Now that I've been doing this for a year, there are more debut graduates to cover every month. I found four for this month. Here's a little snippet on each of them:
A Fire in the North by David Bilsborough
This author lives in a tiny village in Java, and therefore maintains no Internet presence (he discusses it here). His first novel, The Wanderer's Tale, came out a year ago Here's the blurb for his second novel, which Tor provided to me as a review copy:
Five hundred years ago a huge force defeated an evil, supernaturally powerful tyrant who terrorized and ravaged those who cowered under his lash. Now, terrible news from the north suggests that someone or some thing is once again preying upon the northern lands, threatening to once again darken the lives of those whose forebears still remember the horrific past.Now, a small, motley band faces a daunting challenge. Led by a brave warrior and a visionary priest, they have finally reached the land to the north. They have seen wonders and endured terrifying experiences, barely escaping from a dizzying series of perils, magical and otherwise. But the direst perils lie before them as they approach the evil that has risen again, its dread power terrorizing and enslaving all who oppose it. Finally, the Wanderer, fated to face the ultimate test, will confront his destiny. A world and its trembling masses await the outcome.
Escapement by Jay Lake
Jay Lake has published a slew (and I do mean a slew) of short stories, and his debut, Mainspring, was warmly received last year. I have not read it yet, but it's one of those that I'd like to read because it sounds so imaginative. Here's the blurb for the next book:
In his novel Mainspring, Lake created an enormous canvas for storytelling with his hundred mile high Equatorial Wall that holds up the great Gears of the Earth. Now in Escapement, he explores more of that territory. Paolina Barthes is a young woman of remarkable intellectual ability – a genius on the level of Isaac Newton. But she has grown up in isolation, in a small village of shipwreck survivors, on the Wall in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. She knows little of the world, but she knows that England rules it, and must be the home of people who possess the learning that she so desperately wants. And so she sets off to make her way off the Wall, not knowing that she will bring her astounding, unschooled talent for sorcery to the attention of those deadly factions who would use or kill her for it.
The Cold Minds by Kristin Landon
I read Kristin's debut, The Hidden Worlds, last year, plus I interviewed her. I found it almost impossible to put down and somewhat disturbing. It is the type of novel that compels you in spite of yourself. I plan to snatch up this sequel sometime soon.
After Earth's destruction by ruthless machine intelligences known as the Cold Minds, the remnants of the human race fled to the Hidden Worlds. Now, after six centuries of safety, the horrors of the past have returned to finish the extermination. Renegade jump pilot Iain sen Paolo and Linnea Kiaho know that the Cold Minds have found humanity again. To fight back, they need to recruit jump pilots. But the secretive Pilot Masters guard their knowledge—and their ships—jealously. They refuse to admit that the Cold Minds have returned or that anyone not of their number could possess the ability to fly a jump ship. Now, Linnea must prove the Pilot Masters wrong. On the run and desperately searching for allies to oppose the Cold Minds, Linnea and Iain face near-impossible odds. But they know that somehow, some way, they must succeed—or humanity itself will become extinct.…
Spectre by Phaedra Weldon
Phaedra Weldon's Wraith was one of the first debuts that I announced. Back then, she didn't have a web presence, but now she has a nice website with links to her blog and a MySpace page. Turn up the sound! Here's the blurb for Spectre:
Zoë Martinique has the extraordinary ability to travel outside her body at will. When she is drawn into an investigation of a series of bizarre murders, in which the victims are missing body parts, Zoë hopes to help her boyfriend, Atlanta homicide detective Daniel Frasier, stop the killer— one she’s sure is from the darkest levels of the astral plane—without letting him find out about her special abilities.Then danger strikes close to home when Zoë’s mother disappears, and Zoë must use all the powers at her command to save her—even though Zoë knows that, in doing so, she may make herself into something no longer entirely human.