Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Titles to look out for: January - March 2013

After scouring the publisher catalogs these are the new or forthcoming book releases which have caught my eye. Books might be included in the list based on their brilliant writing, a captivating premise, the continuation of an addictive series or something as simple as the magical lure of their cover art.


The Explorer By James Smythe
Release date: 17 Jan 2013 / ISBN: 9780007456758
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When journalist Cormac Easton is selected to document the first manned mission into deep space, he dreams of securing his place in history as one of humanity's great explorers.

But in space, nothing goes according to plan.

The crew wake from hypersleep to discover their captain dead in his allegedly fail-proof safety pod. They mourn, and Cormac sends a beautifully written eulogy back to Earth. The word from ground control is unequivocal: no matter what happens, the mission must continue.

But as the body count begins to rise, Cormac finds himself alone and spiraling toward his own inevitable death . . . unless he can do something to stop it.

A Memory of Light by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
Release date: 8 Jan 2013 / ISBN: 9781841498720
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'And it came to pass in those days, as it had come before and would come again, that the Dark lay heavy on the land and weighed down the hearts of men, and the green things failed, and hope died.' - Charal Drianaan te Calamon, The Cycle of the Dragon.

In the Field of Merrilor the rulers of the nations gather to join behind Rand al'Thor, or to stop him from his plan to break the seals on the Dark One's prison - which may be a sign of his madness, or the last hope of humankind. Egwene, the Amyrlin Seat, leans toward the former.

In Andor, the Trollocs seize Caemlyn. In the wolf dream, Perrin Aybara battles Slayer.

Approaching Ebou Dar, Mat Cauthon plans to visit his wife Tuon, now Fortuona, Empress of the Seanchan.

All humanity is in peril - and the outcome will be decided in Shayol Ghul itself. The Wheel is turning, and the Age is coming to its end. The Last Battle will determine the fate of the world. . .


The Daylight War by Peter V. Brett
Release Date: 11 February 2013 / ISBN: 9780007276219
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Continuing the impressive debut fantasy series from author Peter V. Brett, The DAYLIGHT WAR is book three of the Demon cycle, pulling the reader into a world of demons, darkness and heroes. Humanity is fighting back. Although the night still belongs to the demons that arise as the sun sets, new wards and weapons are giving those willing to fight in the darkness a chance to retaliate against their core-spawned enemies. But, as humanity is about to learn, not all monsters are confined to the dark. Civil war ravages the north and south, battles fought between those who should be working together. It is up to Arlen -- the Painted Man -- and Jardir -- the self-proclaimed Shar'Dama Ka, the Deliverer -- to put aside their differences and bring their people to terms if they are to have any chance of saving their civilisation from demon-rule.

Farside by Ben Bova
Release Date: 12 February 2013 / ISBN: 9780765323873
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Farside, the side of the Moon that never faces Earth, is the ideal location for an astronomical observatory. It is also the setting for a tangled web of politics, personal ambition, love, jealousy, and murder.

Telescopes on Earth have detected an Earth-sized planet circling a star some thirty light-years away. Now the race is on to get pictures of that distant world, photographs and spectra that will show whether or not the planet is truly like Earth, and if it bears life.

Farside will include the largest optical telescope in the solar system as well as a vast array of radio antennas, the most sensitive radio telescope possible, insulated from the interference of Earth’s radio chatter by a thousand kilometers of the Moon’s solid body.

Building the Farside observatory is a complex, often dangerous task. On the airless surface of the Moon, under constant bombardment of hard radiation and infalling micrometeoroids, builders must work in cumbersome spacesuits and use robotic machines as much as possible. Breakdowns—mechanical and emotional—are commonplace. Accidents happen, some of them fatal.

What they find stuns everyone, and the human race will never be the same.

Fade to Black by Francis Knight
Release date: 26 February 2013 / ISBN: 9780316217682
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A dazzling fantasy debut set in a futuristic city where pain is the currency of magic.

From the depths of a valley rises the city of Mahala

It's a city built upwards, not across - where streets are built upon streets, buildings upon buildings. A city that the Ministry rules from the sunlit summit, and where the forsaken lurk in the darkness of Under.

Rojan Dizon doesn't mind staying in the shadows, because he's got things to hide. Things like being a pain-mage, with the forbidden power to draw magic from pain. But he can't hide for ever.

Because when Rojan stumbles upon the secrets lurking in the depths of the Pit, the fate of Mahala will depend on him using his magic. And unlucky for Rojan - this is going to hurt.


The Curve of the Earth by Simon Morden
Release date: 19 March 2013 / ISBN: 9780316220064
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An action-packed new science fiction thriller set in the world of the Philip K. Dick Award-winning Samuil Petrovitch novels

Welcome to the Metrozone - the post-apocalyptic London of the future, complete with homeless refugees, vicious street gangs and mad cults. A dangerous city needs an equally dangerous saviour: step forward Samuil Petrovitch, a Russian émigré with a genius-level intellect, extensive cybernetic replacements, a built-in AI with god-like capabilities and a full armoury of Russian swear words. Brilliant, selfish and cocky, he's dragged the city back from the brink more than once - and made a few enemies on the way.

So when his adopted daughter Lucy goes missing in Alaska, he has a good idea who's responsible and why. It never occurs to him that there's a chance he could be wrong, and looking for one woman on the dark, frozen slopes of the far north could tip the delicate balance of nuclear-armed nations. This time it's not a city of twenty-five million that needs rescuing: it's the world . . .

Wolfhound Century by Peter Higgins
Release date: 26 March 2013 / ISBN: 9780575130531
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A gripping SF thriller in a brilliantly realized alternative Russia - a superb debut.

A thousand miles east of Mirgorod, the great capital city of the Vlast, deep in the ancient forest, lies the most recent fallen angel, its vast stone form half-buried and fused into the rock by the violence of impact. As its dark energy leeches into the crash site, so a circle of death expands around it, slowly - inexorably - killing everything it touches. Alone in the wilderness, it reaches out with its mind.

The endless forest and its antique folklore are no concern to Inspector Vissarion Lom, summoned to the capital in order to catch a terrorist - and ordered to report directly to the head of the secret police. A totalitarian state, worn down by an endless war, must be seen to crush home-grown terrorism with an iron fist. But Lom discovers Mirgorod to be more corrupted than he imagined: a murky world of secret police and revolutionaries, cabaret clubs and doomed artists. Lom has been chosen because he is an outsider, not involved in the struggle for power within the party. And because of the sliver of angel stone implanted in his head at the children's home.

Lom's investigation reveals a conspiracy that extends to the top echelons of the party. When he exposes who - or rather what - is the controlling intelligence behind this, it is time for the detective to change sides. Pursued by rogue police agents and their man-crushing mudjhik, Lom must protect Kantor's step-daughter Maroussia, who has discovered what is hidden beneath police headquarters: a secret so ancient that only the forest remembers. As they try to escape the capital and flee down river, elemental forces are gathering. The earth itself is on the move.

Halo Silentium by Greg Bear
Release date: 19 March 2013 / ISBN: 9780765323989
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In the first Forerunner novel, rebellious young Forerunner Bornstellar Makes Eternal Lasting crosses the paths of two humans, and the long-life line of a great military leader. . . forever changing Bornstellar’s destiny. . . and the fate of the entire galaxy.

In the second, those two humans—Chakas and Riser—are captured by the Master Builder, misplaced during a furious battle in space, and find themselves on an inverted world where horizons rise into the sky, and where humans of all kinds are trapped in a perilous cycle of horror and neglect. They became both research animals and strategic pawns in a cosmic game whose madness knows no end—a game of ancient vengeance between the powers who seeded the galaxy with life, and the Forerunners who expect to inherit their sacred Mantle of duty to all living things.

Now, the third book in this ground-breaking trilogy will reveal the ultimate purpose of this ancient game, challenging everything we thought we knew about the Forerunners.

Based on the universe and characters from the multimillion copy selling Xbox video games, Untitled Forerunner #3, completes a trilogy set in the pre-Halo universe, and sets the stage for the next hotly anticipated Halo game.


Did I miss any? Let me know in the comments which titles you are looking forward to.


  1. I quite like the sound of Explorer! Not heard of the author tho...

    1. I haven't come across the author before either. He has written other books, but I think this is the first one leaning to science fiction. The synopsis does sound very good though and it has been getting some rave reviews.

  2. This is the second piece I've read on Wolfhound Century, it's got me intrigued. Have you read Yellow Blue Tibia by Adam Roberts? Another slice of Soviet-related sci-fi I finished recently, well worth checking out. It's drenched in paranoia and general insanity, and I mean that in the best way possible.