New Books Network

Ken Liu, “The Hidden Girl and Other Stories” (Gallery/Saga Press, 2020)
Ken Liu’s second collection of speculative stories explores migration, memory, and a post-human future through the eyes of parents and their children. Whether his characters are adjusting to life on a new planet or grappling with moral quandaries—like whether a consciousness uploaded to a server is still human—they struggle with the age-old... Read More
K. M. Szpara, “Docile” (Tor.com, 2020)
In Docile (Tor.com, 2020), the debut novel by K.M. Szpara, people pay off family debts by working as indentured personal assistants to the ultra-wealthy. Tor describes the book as a “science fiction parable about love and sex, wealth and debt, abuse and power.” Szpara describes the book as “really gay.”... Read More
Karl Schroeder, “Stealing Worlds” (Tor Books, 2019)
To catch the people who killed her environmentalist father, the main character of Karl Schroeder’s Stealing Worlds (Tor Books, 2019) disappears into a virtual world of overlapping LARPs—live action role-playing games. But Sura Neelin soon discovers that the LARPs are more than games. They’re also an underground economy that meets players’... Read More
Nino Cipri, “Homesick: Stories” (Dzanc Books, 2019)
When Nino Cipri entered the Dzanc Short Story Collection Contest, they had no expectation of winning, so when they won, they were shocked. The prize came with a publishing contract, and suddenly Cipri was scrambling for a literary agent, negotiating a contract, and reaching a wider audience. “I wasn’t really planning on... Read More
Kameron Hurley, “The Light Brigade” (Saga Press, 2019)
Some war stories emphasize heroism and a higher purpose; others emphasize brutality and disillusionment. The first kind of story got Dietz, the narrator of Kameron Hurley’s military science fiction novel The Light Brigade (Saga Press, 2019), to enlist in a war against aliens from Mars. The second is the story... Read More
Mike Chen, “A Beginning at the End” (MIRA, 2020)
The end of the world is no excuse for eating French fries. That’s a lesson 7-year-old Sunny Donelly learns from her father, Rob, who tries to give her as normal a childhood as possible in the post-pandemic landscape of Mike Chen’s A Beginning at the End (MIRA, 2020). Trying to... Read More
Seanan McGuire, “Middlegame” (Tor.com, 2019)
Science fiction and fantasy often feature characters who seek absolute control (over a kingdom, country, world, galaxy or universe), but few break down the secret to power as elegantly as Seanan McGuire in Middlegame (Tor.com, 2019), where her sibling protagonists subdue the forces of nature through the union of two... Read More
K Chess, “Famous Men Who Never Lived” (Tin House, 2019)
Famous Men Who Never Lived (Tin House, 2019) is set in two Brooklyns. In one, people ride in trams; in the other, they take subways. In one, the swastika is a symbol of luck; in the other, it signifies hate. In one, science fiction is literature; in the other, it’s considered... Read More
Sarah Pinsker, “A Song for a New Day” (Berkley, 2019)
Sarah Pinsker’s A Song for a New Day (Berkley, 2019) explores how society changes following two plausible disasters: a surge in terrorism and a deadly epidemic. In the Before, people brush against each other in crowded cities, gather in stadiums to watch baseball games, and hang out in clubs to... Read More
Jim Clarke, “Science Fiction and Catholicism: The Rise and Fall of the Robot Papacy” (Gylphi, 2019)
Ah, science fiction: Aliens? Absolutely. Robots? Of course. But why are there so many priests in space? As Jim Clarke writes in Science Fiction and Catholicism: The Rise and Fall of the Robot Papacy (Gylphi, 2019), science fiction has had an obsession with Roman Catholicism for over a century. The... Read More