October and September had so many new releases that my last post on upcoming science fiction and fantasy novels didn’t even get to the books in November and December! These two months are generally shorter on new books than the rest of the year, but I do have some exciting new titles to share with you.
November 6th — Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan
I was lucky enough to get an ARC of Girls of Paper and Fire, and I can testify that it’s just as great as the hype says. Essentially, YA fantasy meets The Handmaid’s Tale in this new novel where a peasant girl, Lei, is kidnapped and brought to the court of the Demon King as a courtesan. There, she meets and falls in love with another girl, Wren, and tries to survive in the opulent prison she’s been trapped in. Note, the book does require a trigger warning for sexual violence. My review will be up later this month. I can’t wait to share it with you!
November 6th — Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix by Julie C. Dao
Last year, I was blown away by Julie C. Dao’s debut novel, Forest of a Thousand Lanterns, a YA fantasy retelling of “Snow White” set in an East Asian inspired setting. I adored how the book was an origin story for the evil queen and gave us a delightfully complicated anti-heroine. If Xifeng was an anti-heroine, the protagonist of Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix looks more likely to be a straight-up heroine: Princess Jade, the parallel to Snow White in the retelling. Although I’ll miss Xifeng, I trust Julie C. Dao to give us a delightful new story.
November 6th — Skyward by Brandon Sanderson
Look, I’ll read practically anything Brandon Sanderson writes, so of course, I’m going to be all over this new young adult science fiction novel by him. Plus, it’s got a female protagonist! The novel takes place in a future where humanity is constantly attacked by mysterious alien spaceships. When a human girl finds the wreckage of one of these spaceships, she manages to repair and befriend it. The concept sounds intriguing, and I know Sanderson has enough chops as an author to pull it off. I won’t be alone in having Skyward on my “most anticipated” list.
November 6th — Breach by W.L. Goodwater
While I’m not familiar with the author, the Breach‘s blurb caught my eye. It’s a historical fantasy novel dealing with the Cold War and Berlin, a time period I’ve only ever seen addressed in SFF once before — The Witch Who Came in from the Cold by Serial Box. For whatever reason, the vast majority of historical fantasy is either Regency or Victorian. I’d love more historical fantasy that moves beyond those time periods, so Breach is on my horizons. I haven’t received an ARC, so I don’t have a whole lot more to tell you than that.
November 6th — Empress of All Seasons by Emiko Jean
I have an ARC of Empress of All Seasons! I just… haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. But that will soon change as I guarantee that I will get to it sometime in October. Anyway, Empress of All Seasons is a YA fantasy novel about a heroine who is competing to become empress but who has a dangerous secret: she’s a supernatural being with the ability to transform into a monster. Yay for monstrous women! My main concern with this one is that it will be too romance focused for me, as that’s something I tend to run into with YA novels.
November 13th — Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri
I also have an ARC of Empire of Sand that I swear I will get to in October! This debut fantasy novel takes place in a Mughal India-inspired setting and follows Mehr, the illegitimate daughter of an imperial governor and an exiled mother, from whom Mehr has inherited magical powers. City of Brass is one of the comp titles for Empire of Sand. If the comparison holds true then I’m likely to enjoy Empire of Sand. Plus, the advanced reviews have been excellent. All things considered, I can’t wait to dive into Empire of Sand.
November 27th — How Long til’ Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin
N.K. Jemsin has recently taken the SFF world by storm by winning three Hugo Awards for Best Novel in a row — and I can’t think of a trilogy that deserves it more (seriously ya’ll, if you haven’t read The Fifth Season, GO DO THAT RIGHT NOW). Now she’s got a new short fiction collection on the horizon! I’ve read next to none of her short stories (literally only “The City Born Great”), so pretty much everything in How Long til’ Black Future Month? will be new to me. I can’t wait.
December 4th — Fire and Heist by Sarah Beth Durst
Ever since I heard the words “a heist story with dragons” I have desperately needed to read Fire and Heist. You guys know me. I love fantasy novels, especially dragons, and I love heists. Therefore, heist + dragons = perfect story for Sarah. As an added bonus, I’ve enjoyed Sarah Beth Durst’s books before and trust her as a writer. And even better? This is one of the elusive, female-led heist novels I have been desperately longing for. Ocean’s 8 helped, but it didn’t fill the gaping hole in my heart. I need massive amounts of new stories for that, and I hope Fire and Heist can be one.
Are you excited about any of these books? Any other November or December releases you’re looking forward to? Let me know in the comments!