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 new in a given week. Here’s what’s new on the Giant Freakin’ Bookshelf!
“Damage” by David D. Levine
In the extremities of war, we may know what we’ve been, but not what we will become. Damage is a tale of desperate times, desperate measures, and the inner life of a fighter spacecraft.
“Imaginarium 2014: The Best Canadian Speculative Writing” edited by Sandra Kasturi & Helen Marshall
Imaginarium 2014: The Best Canadian Speculative Writing is a reprint anthology collecting speculative short fiction and poetry (science fiction, fantasy, horror, magic realism, etc.) that represents the best work published by Canadian writers in the 2013 calendar year.
“King of the Cracksmen” by Dennis O’Flaherty
The year is 1877. Automatons and steam-powered dirigible gunships have transformed the nation in the aftermath of the Civil War. Everything on the other side of the Mississippi has been claimed for Russia. Lincoln is still president, having never been assassinated, but the former secretary of war Edwin Stanton is now the head of the Department of Public Safety, ruling with an iron fist as head of the country’s military.
Liam McCool is a bad man, one of the best Irish cracksmen there is when it comes to robbery, cracking safes, and other sundry actives — until he was caught red-handed by Stanton. Those in the South who don’t fit into Stanton’s plans for the Reconstruction, and Stanton realizes Liam McCool is more useful doing his dirty work than sitting in a jail cell. But when his sweetheart, Maggie, turns up murdered, Liam McCool realizes he’ll do anything, even if it means getting way over his head with bloodthirsty Russians, to solve the crime.
The King of the Cracksmen is an explosive, action-packed look at a Victorian empire that never was, part To Catch a Thief, part Little Big Man. It’s steampunk like you’ve never seen it before, a murder mystery in a foreign world where no one is who they seem to be and danger lurks around every corner.
“Morte” by Robert Repino
The ‘war with no name’ has begun, with human extinction as its goal. The instigator of this war is the Colony, a race of intelligent ants who, for thousands of years, have been silently building an army that would forever eradicate the destructive, oppressive humans. Under the Colony’s watchful eye, this utopia will be free of the humans’ penchant for violence, exploitation and religious superstition. The final step in the Colony’s war effort is transforming the surface animals into high-functioning two-legged beings who rise up to kill their masters.
Former housecat turned war hero, Mort(e) is famous for taking on the most dangerous missions and fighting the dreaded human bio-weapon EMSAH. But the true motivation behind his recklessness is his ongoing search for a pre-transformation friend — a dog named Sheba. When he receives a mysterious message from the dwindling human resistance claiming Sheba is alive, he begins a journey that will take him from the remaining human strongholds to the heart of the Colony, where he will discover the source of EMSAH and the ultimate fate of all of earth’s creatures.
“Polaris” by Mindee Arnett
Jeth Seagrave and his crew of mercenaries are pulled into one last high-stakes mission in this breathtaking sequel to Mindee Arnett’s Avalon, which SLJ called ‘an exciting piece of science fiction that keeps up its energy from beginning to end’ in a starred review.
Jeth Seagrave and his crew are on the run. The ITA, still holding Jeth’s mother in a remote research lab, is now intent on acquiring the metatech secrets Jeth’s sister Cora carries inside her DNA, and Jeth is desperate to find the resources he needs to rescue his mother and start a new life outside the Confederation. But the ITA is just as desperate, and Jeth soon finds himself pursued by a mysterious figure hell-bent on capturing him and his crew — dead or alive.
With nowhere to run and only one play left, Jeth enters into a bargain with the last person he ever thought he’d see again: Daxton Price, the galaxy’s newest and most fearsome crime lord. Dax promises to help Jeth, but his help will only come at a price — a price that could mean sacrificing everything Jeth has fought for until now.
“The Prey” by Tom Isbell
The Maze Runner meets The Hunger Games in this heart-pounding trilogy. Orphaned teens, soon to be hunted for sport, must flee their resettlement camps in their fight for survival and a better life. For in the Republic of the True America, it’s always hunting season. Riveting action, intense romance, and gripping emotion make this fast-paced adventure a standout debut.
After a radiation blast burned most of the Earth to a crisp, the new government established settlement camps for the survivors. At one such camp, the sixteen-year-old ‘LTs’ are eager to graduate as part of the Rite. Until they learn the dark truth: ‘LTs’ doesn’t stand for lieutenant but for Less Thans, feared by society and raised to be hunted for sport. They escape and join forces with the Sisters, twin girls who’ve suffered their own haunting fate. Together they seek the fabled New Territory, with sadistic hunters hot on their trail. Secrets are revealed, allegiances are made, and lives are at stake. As unlikely Book and fearless Hope lead their quest for freedom, these teens must find the best in themselves to fight the worst in their enemies.