Our Tor Essentials line was created to give readers new editions of science fiction and fantasy titles that have stood the test of time, and to bring back ones current SFF fans might have missed out on in the past. Check out every Tor Essentials title coming out in 2021 here!
The Wood Wife by Terri Windling
Leaving behind her fashionable West Coast life, Maggie Black comes to the Southwestern desert to pursue her passion and he dreams. Her mentor, the acclaimed poet Davis Cooper, has mysteriously died, bequeathing her his estate and the mystery of his life—and death. Maggie is astonished by the power of this harsh but beautiful land and captivated by the uncommon people who call it home—especially Fox, a man unlike any she has ever known, who understands the desert’s special power. As she reads Cooper’s letters and learns the secrets of his life, Maggie comes face-to-face with the wild, ancient spirits of the desert—and discovers the hidden power at its heart, a power that will take her on a journey like no other. On sale now!
The Best of R. A. Lafferty by R. A. Lafferty
Acclaimed as one of the most original voices in modern literature, Raphael Aloysius Lafferty (1914-2002) was an American original, a teller of acute, indescribably loopy tall tales whose work has been compared to that of Avram Davidson, Flannery O’Connor, Flann O’Brien, and Gene Wolfe. The Best of R. A. Lafferty presents 22 of his best flights of offbeat imagination, ranging from classics like “Nine Hundred Grandmothers” to his Hugo Award-winning “Eurema’s Dam.” Introduced by Neil Gaiman, the volume also contains story introductions and afterwords by, among many others, Michael Dirda, Samuel R. Delany, John Scalzi, Connie Willis, Jeff VanderMeer, Kelly Robson, and more. On sale now!
Stand on Zanzibar by John Brunner
Now available in a Tor Essentials edition, the Hugo Award-winning, uncannily prophetic Stand on Zanizbar is a science fiction novel unlike any before. It remains an insightful look at America’s downfall that allows us to see what has been, what is, and what is to come. With an introduction by cyberpunk pioneer Bruce Sterling, author of Distraction and Islands In the Net. On sale now!
Shadow & Claw by Gene Wolfe
The Book of the New Sun is acclaimed as Wolfe’s most remarkable work, hailed as “a masterpiece of science fantasy comparable in importance to the major works of Tolkien and Lewis,” by Publishers Weekly and “one of the most ambitious works of speculative fiction in the twentieth century,” by the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. The Shadow of the Torturer is the first volume, the tale of young Severian, an apprentice to the Guild of Torturers on the world called Urth, exiled for committing the ultimate sin of his profession—showing mercy toward his victim. The Claw of the Conciliator continues the saga of Severian, banished from his home, as he undertakes a mythic quest to discover the awesome power of an ancient relic and learn the truth about his hidden destiny. On sale now!
Sword & Citadel by Gene Wolfe
Gene Wolfe has been called “the finest writer the science fiction world has yet produced” by The Washington Post. The Sword of the Lictor is the third volume in Wolfe’s remarkable epic, chronicling the odyssey of the wandering pilgrim called Severian, driven by a powerful and unfathomable destiny, as he carries out a dark mission far from his home. The Citadel of the Autarch brings The Book of the New Sun to its harrowing conclusion, as Severian clashes in a final reckoning with the dread Autarch, fulfilling an ancient prophecy that will alter forever the realm known as Urth. On sale now!
Redshirts by John Scalzi
Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It’s a prestige posting, with the chance to serve on “Away Missions” alongside the starship’s famous senior officers. Life couldn’t be better…until Andrew begins to realize that (1) every Away Mission involves a lethal confrontation with alien forces, (2) the ship’s senior officers always survive these confrontations, and (3) sadly, at least one low-ranking crew member is invariably killed. Then Andrew stumbles on information that transforms his and his colleagues’ understanding of what the starship Intrepid really is…and offers them a crazy, high-risk chance to save their own lives. On sale 10/12!