A year after the sack of Sleighthulme, Joron is riddled with disease and dismay. As the Black Pirate, he is dreaded throughout the Hundred Isles, but he is no closer to finding Meas. How far will he go for his shipwife – and will she forgive what he has done in her name?
Locked in the back room of a research institute where little work is ever done, Cabinet 13 holds secret files documenting cases of spontaneous evolution. When a bored office assistant picks the lock, his understanding of the world changes – but how will forbidden knowledge transform him?
This year’s Subjective Chaos Kind of Awards had what may be the strongest line-up of novella nominees yet. It’s been an absolute pleasure to read them, and a nightmare to try and choose between them to select our finalists. Today I’m looking back briefly at them all, because hell yes you should read them. All of them.
The Mugenese have been shattered by the Phoenix’s terrible power, but Rin still hungers to destroy Nikan’s treacherous Empress. Before she can defeat her enemies, Rin must face her demons – and learn to control the god within…
Branwen’s dreams of granting Iveriu safety, Eseult happiness and Tristan her heart are in tatters. She is determined to right her mistakes – but with the local priests and the new King’s Champion watching her every move, the slightest mis-step could end in disaster…
Gyen Jebi is desperate enough for cash to pursue a government job. Nobody knows why the Razanei occupiers are so keen to recruit artists, but Jebi soon discovers they won’t take no for an answer. Assigned to a horrifying military project, Jebi must decide where their loyalties lie – if they can find the courage.
As part of the Subjective Chaos Kind of Awards panel, I get to choose which categories I’ll read at each stage. This year, I put my hand up for Series and Novellas; I’m now halfway through the series so before I dive back into novellas I want to round up my thoughts on the first instalments of two of our Series nominees.
Thara Celehar can speak to the recently dead. A reserved man haunted by his own ghosts, he asks the dead questions to confirm burial rites and inheritances, and to ease the hearts and minds of the living. But sometimes the dead have dark secrets. When a woman is murdered, Thara is determined to do right by her – whatever the cost.
The devout know that divine Nari, founder of Narida, will be reborn when he is most needed. With the current God-king sick and Tjakorshi Raiders settling on the Black Coast, the time is surely ripe. But how will Narida welcome him?
The Near Earth Orbital Guard handle search and rescue in space, a vital if underfunded mission delivered by small, tight crews determined to save lives. When rookie lieutenant Max Carmichael is unexpectedly assigned to the best Neo-G crew in the service, she has a lot to prove – to her new team, to her estranged family, but mostly to herself.
A year after saving the wakewyrm, the resistance port of Safeharbour is raided by the Bern; more arakeesians are sighted, putting the Hundred Isles back on a war footing; and the toxic cargo of a merchant ship suggests the Thirteenbern has even darker plots afoot. The battle for peace teeters on a knife-edge – and there’s a mutiny brewing aboard the Tide Child...
The new Parijatdvipan Emperor is a tyrant and a zealot, fond of ‘purifying’ women with flame. When his rebellious sister refuses to be sacrificed, she is imprisoned. But allies are sometimes found in the strangest places, and Malini is not alone in her fear of the Emperor. Chandra’s cruelty may set the whole Empire alight.
Anaiya is a Hero of Otpor, the Peacekeeper who brought a Heterodox traitor to justice. But her time undercover has stripped her of her aptitude – and appetite – for her role. Caught between the Elements of Fire and Air, can she learn to live differently without condemning herself as Heterodox?
The month of May is made of good intentions, followed by a cascade of compromises. That is to say: I started Wyrd & Wonder with a stack of outstanding reviews …and I ended it the same way. Time to clear my conscience – let’s take a look at my last 2 Wyrd & Wonder reads and catch up on the third season of BookBurners.