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Books Received, May 16 — May 22

23 May, 2020


Re V The Third Machine Dynasty

In the final instalment of the influential Machine Dynasty series, the rapture for which the self-replicating humanoids were engineered finally comes to pass. 

Now that the failsafe that once kept synthetic beings from harming humans has been hacked, all vNare discovering the promise – and the peril –of free will. Her consciousness unleashed across computer systems all across the world, the vicious vN Portia stands poised to finally achieve her lifelong dream of bringing feeble, fleshy humanity to its knees. 

The battle between Portia and granddaughter Amy comes to its ultimate conclusion. Can Amy get her family to the stars before Portia destroys every opportunity for escape and freedom? 

The Trials of Koli

The journey through M. R. Carey’s immersive, impeccably rendered world” ( Kirkus ) — a world in which nature has turned against us — continues in The Trials of Koli, book two of the Rampart Trilogy.
T he earth wants to swallow us whole…
Koli never planned to set foot outside his small village. He knew that beyond its walls lay a fearsome landscape filled with choker trees, vicious beasts and Shunned men. But when he was exiled, he had no choice but to journey out into this strange world where every moment is a fight for survival.
And it’s not just Koli’s life that is threatened. Whole villages just like his are dying out.
But Koli heard a story, once. A story about lost London, and the mysterious tech of the Old Times that may still be there. If he can find it, there may still be a way for him to change his own fate — by saving the lives of those who are left. 

Relentless Moon A Lady Astronaut Novel

Mary Robinette Kowal continues her Hugo and Nebula award-winning Lady Astronaut series, following The Calculating Stars and The Fated Sky, with The Relentless Moon. The Earth is coming to the boiling point as the climate disaster of the Meteor strike becomes more and more clear, but the political situation is already overheated. Riots and sabotage plague the space program. The IAC’s goal of getting as many people as possible off Earth before it becomes uninhabitable is being threatened. Elma York is on her way to Mars, but the Moon colony is still being established. Her friend and fellow Lady Astronaut Nicole Wargin is thrilled to be one of those pioneer settlers, using her considerable flight and political skills to keep the program on track. But she is less happy that her husband, the Governor of Kansas, is considering a run for President.

Dominion An Anthology of Speculative Fiction from Africa and the African Diaspora

Dominion: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction from Africa and the African Diaspora seeks speculative fiction that grapples with the question: What is the legacy and the future of Africa and the African Diaspora?”

Bonds of Brass Book One of the Bloodright Trilogy

A young pilot risks everything to save his best friend — the man he trusts most and might even love — only to learn that his friend is secretly the heir to a brutal galactic empire.

Riveting, wildly fun, and incredibly smart.”— Emily A. Duncan, New York Times bestselling author of *Wicked Saints*

Ettian’s life was shattered when the merciless Umber Empire invaded his world. He’s spent seven years putting himself back together under its rule, joining an Umber military academy and becoming the best pilot in his class. Even better, he’s met Gal — his exasperating and infuriatingly enticing roommate who’s made the academy feel like a new home.

But when dozens of classmates spring an assassination plot on Gal, a devastating secret comes to light: Gal is the heir to the Umber Empire. Ettian barely manages to save his best friend and flee the compromised academy unscathed, rattled that Gal stands to inherit the empire that broke him, and that there are still people willing to fight back against Umber rule.

As they piece together a way to deliver Gal safely to his throne, Ettian finds himself torn in half by an impossible choice. Does he save the man who’s won his heart and trust that Gal’s goodness could transform the empire? Or does he throw his lot in with the brewing rebellion and fight to take back what’s rightfully theirs? 

Home World Aer

After forty years, S.P. Somtow has produced a fifth novel in the Chronicles of the High Inquest, one of the most lauded galactic empire epics of the 1980s. Critically acclaimed yet never previously in print as a complete set, the series has passionate adherents — and they have finally persuaded the author to enrich the universe with more novels. Homeworld of the Heart is the first of a trilogy within a trilogy.The songs of Sajit were known and loved through the million worlds of the Dispersal of Man. He was the favorite of Elloran, most powerful, most compassionate of the godlike Inquestors — even, it was rumored, his lover. In his old age, Ton Elloran visits a backwater planet that purports to contain the tomb of Sajit. A nostalgic visit to his childhood companion birth planet, however, reveals that everything he thought he knew about his closest friend was wrong — and that there were at least two Sajits, their stories bifurcating and melding in an ever more complex skein of memory, desire, and loss. Homeworld of the Heart begins in a small village in a backworld — where a microscopic glitch in Inquestral management has caused two contradictory games of makrúgh to be played out. People bins are raining from the sky, a city is devouring another city, and a goddess must learn to become a whore as cultures and worlds clash.The Inquestor Series is like Game of Thrones — but on a galactic scale. For twenty centuries, the godlike Inquestors have ruled the million worlds of the Dispersal of Man, keeping all its disparate civilizations in precarious balance by playing the star-destroying game of makrúgh.Theodore Sturgeon said Somtow deals with the greatest magnitude of concept since Stapledon … I deeply envy anyone who has not read the tale of the Inquestors, for they have before them this transcendent experience.“Orson Scott Card said of this series, he can create a world with less apparent effort than some writers devote to creating a small room …” and in Homeworld of the Heart Somtow revisits and vastly expands the teeming landscape of the Inquestor series. 

In the Black

It’s Hunt for the Red October in Space, with this brand new military science fiction novel from Patrick S. Tomlinson, *In the Black*

In a demilitarized zone on the border of human space, long range spy satellites are mysteriously going quiet, and no one knows why. Captain Susan Kamala and her crew are dispatched to figure out what’s going on and solve the problem. 

That problem, however, is a mysterious, bleeding edge alien ship that no human vessel could hope to match in open conflict. But, it’s not spoiling for a fight. 

Now, the Captain and her Crew must figure out how to navigate a complicated game of diplomacy, balancing the needs of their corporate overlords, and the honest desire for a lasting peace between the two races, all without letting a long standing cold war turn hot. 

Beast Player

An enthralling and sophisticated fantasy story from one of Japan’s most popular writers of teen fiction, which has been turned into a popular anime series

Erin’s family have an important responsibility: caring for the Toda, fearsome water serpents who form the core of their Lord’s army. So when a number of Toda mysteriously die, it is Erin’s mother who takes the blame, and the punishment — she is sentenced to death. Before she dies she manages to use an ancient, forbidden power to send Erin to safety — leaving her daughter alone, far from home but with the knowledge that both she and her mother are somehow different. 

Soon, Erin finds she can talk to both the terrifying Toda and the majestic Royal Beasts, who protect the supreme queen of her realm. This knowledge gives her great power, but it also involves her in deadly plots and political gameplaying that she wants no part of. Can Erin save herself and prevent her beloved beasts from being used as tools of war, or is there no way of avoiding the terrible battles to come?