFTER anthology)
Atlantis Unleashed
Atlantis Unmasked
Atlantis Redeemed
Atlantis Betrayed
Vampire in Atlantis
Heart of Atlantis
Alejandro’s Sorceress (a related novella; begins the Cardinal Witches spinoff series)

The Cursed
The Curse of the Black Swan (a novella; coming later as standalone, originally in the ENTHRALLED anthology)
The Treasured (coming as a free gift to newsletter subscribers)

Second Chances

Email to the Front

Science Fiction / Fantasy

Jon Sprunk
In a world of sorcery and sand, a slave rebellion is out of control and an army of undead is approaching. Does Horace have the power and strength to save what he fought so hard to win?

In a setting reminiscent of ancient Egypt and Babylon, where God-Kings and God-Queens hold the power of life and death in their hands, Horace, the onetime slave who became a powerful magician, has turned the tables on his former masters. Blade and Bone, the third book in The Book of the Black Earth, follows Horace, Alyra, and Jirom as they navigate the hurdles of managing the slave rebellion under the Akeshian Empire’s nose. But evil is not content to sit back and let them gather their strength. A new threat is coming in the form of an unstoppable army of the walking dead. To face this enemy, our heroes will have to dig deeper and find a strength they didn’t know they possessed.

Christopher Nuttall

Christopher G. Nuttall’s novel of human fear and survival, set in the thrilling world of his Angel in the Whirlwind series.

A year after the Commonwealth won the war with the Theocracy, the interstellar cruise liner Supreme is on its maiden voyage, carrying a host of aristocrats thrilled to be sharing in a wondrous adventure among the stars. The passengers include the owner and his daughters, Angela and Nancy. Growing up with all the luxuries in the world, neither sister has ever known true struggle, but that all changes when a collision with a pirate ship leaves the cruiser powerless and becalmed in hyperspace. And they’re not alone.

Now, the mysterious force that’s living on this floating graveyard is coming for Supreme’s crew and passengers. As madness starts to tear at their minds, they must fight to survive in a strange alien realm.

And there’s no way out…

Paolo Bacigalupi, Tobias S. Buckell
From award-winning and New York Times bestselling authors Paolo Bacigalupi and Tobias Buckell comes a fantasy novel told in four parts about a land crippled by the use of magic, and a tyrant who is trying to rebuild an empire—unless the people find a way to resist.

Khaim, The Blue City, is the last remaining city in a crumbled empire that overly relied upon magic until it became toxic. It is run by a tyrant known as The Jolly Mayor and his devious right hand, the last archmage in the world. Together they try to collect all the magic for themselves so they can control the citizens of the city. But when their decadence reaches new heights and begins to destroy the environment, the people stage an uprising to stop them.

In four interrelated parts, The Tangled Lands is an evocative and epic story of resistance and heroic sacrifice in the twisted remains surrounding the last great city of Khaim. Paolo Bacigalupi and Tobias Buckell have created a fantasy for our times about a decadent and rotting empire facing environmental collapse from within—and yet hope emerges from unlikely places with women warriors and alchemical solutions.

Spencer Ellsworth

Spencer Ellsworth’s Starfire space opera trilogy, a gritty, adult science-fiction adventure, concludes with Starfire: Memory’s Blade

At the heart of the Dark Zone, a duel for the universe rages.

In an ancient Jorian temple, Jaqi faces John Starfire, the new ruler of the Empire. He has set all the worlds aflame in his quest to destroy humankind. Jaqi has sworn to stop him. Problem is, Jaqi isn’t much of a fighter.

Meanwhile, the sun-eating cosmic spiders, the Shir, have moved out of the Dark Zone and are consuming the galaxy. Araskar knows that he must hold them back, but to do that, he has to give himself over to the Resistance, under the command of John Starfire’s wife. And she wants him dead more than she wants the stars to live.

If Jaqi and Araskar can fight their way out, they can use a secret at the heart of the Dark Zone to free the galaxy, and end John Starfire’s new tyranny. They lose, and every star in the sky will go dark.

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

Dima Zales, Anna Zaires
From New York Times and USA Today bestseller Dima Zales comes the highly anticipated conclusion to the Human++ trilogy

It’s been four and a half years since my friends and I revolutionized the world with our Brainocyte technology. I have a beautiful wife, a genius son, and more money than I know what to do with. My current problem? Not everyone appreciates the brave new world we’ve built.

With enemies where I can least expect them, our life-saving technology could turn out to be the end of everything… even humanity itself.

Ezekiel Boone
In the thrilling, nerve-wracking finale of Ezekiel Boone’s “hair-raising” (Parade) Hatching series, the United States goes to war against the queen spiders that threaten to overtake the human race forever.

The world is on the brink of apocalypse. Zero Day has come.

The only thing more terrifying than millions of spiders is the realization that those spiders work as one. But among the government, there is dissent: do we try to kill all of the spiders, or do we gamble on Professor Guyer’s theory that we need to kill only the queens?

For President Stephanie Pilgrim, it’s an easy answer. She’s gone as far as she can—more than two dozen American cities hit with tactical nukes, the country torn asunder—and the only answer is to believe in Professor Guyer. Unfortunately, Ben Broussard and the military men who follow him don’t agree, and Pilgrim, Guyer, and the loyal members of the government have to flee, leaving the question: what’s more dangerous, the spiders or ourselves?

New Adult / Young Adult / Middle Grade

Gena Showalter
Don’t miss the EPIC CONCLUSION to the Everlife novels, a series fans calls “vividly unique,” “unforgettable” and “exhilarating.” New from Gena Showalter, author of the New York Times bestselling The White Rabbit Chronicles, comes a series finale that will keep you on the edge of your seat rooting for the characters until the very last page.

“Utterly unique and absolutely riveting—I couldn’t put it down! What a marvelously cool world.” —Sarah J. Maas, New York Times bestselling author, on Firstlife



At seventeen years old, Tenley “Ten” Lockwood had to make the ultimate choice—where to live after she died. Loyalty to her selected realm has not wavered…until now. She is out of time. Sacrifices must be made, and a terrible price must be paid. But is she too late?

As the Everlife descends into darkness, a single truth becomes clear: Troika and Myriad must unite—or perish. In order to bring sworn enemies together, Ten must enter forbidden territory…and destroy the powerful Prince of Ravens. But there’s only one way inside—bonding with Killian Flynn, a deadly rival who sets her blood aflame.

When nothing goes as planned and betrayal leads to the edge of utter defeat, Ten and Killian will have to rebuild trust from the ashes of their hearts. Victory seems impossible, the odds stacked against them. In the end, how far will they be willing to go for the sake of their realms and the Everlife?

Lifeblood ramps up the action ‘Ten’fold—don’t miss this exhilarating sequel to Firstlife!” —P.C. Cast, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Firstlife…illuminat[es] the depths of human resilience and the power of love, even in the darkest hours.” —Kresley Cole, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Arcana Chronicles

“I couldn’t stop rooting for Ten, an unforgettable and powerful heroine who is obsessed with numbers, creates the coolest reverse poems, and fascinates the baddest bad boy Showalter has ever written.” —Kristin Cast, #1 New York Times bestselling author, on Firstlife

“Raw, edgy and dark—Firstlife will leave you craving more.” —Wendy Higgins, New York Times bestselling author of the Sweet series

Tricia Levenseller

The capable, confident, and occasionally ruthless heroine of Daughter of the Pirate King is back in this action-packed sequel that promises rousing high seas adventures and the perfect dash of magic.

Alosa’s mission is finally complete. Not only has she recovered all three pieces of the map to a legendary hidden treasure, but the pirates who originally took her captive are now prisoners on her ship. Still unfairly attractive and unexpectedly loyal, first mate Riden is a constant distraction, but now he’s under her orders. And she takes great comfort in knowing that the villainous Vordan will soon be facing her father’s justice.

When Vordan exposes a secret her father has kept for years, Alosa and her crew find themselves in a deadly race with the feared Pirate King. Despite the danger, Alosa knows they will recover the treasure first . . . after all, she is the daughter of the Siren Queen.

In Daughter of the Siren Queen, Tricia Levenseller brings together the perfect mix of thrilling action, tense battle scenes, and a heart-pounding romance.

Ashley Poston

An action-packed tale full of romance, royalty, and adventure, inspired by the story of Anastasia. Perfect for fans of Six of Crows,Cinder, and the cult classic television show Firefly.

Seventeen-year-old Ana is a scoundrel by nurture and an outlaw by nature. Found as a child drifting through space with a sentient android called D09, Ana was saved by a fearsome space captain and the grizzled crew she now calls family. But D09—one of the last remaining illegal Metals—has been glitching, and Ana will stop at nothing to find a way to fix him.

Ana’s desperate effort to save D09 leads her on a quest to steal the coordinates to a lost ship that could offer all the answers. But at the last moment, a spoiled Ironblood boy beats Ana to her prize. He has his own reasons for taking the coordinates, and he doesn’t care what he’ll sacrifice to keep them.

When everything goes wrong, she and the Ironblood end up as fugitives on the run. Now their entire kingdom is after them—and the coordinates—and not everyone wants them captured alive.

What they find in a lost corner of the universe will change all their lives—and unearth dangerous secrets. But when a darkness from Ana’s past returns, she must face an impossible choice: does she protect a kingdom that wants her dead or save the Metal boy she loves?

Alisa Kwitney
“Alisa Kwitney has an understanding of human foibles and follies and a light, intelligent touch that marks her as an author to watch and enjoy.”
—#1 New York Times bestselling author Neil Gaiman

Frankenstein meets Marissa Meyer’s Cinder in this tightly paced historical thriller packed with secrets, betrayal and steamy romance.

When Elizabeth Lavenza enrolled at Ingold as its first female medical student, she knew she wouldn’t have an easy time. From class demands to being an outsider among her male cohorts, she’ll have to go above and beyond to prove herself.

So when she stumbles across what appears to be a faulty Bio-Mechanical—one of the mechanized cadavers created to service the school—she jumps at the chance to fix it and get ahead in the program. Only this Bio-Mechanical isn’t like the others. This one seems to have thoughts, feelings…and self-awareness.

Soon Elizabeth realizes that it is Victor Frankenstein—a former student who died under mysterious circumstances. Suddenly Elizabeth finds herself entwined in his dark secrets, ones he might have been murdered to keep buried.

“Fiendishly clever and gorgeously romantic. Alisa Kwitney spins an electrifying tale of beautiful monsters and mad scientists that will keep your nerves tingling and your heart racing long into the night.”
—Carol Goodman, New York Times bestselling author of The Metropolitans

“Fans of Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles will enjoy this.”

“In this inventive Victorian-era steampunk tale…Kwitney blends elements of murder mystery, classic science fiction, and gothic romance, all cleverly framed around a Beauty and the Beast take on Frankenstein.”

“A dark, thrilling and ingenious riff on the Frankenstein legend.”
—M.R. Carey, author of The Girl with All the Gifts

“Strikingly written and impeccably conjured.”
—Gwenda Bond, author of the Lois Lane series

“It swept me right away.”
—Delia Sherman, author of The Great Detective

Mike Lancaster
After preventing conservative MP Victor Palgrave from engineering a human mind-controlled teenage army, Joe Dyson and Ani Lee, operatives for a secret youth division of British Intelligence, have probably earned a rest. But there’s no time to be lax with bizarre new developments popping up across the UK and the world.

While busting a group that’s pressing teen runaways into slave labor building tech, Joe discovers a computer component not yet out on the market, linked to a very popular, but highly secretive gaming company based in California. Meanwhile, skilled hacker Ani works her way into a vigilante hacking ring intent on using viral social media to bring the truth to the world and bring world governments to their knees. They’re method: rewriting reality, virtually, so that the world never knows the difference.

As Ani’s and Joe’s missions draw closer together, they realize that they have been corralled into a real-life video game—one where the levels are constantly being rewritten, and the stakes are constantly shifting.

What happens when AI evolves to the point where it has a mind of its own? When the computer threatens to turn on its master? Joe, Ani, and the world are about to find out.

Rachel Hartman
Meet Tess, a brave new heroine from beloved epic fantasy author Rachel Hartman.

“Surprising, rewarding, and enlightening, both a fantasy adventure and a meta discourse on consent, shame, and female empowerment.”–Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Not to be ignored. Absolutely essential.”–Booklist, starred review

In the medieval kingdom of Goredd, women are expected to be ladies, men are their protectors, and dragons can be whomever they choose. Tess is none of these things. Tess is. . . different. She speaks out of turn, has wild ideas, and can’t seem to keep out of trouble. Then Tess goes too far. What she’s done is so disgraceful, she can’t even allow herself to think of it. Unfortunately, the past cannot be ignored. So Tess’s family decide the only path for her is a nunnery.

But on the day she is to join the nuns, Tess chooses a different path for herself. She cuts her hair, pulls on her boots, and sets out on a journey. She’s not running away, she’s running towards something. What that something is, she doesn’t know. Tess just knows that the open road is a map to somewhere else–a life where she might belong.

Returning to the spellbinding world of the Southlands she created in the award-winning, New York Times bestselling novel Seraphina, Rachel Hartman explores self-reliance and redemption in this wholly original fantasy.

Jennifer A. Nielsen
Nothing is as it seems in the kingdom of Antora. Kestra Dallisor has spent three years in exile in the Lava Fields, but that won’t stop her from being drawn back into her father’s palace politics. He’s the right hand man of the cruel king, Lord Endrick, which makes Kestra a valuable bargaining chip. A group of rebels knows this all too well — and they snatch Kestra from her carriage as she reluctantly travels home.

The kidnappers want her to retrieve the lost Olden Blade, the only object that can destroy the immortal king, but Kestra is not the obedient captive they expected. Simon, one of her kidnappers, will have his hands full as Kestra tries to foil their plot, by force, cunning, or any means necessary. As motives shift and secrets emerge, both will have to decide what — and who — it is they’re fighting for.

Jennifer A. Nielsen introduces us to an unforgettable new heroine in this epic tale of treachery and intrigue, love and deceit.

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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