Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. It’s all about books, lists and sharing the love we have of both with our bookish friends. This week, it’s time to take a look at the releases we are most excited about in the second half of 2021.
My list of Ones To Watch in 2021 was exhaustive. Just enormous. It grew daily, too, as I heard about more and more awesome releases I was never going to stay ahead of. By contrast, my visibility of what’s coming up after September is almost non-existent. Hell, I know about more 2022 releases than I know about late 2021. So I guess this week’s topic will result in the squeakily explosive growth of my TBR as check out everyone else’s list!
Skipping right past July as I took a longer look at its stack of amazing releases last week, I’m happy to say August and September are similarly blessed.
The UK edition of A Master of Djinn by P Djèlí Clark hits the shelves on August 19th. I thoroughly enjoyed my first dip into Clark’s alt historical steampunk Cairo and can’t wait to dive into his debut novel. There’s also the delightfully tasty proposition of a collaboration between UK space opera giants Peter F Hamilton and Gareth L Powell on August 24th – Light Chaser gives us an explorer who trades life stories for trinkets, and comes to the realisation that something is terribly wrong in the galaxy.
Other August releases that have caught my eyes are debut novels This Is Our Undoing by Lorraine Wilson (August 3rd) and The Hand of the Sun-King by JT Greatwater (August 5th), and there’s a number of exciting sequels slated (including The Thousand Eyes by AK Larkwood and The Second Rebel by Linden A Lewis), hammering home that I really do have a lot of 2020 still to catch up on, dammit.
September is set to be as big as July. Cass Khaw’s debut novel is set to have me squeaking on September 7th (US) / 20th (UK): resurrected cyborg criminals take on a conspiracy of sapient ageships suggests The All-Consuming World is exactly my brand of space opera (and as this is Cass Khaw, so I’m just going to go ahead and assume there’ll be tentacles).
Also on September 7th are the very different but equally irresistible You Sexy Thing by Cat Rambo and No Gods No Monsters by Cadwell Turnbull. The elevator pitch for Rambo’s space opera literally melted my brain – I have no way to process ‘Farscape meets The Great British Bake Off’, but I want to read it. Retired military turned bakers, a sentient spaceship and sadistic space pirates round out this barrel of WTF and almost leave me wishing the summer away. Turnbull’s debut (The Lesson) is still on my TBR, but I’ll be getting to No Gods No Monsters as fast as my grabby hands can snag it – I simply can’t resist thoughtful narratives wrapped up in ‘the monsters are all real and they’ve stopped hiding’ plots.
I’ve already got my grabby hands on a review copy of Premee Mohamed’s next oddly hopeful post-apocalytic novella The Annual Migration of Clouds (out September 30th) because after These Lifeless Things you bet I’m leaping on every novella she writes.
This is the tip of the September iceberg – I’ve not even mentioned Zoraida Córdova’s new dual-timeline magical stand-alone The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina (September 7th) or the final instalment in RJ Barker’s maritime fantasy The Bone Ship’s Wake (September 28th) – or – but no, I’ll restrain myself. Go check out September’s releases, and start making room on your shelves. You’re going to need it.
The last 3 months of the year are shrouded in mystery, although there are two epic space operas on the horizon. Tade Thompson is back on October 26th with space colonisation mystery Far From The Light Of Heaven. Early winter promises Leviathan Falls, the final novel of The Expanse by James SA Corey (due November 16th). I am bracing for devastation and half-wondering if there’s any way I can squeeze in a reread (I can’t, unless I read nothing else. Maybe just a reread of books 7 and 8?)
There are also sequels due in several series I’m attached to (The Quicksilver Court by Melissa Caruso on October 12th, The God of Lost Words by AJ Hackwith on November 2nd, The Bone Shard Emperor by Andrea Stewart on November 9th), but after November I only know of a single release: Shea Ernshaw’s adult debut, A History of Wild Places (December 7th). It’s definitely one to watch out for, promising an atmospheric mystery in a remote community troubled by the historic disappearance of two outsiders. Besides, look at that cover. I think it’s telling us everything about what to expect in this thriller…
If you have more idea of what’s coming in the last quarter of the year, I’m all ears!
What releases are you most looking forward to in the next six months?