Giant Freakin’ Bookshelf: New SF Books For The Week Of Jan. 5, 2015
As much as we love science fiction on TV, on the big screen, on the comics page, and in video game form, there’s just something irreplaceable about digging into a good book. There’s no shortage of new sci-fi adventures hitting shelves on a regular basis, but GFR is your one-stop shop to keep up with what’s hitting shelves in a given week. Here’s what’s new on the Giant Freakin’ Bookshelf!
“City 1” by Gregg Rosenblum
From the creators of Homeland and American Horror Story comes City 1, the chilling finale to the Revolution 19 trilogy.
The time has come to win the cities back from the bots — or die trying.
After finally reuniting at a rebel camp, siblings Nick, Kevin, and Cass are willing to do anything to stay together — and free their parents from bot rule. But the leader of the rebel camp has her own ideas. Cruel and determined, General Clay won’t let anything stand in the way of her plan to destroy the robots and all the brainwashed humans. For Nick, Kevin, and Cass, this means their parents’ lives are at stake, but they can’t desert the rebels when they’re so close to freedom. How far will they go to save the world they believe in?
“Evensong” by John Love
A near-future thriller where those who protect humanity are not always completely human.
The future is a dangerous place. Keeping the world stable and peaceful when competing corporate interests and nation-states battle for power, wealth, and prestige has only gotten harder over the years. But that’s the United Nations’ job. So the UN has changed along with the rest of the world. When the UN’s ‘soft’ diplomacy fails, it has harder options. Quiet, scalpel-like options: The Dead — biologically enhanced secret operatives created by the UN to solve the problems no one else can.
Anwar Abbas is one of The Dead. When the Controller-General of the UN asks him to perform a simple bodyguard mission, he’s insulted and resentful: mere bodyguard work is a waste of his unique abilities. But he takes the job, because to refuse it would be unthinkable.
Anwar is asked to protect Olivia del Sarto, the host of an important upcoming UN conference. Olivia is head of the world’s fastest-growing church, but in her rise to power she has made enemies: shadowy enemies with apparently limitless resources.
Anwar is one of the deadliest people on earth, but her enemies have something which kills people like him. And they’ve sent it for her. It’s out there, unstoppable and untraceable, getting closer as the conference approaches.
As he and Olivia ignite a torrid affair, Anwar must uncover the conspiracy that threatens to destroy her, the UN, and even The Dead.
“The Galaxy Game” by Karen Lord
Karen Lord is one of today’s most brilliant young talents. Her science fiction, like that of predecessors Ursula K. Le Guin and China Miéville, combines star-spanning plots, deeply felt characters, and incisive social commentary. With The Galaxy Game, Lord presents a gripping adventure that showcases her dazzling imagination as never before.
On the verge of adulthood, Rafi attends the Lyceum, a school for the psionically gifted. Rafi possesses mental abilities that might benefit people…or control them. Some wish to help Rafi wield his powers responsibly; others see him as a threat to be contained. Rafi’s only freedom at the Lyceum is Wallrunning: a game of speed and agility played on vast vertical surfaces riddled with variable gravity fields.
Serendipity and Ntenman are also students at the Lyceum, but unlike Rafi they come from communities where such abilities are valued. Serendipity finds the Lyceum as much a prison as a school, and she yearns for a meaningful life beyond its gates. Ntenman, with his quick tongue, quicker mind, and a willingness to bend if not break the rules, has no problem fitting in. But he too has his reasons for wanting to escape.
Now the three friends are about to experience a moment of violent change as seething tensions between rival star-faring civilizations come to a head. For Serendipity, it will challenge her ideas of community and self. For Ntenman, it will open new opportunities and new dangers. And for Rafi, given a chance to train with some of the best Wallrunners in the galaxy, it will lead to the discovery that there is more to Wallrunning than he ever suspected…and more to himself than he ever dreamed.
“Golden Son (The Red Rising Trilogy, Book 2)” by Pierce Brown
With shades of The Hunger Games, Ender’s Game, and Game of Thrones, debut author Pierce Brown’s genre-defying epic Red Rising hit the ground running and wasted no time becoming a sensation. Golden Son continues the stunning saga of Darrow, a rebel forged by tragedy, battling to lead his oppressed people to freedom.
As a Red, Darrow grew up working the mines deep beneath the surface of Mars, enduring backbreaking labor while dreaming of the better future he was building for his descendants. But the Society he faithfully served was built on lies. Darrow’s kind have been betrayed and denied by their elitist masters, the Golds — and their only path to liberation is revolution. And so Darrow sacrifices himself in the name of the greater good for which Eo, his true love and inspiration, laid down her own life. He becomes a Gold, infiltrating their privileged realm so that he can destroy it from within.
A lamb among wolves in a cruel world, Darrow finds friendship, respect, and even love — but also the wrath of powerful rivals. To wage and win the war that will change humankind’s destiny, Darrow must confront the treachery arrayed against him, overcome his all-too-human desire for retribution — and strive not for violent revolt but a hopeful rebirth. Though the road ahead is fraught with danger and deceit, Darrow must choose to follow Eo’s principles of love and justice to free his people.
He must live for more.
“Hive Invasion” by James Axler
Seeking refuge in a post-Armageddon America, Ryan Cawdor and his crew of misfits travel together for survival and sanity. Known as Deathlands, this lawless hellscape is defined by destruction, death and despair. Only those who persevere with the belief in a better future stand a chance in this world where each day brings a new, and potentially lethal, struggle.
Desperate to find water and shelter on the barren plains of former Oklahoma, Ryan and his team come upon a community that appears, at first, to be peaceful. Then the ville is attacked by a group of its own inhabitants — people infected with a parasite that has turned them into slave warriors for an unknown overlord. The companions try to help fend off the enemy and protect the remaining population, but when Ryan is captured during a second ambush, all hope seems lost. Especially when he launches an assault against his own crew.
“Originator” by Joel Shepherd
Hope for the future in the hands of an enemy from the past…
Cassandra Kresnov must find the answers that could free her people — or doom her family.
A quarter of a million people die in the destruction of the moon Cresta. The League civil war is accelerating out of control, but projections indicate that as their technologically induced sociological dysfunction continues, all of humanity may face a similar fate. In the aftermath of Cresta’s destruction, Sandy Kresnov discovers the alien Talee operative Cai in Tanusha, there to learn just how far the technologically-induced insanity has gone. The Talee have seen this before, and they are terrified of anything threatening a recurrence.
Meanwhile, Sandy’s old nemesis Renaldo Takewashi, the self-proclaimed ‘father’ of synthetic intelligence, comes to the Federation seeking asylum. Talewashi may even have a cure — previously unknown Talee technology implanted into a human child subject — Sandy’s little boy, Kiril. But it is exactly this technology that the Talee fear, and they will exterminate anyone caught using it.
Now, Sandy must fight to save her family from a terrible new threat, but doing so may plunge humanity into another destructive war between humans, or worse, against the massively-advanced Talee. And what final secret are the Talee protecting about the origins of synthetic humans like Sandy that could either liberate Sandy’s fellow synthetics from bondage or spell disaster for all humanity?
“The Stargods Trilogy” by Irene Radford
Operating on the wrong side of interstellar law one time too many, the three O’Hara brothers find themselves in a life-or-death flight from intergalactic police forces. In a last desperate escape attempt, they stumble across what must be a lost or abandoned colony world. Forced to bring their shuttle down in search of repair facilities, the O’Haras encounter humans who have returned to a hunter-gatherer level of society. Here is a place where technology can make them seem like gods — a land where they will remain trapped unless they can find a way to mine and manufacture the things they need to repair their ship. They don’t believe the legends about dragons and magic, and they are certain technology will see them through — at least until they confront their first dragon and feel their own unique powers expanding beyond their control…
Here, together in one volume for the first time, are the three novels which reveal the truth behind the legend of the Stargods, the events which changed the future of an entire world.
“Strands of Sorrow” by John Ringo
BOOK 4 AND CONCLUSION OF THE BLACK TIDE RISING SERIES FROM THE NEW YORK TIMES BEST-SELLING AUTHOR. Sequel to Islands of Rage and Hope, To Sail a Darkling Sea, and Under a Graveyard Sky. A hardened group of survivors fights back against a zombie plague that has brought down civilization.
With the world consumed by a devastating plague that drives humans violently insane, what was once a band of desperate survivors bobbing on a dark Atlantic ocean has now become Wolf Squadron, the only hope for the salvation of the human race. Banding together with what remains of the U.S. Navy, Wolf Squadron, and its leader Steve Smith, not only plans to survive — he plans to retake the mainland from the infected, starting with North America.
Smith’s teenage daughters have become zombie hunters of unparalleled skill, both at land and on the sea, and they may hold the key to the rebirth of civilization on a devastated planet.