New Science Fiction Books in September 2010

Time to have a look at September for new science fiction books to order. Here is my pick and a few other books I found interesting. It looks like a good month lots of books I will read as soon as I can unwrap them.

Many of these books are on my 13 SF for the rest of 2010 book list Guardians of Paradise, Out of the Dark, Quantum Thief, What Distant Deep, Dreadnought and The Truth of Valor.

On Order

Title: Out of the Dark

Author: David Weber
Genre: Vampire Science Fiction | Alien Invasion
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Tor Books 28 Sep 2010

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Vampires and space opera, it sounds cheesy but it is a Weber book so I am in. The first news made this out to be a new series but later reports says it is not.

Expanded from a short story that first appeared in George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois’s anthology Warriors, this trilogy kickoff blends elements of military science fiction and dark fantasy. In the very near future, Earth has been targeted for colonization by a galactic empire known as the Hegemony. Deemed “lunatic local sentients” by a survey team that witnessed King Henry V and his troops slaughtering the French at Agincourt, humankind has essentially been written off as bloodthirsty, expendable barbarians. When the Hegemony’s henchmen, the doglike Shongairi, show up to conquer Earth, the resistance is beyond anything they had ever imagined, especially when vampires appear to help the humans. Weber pulls off this conceit in audacious style with a focus on military-powered action that will thrill fans of his Honor Harrington series, and he keeps the pedal to the metal right up to the almost unbelievable conclusion.

Title: The Quantum Thief

Series: The Quantum Thief 1
Author: Hannu Rajaniemi
Genre: Space Opera
Hardcover: 448 pages
Publisher: Gollancz 30 Sep 2010

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I read a short story by Hannu, he is a fantastic writer. This promises to be a real good posthuman series.

Jean le Flambeur is a post-human criminal, mind burglar, confidence artist and trickster. His origins are shrouded in mystery, but his exploits are known throughout the Heterarchy – from breaking into the vast Zeusbrains of the Inner System to steal their thoughts, to stealing rare Earth antiques from the aristocrats of the Moving Cities of Mars. Except that Jean made one mistake. Now he is condemned to play endless variations of a game-theoretic riddle in the vast virtual jail of the Axelrod Archons – the Dilemma Prison – against countless copies of himself. Jean’s routine of death, defection and cooperation is upset by the arrival of Mieli and her spidership, Perhonen. She offers him a chance to win back his freedom and the powers of his old self – in exchange for finishing the one heist he never quite managed . . . The Quantum Thief is a dazzling hard SF novel set in the solar system of the far future – a heist novel peopled by bizarre post-humans but powered by very human motives of betrayal, revenge and jealousy. It is a stunning debut.

Title: Guardians of Paradise

Series: The Hidden Empire/Sidhe 3
Author: Jaine Fenn
Genre: Space Opera
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Gollancz 16 Sep 2010

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Jaine is another author I love. Read my take on the previous books in the Hidden Empire: Consorts of Heaven and Principles of Angels.

Most people believe the Sidhe are long dead, exterminated centuries ago when the males of the race rose up and fought alongside the humans subjugated and enslaved by the female Sidhe. But Jarek Reen knows better: he’s discovered, the painful way, that the Sidhe are alive and well, and still screwing over humanity. They’ve already killed his sister, so he’s not surprised when he discovers an old friend and her partner are next on the Sidhe’s hitlist. He helps not only to foil the assassination attempt, but also to muddy the scene of the crime, leaving the Angels Nual and Taro sanMalia presumed dead – and free to join his crusade to expose the insidious influence of the Sidhe, and their evil plans to enslave the human race again. Their mission takes them across human-space, from utilitarian hub-points to rich, exotic planets – where they discover that a brilliant vacation spot hides some of the darkest secrets of all. And that’s when they discover how easy it is for the hunters to become the hunted . . .

Title: What Distant Deeps

Series: Lt. Leary/RCN
Author: David Drake
Genre: Military Science Fiction
Publisher: Baen
Hardcover: 384 pages

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I ordered this book in November last year. Daniel and Adele has been wonderful companions so far. This is usually uncomplicated enjoyable military scifi.

This series is on my List of Military SF Series


Captain Daniel Leary and his friend, the spy Adele Mundy, have been in the front lines of Cinnabar’s struggle against the totalitarian Alliance. Now these galactic superpowers have signed a peace of mutual exhaustion–  But the jackals are moving in!

The Republic of Cinnabar was on the verge of collapse under the weight of taxes, casualties, and war’s disruption of trade. That the Alliance of Free Stars was in even worse condition helped only because it has made peace possible.

Years of war have been hard on Daniel and harder still on Adele, whose life outside information-gathering is a tightrope between despair and deadly violence. Their masters in the RCN and the Republic’s intelligence service have sent them to the fringes of human space to relax away from danger.

But the barbarians of the outer reaches have their own plans, plans which will bring down both Cinnabar and the Alliance. The enemies of peace include traitors, giant reptiles, and barbarian pirates whose ships can outsail even Daniel Leary’s splendid corvette, the Princess Cecile.

Unless Daniel, Adele, and their unlikely allies succeed, galactic civilization will disintegrate into blood and chaos. So they will succeed— or they’ll die trying!

Title: Dreadnought

Series: Clockwork Century 3
Author: Cherie Priest
Genre: Steampunk
Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Tor Books 28 Sep 2010

Excerpt: Chapter 1

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Boneshaker was wonderful and Clementine arrived this week so I haven’t read it yet. But I expect it to be good to.

A grizzly death in the Rue Morgue – a body sliced in half. Milady de Winter hunts the killer, and discovers the body held an incredible secret.

The quest to discover it will take her to the edge of the world and to the depths of her own soul.

Outstanding steampunk adventure from the author of The Bookman.

File Under: Steampunk [ A Ghostly Murder / A Mythical Object / A Worldwide Quest ]

Title: The Truth of Valor

Series: Confederation of Valor 5
Author: Tanya Huff
Genre: Military Science Fiction
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: DAW 7 Sep 2010

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Tanya is really good at characters and dialog making this one an easy choise.

Former Marine Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr is attempting to build a new life with salvage operator Craig Ryder on his ship, the Promise. Turns out civilian life is a lot rougher than she’d imagined-salvage operators are losing both cargo and lives to pirates. And when they attack the Promise, Craig is taken prisoner and Torin is left for dead.

When Torin finds out why the pirates needed Craig, she calls in the Marines to get him back-and to stop the pirates from changing the balance of power in known space.

Title: Ragnarok

Series: Ragnarok book 1
Author: Patrick A. Vanner
Genre: Military Science Fiction | Space Opera
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Baen

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This is probably a hit or miss kind of thing. It is Patrick A Vanner’s first novel in a series of military space opera. I have this thing for female protagonist so I will give it a try.

Captain Alexandra “Alex” McLaughlin is not a woman to be underestimated. Under her petite exterior is a spine of solid steel and a disposition to laugh in the face of impending death. A former member of the Terran Navy’s elite force, the Dead Jokers, electronic-warfare pilots with a mortality rate to match that of old Japan’s Kamikazes, Alex is a born survivor. But sometimes survival can be a curse.

Humanity is locked in a war of survival with the Xan-Sskarn, an alien race that refuses to acknowledge the rights of “weaker” creatures to live. It is a war that will not end with a peace treaty, but only the complete subjugation of one species to the other. And right now, the alien side is winning.

However, the enemy on the outside is not the only one to be faced. As the battles take on an eerily familiar pattern of no-win scenarios, Alex realized the horrifying truth; humanity has a traitor, and it’s somebody close. As each battle brings more death, Alex’s ghosts grow and so does her desire for vengeance. There is only one way for this to end, and Alex is just the human to take it there—to Ragnarok

Other New Books of Interest

Title: The Clockwork Man

Author: William Jablonsky
Genre: Steampunk
Paperback: 268 pages
Publisher: Medallion Press

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This one sounds interesting but could be a hit or miss kind of thing.

Ernst, the first man made of clockwork, is hailed as a marvel of late 19th-century automation and gains endless admirers, but when his love for the daughter of his creator is abruptly cut short, his serene existence is shattered. Forlorn, he allows himself to wind down in a willful act of defiant suicide. Now, more than 100 years later, he awakens to a new world and mentor – a well-meaning, if slightly unstable, homeless man. Attempting to piece together the events that brought him to this new home, Ernst tries to let go of the century-old tragedy that still haunts him. This story of science fiction realism delves into the thoughts, feelings, and desires of a character who must deal with the poignant social repercussions of having been built, rather than born.

Title: Zero History

Author: William Gibson
Genre: Cyberpunk

Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Viking 2 September 2010 | Putnam Adult 7 September 2010
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The iconic visionary returns with his first new novel since the New York Times bestseller Spook Country.

Whatever you do, because you are an artist, will bring you to the next thing of your own…

When she sang for The Curfew, Hollis Henry’s face was known worldwide. She still runs into people who remember the poster. Unfortunately, in the post-crash economy, cult memorabilia doesn’t pay the rent, and right now she’s a journalist in need of a job. The last person she wants to work for is Hubertus Bigend, twisted genius of global marketing; but there’s no way to tell an entity like Bigend that you want nothing more to do with him. That simply brings you more firmly to his attention.

Milgrim is clean, drug-free for the first time in a decade. It took eight months in a clinic in Basel. Fifteen complete changes of his blood. Bigend paid for all that. Milgrim’s idiomatic Russian is superb, and he notices things. Meanwhile no one notices Milgrim. That makes him worth every penny, though it cost Bigend more than his cartel-grade custom-armored truck.

The culture of the military has trickled down to the street- Bigend knows that, and he’ll find a way to take a cut. What surprises him though is that someone else seems to be on top of that situation in a way that Bigend associates only with himself. Bigend loves staring into the abyss of the global market; he’s just not used to it staring back.

Title: Human Secrets

Author: Linden Lewis
Paperback 300 pages
Publisher: Matador 6 Sep 2010

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When Guy Hewson, a young professor of Egyptology, discovers a strange relic, he has no idea of the bizarre sequence of events that will follow. The importance of the unearthed antiquity becomes manifest when the professor is the target of an assassination attempt. He is saved by an old university friend, Justin Bloom, a man struggling to cope with the humdrum routine of his daily existence. Justin is drawn into a scenario that’s far removed from his regular family life in Norfolk. As the mystery deepens his integrity is tested by the reciprocated fascination he has for another woman, Abigail Shakespeare, who becomes involved. Eventually, the incredible significance of the relic becomes apparent and a dark secret from humanity’s past is uncovered. Whilst Professor Hewson attempts to stay one step ahead of the police and a murderous third party, it’s down to Justin and Abigail to avert a reanimated danger threatening all of civilisation. Human Secrets exemplifies a new category of credible science fiction that deals with the lives of a group of ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. It is a tale of romance and adventure that questions mankind’s place in the past, present and future.

New Releases of Old Books

Title: The High Crusade

Author: Paul Anderson
Genre: Alien invasion | Alternative History
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: Baen (1st Ed 1960)

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In the year of grace 1345, as Sir Roger Baron de Tourneville is gathering an army to join King Edward III in the war against France, a most astonishing event occurs: a huge silver ship descends through the sky and lands in a pasture beside the little village of Ansby in northeastern Lincolnshire. The Wersgorix, whose scouting ship it is, are quite expert at taking over planets, and having determined from orbit that this one was suitable, they initiate standard world-conquering procedure. Ah, but this time it’s no mere primitives the Wersgorix seek to enslave—they’ve launched their invasion against free Englishmen! In the end, only one alien is left alive—and Sir Roger’s grand vision is born. He intends for the creature to fly the ship first to France to aid his King, then on to the Holy Land to vanquish the infidel. Unfortunately, he has not allowed for the treachery of the alien pilot, who instead takes the craft to his home planet, where, he thinks, these upstart barbarians will have no choice but to surrender. But that knavish alien little understands the indomitable will and clever resourcefulness of Englishmen, no matter how great the odds against them. . .

Title: Engineman

Author: Eric Brown
Genre: Space Opera
Paperback: 640 pages
Publisher: Solaris (1st ed 1994)

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Once the Enginemen pushed bigships through the cobalt glory of the nada-continuum. But faster than light isn’t fast enough anymore. The interfaces of the Keilor-Vincicoff Organisation bring planets light years distant a simple step away. Then a man with half a face offers ex-Engineman Ralph Mirren the chance to escape his ruined life and push a ship to an undisclosed destination. The nada-continuum holds the key to Ralph’s future. What he cannot anticipate is its universal importance – nor the mystery awaiting him on the distant colony world.

Engineman is a thrilling action adventure by the author of Helix and Kéthani. Also in this volume are nine stories set in the Engineman universe, including the Interzone award-winning ‘The Time-Lapsed Man.’

Title: Winter Song

Author: Colin Harvey
Genre: Hard Science Fiction | Lost Colony
Cover art: Chris Moore
Paperback: 432 pages
Publisher: Angry Robot Sept 2010 (US) | 1st 2009

Excerpt: Sample chapter

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Read my review on TLR

The planet had fallen off the map. When Karl Altman’s spaceship crashed, he had only one question: “HOW THE HELL DO I GET OUT OF HERE?” Rock-hard sci-fi adventure. No-one here gets out alive. When his spaceship crashes on an unknown and forgotten planet, scientist Karl Altman discovers himself hunted by an ancient race. The descendants of a Viking race have reverted to a savage culture of sacrifice, pillage and violence. When Karl falls in love with an outcast girl, he has only one goal: escape. But escape is a distant dream on this nightmare planet.

FILE UNDER: Science Fiction [Starship Crash / Abandoned Colonists / Alien Slaughter / Hell Planet]