NPR: Readers may want to start with the first book in the series (this is the second), though starting here doesn’t get in the way of enjoying this otherworldly mystery, gorgeous writing and slow burn of a romance with a man who truly understands a woman, ghosts and all.
Audio rights to three novels (THE BRIDE WORE CONSTANT WHITE, THE DANCER WORE OPERA ROSE, and THE MATCHMAKER WORE MARS YELLOW) and four novellas (CARRICK HOUSE, SELWYN PLACE, HOLLY COTTAGE, and GWYNN PLACE) in Shelley Adina’s Magnificent Devices series, to Kim Budnick at Tantor Media, by Michael Curry for Jennifer Jackson.
Audio rights to Sarah Pemberton Strong’s THE FAINTING ROOM, to Kim Budnick at Tantor Media, by Katie Shea Boutillier on behalf of Cameron McClure.
Chinese rights to C.L. Polk’s WITCHMARK, to Chongqing, in a pre-empt, in a three-book deal, by Ping Chang at The Grayhawk Agency on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier for Caitlin McDonald.
Czech rights to Robert McCammon’s USHER’S PASSING, to Dobrovsky, by Milena Kaplarevic at Prava I Prevodi, on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier for Cameron McClure.
Czech rights to Brent Week’s THE BURNING WHITE, to Fantom Print, by Milena Kaplarevic at Prava I Prevodi, on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier for Donald Maass.
French rights to Robert McCammon’s SWAN SONG, to Monsieur Toussaint Louverture, by Robin Batet at Anna Jarota Agency, on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier for Cameron McClure.
German rights to Robert McCammon’s THE PROVIDENCE RIDER, to Luzifer, by Sarah Knofius at Thomas Schlueck Agency on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier for Cameron McClure.
German rights to Caitlin Starling’s THE LUMINOUS DEAD, to Frank Festa at Festa, by Sarah Knofius at Thomas Schlueck Agency, on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier for Caitlin McDonald.
Hungarian rights to Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka’s ALWAYS NEVER YOURS, to Mora, by Milena Kaplarevic at Prava I Prevodi, on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier.
Japanese rights to Carolyn Crane’s AGAINST THE DARK, to Futami Shobo, by Kohei Hattori at The English Agency on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier, for Cameron McClure.
Spanish rights to Shaun David Hutchinson’s WE ARE THE ANTS, to Kakao Books, by Amaiur Fernandez at International Editors’, on behalf of Katie Shea Boutillier.
World Fantasy Award-winning author C. L. Polk’s THE MIDNIGHT BARGAIN, set in a world where married women’s magic is taken from them to protect the lives of their unborn children, a young woman must balance her desire to become the first great female magician against her duty to secure a rich husband who can discharge her family’s debts, to Sarah Guan at Erewhon, in a two-book deal, for publication in Fall 2020, by Caitlin McDonald.
Locus: One of the most irreverent characters I’ve encountered in a long time, Gideon Nav wants only to escape the House of the Ninth, a dark place populated by the dead and the few living necromancers that control them. Gideon, no necromancer but an enthusiastic swordswoman, keeps trying to escape and join the military Cohort, but her plans are continually foiled. Then she’s offered something new—if she accompanies the Lady of the Ninth House, the much-loathed necromancer Harrowhark, on a mission. The Emperor, the King Undying, has called for each house to send their first (Harrowhark) and their cavalier to be tested as potential Lyctors. The problem is the Ninth’s cavalier is unwilling, so Harrowhark drafts Gideon, and the two are off to another world where they end up in an incomprehensible contest against the other eight houses in a decaying, mazelike complex. Foul-mouthed Gideon is a joy to watch as she attempts to pass as a cavalier, falls for one of the competition, and basically spends a hell of a lot of time trying to figure out what’s going on—gradually learning to work with Harrowhark, and maybe even coming to appreciate her…Muir’s impressive first novel offers a heady and macabre mix of science, necromancy, constant danger, and a healthy dollop of Gormenghast-like weirdness like no other.
Debut author Kelly Duran’s CAN’T TAKE IT BACK, which tells the story of a tight-knit group of four female friends, each facing a crossroads in their lives, over the course of a kindergarten school year, pitched as combining the suburban drama of Little Fires Everywhere with the interconnected storytelling style of Love, Actually, to Lara Blackman at Audible Originals, by Katie Shea Boutillier.
Kirkus: From the award-winning author of The Red-Stained Wings (2019, etc.), a collection of 27 tales published between 2005 and 2019, spanning most of Bear’s career. Readers familiar with Bear’s novels soon learn to expect the unexpected, with characters, worlds, and ideas eyed from drastically skewed perspectives. Who else would dream up a lactating vampire to whom the sun is no enemy, as Bear did in “Needles”? Or imagine a mortal Loki, banished from the Norse pantheon, as a god of rock music, as in “Hobnoblin Blues”? Mark Twain makes a guest appearance in a chewy murder mystery, “The Body of the Nation,” set in the author’s remarkable New Amsterdam universe and featuring the splendid Detective Crown Investigator Abigail Irene Garrett. We’re offered an early yet highly effective glimpse of the universe that will evolve into the stunning Steles of the Sky series, “Love Among the Talus,” while “Okay, Glory” shows us a reclusive, solipsistic genius forced to reinvent himself and the AI that’s imprisoning him. Elsewhere, “The Bone War,” Bear’s wry commentary on the real-world Bone Wars between 19th-century paleontologists O.C. Marsh and E.D. Cope, evokes a wide grin. Two tales would wring tears from a stone: “Tideline,” about a dying battle machine whose last purpose is to memorialize her dead crew members, and “Orm the Beautiful,” an exquisitely fashioned fable of the last dragon—that’s also, possibly, a genuflection to Ursula K. Le Guin’s Earthsea tales…While Bear doesn’t preach or hector, there’s a message implicit in much of the work here: As individuals and as a species, we adapt, or we die. Eclectic and insightful, mostly, and well worth dipping into.