THE UL­TI­MATE BOOK PRE­VIEW

JONATHAN WRIGHT GATH­ERS TO­GETHER SOME OF THE BEST NEW NOV­ELS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN THE COM­ING YEAR

SFX - - Contents -

Here they are – the most buzz-wor­thy sci­ence fic­tion and fan­tasy page-turn­ers out to claim a chunk of shelf-space in 2019.

IN­FI­NITE DE­TAIL by TIM MAUGHAN (MCD/FSG Orig­i­nals)

Eight years on from his ac­claimed col­lec­tion Paint­works, nou­veau-cy­ber­punk’s bright­est name fi­nally has a de­but novel to his name. Set in Bris­tol, it imag­ines what might hap­pen if some­body turned off the in­ter­net. Think world­wide hard Brexit, plus-plus. Bad, very bad. ETA March

DAVID MOGO: GODHUNTER by SUYI DAVIES okung­bowa (Abad­don Books)

In the wake of the Or­isha War that rained gods on La­gos, David Mogo is a godhunter. He’s good at what he does. And he needs to be when con­fronted with a le­gion of taboos – feral godling-child hy­brids. Nige­rian writer Okung­bowa’s richly promis­ing de­but ur­ban fan­tasy. ETA Sum­mer

THE TRUE QUEEN by Zen Cho (Macmillan)

Witches abroad. In a novel that ranges across Re­gency Lon­don, Fairy­land and an en­chanted is­land in the Malay ar­chi­pel­ago, two sis­ters are sep­a­rated. For things to be righted, a curse needs to be lifted. A wildly imag­i­na­tive fan­tasy from Bri­tish Fan­tasy So­ci­ety Award-win­ning, Malaysiaraised Zen Cho, who now lives in Birm­ing­ham. ETA March

THE RAVEN TOWER by ANN LECKIE (Orbit)

Hav­ing won Ev­ery Award Ever for her hard SF nov­els, Leckie turns her at­ten­tion to fan­tasy. Specifics are sketchy at the mo­ment, but we’re told to ex­pect a tale of gods and men med­dling in each other’s fates, and a pre­tender who “must be cast down from the throne”. ETA Fe­bru­ary

THE CITY IN THE MID­DLE OF THE NIGHT by CHAR­LIE JANE AN­DERS (Ti­tan Books)

On a fail­ing planet with zones where, re­spec­tively, night and day never end, humanity re­sides in two cities where it’s al­ways dusk. A pariah, sac­ri­ficed to the night, wants bet­ter and leads a re­bel­lion. Much-an­tic­i­pated sopho­more of­fer­ing from the for­mer edi­tor-in-chief of io9. Michael Chabon is a fan. ETA Fe­bru­ary

SANC­TU­ARY by vv JAMES (Gol­lancz)

As the Con­necti­cut town of Sanc­tu­ary mourns its de­ceased star quar­ter­back, sus­pi­cion falls on his ex-girl­friend, Harper. Well, she’s said to be the daugh­ter of a witch and she was there when he died. A su­per­nat­u­ral-tinged thriller from the writer of (as Vic James) the “Dark Gifts Tril­ogy”. ETA Au­gust

A BOY AND HIS DOG AT THE END OF THE WORLD by CA FLETCHER (Orbit)

Griz lives on a re­mote is­land with his par­ents. He’s not lonely – he has a pooch for com­pany – un­til a thief comes to the is­land. The new novel from Stone­heart au­thor (C)har­lie A Fletcher, a story set amidst “the ru­ins of the world”, con­jures up both melan­choly and frag­ile hope. ETA April

WASTE TIDE by CHEN QIUFAN (Head of Zeus)

In a near-fu­ture China, “waste girl” Mimi ekes out a liv­ing on Sil­i­con Isle, the global cap­i­tal for elec­tronic garbage recycling. When a ship car­ry­ing a terrible virus ar­rives, so too does con­flict – be­tween rich and poor, the past and what lies ahead. The Chi­nese SF re­nais­sance gath­ers pace. ETA April

THE LIGHT BRIGADE by kameron hur­ley (An­gry Ro­bot)

Quite pos­si­bly the best spec­u­la­tive nov­el­ist you’ve yet to read, Hur­ley’s con­sis­tency is a thing of magic in it­self. Her new novel is a mil­i­tary SF tale of grunts serv­ing in the cor­po­rate corps, and the gap be­tween pro­pa­ganda and re­al­ity ex­pe­ri­enced by new re­cruit Di­etz. ETA April

BLACK LEOP­ARD, RED WOLF by MAR­LON JAMES (Hamish Hamil­ton)

The Man Booker Prize-win­ning au­thor of A Brief His­tory of Seven Killings turns to fan­tasy for the first vol­ume in his “Dark Star Tril­ogy”. Rooted in African mythol­ogy, it fol­lows a loner hunter, Tracker, who’s forced to call on help in his quest to lo­cate a miss­ing child. ETA Fe­bru­ary

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