Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Reviews

Three Days Breathing by Mike Maguire
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 21, 2016

"A striking feat of mature, humanistic sci-fi that explores a shocking future."
A sci-fi thriller finds an ordinary family besieged by the structure of its seemingly utopian society. Read full book review >
Why I Shouldn't Work With a Werewolf by James Carpenter
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 18, 2016

"Supernatural high jinks abound in this joyfully flippant tale."
Two agents—one a vampire, the other a werewolf—clash when attempting to stop a rampaging vampwolf in this paranormal comedy. Read full book review >

Kingdom's End by Charles D. Blanchard
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2016

"A depressing read, despite an ending that offers some triumph."
In Blanchard's (Mourning Doves After the Fire, 2010) fantasy novel, a large rat colony is ruled by a good king until a rat soldier usurps power and the city hires exterminators. Read full book review >
FROST LIKE NIGHT by Sara Raasch
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"The dangers are real and many die—which is why the twist ending works: happiness is sobered by sacrifice in a fulfilling conclusion. (Fantasy. 14 & up)"
Meira returns in this final installment in the Snow Like Ashes trilogy. Read full book review >
THE HAWKWEED PROPHECY by Irena Brignull
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"Fantasy and nonfantasy readers alike will appreciate this gritty and intriguing coming-of-age story. (Fantasy. 14 & up)"
Poppy and Ember, switched at birth, discover the truth and each other in this coming-of-age fantasy. Read full book review >

A TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT by Sabaa Tahir
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"An excellent continuation of a series seemingly designed for readers of the political, bloody fantasy style du jour, set apart by an uncommon world. (Fantasy. 14 & up)"
Tahir's follow-up to An Ember in the Ashes (2015) picks up right where Volume 1 left off, ratcheting up the tension (military and sexual) as well as the magic, the violence, and the stakes. Read full book review >
NINTH CITY BURNING by J. Patrick Black
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"Black borrows a long list of sci-fi/fantasy ingredients to cook up a Hunger Games/Star Wars remix featuring tweens trapped in an unmotivated war which will make them unlikely-but-relatable heroes."
After an alien invasion and near-instantaneous human extinction that unleashed a force called "thelemity," which "certain people can use to affect reality," most humans live in militarized zones under siege; but there are also warring, nomadic tribes from whose "coda" come two sisters, thelemity adepts, who tip the balance of power. Read full book review >
Rattleman by John Rosegrant
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 6, 2016

"A fun fantasy adventure, but one that can't be read as a stand-alone work."
The third title in Rosegrant's (Kintravel, 2014, etc.) fantasy series brings the heroes face to face with a dangerous adversary.Read full book review >
THE SOUND OF SEAS by Gillian  Anderson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 13, 2016

"Ideas that looked thin for a single book stretched beyond all reasonable elasticity."
Final part of the X-Files-ish trilogy (A Dream of Ice, 2015, etc.) about contact with an ancient civilization now buried under the Antarctic ice. Read full book review >
SOVEREIGNTY by Anjenique Hughes
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: July 19, 2016

"A well-crafted thriller that offers both a warning and hope for the future."
A dystopian sci-fi YA novel about a teenager whose unexpected discoveries hold the promise of a revolution against a totalitarian regime. Read full book review >
Cyber World by Joshua Viola
FICTION & LITERATURE

"Killer apps outnumber the glitches in 20 short, bracing narratives of cyberpunk sci-fi."
An anthology of cyberpunk short fiction takes readers to a malleable world where advanced data technology and human interfaces create shifting realities, altered perceptions, and para-human intelligence. Read full book review >
We Walk in Darkness by Bill Hiatt
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 14, 2015

"A deft mix of history, mythology, and coming-of-age themes."
Supernatural and mythical beings enliven this latest installment in Hiatt's (Evil within Yourselves, 2015, etc.) Spell Weaver action-adventure series.Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Chris Cleave
June 14, 2016

In bestseller Chris Cleave’s latest novel Everyone Brave Is Forgiven, it’s London, 1939. The day war is declared, Mary North leaves finishing school unfinished, goes straight to the War Office, and signs up. Tom Shaw decides to ignore the war—until he learns his roommate Alistair Heath has unexpectedly enlisted. Then the conflict can no longer be avoided. Young, bright, and brave, Mary is certain she’d be a marvelous spy. When she is—bewilderingly—made a teacher, she finds herself defying prejudice to protect the children her country would rather forget. Tom, meanwhile, finds that he will do anything for Mary. And when Mary and Alistair meet, it is love, as well as war, that will test them in ways they could not have imagined, entangling three lives in violence and passion, friendship and deception, inexorably shaping their hopes and dreams. “Among all the recent fictions about the war, Cleave’s miniseries of a novel is a surprising standout,” our reviewer writes, “with irresistibly engaging characters who sharply illuminate issues of class, race, and wartime morality.” View video >