Many of the genre’s biggest names are looking toward the near future, and their works coming out this spring forecast ecological and economic disaster and show how humans can survive and even thrive.
Lara Elena Donnelly. Tor, Feb. 7
Donnelly’s debut, a fast-moving tale of desperate love and intrigue in a created world that recalls Europe on the brink of WWII, is emotionally wrenching and shockingly timely.
Carrie Vaughn. HMH/Mariner/Adams, July 11
This novel, which builds on several of Vaughn’s acclaimed short stories, is set in a dystopian future when communities must prove their viability before new children are permitted.
The Book of Etta
Meg Elison. Amazon/47North, Feb. 21
In this magnificently unsettling novel, set decades after the apocalypse depicted in The Book of the Unnamed Midwife, a transgender man tries to find his place in a world where women are the scarcest commodity.
The Devil Crept In
Ania Ahlborn. S&S/Gallery, Feb. 7
Ahlborn is at the top of her game with this intimate horror novel, which focuses on the relationship between overwhelmed mothers and the sons they can’t save.
Peter S. Beagle. Tachyon, Feb. 14
Venerated fantasist Beagle, still best known for The Last Unicorn nearly 50 years after its first publication, contrasts ethereal magic with modern media spectacle in a very different tale of a unicorn and her human companion.
New York 2140
Kim Stanley Robinson. Orbit, Mar. 14
Always the optimist, Robinson finds ways to paint a hopeful picture of a flooded near-future New York City, where rising seas have turned the streets into canals.
The Stars Are Legion
Kameron Hurley. S&S/Saga, Feb. 7
Hurley, who’s earned increasing acclaim for both her fiction and her essays, sets this intricate and morally complex novel in a universe of warring world ships populated entirely by women.
The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter
Theodora Goss. S&S/Saga, June 20
Fans of Goss’s short fiction and poetry will be thrilled to see her expertise in Victorian literature on display in her first novel, about the daughters and other creations of doctors Jekyll, Frankenstein, and Moreau.
Sofia Samatar. Small Beer, Apr. 11
This first collection of Samatar’s lauded short fiction is sure to impress those who only know her through her groundbreaking Olondria fantasy novels.
Cory Doctorow. Tor, Apr. 25
Author and activist Doctorow constructs a near future where enormous gulfs between rich and poor lead to the poor opting out of society altogether, with unexpected consequences.
SF, Fantasy & Horror Listings
Sorcerer Royal by Zen Cho (July 4, hardcover, $27, ISBN 978-0-425-28341-7). Cho’s debut, Sorcerer to the Crown, made major waves with its blend of Regency romance and fascinating magic. The sequel raises the stakes with threats of war between the fairy and human realms.
When the English Fall by David Williams (July 11, hardcover, $24.95, ISBN 978-1-61620-522-5). Williams’s debut recounts the experiences of an Amish man trying to protect his community when technology fails and outsiders begin raiding self-sufficient farms.
The Book of Etta by Meg Elison (Feb. 21, trade paper, $14.95, ISBN 978-1-5039-4182-3). In this gritty sequel to The Book of the Unnamed Midwife (one of PW’s 2016 Best Books), Elison returns to her postapocalyptic American Midwest milieu, where a transgender man tries to find his place in a gender-divided world.
Dreams Before the Start of Time by Anne Charnock (Apr. 18, trade paper, $14.95, ISBN 978-1-5039-3472-6) explores near-future reproductive technologies and their emotional, legal, and cultural implications.
A Perfect Machine by Brett Savory (Feb. 7, mass market, $7.99, ISBN 978-0-85766-630-7). Mysterious forces bring together Runners, who want to be shot full of bullets, and Hunters, whose goal is to shoot them as they run through the city.
The Black Wolves of Boston by Wen Spencer (Feb. 7, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-1-4814-8246-2). Four unlikely heroes—a depressed vampire, a monster-hunter, a teenage prince, and an ordinary student—come together to unravel a plot by Wickers, witches who gain power from human sacrifices.
Witchy Eye by D.J. Butler (Mar. 7, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-1-4767-8211-9). A teen girl tries to understand her secret heritage in a magical alternate Appalachia.
Lost Boy by Christina Henry (July 18, trade paper, $16, ISBN 978-0-399-58402-2). Henry (Alice) turns the story of Peter Pan into something even weirder and scarier, setting Peter’s amorality in conflict with the kindness and empathy of Jamie, Peter’s favorite of the lost boys.
City of Miracles by Robert Jackson Bennett (May 2, trade paper, $16, ISBN 978-0-553-41973-3). In Bennett’s third Divine Cities political fantasy, fugitive Sigrud je Harkvaldsson finds new meaning in life in hunting down the killer of his closest friend.
Candlemark & Gleam
Unraveling Timelines by Lise Breakey (July 1, trade paper, $19.95, ISBN 978-1-936460-75-5). Stockbroker Peter Chang is pulled into Nikki Varian’s quest to find who killed her time-traveling father and to save the multiverse from destruction.
The Witchwood Crown: Book One of the Last King of Osten Ard by Tad Williams (Apr. 4, hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-7564-1060-5) is a return to the epic Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn series after 24 years, in a trilogy launch that finds the fantasy realm in great peril.
Cold Welcome by Elizabeth Moon (Apr. 11, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-1-101-88731-8). The author’s first Kylara Vatta space adventure in nearly a decade lands Kylara on a frozen island full of mysteries, where she must protect survivors of a crash while finding out who sabotaged their shuttle.
The Waking Land by Callie Bates (July 4, hardcover, $27, ISBN 978-0-425-28402-5) is a debut flintlock fantasy featuring a woman caught between the royalty who raised her and the rebels led by her father.
All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai (Feb. 7, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-1-101-98513-7). A man who feels out of place in his own timeline’s 2016—a techno-utopian paradise of flying cars, moving sidewalks, and moon bases—ends up stranded in our comparatively dystopian world, which might hold his only chance for personal happiness.
The Witches of New York by Ami McKay (July 11, trade paper, $15.99, ISBN 978-0-06-235992-6) is a tale of three women in 1880 New York whose séances go awry, leading them to realize that magic can be even more terrifying than the social machinations of the elite. 50,000-copy announced first printing.
Bannerless by Carrie Vaughn (July 11, trade paper, $14.99, ISBN 978-0-544-94730-6) builds on Vaughn’s acclaimed short stories set in a dystopian future where economic and environmental collapse have destroyed much of civilization. 25,000-copy announced first printing.
A God in the Shed by J-F. Dubeau (June 13, trade paper, $15.99, ISBN 978-1-942645-35-1). In a bucolic farm village ravaged by a serial killer, a young woman traps a sinister creature in a backyard shed and must figure out what she’s caught and how to deal with it.
Dichronauts by Greg Egan (July 4, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-59780-892-7) is set in a strange universe where light and gravity play tricks and living entities must rely on symbiosis to survive in a constantly moving habitable zone. When an impassible fissure blocks their migration, they are forced to descend into the unknown.
Uncle Brucker the Rat Killer by Leslie Peter Wulff (Mar. 7, trade paper, $15.99, ISBN 978-1-59780-894-1). A teen fleeing his unpleasant home to live with his uncle is pulled into an interdimensional war between humans and rats. When his uncle vanishes, the boy must travel into Rat Land to save him.
The Boy on the Bridge by M.R. Carey (May 2, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0-316-30033-9) follows the bestselling The Girl with All the Gifts with a tale of a boy sent by the terrified people of his town to face the monsters that threaten them. 100,000-copy announced first printing.
New York 2140 by Kim Stanley Robinson (Mar. 14, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0-316-26234-7) envisions 22nd-century New York as a flooded but vibrant metropolis where canals wend among the islands of skyscrapers. 100,000-copy announced first printing.
Revenger by Alastair Reynolds (Feb. 28, trade paper, $14.99, ISBN 978-0-316-55556-2). In the distant future, humans build with the rubble of alien civilizations, and one crew of rogues embarks on a deep-space heist involving alien artifacts, kidnapping, and revenge. 75,000-copy announced first printing.
Winter of the Gods by Jordanna Max Brodsky (Feb. 14, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0-316-38591-6). In this stellar sequel to 2016’s The Immortals, the former Olympian goddess Artemis, now living in New York City as Selene DiSilva, is drawn into another murder investigation. 50,000-copy announced first printing.
Wilders by Brenda Cooper (June 13, trade paper, $18, ISBN 978-1-63388-265-2). This small story of two sisters in near-future Seacouver is set against the larger conflict between those who live in fantastical megacities that meet their every need, and those who choose to live a rougher life and restore the wilderness outside.
The Devil Crept In by Ania Ahlborn (Feb. 7, trade paper, $16, ISBN 978-1-4767-8375-8). Lauded author Ahlborn (Within These Walls) delivers a beautiful and deftly wrought horror story of mothers, sons, and the delicate bond between cousins.
The Turn: The Hollows Begins with Death by Kim Harrison (Feb. 7, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-5011-0871-6) is a prequel to Harrison’s popular Hollows series. It follows two new protagonists in a race to convince paranormal species to reveal themselves and save humankind from a deadly threat.
At the Table of Wolves by Kay Kenyon (July 11, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-4814-8778-8). A woman with a magical gift for drawing out hidden truths embarks on a solo mission to convince the leaders of 1936 England that Nazi Germany plans to invade.
The Berlin Project: An Alternative History of World War II by Gregory Benford (May 9, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-4814-8764-1) explores what might have happened if the atom bomb had been ready to drop in the summer of 1944.
The Refrigerator Monologues by Catherynne M. Valente, illus. by Annie Wu (June 6, hardcover, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-4814-5934-1), tells the stories of six women in a superhero universe who have been harmed, traumatized, or killed in the service of men’s stories.
The Stars Are Legion by Kameron Hurley (Feb. 7, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-4814-4793-5). In a universe where the word for spaceship is the same as the word for world, two women struggle to escape perpetual war in this dystopian yet hopeful space opera.
The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter by Theodora Goss (June 20, hardcover, $24.99, ISBN 978-1-4814-6650-9). A group of women in Victorian England, led by Mary Jekyll and all possessing some personal connection to the supernatural, unlock the secrets of their own disturbing origins.
In the Valley of the Sun by Andy Davidson (June 6, hardcover, $24.99, ISBN 978-1-5107-2110-4). A serial womanizer in rural Texas encounters a woman who instigates his transformation into something terrifying.
Tender by Sofia Samatar (Apr. 11, hardcover, $24, ISBN 978-1-61873-126-5) is the first collection from one of fantasy’s rising stars, showcasing her rich, lyrical language and intricate storytelling in 20 short works.
The Empire’s Ghost by Isabelle Steiger (May 16, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-1-250-08848-2). In a tattered fantasy world, a dictator seizes power amid the ruins of an empire, and the weakened powers of the neighboring kingdoms must come together to take him down.
Glass Town by Steven Savile (July 4, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-1-250-07783-7). The popular U.K. author makes his U.S. debut with a novel of genuine magic and eerie illusion in 1990s London.
In Calabria by Peter S. Beagle (Feb. 14, hardcover, $19.95, ISBN 978-1-61696-248-7). An older man in southern Italy breaks his self-imposed isolation to help a visiting unicorn and is dragged into the 21st-century media spotlight.
Borrowed Souls: A Soul Charmer Novel by Chelsea Mueller (Apr. 4, trade paper, $14.99, ISBN 978-1-940456-82-9) Mueller’s debut begins an urban fantasy series that revolves around the rental of souls to spare one’s own from the sin attached to dirty deeds.
Godblind by Anna Stephens (May 16, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-1-940456-93-5). A clash 1,000 years in the making begins when the Mireces, exiled from wealthy, fertile Rilpor, plot invasion as the prince of Rilpor makes a play for power. 25,000-copy announced first printing.
Lotus Blue by Cat Sparks (Mar. 7, trade paper, $15.99, ISBN 978-1-940456-70-6). The Australian fantasist makes her full-length debut with this far-future tale of sentient machines, nomadic travelers, and interplanetary voyages.
Amberlough by Lara Elena Donnelly (Feb. 7, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-8381-5). In a city on the brink of a fascist revolution, a spy, his smuggler lover, and a cabaret dancer try to protect their hedonistic way of life.
The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi (Mar. 21, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-8888-9). Hugo-winner Scalzi launches a space opera series in a new far-future setting where the mysterious force that has allowed humans to leave Earth is drifting out of reach.
Deadmen Walking by Sherrilyn Kenyon (May 9, hardcover, $27.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-8568-0). An ancient entity returns to the human realm in the age of sail and piracy, commanding an undead crew.
Miranda and Caliban by Jacqueline Carey (Feb. 14, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-8679-3). Carey (the Santa Olivia series) turns Shakespeare’s Tempest on its head with this brilliant deconstruction.
Pawn: A Chronicle of the Sibyl’s War by Timothy Zahn (May 2, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-2966-0). Renowned space opera author Zahn begins a trilogy with the story of a smalltime crook, his broke girlfriend, and an ER doctor all whisked away by aliens.
Tomorrow’s Kin: Book 1 of the Yesterday’s Kin Trilogy by Nancy Kress (July 11, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-9029-5), based on Kress’s Nebula-winning short novel Yesterday’s Kin, puts the fate of Earth in the hands of a few scientists after aliens arrive bearing a terrible secret.
Twelve Days by Steven Barnes (June 27, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-7597-1). As a wave of deaths sweeps the world, a martial arts guru brings together an autistic boy, his troubled family, and an ex-soldier on a moral precipice.
Walkaway by Cory Doctorow (Apr. 25, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-9276-3). In a near future shaped by climate change and vast gulfs between rich and poor, groups of walkaways give up on formal society altogether—and discover the secret to immortality.
Agents of Dreamland by Caitlín R. Kiernan (Feb. 28, e-book, $2.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-9431-6). This eerie novella brings together cults, aliens, and a woman outside of time.
Buffalo Soldier by Maurice Broaddus (Apr. 25, e-book, $1.49, ISBN 978-0-7653-9428-6). A Jamaican ex-spy helps a mysterious boy flee from the numerous factions trying to learn his secrets.
Proof of Concept by Gwyneth Jones (Apr. 11, e-book, $2.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-8736-3). Near-future humans program themselves to ignore risks while searching for ways to escape a planet devastated by climate change.
Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys (Apr. 4, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0-7653-9090-5). This inventive dark fantasy debut crossbreeds the Cthulhu Mythos with a Cold War thriller.
Univ. of Minnesota
The Sacred Era by Aramaki Yoshio, trans. by Baryon Tensor Posadas (Apr. 11, trade paper, $22.95, ISBN 978-0-8166-9986-5). In a distant future, a young newcomer to the Papal Court of the Holy Empire of Igitur embarks on a pilgrimage to a supposedly mythical planet.