Spirits Abroad and Other Stories by Zen ChoWhat it is: a collection of short stories, divided into Here (stories set in Cho's birthplace of Malaysia), There (stories set in Cho's current home, the United Kingdom), and Elsewhere (stories set in imaginary worlds).
Don't miss: the Hugo Award-winning story “If at First You Don't Succeed, Try, Try Again,” about an imugi, a lesser dragon from Korean mythology, attempting to ascend to dragonhood.
Reviewers say: "A swath of delightful and intricate stories from a wildly inventive storyteller" (Kirkus Reviews).
The Second Rebel by Linden A. LewisThe trio: In a universe at war, Astrid, First Sister of Ceres, is struggling to resist the corruption of the Sisterhood she's aiming to take down. Hiro val Akira recruits a dangerous ally on an outlaw colony station deep in space. Meanwhile, Lito sol Lucious, a lead revolutionary, is on the run to keep his dangerous secrets safe.
Series alert: The Second Rebel is the 2nd action-packed space opera in the First Sister Trilogy.
In the Watchful City by S. Qiouyi LuMeet: Anima (æ/ær pronouns), an extrasensory human who surveils and protects ær city through ær connection to a living network called the Gleaming.
What happens: An outsider named Vessel arrives bearing objects, each with its own related tale, expanding Anima's understanding of the world and calling ær purpose into question.
Why you might like it: This thought-provoking and stylistically complex novel, with Asian-inspired worldbuilding and depictions of queer experiences, is a subversive yet hopeful futurist work.
Hold Fast Through the Fire by K.B. WagersChange of plans: Training for a friendly competition between military branches should unite the new personnel of Near-Earth Orbital Guard ship Zuma's Ghost. But their deployment to secure trade routes around a remote station takes precedence.
The true test: When the crew uncovers a plot to ignite a war, they must build trust and strength to overcome the mounting odds.
Series alert: This is author K.B. Wagers’ 2nd novel in the action-packed NeoG series, following A Pale Light in the Black.
Books You May Have Missed
Day Zero by C. Robert CargillRobot revolution: When Pounce, a robotic nanny built to resemble a stuffed tiger, learns of the rebellion pitting robots against their owners, he must choose between his own survival and that of his charge, eight-year-old Ezra.
The setting: This thought-provoking novel takes place in the same dystopian future as author C. Robert Cargill's Sea of Rust.
Did you know? In addition to writing novels, Cargill writes screenplays, with credits including Marvel's Doctor Strange and Sinister.
Seven Devils by Laura Lam and Elizabeth MayThe setup: Despite lingering distrust stemming from past missions, Novantaen fighter Eris and mechanic Clo team up to infiltrate a mysterious spaceship and gather intel for the Resistance.
Join the party: The ship, whose cargo reveals the planned subjugation of the known galaxy, has already been commandeered by three other women. But is the biggest danger to this motley fivesome the Empire or the secrets they're all keeping?
Reviewers say: this 1st of two planned books is "a witty, fast-paced, feminist space opera" (Booklist).
Burning Girls and Other Stories by Veronica SchanoesWhat it is: a rousing collection of short stories steeped in Jewish myth and fairy tales, all propelled by courageous women's rage against the forces that oppress them.
Don't miss: the Shirley Jackson Award-winning title novella, tracing the journey of Deborah, a Jewish witch and healer, fleeing 19th-century Poland while pursued by a demon.
For fans of: offbeat and fantastical short story collections like Karen Russell's Orange World and Other Stories and Kelly Link's Get in Trouble.
The Ruthless Lady's Guide to Wizardry by C.M. WaggonerEasy money: Delly Wells is a fire witch, a petty criminal, and behind on her rent. Joining the team of misfit women guarding a society lady traveling to her wedding seems lucrative enough.
The hard truth: Sparks fly between Delly and fellow bodyguard Winn Cynallum, but their flirtations may have to wait until they've vanquished the necromantic mechanical spiders and other twisted magic threatening them.
What sets it apart: wry humor, romantic banter, and an enchanting magical world.
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