December Science Fiction And Fantasy Overview

This month, science fiction and fantasy readers can expect new releases from a variety of authors, just in time for the holidays. Today we're playing tour guide and pointing out some December hotspots of the genres. We've selected four releases — from space opera to epic fantasy — and offer an overview of the stories, plus some important tidbits of wisdom that readers should know before diving in.

 

 

The Folly of the World 
by Jesse Bullington

The story: Set in 1421, Holland’s two factions — the upper class Hooks and the lower class Cods — are at war, but when the North Sea unleashes a great flood on the country, everything is destroyed and towns are replaced by an ocean of murky water. But three survivors discover that the new landscape may work in their favor. Together, a deranged thug, a con man and a half-feral girl sail the changed landscape in search of profit and new beginnings.

Know before you read: Based on a 16th-century painting and Flemish proverbs, author Jesse Bullington’s unique tale is not your typical fantasy fare, although genre fans and readers of alternate history stories will definitely enjoy it. 

     
 

The Fractal Prince 
by Hannu Rajaniemi

The story: In this futuristic look at Earth, thief Jean de Flambeur has experienced an existence full of death and constant regeneration in a place known as the Dilemma Prison. But now, with the help of a powerful spaceship, he is searching for immortality. But in order to gain his long sought-after escape, he must unravel the mystery within a Schrödinger box. But will it contain his freedom, or will be another dead end?

Know before you read: This is the second in a series, and according to reviewer Victoria Frerichs, it’s vital to pick up series starter before digging into this one. Space opera fans that have read the first in Rajaniemi’s trilogy, The Quantum Thief, will definitely want to get their hands on this.

     
 

The Damnation Affair 
by Lilith Saintcrow

The Story: When well-to-do Bostonian Catherine Barrowe heads west in search of her missing brother, she’s not prepared for the barrage of weird that she encounters in the peculiar frontier town of Damnation. Taking a job as a schoolmarme, Catherine begins her search with the help of local Sheriff Jack Gabriel, who’s determined to protect her from the dangers his strange town possesses. When Catherine discovers that her brother may be mixed up in the evil that haunts Damnation, she’s willing to do whatever it takes in order to keep him safe.

Know before you read: This story is currently only available digitally, which is great for e-book lovers looking to fill up their devices for the holidays. For those who would prefer a print copy, the paperback version will be available on February 5. 

     
 

Bard’s Oath 
by Joanne Bertin

The story: An epic fantasy that follows a world inhabited by Dragonlords — humans that can take the form of dragons — Bertin’s latest is a compelling tale of betrayal and is filled with a variety of fascinating creatures. When Leet, a master bard with great magic, uses his power to harm the human friend of Dragonlord Linden, Linden must figure out if his Dragonlord abilities are enough to save the fate of humans.

Know before you read: Twelve years after Dragons and Phoenix, the finale in Bertin’s Dragonlord series is finally here, and fans have certainly waited long enough! Although this is a story best enjoyed by those who have read the previous two books, it will equally satisfy newcomers.

     

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