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!
“Star Wars: A New Dawn” by John Jackson Miller
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…
’The war is over. The Separatists have been defeated, and the Jedi rebellion has been foiled. We stand on the threshold of a new beginning.’ — Emperor Palpatine
For a thousand generations, the Jedi Knights brought peace and order to the Galactic Republic, aided by their connection to the mystical energy field known as the Force. But they were betrayed — and the entire galaxy has paid the price. It is the Age of the Empire.
Now Emperor Palpatine, once Chancellor of the Republic and secretly a Sith follower of the dark side of the Force, has brought his own peace and order to the galaxy. Peace through brutal repression, and order through increasing control of his subjects’ lives.
But even as the Emperor tightens his iron grip, others have begun to question his means and motives. And still others, whose lives were destroyed by Palpatine’s machinations, lay scattered about the galaxy like unexploded bombs, waiting to go off…
The first Star Wars novel created in collaboration with the Lucasfilm Story Group, Star Wars: A New Dawn is set during the legendary ‘Dark Times’ between Episodes III and IV and tells the story of how two of the lead characters from the animated series Star Wars Rebels first came to cross paths. Featuring a foreword by Dave Filoni.
“Acceptance” by Jeff VanderMeer
The final installment of Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach Trilogy
It is winter in Area X. A new team embarks across the border on a mission to find a member of a previous expedition who may have been left behind. As they press deeper into the unknown — navigating new terrain and new challenges — the threat to the outside world becomes more daunting. In Acceptance, the last installment of Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach Trilogy, the mysteries of Area X may have been solved, but their consequences and implications are no less profound — or terrifying.
“Fortunes of the Imperium” by Jody Lynn Nye
Sequel to A View from the Imperium. Jeeves in space! Rollicking adventure featuring a seemingly dense, lovable nobleman and his indespensible, droll aide, Parsons.
Lieutenant Lord Thomas Kinago sets out from the Imperium homeworld for the Autocracy of the Uctu, a galactic region with a geckolike overlord known, eponymously, as the Autocrat. Thomas is ostensibly on a pleasure cruise with his cousin Jil to enjoy the pleasures of the Gecko culture. (Jil is herself fleeing a spot of trouble in the Central Worlds after she rebuffed the unwanted amorous interest of a local crime boss.)
In fact, Thomas is on a mission for the mysterious Mr. Frank, the head of the secret service, to discover how prohibited goods, including a small fighter ship, are being smuggled into the Autocracy. His crew’s overt assignment is to find out why legitimate shippers are being detained at checkpoints, sometimes for months, without explanation. As usual, Thomas’s reputation for sudden enthusiasm and goodhearted mayhem precede him. It is all his trusted aid Parsons can do to keep his leader on course.
Thomas’s newest interest is superstitions, and he is driving everyone to distraction by telling fortunes, and even inventing a new method or two. Yet while the Autocrat, a new and fairly young Uctu female, finds Thomas a curious diplomat, she also rather likes him — much to Parsons’s relief. It seems Thomas needs free passage within the Uctu home system before he can investigate the illegal contraband trade. What’s more, the smuggling ring is quite determined to cancel Thomas’s visit before he can cancel them. As usual, it’s up to Parsons to find a way to lead his hapless master to victory — or at least keep him from getting himself killed by a very determined enemy.
“Glory Main” by Henry V. O’Neill
We are closer to the Sims than we think…
For decades, mankind has been locked in a war with an alien enemy that resembles the human race so closely they are known as the Sims. Both sides battle for control of habitable planets across the galaxies — often at any cost.
Lieutenant Jander Mortas is fresh out of officer training and new to the war zone but eager to prove himself. There’s just one problem: disaster strikes while he’s traveling to his first assignment. He wakes to find himself marooned on a planet that appears deserted, with the only other survivors: a psychoanalyst, a conscientious objector, and a bitter veteran of a brutal slave-scout detachment. As the group struggles to reach safety on a nearby base, Glory Main, they discover a Sim colony — which could mean their salvation, or their demise.
Thrown together, they must fight the harsh elements, an ever-present enemy, and possibly each other.
“It Waits Below” by Eric Red
It waits no more!
In the 1800s, an asteroid carrying an extraterrestrial life form crashed to earth and sunk a Spanish treasure ship. Now, a trio of salvage experts dives a three-man sub to the deepest part of the ocean to recover the sunken gold. There, they confront a nightmarish alien organism beyond comprehension, which has waited for over a century to get to the surface. It finally has its chance.
As their support ship on the surface is ambushed by deadly modern-day pirates, the crew of the stranded sub battles for their very lives against a monster no one on Earth has seen before.
“The Savior” by Tony Daniel & David Drake
Sequel to The Heretic, Book 10 in the nationally bestselling General series.
FROM HERETIC TO SAVIOR
Duisberg is one of thousands of planets plunged into darkness and chaos by the collapse of the galactic republic, but where other worlds have begun to rebuild a star-travelling culture, Duisberg remains in an uneasy balance between mud-brick civilization and bloodthirsty barbarism.
The people of Duisberg have a god: Zentrum, a supercomputer from the ancient past. Zentrum has decided avoid another collapse by preventing civilization from rising from where it is. This is known as the Stasis. And because even a supercomputer and the powerful religion which it founded cannot block all progress, Zentrum has another tool: every few centuries the barbarians sweep in from the desert, slaughtering the educated classes and cowing the peasants back into submission. These are the Blood Winds, and the Blood Winds are about to blow again.
This time, however, there’s a difference: Abel Dashian, son of a military officer, has received into his mind the spirit of Raj Whitehall, the most successful general in the history of the planet Bellevue — and of Center, the supercomputer which enabled Raj to shatter his planet’s barbarians and permit the return of civilization.
One hero can’t stop the tide of barbarians unless he has his own culture supporting him. To save Duisberg, Abel must conquer the very land of his origin and attempt to destroy the computer A.I. ‘god’ who has doomed his world to an everlasting Dark Age. Abel is a heretic, but now he must go beyond and become — THE SAVIOR.
“Species Imperative” by Jule E. Czerneda
A threat to entire worlds. Where on that scale does one woman fall?
Dr. Mackenzie ‘Mac’ Connor’s goal in life is to be left in peace to study her salmon and their migration. She has no interest in the Interspecies Union, space travel, or the mysterious Chasm, an expanse of dead worlds filled with the ruins of alien civilizations. The only cloud on Mac’s horizon is having to meet with the Oversight Committee to defend any research intrusions into the protected zones on shore.
But what Mac wants no longer matters. There’s another, darker, migration underway, this time across space. What created the Chasm has awakened once more, to follow its imperative to feed on living worlds. How can it be stopped?
Aliens have asked Mac to find that answer. She knows it may mean sacrificing all she loves, including Earth itself. She’s determined to find another way.
But, first, she must survive.
The Chasm of the past was only a trial run, for this species intent on replacing all life with its own. And they’ve learned her name.