The science fiction and fantasy genre covers a lot of ground—and time and space. Ranging from historical fantasies that take place in a world much like our own to generation ship stories that transport their characters over decades to the distant reaches of the galaxy, from novels that contain just a bit of magic to others that create entirely new civilizations, these books are expanding the boundaries of fiction.

Natasha Pulley is known as the author of steampunk historical fantasies, but she’s turned to science fiction in her latest novel, The Mars House (Bloomsbury, March 19). January Stirling is a ballet dancer in London when rising waters force him to take refuge on Tharsis, the Chinese colony on Mars. The lower gravity there means that people born on Earth are bigger and stronger than those born on Mars, and they must go through a dangerous process of weakening. “Full of charming details and gender-bending gallantry, this imaginative thriller is a pleasure to read,” according to our starred review.

Leigh Bardugo’s fans have been awaiting the final installment in her Ninth House Trilogy, but they’ll have to wait a bit longer. Her new book, The Familiar (Flatiron, April 9), is a captivating historical fantasy set during the Spanish Inquisition. Luzia Cotado is a Crypto-Jew working as a scullery maid, forced to hide the small bits of magic she can conjure by singing snatches of Hebrew—making burned bread edible, fixing broken goblets. When her striving mistress discovers her talents, though, she gets ensnared in a magical contest sponsored by the most powerful people in the land. “Part fairy tale, part political thriller, part romance, the novel unfolds like a winter tree bursting into unnatural bloom,” according to our starred review.

Samantha Mills’ 2023 short story “Rabbit Test” won Nebula, Locus, and Hugo awards, and now she’s published her first novel, The Wings Upon Her Back (Tachyon, April 23). Zenya lives in the towering and heavily stratified city of Radezhda, the daughter of scholars who’s meant to follow her parents’ path—until she runs away to train as a mechanically modified warrior with wings on her back. Over the course of decades, though, she begins to see her fellow warriors as treacherous and becomes disillusioned with her society. Our starred review highlights Mills’ “masterful worldbuilding, brisk pacing, and stand-up-and-applaud action sequences” but says “the real power here is in her exploration of finding one’s true path, the dangers of blind faith, and weaponized zealotry.…An absolute must-read.”

The Silverblood Promise (Tor, May 7), James Logan’s debut novel, is the opening of an adventure-fantasy series called The Last Legacy. It sounds pretty standard—a young man who’s estranged from his father sets out to learn more about him after he’s found murdered. But, as our starred review says, “there’s a freshness and vibrancy to this tale, in large part because of the flawless execution of various elements. The worldbuilding is exceptional…the diverse cast of characters is insightfully portrayed…the action is nonstop, and the pacing is breakneck.…An undeniable masterwork—and a blueprint for how adventure fantasy should be written.”

Laurie Muchnick is the fiction editor.