After two crazy weeks with a crazy number of new releases, we're heading into a quieter week. A little sci fi, a little fantasy, a little urban fantasy, not so much paranormal romance, LOTS of YA. See what’s coming this week…and enter the Reader’s Choice contest at the end!
2030: The Real Story of What Happens to America,
by Albert Brooks (May 10, St. Martin’s Press)
Yes, that Albert Brooks. The filmmaker, actor and comedian takes to the page in his first novel with what he describes as a plausible futuristic story. June 12, 2030, started out like any other day in memory. Since cancer had been cured, America’s aging population was sucking up benefits and resources while young people simmered with resentment. But on June 12, everything changed: a massive earthquake devastated Los Angeles and the government, always teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, was unable to respond. The fallout from the earthquake sets in motion a sweeping novel of ideas that pits national hope for the future against assurances from the past.
After Midnight, by Lynn Viehl
(May 8, Flux)
Sophomore Catlyn Youngblood is used to the nomadic existence she and her two older brothers have shared since the death of their parents. When they settle down for good in the sleepy backwoods town of Lost Lake, Fla., Cat thinks they might finally fit in. Instead, they’re shunned by the locals. While riding her horse late one night, Cat meets an enigmatic and handsome boy named Jesse Raven. Even more strange than her overpowering attraction to him is Jesse’s apparent aversion to the sun. As their attraction intensifies, long-kept secrets come to light. Cat learns that the Ravens are a centuries-old vampire clan...and worse still, that she and her brothers are descendents of Abraham Van Helsing, the world-famous vampire hunter. First in The Youngbloods series.
Central Park Knight, by C.J. Henderson
(May 10, Tor)
Professor Piers Knight is the Brooklyn Museum’s very own Indiana Jones. His specialties include lost civilizations, arcane cultures, and more than a little bit of the history of magic and mysticism. What his contemporaries don’t know is that in addition to being a scholar of all these topics, he is also proficient in the uses of magical artifacts. Knight receives a chilling message from Tian Lu, a former lover and an agent for the Chinese government. Years ago, they made a frightening discovery at an archeological dig when out of the depths rose… a living, fire-breathing dragon. Now, the dragons are waking from their slumber before their scheduled time. And one particularly diabolical dragon is set on eliminating the others and taking over the world.
Die for Me, by Amy Plum
(May 10, HarperTeen)
My life had always been blissfully, wonderfully normal. But it only took one moment to change everything. Suddenly, my sister, Georgia, and I were orphans. We put our lives into storage and moved to Paris to live with my grandparents. And I knew my shattered heart, my shattered life, would never feel normal again. Then I met Vincent. Mysterious, sexy, and unnervingly charming, Vincent Delacroix appeared out of nowhere and swept me off my feet. Just like that, I was in danger of losing my heart all over again. But I was ready to let it happen. Of course, nothing is ever that easy. Because Vincent is no normal human. First in the Revenants series.
Fuzzy Nation, by John Scalzi
(May 10, Tor)
Jack Holloway works alone, for reasons he doesn’t care to talk about. Hundreds of miles from ZaraCorp’s headquarters on Zarathustra, 178 light-years from the corporation’s headquarters on Earth, Jack is content as an independent contractor. But there’s a wrinkle to ZaraCorp’s relationship with the planet Zarathustra. Their legal right to exploit it is based on the claim that it has no sentient species. Then a small furry biped shows up at Jack’s outback home, followed by its family. As it dawns on Jack that these are people, he begins to suspect that ZaraCorp may stop at nothing to eliminate the “fuzzys” before their existence becomes more widely known.
The Legions of Fire, by David Drake
(May 11, Tor)
In this novel of magical menace to the survival of humanity, David Drake introduces a new fantasy world, Carce, based on Europe during the later Roman Empire. Far in the north, a group of magicians perform a strange dance on a volcanic island, intended to open a gateway for supernatural creatures that will allow them to devastate Earth. Not knowing the cause, two young men, Corylus and Varus,and two women, Hedia and Alphena, separately pursue the answer to mysterious and threatening happenings that prefigure disaster in the great city of Carce, the center of civilization.Through magical voyages in other realities where fantastic creatures, and even gods, help or hinder them, each must succeed or the world will end in fire. First of a fantasy quartet.
Mind Storm, by K.M. Ruiz
(May 10, Thomas Dunne)
Two centuries after the world was nearly wiped out by nuclear war, the rich and powerful plan to ascend in secret to another planet. But the deadly new breed the rulers have enslaved to protect their interests is about to change everything. Threnody Corwin is a “psion,” with the ability to channel electricity like lightning through anything she touches. Threnody, a soldier-slave, is recruited by the scion of Earth’s most powerful (and supposedly human) family, the Serca Syndicate. But Lucas Serca is far from human and he intends to make Threnody and her fellow psions meet their destiny, no matter what. First in the Strykers Syndicate series.
The Quantum Thief, by Hannu Rajaniemi
(May 10, 2011)
Jean le Flambeur is a post-human criminal, mind burglar, confidence artist and trickster. His origins are shrouded in mystery, but his exploits are known throughout the Heterarchy—from breaking into the vast Zeusbrains of the Inner System to stealing rare Earth antiques from the aristocrats of Mars. Now he’s confined inside the Dilemma Prison, where every day he has to get up and kill himself before his other self can kill him. Rescued by the mysterious Mieli, who offers him the chance to win back his freedom and the powers of his old self—in exchange for finishing the one heist he never quite managed. U.S. Release.
Queen of Kings, by Maria Dahvana Headley
(May 12, Dutton)
The year is 30 B.C. Octavian Caesar and his massed legions are poised to enter Alexandria when a messenger informs Egypt’s queen, Cleopatra, that her beloved Mark Antony has died by his own hand. Desperate to save her kingdom, resurrect her husband and protect all she holds dear, Cleopatra turns to the gods for help. Ignoring the warnings of those around her, she summons Sekhmet, goddess of death and destruction, and strikes a mortal bargain. And not even the wisest of Egypt’s scholars could have predicted what would follow. For, in return for Antony’s soul, Sekhmet demands something in return: Cleopatra herself.
Relic Master: The Dark City, by Catherine Fisher
(May 12, Dial)
Welcome to Anara, a world mysteriously crumbling to devastation, where nothing is what it seems: Ancient relics emit technologically advanced powers, members of the old Order are hunted by the governing Watch yet revered by the people, and the great energy that connects all seems to also be destroying all. The only hope for the world lies in Galen, a man of the old Order and a Keeper of relics, and his 16-year-old apprentice, Raffi. They know of a secret relic with great power that has been hidden for centuries. As they search for it, they will be tested beyond their limits. For there are monsters—some human, some not—that also want the relic's power and will stop at nothing to get it.
The Rogue Crew: A Tale of Redwall, by Brian Jacques
(May 12, Philomel)
Redwall Abbey has never seen a creature more evil or more hideous than Razzid Wearat. Captain of the Greenshroud, a ship with wheels that can sail through water as well as the forest, this beast is a terror of both land and sea, traveling Mossflower Country, killing nearly everything—and everyone—in his path. And his goal? To conquer Redwall Abbey. From Salamandastron to the High North Coast, the brave hares of the Long Patrol team up with the fearless sea otters of the Rogue Crew to form a pack so tough, so rough, only they can defend the abbey and defeat Razzid Wearat once and for all. No. 22 in the Redwall series. Author Brian Jacques died of a heart attack on Feb. 5, 2011, at age 71; The Rogue Crew is expected to be the final Redwall novel.
Ruby Red, by Kerstin Gier
(May 10, Henry Holt)
Gwyneth Shepherd’s sophisticated, beautiful cousin Charlotte has been prepared her entire life for traveling through time. But unexpectedly, it is Gwyneth, who in the middle of class takes a sudden spin to a different era. Gwyneth must unearth the mystery of why her mother would lie about her birth date to ward off suspicion about her ability, brush up on her history, and work with Gideon, the time traveler from a similarly gifted family that passes the gene through its male line, and whose presence becomes, in time, less insufferable and more essential. U.S. release. First in the Edelstein Trilogie.
Tempest Rising, by Tracy Deebs
(May 10, Walker)
Tempest Maguire wants nothing more than to surf the killer waves near her California home; continue her steady relationship with her boyfriend, Mark; and take care of her brothers and surfer dad. But Tempest is half mermaid, and as her 17th birthday approaches, she will have to decide whether to remain on land or give herself to the ocean like her mother. The pull of the water becomes as insistent as her attraction to Kai, a gorgeous surfer whose uncanny abilities hint at an otherworldly identity as well. And when Tempest does finally give in to the water’s temptation and enters a fantastical underwater world, she finds a larger destiny awaits her—and that the entire ocean’s future hangs in the balance.
Tighter, by Adele Griffin
(May 10, Knopf)
When 17-year-old Jamie arrives on the idyllic New England island of Little Bly to work as a summer au pair, she is stunned to learn of the horror that precedes her. Seeking the truth surrounding a young couple’s tragic deaths, Jamie discovers she looks shockingly like the dead girl—and that she has a disturbing ability to sense the two ghosts. Why is Jamie’s connection to the couple so intense? What really happened last summer at Little Bly? As the secrets of the house wrap tighter around her, Jamie must navigate the increasingly blurred divide between the worlds of the living and the dead.
See anything you want? I can tell you already that reviews/giveaways of After Midnight, Fuzzy Nation, Mind Games and Ruby Red will be coming up in the next week or two. So…reader’s choice―you tell me. As always, four entries possible and please include your e-mail: +1 for comment, +1 for blog follow, +1 for Twitter follow @Suzanne_Johnson, and +1 for a Tweet or RT about the contest. Now….go!