James Nicoll Reviews

Home > Blog > Post

Books Received, March 29 — April 5

6 Apr, 2024



FIYAH No. 30 published by FIYAH Literary Magazine (April 2024)

Issue #30 of FIYAH Literary Magazine 

Locus April 2024

Locus, April 2024 published by Locus Publications (April 2024)

The Magazine of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Field 

Bitter Waters

Bitter Waters by Vivian Shaw (June 2024)

A witty, charming standalone novella starring Greta Helsing, doctor to the undead, who must get to the bottom of a mystery involving a newly turned child vampire. When a barrow-wight shows up on Greta and Varney’s doorstep one night with an 11-year-old girl who’s been newly — and forcefully — bitten and turned, it’s up to Greta and her vampiric friends to find out who did this to her, and why. 

New Adventures in Space Opera

New Adventures in Space Opera edited by Jonathan Strahan (August 2024)

Have you ever wanted a faster-than-light trip to the future? Are you just a little tired of reading science fiction novels that take eons to finish? Do you want to discover where memories live and die, and where memes rise and fall in moments? Because the future is sooner than you think, and there’s only so much time for a visit. 

In Zen and the Art of Starship Maintenance,” a cloud-based contractor finds a human war criminal clinging to the hull of the ship. The clones of All the Colours You Thought Were Kings,” about to attend their coming-of-age ceremony, are plotting treason. During A Temporary Embarrassment in Spacetime,” two outlaws go on the run after stealing a device from a space cult. 

Here are the new, adventurous — and most efficient — takes on interstellar battles, sentient spaceships, and political intrigue on a galactic scale. Discover where memories live and die, and where memes rise and fall in moments. Remember, the future is sooner than you think, and there’s only so much time for visiting it. 

A Pirates Life for Tea

A Pirate’s Life for Tea by Rebecca Thorne (October 2024)

Bookshops & Bonedust meets Our Flag Means Death in this cozy fantasy on the low seas, where lesbian pirates find out if enemies actually can become lovers!This trade paperback release features vivid orange sprayed edges, a beautiful color illustration, and a never-before-seen bonus short story!Kianthe and Reyna are on the hunt for dragon eggs to save their hometown — but it requires making a deal with Diarn Arlon, lord of the legendary Nacean River. Simply capture the river pirate Serina, who’s been plaguing Arlon’s supply chains, and bring her in for justice. Easy peasy. 

Begrudgingly, the couple joins forces with Bobbie, one of Arlon’s constables determined to capture the pirate. Except Bobbie and Serina have a more complicated history than anyone realized, and it might jeopardize everything. While Kianthe and Reyna watch this relation-shipwreck from afar, it quickly becomes apparent that these disaster lesbians need all the help they can get. Luckily, matchmaking is Reyna’s favorite pastime. The dragon eggs may have to wait. 

The Dark Issue 107

The Dark Issue 107 edited by Sean Wallace (April 2024)

The Magazine of Dark Fantasy 

The Cursed

The Cursed by Harper L. Woods (September 2024)

From Harper L. Woods, comes The Cursed, the next chapter in her Coven of Bones series – a pulse-pounding romantasy where The Magicians meets Gothikana. 


He was the deception waiting in the night; the truth I never saw coming. After a lifetime of manipulation, I finally learned the truth. I was his puppet — even if I never saw my strings. 

Even knowing how deep his betrayal runs, I can’t shake the undeniable connection between Gray and I — the way a single glance from him sets my soul on fire. We are not the same. We’re enemies, poised to battle for the future of the very thing I’d wanted to destroy. 

With the Covenant gone, the revenge I thought I wanted is no longer my priority. The witches that remain played no role in my aunt’s death, and the only person standing in the way of righting those wrongs is the very man determined to keep me in his bed. 

But the remaining members of the Coven will never forgive me for the role I played in their demise and subjugation, and the worst part of all is that I can’t even blame them for it. I’d been naive, believing my own delusions of grandeur when destiny clearly had other plans for me. Plans that had been set in motion centuries before my birth. 

But even that had been a lie, and now it is my duty to do everything in my power to undo it. 

To protect my Coven from my husband’s hatred — no matter what the cost.