Make Some Room: November

Header (text): MAKE SOME ROOM (there's always room for one more)

I had very little idea what November has in store for us, but hang on to your hats, folks – I’ve been digging and next month is chock full of interesting SFF releases. If there’s always room for one more, these are the ones I’m considering…

November sees new books from some of the biggest names in SF and the much-anticipated ending to at least 2 major series. It has paperback editions or rereleases for books I can’t help but yell about one more time. And it has a number of really interesting titles that you might not have come across yet… Shall we get to it?

Lets start with the elephants in the room: new books from Neal Stephenson, Adrian Tchaikovsky and James S A Corey.

I’m way more excited about one of these than the other two because I am an unabashed and unquiet Expanse fangirl. I started screaming when I heard the final volume would be called Leviathan Falls, and I don’t expect to stop any time soon (I assume there will be emotional devastation on a scale appropriate to a series of 9 excellent doorstops). Watch out for the hardback from Orbit on November 16th (allegedly; I’ll be unsurprised if this changes given the state of autumn 2021).

Book cover: Leviathan Falls -  James S A Corey

While we’re talking favourites, how long is it since I last told you to read one of Premee Mohamed’s novellas? Well, it’s time to tell you again – The Annual Migration of Clouds (a searing post-apocalyptic tale of hope and feral pigs) gets its delayed paperback release from ECW Press on November 11th.

It’s a popular date – it also sees the release of a new hardback edition of Yoon Ha Lee’s magical collection of flash fiction, The Fox’s Tower and Other Tales from Andrews McMeel Publishing; and the paperback release of Kim Bo-Young’s English language debut I’m Waiting For You from HarperVoyager.

Last but not least, there’s Sinopticon from Solaris – a collection of 13 Chinese science fiction curated and translated into English for the first time by Xueting Christine Ni (watch out for an interview next month). I’m very excited to be introduced to so many new voices along with more familiar names such as Hao Jingfang.

Having strayed into mentions of new names, let me introduce you to a clutch who have caught my eye this month.

Scottish author NC Scrimgeour’s Those Left Behind caught my eye with its well-composed cover (I’m a sucker for spaceships and stars peeping from behind planets), and the pitch has me convinced this is a space opera I want to pick up: existential crisis, first contact, alien artefacts, ancient threats – and most importantly, a crew under pressure that’s already falling apart. Let me grab my popcorn. Those Left Behind is out on November 16th.

Only This Once Are You Immaculate is the sort of title that immediately piques my interest. Blessing Musariri’s fiction debut presents adoptive siblings venturing from a peaceful home into a turbulent world of warlords and shadow armies. This coming-of-age story promises fantasy world-building rooted in African landscapes. Out from Flipped Eye Publishing on November 18th.

Sticking with African fantasy, next up is The House of Rust by Khadija Abdalla Bajaber. Steeped in Hadrami mythology and peopled with talking animals, this magical adventure has a determined young woman try to find her father, sidestep marriage and defeat a snake-demon in her search for independence. Out from Graywolf Press on November 22nd.

Month-end holds more delights. I’m looking forward to When A Robot Decides To Die and other stories, a first English translation of the SFnal stories of Spanish author Francisco García González. Manufactured serial killers and suicidal robots suggest these may be dark, but I’m excited to see ever more works in translation coming through. Out from Vanderbilt University Press on November 30th.

I’ll close with The Perishing by Natashia Deón, out from Counterpoint on November 30th. When a young black woman wakes on a 1930s LA street with no memory of how she got there – or where her clothes are – she’s lucky to be taken in by a good family. Lou’s life will be extraordinary; but is she more than human – and if so, what has she been sent to achieve? I don’t know, but I’m keen to find out.

What books coming out next month are you excited for?

All release dates and publishers are for the UK unless otherwise mentioned.