Here are a few new releases in science fiction that caught our attention. The vast majority are from small presses or are self-published with the occasional title from a big publisher sprinkled in. These are handpicked based on customer reviews, plot summary, author, or just our gut feeling.
If you are a self-published author or one who has a novel being released through a small press, let us know and we may include it on our weekly new releases post. If it really makes an impression, Prescient may post a review and may send an interview request for Thoughtcrime, our official Podcast.
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
A mysterious worldwide epidemic reduces the birthrate of female infants from 50 percent to less than 1 percent. Medical science and governments around the world scramble in an effort to solve the problem, but twenty-five years later there is no cure, and an entire generation grows up with a population of fewer than a thousand women.
Zoey and some of the surviving young women are housed in a scientific research compound dedicated to determining the cause. For two decades, she’s been isolated from her family, treated as a test subject, and locked away—told only that the virus has wiped out the rest of the world’s population.
Captivity is the only life Zoey has ever known, and escaping her heavily armed captors is no easy task, but she’s determined to leave before she is subjected to the next round of tests…a program that no other woman has ever returned from. Even if she’s successful, Zoey has no idea what she’ll encounter in the strange new world beyond the facility’s walls. Winning her freedom will take brutality she never imagined she possessed, as well as all her strength and cunning—but Zoey is ready for war.
A far-future science fiction debut set in San Francisco—action adventure with a cyberpunk tone.
Kris Ballard is a motorcycle courier. A nobody. Level 2 trash in a multi-level city that stretches from San Francisco to the Mexican border, where corporations make all the rules. A runaway since the age of 14, Kris struggled to set up her life, barely scraping by, working hard to make it without anyone’s help. Witnessing the murder of one of her clients changes everything. Now she’s stuck with a mysterious package that everyone seems to want.
Now the corporations want Kris gone, and are willing to go to almost any length to make it happen. Hunted, scared, and alone, she retreats to the only place she knows she can hide: the Level 1 streets. Running from people that seem to know her every move, she is rescued by Miller—a member of an underground resistance group—only to be pulled deeper into a world she doesn’t understand. They work together to stay ahead of the corporate killers, until Miller falls into their hands. Kris realizes being alone isn’t the answer, and she’s willing to do anything to get him back.
Publisher: Supposed Crime
Xero knows what she wants: absolute rule over Southern Arizona, a cure for the superbug that’s killing her best friend, and a decent bar of soap. Some are easier to get than others. At least, that’s what she thought. To save her friend, she needs antibiotics. Not just any antibiotics: Ketocillin. The dreaded Zaps are dissolving Trina’s lungs, and only the rare medication can save her. No problem: Xero is an expert smuggler. You want it, she ships it. As the ruler of the Tucson Exiles, she works as a double agent, hustling supplies for the government and pumping the desert full of designer drugs on the sly.
With whispers of a full revolution echoing through the desert, Xero questions her uneasy alliances with a shady Phoenix psychiatrist and a roving cyborg mercenary. Especially when Yuma goes kaboom, and her Ketocillin is destroyed along with it. Catastrophe looms, and she finds herself stuck in a complicated web spun from her biggest demons: money, germs, and drugs. As she’s sucked deeper into a net of convoluted schemes to dig up some Ketocillin, she would do anything for a simple hot shower. Who do you have to kill to get some soap? The body count climbs as Xero struggles to protect her friends and stay clean in a very dirty world.
Publisher: Sword & Laser
JF Dubeau’s debut novel, The Life Engineered, begins in the year 3594, where humanity is little more than a memory a legend of the distant past destined to reappear. Capeks, a race of artificial creatures originally created by humans, have inherited the galaxy and formed a utopian civilization built on the shared goal of tirelessly working to prepare for their makers return.
One moment a cop dying in the line of duty in Boston, the next reborn as a Capek, Dagir must find her place in this intricate society. That vaguely remembered death was but the last of hundreds of simulated lives, distilling her current personality. A robot built for rescue and repair, she finds her abilities tested immediately after her awakening when the large, sentient facility that created her is destroyed, marking the only instance of murder the peaceful Capeks have ever known. For the first time in their history, conflicting philosophies clash, setting off a violent civil war that could lay waste to the stars themselves.
Dagir sets off on a quest to find the killers, and finds much more than she sought. As the layers of the Capeks past peel away to reveal their early origins, centuries-old truths come to light. And the resulting revelations may tear humanity s children apart and destroy all remnants of humankind.
Ryonna, the Droxian who helped Chase and Sarah procure quadrinium for their fight against Zarlack forces threatening Earth, continues her mission to rescue her abducted son, Ronan.
While acquiring vital information to infiltrate Hellstar, the maximum security prison her son is being held in, she makes an unlikely alliance that raises shadows from her past. It quickly becomes clear that the reasons behind the bounty on her head run deeper than she could ever have imagined. The shocking implications will turn Ryonna’s entire life upside down.
While attempting to break Ronan out of Hellstar remains her top priority, she embarks on a series of highly dangerous trials in order to uncover the truth behind it all, putting her life, mission and even her sanity on the line at every turn.
Matthew De Abaitua
Publisher: Angry Robot
Theodore Drown is a destructive. A recovering addict to weirdcore, he’s keeping his head down lecturing at the university of the Moon. Twenty years after the appearance of the first artificial intelligence, and humanity is stuck. The AIs or, as they preferred to be called, emergences have left Earth and reside beyond the orbit of Mercury in a Stapledon Sphere known as the university of the sun. The emergences were our future but they chose exile. All except one. Dr Easy remains, researching a single human life from beginning to end. Theodore’s life.
One day, Theodore is approached by freelance executive Patricia to investigate an archive of data retrieved from just before the appearance of the first emergence. The secret living in that archive will take him on an adventure through a stunted future of asylum malls, corporate bloodrooms and a secret off-world colony where Theodore must choose between creating a new future for humanity or staying true to his nature, and destroying it.
Nine years of tranquility came to an abrupt end when a Méridien starship entered the Hellébore system, sounding a dire warning for Alex Racine, the Haraken president. Unwanted visitors had arrived again. But this time, they’re not alien; they’re human.
Claiming to have followed the course of a colony ship launched a millennium ago when Earth wrestled with resource wars and climate change, the mission commander, Antonio García, requests a meeting with the planet’s leaders. The Earthers profess a kinship with all humans, and their great desire is to have Méridien join their United Earth (UE).
Alex Racine journeys to Méridien to investigate and uncover the Earthers’ intentions. In the Haraken world, SADEs (self-aware digital entities) have been freed from their boxes aboard the Méridien-built starships. The mobile SADEs are powerful players in Alex’s strategies, inventing ingenious methods to investigate the Earthers and their ship.
Complicating matters, the Méridien leadership is in turmoil. The Council Leader insists her people ignore the Earthers, but this path has costs. As tensions escalate, García sends a request for support to his superiors back on Earth, lest his discovery of the rich, Méridien worlds, boasting unbelievable advanced technology, slip through his grasp. A UE battleship heeds the call, escalating the pressure for action.
Join the journey as the Harakens and Méridiens work together to protect their planets and their way of life from the newest invaders.
Publisher: Hartper Voyager Pulse
After the missiles tore up the Earth, societies crumbled, leaving scattered patches of humanity struggling to survive. Slowly, a group came together, helping each other regrow a world worth living in.
And then the Others attacked.
Realizing the need to truly protect themselves, they formed the Academy: a place where young people could be built into an elite military force. The training is intense…and so are the consequences for failure.
Sloan Radcliffe is not a failure. In fact, she’s the best of the best—the girls’ Senior Champion—and the only one who can match her is matched to her: her betrothed, Jared Dawson. They are the perfect couple: exemplary fighters, pure leaders, and exceptional role models. But as their time at the Academy draws to a close, Sloan is starting to see signs that maybe their life is built upon secrets…and that secrets are never a strong foundation.
With the battlefront looming and whispers growing louder, Sloan is caught up not only between her loyalties to her people, but also to the man she loves.
A combination of military sci-fi and dystopian thriller, R. H. Scott’s Chosen Soldiers is an intense look at a young woman’s world shattering under the weight of its own illusions.