Caught between her Patron father and her Commoner mother, Jessamy’s entire life is a balancing act, yet she yearns for the freedom to become whomever she wants. She relishes her secret sessions on the Fives court, where she trains for the intricate, dangerous athletic event that could someday bring her glory. But when Jes’ family is endangered by cruel Lord Gargaron, she must focus on saving them from a fate worse than death.
The trick to a good alternate history, particularly one that’s trying to be as impish and unpredictable as Crooked, is walking a delicious but delicate line between the weird and the plausible. You don’t want the story to veer into territory so unbelievable that it becomes a farce, but neither do you want to follow the straight and narrow. Austin Grossman (You) knows how to walk this line, and as a result he’s delivered a fiendishly entertaining book.
Lapland, in the far north of Sweden, is a strange and mysterious place, and this epic novel by Swedish author Stefan Spjut reflects every bit of its otherworldly mystery.
Are you ready to dive into a world of magic and adventure, but a bit hesitant to pick up an 800-page doorstopper with a hefty roster of characters? Then Naomi Novik, author of the best-selling Temeraire series, has the perfect summer fantasy for you in the spellbinding Uprooted.
At first glance, The Only Words That Are Worth Repeating looks like Interstellar meets The Stand. Centuries from now, in a post-scientific society where astronomy “is regarded as a delusional cult scarcely more respectable than Jesus Lovers,” a powerful corporation discovers a perfectly intact Orion spacecraft hidden beneath the ruins of Cape Canaveral, along with detailed instructions from NASA on how to launch a voyage to Europa, Jupiter’s icy moon.
In V.E. Schwab’s A Darker Shade of Magic, three versions of London exist side by side in parallel universes. There’s Grey London, where magic is basically extinguished; Red London, where it’s abundant; and White London, where it’s somewhere in between (and where the control of it as a resource is jealously and viciously contested). There was also a fourth—Black London—whose inhabitants were devoured by magic and which should no longer exist. Schwab’s male protagonist, Kell, is one of the few with the power to travel between those Londons, and as such, serves as a diplomatic courier of sorts between the monarchies of each.
In the magical, feuding lands of Norta, a poor young woman is thrust into the center of an elite world where she must hide her true self and discover her inner strength and power to survive.
“Down a path worn into the woods, past a stream and a hollowed-out log full of pill bugs and termites, was a glass coffin . . . and in it slept a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives.” So begins Holly Black’s exquisite story about siblings Hazel and Ben and the sleeping faerie prince they swore to protect.
Ember is a dragon. Her life has been spent at an isolated training school run by Talon, the organization that governs all dragons. To fulfill the next stage of training—assimilation into human society—Ember and her brother, Dante, must assume human form.
Gregory Maguire steps out of Oz and into Tsarist Russia in this magical twist on the classic prince and the pauper folk tale.