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Vita Nostra

Sergey Dyachenko
Marina Dyachenko

The definitive English language translation of the internationally bestselling Russian novel--a brilliant dark fantasy with "the potential to be a modern classic" (Lev Grossman), combining psychological suspense, enchantment, and terror that makes us consider human existence in a fresh and provocative way.

Our life is brief...

While vacationing at the beach with her mother, Sasha Samokhina meets the mysterious Farit Kozhennikov under the most peculiar circumstances. The teenage girl is powerless to refuse when this strange and unusual man with an air of the sinister directs her to perform a task with potentially scandalous consequences. He rewards her effort with a strange golden coin.

As the days progress, Sasha carries out other acts for which she receives more coins from Kozhennikov. As summer ends, her domineering mentor directs her to move to a remote village and use her gold to enter the Institute of Special Technologies. Though she does not want to go to this unknown town or school, she also feels it's the only place she should be. Against her mother's wishes, Sasha leaves behind all that is familiar and begins her education.

As she quickly discovers, the institute's "special technologies" are unlike anything she has ever encountered. The books are impossible to read, the lessons obscure to the point of maddening, and the work refuses memorization. Using terror and coercion to keep the students in line, the school does not punish them for their transgressions and failures; instead, their families pay a terrible price. Yet despite her fear, Sasha undergoes changes that defy the dictates of matter and time; experiences which are nothing she has ever dreamed of... and suddenly all she could ever want.

A complex blend of adventure, magic, science, and philosophy that probes the mysteries of existence, filtered through a distinct Russian sensibility, this astonishing work of speculative fiction--brilliantly translated by Julia Meitov Hersey--is reminiscent of modern classics such as Lev Grossman's The Magicians, Max Barry's Lexicon, and Katherine Arden's The Bear and the Nightingale, but will transport them to a place far beyond those fantastical worlds.

Deeplight

Frances Hardinge

The gods are dead. About fifty years ago they turned on one another and tore each other apart. Nobody knows why.

In an alternative world, fifty years after the death of the gods, a fifteen-year-old boy, Hark, finds the still beating heart of a terrifying deity and uses it to try to save his best friend. Hark risks everything to keep the heart out of the hands of smugglers, military scientists and secret fanatical cults, to try to use it to sustain the life of his best friend, who is gradually and eerily transforming. But how long should someone stay loyal to a friend who is himself becoming a monster?

A Witch's Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of Portal Fantasies

Alix E. Harrow

Hugo Award-winning and Nebula, Eugie, and World Fantasy Award-nominated Short Story

This story originally appeared in Apex Magazine, Issue 105, February 2018. The story is included in the anthology The Best Science Fiction & Fantasy of the Year: Volume Thirteen (2019), edited by Jonathan Strahan.

Read the full story for free at Apex.

Piranesi

Susanna Clarke

Piranesi's house is no ordinary building: its rooms are infinite, its corridors endless, its walls are lined with thousands upon thousands of statues, each one different from all the others. Within the labyrinth of halls an ocean is imprisoned; waves thunder up staircases, rooms are flooded in an instant. But Piranesi is not afraid; he understands the tides as he understands the pattern of the labyrinth itself. He lives to explore the house.

There is one other person in the house-a man called The Other, who visits Piranesi twice a week and asks for help with research into A Great and Secret Knowledge. But as Piranesi explores, evidence emerges of another person, and a terrible truth begins to unravel, revealing a world beyond the one Piranesi has always known.

The White Rose

Black Company: The Book of the North: Book 3

Glen Cook

She is the last hope of good in the war against the evil sorceress known as the Lady. From a secret base on the Plains of Fear, where even the Lady hesitates to go, the Black Company, once in service to the Lady, now fights to bring victory to the White Rose. But now an even greater evil threatens the world. All the great battles that have gone before will seem a skirmishes when the Dominator rises from the grave.

City of Saints and Madmen

Ambergris: Book 1

Jeff VanderMeer

Once upon a time, on the banks of the River Moth, a city sprang up like no other in or out of history. Founded on the blood of the original inhabitants, the stealthy gray caps, and steeped for centuries in the aftermath of that struggle, Ambergris has become a cruelly beautiful metropolis--a haven for artists and thieves, for composers and murderers. City includes the World Fantasy Award-winning novella The Transformation of Martin Lake.

Jagannath: Stories

Karin Tidbeck

"I have never read anything like Jagannath. Karin Tidbeck's imagination is recognizably Nordic, but otherwise unclassifiable -- quietly, intelligently, unutterably strange. And various. And ominous. And funny. And mysteriously tender. These are wonderful stories."--Ursula K. Le Guin

"Restrained and vivid, poised and strange, Tidbeck, with her impossible harmonies, is a vital voice."--China Mieville

Enter the strange and wonderful world of Swedish sensation Karin Tidbeck with this feast of darkly fantastical short stories. Whether through the falsified historical record of the uniquely weird Swedish creature known as the "Pyret" or the title story, "Jagannath," about a biological ark in the far future, Tidbeck's unique imagination will enthrall, amuse, and unsettle you. How else to describe a collection that includes "Cloudberry Jam," a story that opens with the line "I made you in a tin can"? Marvels, quirky character studies, and outright surreal monstrosities await you in the book widely praised by Michael Swanwick, Ursula K. Le Guin, China Mieville, and Karen Joy Fowler. Publishers Weekly calls it "brave... and brilliant." Locus Magazine says this is the most significant debut since the award-winning Margo Lanagan. Introduction by Elizabeth Hand, afterword by the author.

"Tidbeck has a gift for the uncanny and the unsettling. In these wonderful, subtle stories, magic arrives quietly. It comes from the forests or the earth or was always there in your own family or maybe exists in another realm entirely... leaving you slightly dazed and more than a little enchanted."--Karen Joy Fowler

"Were this collection to contain only its biomechanoid wonder of a title story, it would still be amazing. Jagannath heralds the arrival of a bold and brilliant new voice, which I see too few of these days. You must read Karin Tidbeck."--Caitlin R. Kiernan

"In Karin Tidbeck's collection Jagannath, the mundane becomes strange and the strange familiar with near-Hitchcockian subtlety. I loved Tidbeck's clean, classic prose. It creates beautifully eerie music for a twilight domain."--Karen Lord

"I can't think of when I last read a collection that blew me away the way that Jagannath has, or one that's left me somewhat at a loss to describe just how strange and beautiful and haunting these tales are."--Elizabeth Hand (from her introduction)

Perdido Street Station

New Crobuzon: Book 1

China Miéville

Beneath the towering bleached ribs of a dead, ancient beast lies New Crobuzon, a squalid city where humans, Re-mades, and arcane races live in perpetual fear of Parliament and its brutal militia. The air and rivers are thick with factory pollutants and the strange effluents of alchemy, and the ghettos contain a vast mix of workers, artists, spies, junkies, and whores. In New Crobuzon, the unsavory deal is stranger to none not even to Isaac, a brilliant scientist with a penchant for Crisis Theory.

Isaac has spent a lifetime quietly carrying out his unique research. But when a half-bird, half-human creature known as the Garuda comes to him from afar, Isaac is faced with challenges he has never before fathomed. Though the Garuda's request is scientifically daunting, Isaac is sparked by his own curiosity and an uncanny reverence for this curious stranger.

While Isaac's experiments for the Garuda turn into an obsession, one of his lab specimens demands attention: a brilliantly colored caterpillar that feeds on nothing but a hallucinatory drug and grows larger and more consuming by the day. What finally emerges from the silken cocoon will permeate every fiber of New Crobuzon and not even the Ambassador of Hell will challenge the malignant terror it invokes...

Finch

Ambergris: Book 3

Jeff VanderMeer

In Finch, mysterious underground inhabitants known as the gray caps have reconquered the failed fantasy state Ambergris and put it under martial law. They have disbanded House Hoegbotton and are controlling the human inhabitants with strange addictive drugs, internment in camps, and random acts of terror. The rebel resistance is scattered, and the gray caps are using human labor to build two strange towers.

Against this backdrop, John Finch, who lives alone with a cat and a lizard, must solve an impossible double murder for his gray cap masters while trying to make contact with the rebels. Nothing is as it seems as Finch and his disintegrating partner Wyte negotiate their way through a landscape of spies, rebels, and deception. Trapped by his job and the city, Finch is about to come face to face with a series of mysteries that will change him and Ambergris forever.

Sleeping In Flame

The Answered Prayers Sextet: Book 2

Jonathan Carroll

Walker Easterling is a retired actor turned successful screenwriter living in the Vienna of strong coffee, fascinating friends, and mysterious cafes. When he falls in love with Maris York, a beautiful artist who creates cities, his life becomes alive in fantastic and unsettling ways. As Walker's love for Maris grows, his life gets more and more bizarre-he discovers he can see things happening just before they happen, and at the same time feels an incredibly strong tug from his past-so a friend steers him to Venasque, an odd little man reputed to be a powerful shaman. Venasque helps Walker discover and unravel his many interconnected past lives, and it is soon clear that an unresolved conflict from these past lives has resurfaced, and now threatens to undo Walker and Maris's love.

The Etched City

K. J. Bishop

Gwynn and Raule are rebels on the run, with little in common except being on the losing side of a hard-fought war. Gwynn is a gunslinger from the north, a loner, a survivor... a killer. Raule is a wandering surgeon, a healer who still believes in just - and lost - causes. Bound by a desire to escape the ghosts of the past, together they flee to the teeming city of Ashamoil, where Raule plies her trade among the desperate and destitute, and Gwynn becomes bodyguard and assassin for the household of a corrupt magnate. There, in the saving and taking of lives, they find themselves immersed in a world where art infects life, dream and waking fuse, and splendid and frightening miracles begin to bloom...

The Physiognomy

The Well-Built City Trilogy: Book 1

Jeffrey Ford

The nightmare metropolis called the Well-Built City exists because the satanic genius and Master, Drachton Below, wished it so. And few within its confines hold the power of Physiognomist First Class Cley. With scalpels, calipers, and the other instruments of his science, Cley can divine good and evil, determine character and intelligence, uncover dark secrets and foretell a person's destiny, through the careful study of facial and bodily features.

But now the Master has ordered the great physiognomist out of the City on a seemingly trivial assignment into the rural hinterlands. but there, removed from Below's omnipresent scrutiny, even the most loyal servant of logic and order can fall prey to seductions of the flesh and spirit. And in this strange and unfamiliar place possessing terrors uniquely its own, there are stark truths awaiting the eminent Cley -- and inescapable revelations that could shatter his perceptions of himself, his profession, and his world.

The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath

H. P. Lovecraft

Collection of early Lovecraft stories inspired by Lord Dunsany.

Table of Contents:

  • About The Dream Quest of Unknown Kadath and H. P. Lovecraft: Through the Gates of Deeper Slumber - essay by Lin Carter
  • The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath - (1943) - novella
  • Celephais - (1922) - shortstory
  • The Silver Key - (1929) - shortstory
  • Through the Gates of the Silver Key - (1934) - novelette by H. P. Lovecraft and E. Hoffmann Price
  • The White Ship - (1919) - shortstory
  • The Strange High House in the Mist - (1931) - shortstory
  • Postscript About The Dream Quest of Unknown Kadath and H. P. Lovecraft - (1966) - poem by Lin Carter

Shriek: An Afterword

Ambergris: Book 2

Jeff VanderMeer

Narrated with flamboyant intensity by one-time society figure Janice Shriek, and presenting a vivid gallery of strange characters and even stranger events, this is an account of the adventures of her brother Duncan, a historian obsessed with a doomed love affair and a dark secret that may kill or transform him. It involves, too, a war between rival publishing houses which threatens to change Ambergris forever, and rivalry with a marginalised race known as the "grey caps" who, armed with advanced fungal technologies, wait underground for their chance to recover the city that was once theirs. This story of the family Shriek is an exotic and colourful novel of love, life and death which brings to fruition the author's genius for capturing the truly weird.

Veniss Underground

Jeff VanderMeer

In his debut novel, literary alchemist Jeff VanderMeer takes us on an unforgettable journey, a triumph of the imagination that reveals the magical and mysterious city of Veniss through three intertwined voices. First, Nicholas, a would-be Living Artist, seeks to escape his demons in the shadowy underground–but in doing so makes a deal with the devil himself. In her fevered search for him, his twin sister, Nicola, spins her own unusual and hypnotic tale as she discovers the hidden secrets of the city. And finally, haunted by Nicola's sudden, mysterious disappearance and gripped by despair, Shadrach, Nicola's lover, embarks on a mythic journey to the nightmarish levels deep beneath the surface of the city to bring his love back to light. There he will find wonders beyond imagining…and horrors greater than the heart can bear.

By turns beautiful, horrifying, delicate, and powerful, Veniss Underground explores the limits of love, memory, and obsession in a landscape that defies the boundaries of the imagination. This special edition includes the short stories "The Sea, Mendeho, and Moonlight"; "Detectives and Cadavers"; and "A Heart for Lucretia" and the novella Balzac's War, offering a complete tour of the fantastic world of Veniss.

The Memory Theater

Karin Tidbeck

In a world just parallel to ours exists a mystical realm known only as the Gardens. It's a place where feasts never end, games of croquet have devastating consequences, and teenagers are punished for growing up. For a select group of Masters, it's a decadent paradise where time stands still. But for those who serve them, it's a slow torture where their lives can be ended in a blink.

In a bid to escape before their youth betrays them, Dora and Thistle – best friends and confidants – set out on a remarkable journey through time and space. Traveling between their world and ours, they hunt for the one person who can grant them freedom. Along the way, they encounter a mysterious traveler who trades in favors and never forgets debts, a crossroads at the center of the universe, our own world on the brink of war, and a traveling troupe of actors with the ability to unlock the fabric of reality.

Medusa's Web

Tim Powers

From the award-winning author of Hide Me Among the Graves, Last Call, Declare, and Three Days to Never, comes a phantasmagoric, thrilling, mind-bending tale of speculative fiction in which one man must uncover occult secrets of 1920s Hollywood to save his family.

In the wake of their Aunt Amity's suicide, Scott and Madeline Madden are summoned to Caveat, the eerie, decaying mansion in the Hollywood hills in which they were raised. But their decadent and reclusive cousins, the malicious wheelchair-bound Claimayne and his sister, Ariel, do not welcome Scott and Madeline's return to the childhood home they once shared. While Scott desperately wants to go back to their shabby South-of-Sunset lives, he cannot pry his sister away from this haunted "House of Usher in the Hollywood Hills" that is a conduit for the supernatural.

Iron Council

New Crobuzon: Book 3

China Miéville

Following Perdido Street Station and The Scar, acclaimed author China Miéville returns with his hugely anticipated Del Rey hardcover debut. With a fresh and fantastical band of characters, he carries us back to the decadent squalor of New Crobuzon-this time, decades later.

It is a time of wars and revolutions, conflict and intrigue. New Crobuzon is being ripped apart from without and within. War with the shadowy city-state of Tesh and rioting on the streets at home are pushing the teeming city to the brink. A mysterious masked figure spurs strange rebellion, while treachery and violence incubate in unexpected places.

In desperation, a small group of renegades escapes from the city and crosses strange and alien continents in the search for a lost hope.

In the blood and violence of New Crobuzon's most dangerous hour, there are whispers. It is the time of the iron council....

The bold originality that broke Miéville out as a new force of the genre is here once more in Iron Council: the voluminous, lyrical novel that is destined to seal his reputation as perhaps the edgiest mythmaker of the day.

A Child Across the Sky

The Answered Prayers Sextet: Book 3

Jonathan Carroll

Weber Gregston and Philip Strayhorn are best friends. They were at college together; they struggle as nobodies in Hollywood together. Weber soon becomes the most acclaimed director of his generation. Phil is unrecognised for years, and then makes a series of notorious horror films. He has everything; love, fame, money.

Then he takes a gun and blows his head off. Why? Weber hopes the answer is on the video tapes that Phil has left him. But when he plays them, he finds messages from beyond the grave. Step by step, Weber learns that the evil Phil portrayed in his last film is not just slasher gore. He has created something which threatens his friends' lives. And if Weber doesn't put it right, and fast, that evil will extend far beyond a handful of people in Hollywood.

Exploring love and cruelty, creation and ambition, A Child Across the Sky is a brilliant tale of wonder and fear. It is also one of the most important novels of fantastic fiction in recent years.

The City We Became

The Great Cities: Book 1

N. K. Jemisin

Every great city has a soul. Some are as ancient as myths, and others are as new and destructive as children. New York City? She's got six.

But every city also has a dark side. A roiling, ancient evil stirs in the halls of power, threatening to destroy the city and her six newborn avatars unless they can come together and stop it once and for all.

The Circus of Dr. Lao

Frontiers of Imagination: Book 20

Charles G. Finney

Abalone, Arizona, is a sleepy southwestern town whose chief concerns are boredom and surviving the Great Depression--that is, until the circus of Dr. Lao arrives and immensely and irrevocably changes the lives of everyone drawn to its tents.

Expecting a sideshow spectacle, the citizens of Abalone instead confront and learn profound lessons from the mythical made real--a chimera, a Medusa, a talking sphinx, a sea serpent, witches, the Hound of the Hedges, a werewolf, a mermaid, an ancient god, and the elusive, ever-changing Dr. Lao himself. The circus unfolds, spinning magical, dark strands that ensnare the town's populace: the sea serpent's tale shatters love's illusions; the fortune-teller's shocking pronouncements toll the tedium and secret dread of every person's life; sensual undercurrents pour forth for men and women alike; and the dead walk again.

Dazzling and macabre, literary and philosophical, The Circus of Dr. Lao has been acclaimed as a masterpiece of speculative fiction and influenced such writers as Ray Bradbury.

The Builders

Daniel Polansky

Hugo-nominated Novella

A missing eye.
A broken wing.
A stolen country.

The last job didn't end well.

Years go by, and scars fade, but memories only fester. For the animals of the Captain's company, survival has meant keeping a low profile, building a new life, and trying to forget the war they lost. But now the Captain's whiskers are twitching at the idea of evening the score.

Uncle Silas

Sheridan Le Fanu

As the November winds wail in ivied chimneys we are drawn into a Victorian Gothic atmosphere of menacing, sombre gloom and ebony shadows. Sheridan Le Fanu leaves us in no doubt that we are in for a feast of exciting drama, luring us into the intensely claustrophobic world of the nineteenth century sensational novel. Le Fanu is amongst the top-notch exponents of the creepy, the criminal and the oppressive. In this tale of the orphaned teenage heiress Maud Ruthyn, fearing for her life at the hands of her sinister uncle, he has created a rattling good plot with the depth of a social novel and the power of high romance.

Vigil

Verity Fassbinder: Book 1

Angela Slatter

Verity Fassbinder has her feet in two worlds.

The daughter of one human and one Weyrd parent, she has very little power herself, but does claim unusual strength - and the ability to walk between us and the other - as a couple of her talents. As such a rarity, she is charged with keeping the peace between both races, and ensuring the Weyrd remain hidden from us.

But now Sirens are dying, illegal wine made from the tears of human children is for sale - and in the hands of those Weyrd who hold with the old ways - and someone has released an unknown and terrifyingly destructive force on the streets of Brisbane.

And Verity must investigate - or risk ancient forces carving our world apart.

The Cosmic Puppets

Philip K. Dick

This novel is a revised edition of A Glass of Darkness (1956). It originally appeared in Satellite Science Fiction, December 1956. It was included in Ace Double D-249 (1957).

Yielding to a compulsion he can't explain, Ted Barton interrupts his vacation in order to visit the town of his birth, Millgate, Virginia. But upon entering the sleepy, isolated little hamlet, Ted is distraught to find that the place bears no resemblance to the one he left behind-and never did. He also discovers that in this Millgate Ted Barton died of scarlet fever when he was nine years old. Perhaps even more troubling is the fact that it is literally impossible to escape. Unable to leave, Ted struggles to find the reason for such disturbing incongruities, but before long, he finds himself in the midst of a struggle between good and evil that stretches far beyond the confines of the valley.

Winner of both the Hugo and John W. Campbell awards for best novel, widely regarded as the premiere science fiction writer of his day, and the object of cult-like adoration from his legions of fans, Philip K. Dick has come to be seen in a literary light that defies classification in much the same way as Borges and Calvino. With breathtaking insight, he utilizes vividly unfamiliar worlds to evoke the hauntingly and hilariously familiar in our society and ourselves.

Tainaron: Mail from Another City

Leena Krohn

TAINARON: Mail From Another City is the first American publication by the internationally acclaimed Finnish author, Leena Krohn. TAINARON consists of a series of letters sent beyond the sea from a city of insects. TAINARON is a book of changes. It speaks of metamorphoses that test all of nature from a flea to a star, from stone and grass to a human. The same irresistible force that gives us birth, also kills us. Nominated for the prestigious Finlandia prize, this is the perfect introduction to the work of a modern fabulist.

A Voyage to Arcturus

Frontiers of Imagination: Book 21

David Lindsay

After attending a séance, Maskull, a restless and rootless man, finds himself embarking on a journey to the planet Tormance, which orbits Arcturus. Alone, he wanders the startling landscape, open to a bewildering range of experiences from love to ritual murder, encountering new monsters at every turn, metamorphosing, constantly seeking the truth about the divinity known as Shaping, Surtur and Crystalman.

A Voyage to Arcturus is David Lindsay's masterpiece, an extraordinary imaginative tour de force.

Or What You Will

Jo Walton

He has been too many things to count. He has been a dragon with a boy on his back. He has been a scholar, a warrior, a lover, and a thief. He has been dream and dreamer. He has been a god.

But "he" is in fact nothing more than a spark of idea, a character in the mind of Sylvia Harrison, 73, award-winning author of thirty novels over forty years. He has played a part in most of those novels, and in the recesses of her mind, Sylvia has conversed with him for years.

But Sylvia won't live forever, any more than any human does. And he's trapped inside her cave of bone, her hollow of skull. When she dies, so will he.

Now Sylvia is starting a new novel, a fantasy for adult readers, set in Thalia, the Florence-resembling imaginary city that was the setting for a successful YA trilogy she published decades before. Of course he's got a part in it. But he also has a notion. He thinks he knows how he and Sylvia can step off the wheel of mortality altogether. All he has to do is convince her.

Unquenchable Fire

Unquenchable Fire: Book 1

Rachel Pollack

Jennifer Mazden is the survivor of a wrecked marriage and she worries about the usual things in life - work, companionship and her future. But then strange things starts happenening to her and she becomes pregnant - from a dream. At that moment she struggles to take charge of her life.

Vellum

The Book of All Hours: Book 1

Hal Duncan

It's 2017 and angels and demons walk the earth. Once they were human; now they are unkin, transformed by the ancient machine-code language of reality itself. They seek The Book of All Hours, the mythical tome within which the blueprint for all reality is transcribed, which has been lost somewhere in the Vellum - the vast realm of eternity upon which our world is a mere scratch.

The Vellum, where the unkin are gathering for war.

The Vellum, where a fallen angel and a renegade devil are about to settle an age-old feud.

The Vellum, where the past, present, and future will collide with ancient worlds and myths.

And the Vellum will burn....

The Last Days of New Paris

China Miéville

A thriller of war that never was--of survival in an impossible city--of surreal cataclysm. In The Last Days of New Paris, China Miéville entwines true historical events and people with his daring, uniquely imaginative brand of fiction, reconfiguring history and art into something new.

"Beauty will be convulsive...."

1941. In the chaos of wartime Marseille, American engineer--and occult disciple--Jack Parsons stumbles onto a clandestine anti-Nazi group, including Surrealist theorist André Breton. In the strange games of the dissident diplomats, exiled revolutionaries, and avant-garde artists, Parsons finds and channels hope. But what he unwittingly unleashes is the power of dreams and nightmares, changing the war and the world forever.

1950. A lone Surrealist fighter, Thibaut, walks a new, hallucinogenic Paris, where Nazis and the Resistance are trapped in unending conflict, and the streets are stalked by living images and texts--and by the forces of Hell. To escape the city, he must join forces with Sam, an American photographer intent on recording the ruins, and make common cause with a powerful, enigmatic figure of chance and rebellion: the exquisite corpse.

But Sam is being hunted. And new secrets will emerge that will test all their loyalties--to each other, to Paris old and new, and to reality itself.

Rats and Gargoyles

Ratlords: Book 1

Mary Gentle

In a terraced city at the heart of the world, humans are mere underlings of the arrogant Rat-Lords. Men and women are confined to certain districts of the city, while the Rats are restricted to others by their own masters, the Decans. Incarnate in living rock, the thirty-six Lords of Heaven and Hell impose their divine will over Rats and humans alike through gargoyle acolytes, who in their hundreds of thousands wait to swoop down and devour any who oppose the god-daemons.

And opposition is growing.... For generations uncounted, human slaves were forced to build the mountainous Fane, but now the long-held dream of raising their own lost Temple has spurred the builders to revolt. Forbidden the knowledge to build for themselves, they plot to uncover the Masonic wisdom that has been lost for millennia - secrets that will free them from their rulers once and for all. But they need access to parts of the city denied them, and so they strike a deal with the Rat-Priest Plessiez, who has a grand scheme of his own.

Into this conspiracy step Prince Lucas of Candover, a student at the University of Crime, and no man's slave; Zari, a young Kadayan woman who is destined to become the living Memory of all that follows; and the White Crow, a woman whose powers are far greater than anyone suspects.

The Beautiful Bureaucrat

Helen Phillips

A young wife's new job in an enigmatic organization pits her against the unfeeling machinations of the universe in this inventive and compulsively page-turning first novel

In a windowless building in a remote part of town, the newly employed Josephine inputs an endless string of numbers into something known only as The Database. After a long period of joblessness, she's not inclined to question her fortune, but as the days inch by and the files stack up, Josephine feels increasingly anxious in her surroundings--the office's scarred pinkish walls take on a living quality, the drone of keyboards echoes eerily down the long halls. When one evening her husband Joseph disappears and then returns, offering no explanation as to his whereabouts, her creeping unease shifts decidedly to dread.

As other strange events build to a crescendo, the haunting truth about Josephine's work begins to take shape in her mind, even as something powerful is gathering its own form within her. She realizes that in order to save those she holds most dear, she must penetrate an institution whose tentacles seem to extend to every corner of the city and beyond. Both chilling and poignant, The Beautiful Bureaucrat is a novel of rare restraint and imagination. With it, Helen Phillips enters the company of Murakami, Bender, and Atwood as she twists the world we know and shows it back to us full of meaning and wonder--luminous and new.

The Night Clock

Paul Meloy

"In the stories of Paul Meloy - where walk the living dead, genetically modified pandas, and the mad and terrible Nurse Melt, among others - raw, tell-it-like-it-is comedy brawls with trippy horror in a cage match for the human soul. Take a front row seat. Try not to get any blood on you" - Joe Hill

Phil Trevena's patients are dying and he needs answers. One of the disturbed men in his care tells him that he needs to find Daniel, that Daniel will be able to explain what is happening. But who is Daniel? Daniel was lost once, broken by the same force that has turned its hatred on Trevena. His destiny is greater than he could ever imagine.

Drawn together, Trevena and Daniel embark on an extraordinary journey of discovery, encountering The Firmament Surgeons in the Dark Time - the flux above our reality. Whoever controls Dark Time controls the minds of humanity. The Firmament Surgeons, aware of the approach of limitless hostility and darkness, are gathered to bring an end to the war that the Autoscopes, before they tear our reality apart...

The Night Clock is Paul Meloy's extraordinarily rich debut novel, introducing us to a world just beyond our own, shattering preconceptions about creativity and mental illness, and presenting us with a novel like no other.

"Paul Meloy has long been one of my favourite short fiction writers. When we first took on Solaris in 2009, he was one of first authors I approached about writing a novel for us. It's taken a few years but the wait has been well worth it. Meloy's stories are poetic, extraordinary and phantasmagoric, but, most importantly, they ring true. Paul's insights into mental health, the artistry of madness and the revelatory nature of the best genre fiction are what makes him one of most exciting writers working today." Jonathan Oliver, Solaris Editor-in-Chief

Fear

Galaxy Science Fiction: Book 29

L. Ron Hubbard

Professor James Lowry didn't believe in spirits, or witches, or demons. Not until a gentle spring evening when his hat disappeared, and suddenly he couldn't remember the last four hours of his life. Now, the quiet university town of Atworthy is changing - slightly at first, then faster and more frighteningly each time he tries to remember. Lowry is pursued by a dark, secret evil that is turning his whole world against him while it whispers a warning from the shadows: If you find your hat you'll find your four hours. If you find your four hours then you will die...