Bestsellers, Science Fiction & Fantasy: 2017
Vigil (Verity Fassbinder 01)
Verity Fassbinder has her feet in two worlds. The daughter of one human and one Weyrd parent, she has very little power herself, but does claim unusual strength and the ability to walk between one world and the other as a couple of her talents. A rarity, she is charged with keeping the peace, and ensuring the Weyrd remain hidden… When a fantastic paranormal mystery is set here – in Brisbane (or, as Angela would have it: Brisneyland) – how could we not recommend this above all else? Now in paperback! (See #2 for the sequel, Corpselight.)
Urban fantasy | PBK | $22.99
Corpselight (Verity Fassbinder 02)
Mud. Mud. And more mud. Life in Brisneyland is never simple for those who walk between the worlds… An insurance investigation sounds pretty harmless, even if it is for ‘unusual happenstance’ – a rarely-used clause that covers all-purpose hauntings, angry genii loci, ectoplasmic home invasion, demonic possession – that kind of thing. But Susan Beckett’s claimed three times in three months. Her house keeps getting inundated with mud. But she’s still insisting she doesn’t need or want help. Until the dry-land drownings begin. The sequel to the fabulous Vigil (see #1) – and this just may be even more fabulous…
Urban fantasy | TP | $32.99
The Collapsing Empire (Flow 01)
A scientist, a starship captain and the Empress of the Interdependency are all in a race against time to discover what, if anything, can be salvaged from an interstellar empire on the brink of collapse. Oh, yeah! Fantastic new space opera from one of the modern masters of the genre – classic stuff but with a very modern sensibility… Love it!
Space opera | PBK | $19.99
The Goblin Emperor
The youngest, half-goblin son of the Emperor has lived his entire life in exile, distant from the Imperial Court and the deadly intrigue that suffuses it. But when his father and three sons in line for the throne are killed in an ‘accident’, he has no choice but to take his place as the only surviving rightful heir. Surrounded by sycophants eager to curry favour with the naive new emperor, and overwhelmed by the burdens of his new life, he can trust nobody. Amid the swirl of plots to depose him, offers of arranged marriages, and the spectre of the unknown conspirators who lurk in the shadows, he must quickly adjust to life as the Goblin Emperor. Yes, we know it came out a couple of years ago – but Ron has finally got around to reading it and is obsessed and forcing copies upon anyone who will listen to him… (It’s very, very good!) Ignore the drab cover art! Ignore the lacklustre blurb! Just read it!
Fantasy | PBK | $19.95
Behind the Throne (Indranan War 01)
K B Wagers
Former gunrunner-turned-Empress Hail Bristol was dragged back to her home planet to fill her rightful position in the palace. With her sisters and parents murdered, the Indranan Empire is on the brink of war. Hail must quickly make alliances with nearby worlds if she has any hope of surviving her rule. This military space opera series has been hugely popular here. (See #7 for the conclusion of the trilogy.)
Space opera | PBK | $22.99
Killing Gravity (Voidwitch 01)
Corey J White
Before she escaped in a bloody coup, MEPHISTO transformed Mariam Xi into a deadly voidwitch. Their training left her with terrifying capabilities, a fierce sense of independence, a deficit of trust, and an experimental pet named Seven. She’s spent her life on the run, but the boogeymen from her past are catching up with her. An encounter with a bounty hunter has left her hanging helpless in a dying spaceship, dependent on the mercy of strangers. Penned in on all sides, Mariam chases rumours to find the one who sold her out. To discover the truth and defeat her pursuers, she’ll have to stare into the abyss and find the secrets of her past, her future, and her terrifying potential. A brilliant 176pp Tor.com novella from an ex-Brisbanite! Highly recommended for fans of Scalzi and Firefly. We. Love. This. So polished – hard to believe it’s a first book! A new instalment of the series, Void Black Shadow is due in March.
Space opera | PBK | $18.99
Cold Welcome (Vatta’s Peace 01)
Return to the fabulous universe of the Vatta’s War series, in this first instalment of a new trilogy. When commander Kylara Vatta is summoned home, she expects a hero’s welcome – instead she finds herself isolated, unable to communicate with the outside world – and struggling to survive in a hostile environment with sabotaged gear. Only her undeniable talent for command can give her ragtag band a fighting chance…
Space opera | PBK | $22.99
Too Like the Lightning (Terra Ignota 01)
The year is 2454. Humanity has engineered a hard-won golden age, forged in the aftermath of a bitter conflict that wiped both religion and nation state from the planet. Now, seven factions or ‘hives’ co-govern the world, their rule fuelled by benign censorship, oracular statistical analytics and technological abundance. But this is a fragile Utopia – and someone is intent on pushing it to breaking point. When Mycroft Canner is asked to investigate a bizarre theft, he finds himself on the trail of a conspiracy that could shatter the tranquil world order the Hives have maintained for three centuries. But Mycroft has his own secrets. He is concealing a much greater threat to the seven Hives, a wild card no degree of statistical analysis could have prophesised. This threat takes the unlikely form of a thirteen-year-old called Bridger. For how will a world that has banished God deal with a child who can perform miracles…? Superb far-future SF, the first in a quartet. Nominated for the Hugo, it won the John Campbell Award for best book 2017, and the 2017 Compton Crook Award for the best first novel in the genre published during the previous year.
Science fiction | TP | $29.99
The Trials of Morrigan Crow (Nevermoor 01)
Morrigan Crow is cursed. Born on an unlucky day, she is blamed for all local misfortunes, from hailstorms to heart attacks – and, worst of all, the curse means that Morrigan is doomed to die at midnight on Eventide. But as Morrigan awaits her fate, a strange and remarkable man named Jupiter North appears. Chased by black-smoke hounds and shadowy hunters on horseback, he whisks her away into the safety of a secret, magical city called Nevermoor… Wundrous! A breathtaking, enchanting new series by debut author Jessica Townsend, about a cursed girl who escapes death and finds herself in a magical world – but is then tested beyond her wildest imagination… It’s a bit Diana Wynne Jones – and a bit Roald Dahl – though not certain of the exact proportions. Townsend is a young Sunshine Coast writer (who even worked at Australia Zoo!) and this book has sold internationally to uniformly rave reviews… A gorgeous little hardcover edition ($24.99) is now also available.
YA fantasy | PBK | $16.99
The great Norse myths are woven into the fabric of our storytelling – from Tolkien, Alan Garner and Rosemary Sutcliff to Game of Thrones and Marvel Comics. They are also an inspiration for Neil Gaiman’s own award-bedecked, bestselling fiction. Now he reaches back through time to the original source stories in a thrilling and vivid rendition of the great Norse tales. Gaiman’s gods are thoroughly alive – irascible, visceral, playful and passionate – and the tales carry us from the beginning of everything to Ragnarok and the twilight of the gods. Are people still really that interested in Norse gods and folklore? Is The Vikings, screening on SBS, responsible? Maybe – but we’re pretty certain it’s the Gaiman factor!
Mythology | TP | $27.99