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8 Books to Read After You Watch Dune: Part Two

Yeah, we’re into DuneDune lots of reading 📚😎

The spice must flow, and so will our sci-fi book recommendations! But what’s that you say? You’re not just looking for any space opera, you’re looking for the particular space opera that’s going to satisfy the exact reason why you’re already planning to see Dune: Part Two again? Fear not! Our recommendations are sorted by what got you excited for Dune!

By Julia Bergen


If you’re excited to see Dune because:

dune: the heir of caladan by brian herbert & kevin j. andersonDune seems really cool:

You should read: Dune: The Heir of Caladan by Brian Herbert & Kevin J. Anderson

When you need Dune, you need Dune! Dune: The Heir of Caladan is the conclusion of a prequel trilogy by Brian Herbert, Frank Herbert’s son, and science fiction legend Kevin J. Anderson. This saga began with Dune: The Duke of Caladan, continued with Dune: The Lady of Caladan, and tells the story of the Atreides family’s rise to power, and this particular volume details how Paul becomes the leader he needs to be before the events of Dune

princess of dune by brian herbert & kevin j. andersonNo, really. Dune is the coolest and you’ll throw yourself into the maw of a sandworm if you don’t get more immediately:

You should read: Princess of Dune by Brian Herbert & Kevin J. Anderson

When you need Dune, you need Dune! Set a few years before the events of Dune, this story explores the lives of Paul’s love Chani and his wife, the Princess Irulan. Both women will impact the trajectory of the whole galaxy as Paul Atreides brings it hurdling to its destiny. 

to sleep in a sea of stars by christopher paoliniYou love crazy space monsters:

You should read: To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini

The sandworms in Dune are definitely some of the creepiest monsters in SF, and their connection to the spice is shrouded in mystery. While you wait to see sandworms on the screen, you can dive into the mystery of the creature discovered by a xenobiologist during what was supposed to be a routine survey mission on an uncolonized planet. And make sure to check out Fractal Noise for more tales in the same universe!

Placeholder of  -16You love dudes fighting in suits in space:

You should read: Red Rising by Pierce Brown

If you’re most looking forward to seeing how Villeneuve envisions the stillsuits necessary to survive on the desert planet Arrakis, and to see some sweet suit fight scenes, calm you suited bloodthirst with a book about genetically perfected superhumans wearing futuristic body armor battling it out in a Hunger Games-esque competition for the solar system’s best job opportunities.

You Sexy Thing by Cat RamboYou love PEW PEW PEW space battles:

You should read: You Sexy Thing by Cat Rambo

Perfect reading if you want to be able to practically hear that “PEW PEW PEW” noise, and maybe even a Wilhelm scream or two while you’re reading. A group of retired space soldiers gets dragged back into war when they’re forced onto a sentient ship that’s convinced it’s being stolen, and in addition must survive the machinations of a sadistic pirate king.

The Genesis of Misery by Neon YangYou love space politics:

You should read: The Genesis of Misery by Neon Yang

If you can’t resist competing galactic empires and political machinations in space, dive into The Genesis of Misery. A nobody from a nowhere mining planet becomes the center of a power struggle between dangerous players and royal families because of their forbidden powers. Plus, like Dune it’s full of prophecy and space magic. 

Poster Placeholder of - 67No, seriously, you LIVE FOR space politics:

You should read: A Desolation Called Peace Arkady Martine

Oh, so you’re one of those, huh? No judgment, just book recommendations here, my friend. And you definitely need to feast your eyes on A Desolation Called Peace, which should give you all the space politics you could possibly want. An ambassador from a backwater planet must untangle the webs of subterfuge at the center of the Teixcalaanli Empire.

winter's orbit by everina maxwellYou love space politics, but not as much as you love love.

You should read: Winter’s Orbit by Everina Maxwell

If you can’t wait for Dune’s space politic glory, but you’re also looking forward to scenes between Paul and Chani, then as soon as it’s on sale you need to get your hands on this romantic space opera. Two neuromodified psychics, a flirty socialite and a duty-bound soldier, find themselves at the center of a decades-old power struggle and a dangerous treasure-hunt. If they sync their minds, they might avoid life under military control, but they’d be giving up their free will. And what are these FEELINGS they’re having for each other?

Which one are you reading? Let us know in the comments!

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Our Ships Will Never Sink: A List of Tor Staffer’s Ultimate OTPs!

We have a lot of OTPs (One True Pairings) here at Tor, but today, we’re here to talk about our ULTIMATE OTPs. We asked our staff to tell us about their favorite TDA ships and they delivered.

Check them out below!


Place holder  of - 2Samantha Friedlander, Marketing Assistant (she/her)

My favorite TDA OTP would have to be Esther and Cye from Upright Women Wanted by Sarah Gailey. Their chemistry leapt off the page and was one of the many reasons why I loved this novella!

Image Placeholder of - 74Yvonne Ye, Ad/Promo Assistant (she/her)

The Stormlight Archive: I ship Kaladin/therapy, and if you’ve met the man, you’ll understand why

Alternatively! For the Teixcalaan duology by Arkady Martine, I ship Three Seagrass/Mahit Dzmare because I support beleaguered bureaucrat 4 beleagured bureaucrat :))))) If your OTP doesn’t have email work sessions together, do they even love each other?

Image Place holder  of - 36a cat, Marketing Coordinator (he/him)

My TDA OTP is a match made in magic hell and it’s Talasseres Charossa from The Unspoken Name by A. K. Larkwood and John Gaius from Harrow the Ninth. Tal is a rogue with a thing for garbage wizards and John Gaius, the Emperor Undying, is the garbage-ist wizard of all. This pairing is literally cursed, but so potent it must be true.

Poster Placeholder of - 8Anna Merz, Publicity Assistant (she/her)

I would like to start this off by saying I for one ship the Marketing and Publicity teams at TDA xoxo

But also I mega ship Samson and Abitha from Slewfoot. A wholesome Monster/devil love of flower crowns, bees, and revenge.

Placeholder of  -96Becky Yeager, Manager of Ad/Promo & Marketing (she/her)

Kadou and Evemer from A Taste of Gold and Iron by Alexandra Rowland

One is a prince. The other one is a bodyguard. Could I make it any more obvious? Prince Kadou is kind, thoughtful, and anxious. Evemer is loyal, honorable, and reserved. Together they are everything I want out of a couple: a perfect balance of sweet and oh no, he’s hot. They bring out the very best in each other as they contend with conspiracies, a counterfeit crisis, and the periodic assassination attempt. If slow burn and pining are your cup of tea, then look no further than A Taste of Gold and Iron.

cover of A Strange and Stubborn Endurance by Foz MeadowsRachel Taylor, Marketing Manager (she/her)

Definitely Caethari and Velasin from A Strange and Stubborn Endurance by Foz Meadows. Arranged marriage trope? Queer romance? Yearning? WHAT MORE COULD I WANT?!?!?!

What is your SFF OTP? Let us know in the comments? 

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Epic eBook Sale Day!!!!

Today (9/1/22) and today only (again—9/1/22), we’re running an EPIC eBook sale! These three hot titles can be digitally yours for only $2.99! For the remainder of our planet’s current daily rotation, anyway. And that’s a convoluted science-fiction-y way of saying hurry up and act on this deal before it’s gone!


She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-ChanShe Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan

In 1345, China lies under harsh Mongol rule. For the starving peasants of the Central Plains, greatness is something found only in stories. When the Zhu family’s eighth-born son, Zhu Chongba, is given a fate of greatness, everyone is mystified as to how it will come to pass. The fate of nothingness received by the family’s clever and capable second daughter, on the other hand, is only as expected. When a bandit attack orphans the two children, though, it is Zhu Chongba who succumbs to despair and dies. Desperate to escape her own fated death, the girl uses her brother’s identity to enter a monastery as a young male novice. There, propelled by her burning desire to survive, Zhu learns she is capable of doing whatever it takes, no matter how callous, to stay hidden from her fate.

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A Desolation Called PeaceA Desolation Called Peace by Arkady Martine by Arkady Martine

An alien armada lurks on the edges of Teixcalaanli space. No one can communicate with it, no one can destroy it, and Fleet Captain Nine Hibiscus is running out of options. In a desperate attempt at diplomacy with the mysterious invaders, the fleet captain has sent for a diplomatic envoy. Now Mahit Dzmare and Three Seagrass—still reeling from the recent upheaval in the Empire—face the impossible task of trying to communicate with a hostile entity. Their failure will guarantee millions of deaths in an endless war. Their success might prevent Teixcalaan’s destruction—and allow the empire to continue its rapacious expansion.

kindlea nooka ebooksa google playa ibooks2 91 koboa


Light From Uncommon StarsLight From Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki by Ryka Aoki

Shizuka Satomi made a deal with the devil: to escape damnation, she must entice seven other violin prodigies to trade their souls for success. She has already delivered six. When Katrina Nguyen, a young transgender runaway, catches Shizuka’s ear with her wild talent, Shizuka can almost feel the curse lifting. She’s found her final candidate. But in a donut shop off a bustling highway in the San Gabriel Valley, Shizuka meets Lan Tran, retired starship captain, interstellar refugee, and mother of four. Shizuka doesn’t have time for crushes or coffee dates, what with her very soul on the line, but Lan’s kind smile and eyes like stars might just redefine a soul’s worth. And maybe something as small as a warm donut is powerful enough to break a curse as vast as the California coastline.

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Political Sci-Fi of the Possible Future

With far-future science fiction on the rise in film and TV, (see Denis Villeneuve’s Dune (2021) and Foundation (2021) on Apple TV+) we’re looking back and uplifting some of the great science fiction books and series on our list from the last handful of years that delve into the depths of politics and society in a possible future. Check them out here!

by a frog


Placeholder of  -56Terra Ignota series by Ada Palmer

Perhaps the Stars, the highly anticipated conclusion to the Terra Ignota series hit store shelves on 11.2.21, and now is the perfect time to pick up this quartet by Ada Palmer. World Peace is shattered and war spreads across the globe. In this future, the leaders of Hive nations—nations without fixed location—clandestinely committed nefarious deeds in order to maintain an outward semblance of utopian stability. But the facade could only last so long. And the catalyst came in the form of special little boy to ignite half a millennium of repressed chaos.

Image Place holder  of - 57Teixcalaan series by Arkady Martine

In the Hugo Award–winning novel, A Memory Called Empire, Ambassador Mahit Dzmare arrives in the center of the multi-system Teixcalaanli Empire only to discover that her predecessor, the previous ambassador from their small but fiercely independent mining Station, has died. But no one will admit that his death wasn’t an accident—or that Mahit might be next to die, during a time of political instability in the highest echelons of the imperial court.

Place holder  of - 68Luna series by Ian McDonald

The Luna series has been called Game of Thrones in space, and the politics between warring space-faring corporations on the Moon stands up to the comparison. Adriana has wrested control of the Moon’s Helium-3 industry from the Mackenzie Metal corporation and fought to earn her family’s new status. Now, at the twilight of her life, Adriana finds if the Corta family is to survive, Adriana’s five children must defend their mother’s empire from her many enemies… and each other.

Image Placeholder of - 49The Interdependency series by John Scalzi

John Scalzi is known for his science fiction and The Interdependency is his latest completed series with Tor Books. This series is packed with political suspense, action, and all the great reasons we love a Scalzi novel. When the Flow, an extradimensional field available at certain points in space-time begins separating all human worlds from one another, three individuals—a scientist, a starship captain, and the emperox of the Interdependency—must salvage an interstellar empire on the brink of collapse.

Poster Placeholder of - 36Winter’s Orbit by Everina Maxwell

While at its heart a romance, Everina Maxwell’s Winter’s Orbit explores the necessities of political alliances by way of marriage among the stars. Prince Kiem, a famously disappointing minor royal and the Emperor’s least favorite grandchild, has been called upon to be useful for once. He’s commanded to fulfill an obligation of marriage to the representative of the Empire’s newest and most rebellious vassal planet. His future husband, Count Jainan, is a widower and murder suspect.

The Caladan Trilogy by Brian Herbert & Kevin J. Anderson

If you loved the latest film adaptation of Dune, why not consider checking out what more the universe has to offer? Tor is in the midst of publishing a prequel series about House Atreides’ rise to power and just how they made their enemies along the way. Dune: The Duke of Caladan and Dune: The Lady of Caladan are available now and look for Dune: The Heir of Caladan next fall in 2022.

Which book are you reading first? Let us know in the comments! 

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$2.99 eBook Sale: November 22-29, 2021

Ready for some ebook deals?! Check out which books you can snag for only $2.99 from November 22-29!


Place holder  of - 66A Desolation Called Peace by Arkady Martine

An alien armada lurks on the edges of Teixcalaanli space. No one can communicate with it, no one can destroy it, and Fleet Captain Nine Hibiscus is running out of options. In a desperate attempt at diplomacy with the mysterious invaders, the fleet captain has sent for a diplomatic envoy. Now Mahit Dzmare and Three Seagrass—still reeling from the recent upheaval in the Empire—face the impossible task of trying to communicate with a hostile entity. Their failure will guarantee millions of deaths in an endless war. Their success might prevent Teixcalaan’s destruction—and allow the empire to continue its rapacious expansion.

kindlea nooka ebooksa google playa ibooks2 12 koboa

Image Place holder  of - 88A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

Kell is one of the last Antarimagicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black. Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

kindleb nookb ebooksb google playb ibooks2 96 kobob

Placeholder of  -54The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

They are the Beautiful Ones, Loisail’s most notable socialites, and this spring is Nina’s chance to join their ranks. But the Grand Season has just begun, and already Nina’s debut has gone disastrously awry. She has always struggled to control her telekinesis and the haphazard manifestations of her powers make her the subject of malicious gossip. When entertainer Hector Auvray arrives to town, Nina is dazzled. A telekinetic like her, he has traveled the world performing his talents for admiring audiences. With Hector’s help, Nina’s talent blossoms, as does her love for him. But great romances are for fairytales, and Hector is hiding a truth from Nina — and himself—that threatens to end their courtship before it truly begins.

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Queer Books Coming in 2021 🏳️‍🌈

Happy Pride, y’all!!! We are so excited to celebrate the month, starting off with highlighting all of our new queer SFF books out in 2021. Which one is going to the top of your TBR?


Placeholder of  -64Dealbreaker by L. X. Beckett

Rubi Whiting has done the impossible. She has proved that humanity deserves a seat at the galactic table. Well, at least a shot at a seat. Having convinced the galactic governing body that mankind deserves a chance at fixing their own problems, Rubi has done her part to launch the planet into a new golden age of scientific discovery and technological revolution. However, there are still those in the galactic community that think that humanity is too poisonous, too greedy, to be allowed in, and they will stop at nothing to sabotage a species determined to pull itself up.

ON SALE NOW!

Poster Placeholder of - 32Engines of Oblivion by Karen Osborne

Natalie Chan gained her corporate citizenship, but barely survived the battle for Tribulation. Now corporate has big plans for Natalie. Horrible plans. Locked away in Natalie’s missing memory is salvation for the last of an alien civilization and the humans they tried to exterminate. The corporation wants total control of both—or their deletion.

ON SALE NOW!

Image Placeholder of - 97Winter’s Orbit by Everina Maxwell

Prince Kiem, a famously disappointing minor royal and the Emperor’s least favorite grandchild, has been called upon to be useful for once. He’s commanded to fulfill an obligation of marriage to the representative of the Empire’s newest and most rebellious vassal planet. His future husband, Count Jainan, is a widower and murder suspect. Neither wants to be wed, but with a conspiracy unfolding around them and the fate of the empire at stake they will have to navigate the thorns and barbs of court intrigue, the machinations of war, and the long shadows of Jainan’s past, and they’ll have to do it together. So begins a legendary love story amid the stars.

ON SALE NOW!

Image Place holder  of - 87A Desolation Called Peace by Arkady Martine

An alien armada lurks on the edges of Teixcalaanli space. No one can communicate with it, no one can destroy it, and Fleet Captain Nine Hibiscus is running out of options. In a desperate attempt at diplomacy with the mysterious invaders, the fleet captain has sent for a diplomatic envoy. Now Mahit Dzmare and Three Seagrass—still reeling from the recent upheaval in the Empire—face the impossible task of trying to communicate with a hostile entity. Their failure will guarantee millions of deaths in an endless war. Their success might prevent Teixcalaan’s destruction—and allow the empire to continue its rapacious expansion. Or it might create something far stranger . . .

ON SALE NOW!

Place holder  of - 92The House of Always by Jenn Lyons

In the aftermath of the Ritual of Night, everything has changed. The Eight Immortals have catastrophically failed to stop Kihrin’s enemies, who are moving forward with their plans to free Vol Karoth, the King of Demons. Kihrin has his own ideas about how to fight back, but even if he’s willing to sacrifice everything for victory, the cost may prove too high for his allies. Now they face a choice: can they save the world while saving Kihrin, too? Or will they be forced to watch as he becomes the very evil they have all sworn to destroy.

ON SALE NOW!

The Witness for the Dead by Katherine Addison

When the young half-goblin emperor Maia sought to learn who had set the bombs that killed his father and half-brothers, he turned to an obscure resident of his father’s Court, a Prelate of Ulis and a Witness for the Dead. Thara Celehar found the truth, though it did him no good to discover it. Now Celehar lives in the city of Amalo, far from the Court though not exactly in exile. As a Witness for the Dead, he can, sometimes, speak to the recently dead: see the last thing they saw, know the last thought they had, experience the last thing they felt. Now Celehar’s skills lead him out of the quiet and into a morass of treachery, murder, and injustice.

ON SALE 06/22/2021!

She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan

In 1345, China lies under harsh Mongol rule. For the starving peasants of the Central Plains, greatness is something found only in stories. When the Zhu family’s eighth-born son, Zhu Chongba, is given a fate of greatness, everyone is mystified as to how it will come to pass. The fate of nothingness received by the family’s clever and capable second daughter, on the other hand, is only as expected. When a bandit attack orphans the two children, though, it is Zhu Chongba who succumbs to despair and dies. Desperate to escape her own fated death, the girl uses her brother’s identity to enter a monastery as a young male novice. There, Zhu learns she is capable of doing whatever it takes, no matter how callous, to stay hidden from her fate.

ON SALE 07/20/2021!

You Sexy Thing by Cat Rambo

TwiceFar station is at the edge of the known universe, and that’s just how Niko Larson, former Admiral in the Grand Military of the Hive Mind, likes it. Retired and finally free of the continual war of conquest, Niko and the remnants of her former unit are content to spend the rest of their days working at the restaurant they built together, The Last Chance. But, some wars can’t ever be escaped, and unlike the Hive Mind, some enemies aren’t content to let old soldiers go. Niko and her crew are forced onto a sentient ship convinced that it is being stolen and must survive the machinations of a sadistic pirate king if they even hope to keep the dream of The Last Chance alive.

Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune

When a reaper comes to collect Wallace Price from his own funeral, Wallace suspects he really might be dead. Instead of leading him directly to the afterlife, the reaper takes him to a small village. On the outskirts, off the path through the woods, tucked between mountains, is a particular tea shop, run by a man named Hugo. Hugo is the tea shop’s owner to locals and the ferryman to souls who need to cross over. But Wallace isn’t ready to abandon the life he barely lived. With Hugo’s help he finally starts to learn about all the things he missed in life. When the Manager, a curious and powerful being, arrives at the tea shop and gives Wallace one week to cross over, Wallace sets about living a lifetime in seven days.

ON SALE 09/21/2021!

Light from Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki

Shizuka Satomi made a deal with the devil: to escape damnation, she must entice seven other violin prodigies to trade their souls for success. She has already delivered six. When Katrina Nguyen, a young transgender runaway, catches Shizuka’s ear with her wild talent, Shizuka can almost feel the curse lifting. She’s found her final candidate. But in a donut shop off a bustling highway in the San Gabriel Valley, Shizuka meets Lan Tran, retired starship captain, interstellar refugee, and mother of four. Shizuka doesn’t have time for crushes or coffee dates, what with her very soul on the line, but Lan’s kind smile and eyes like stars might just redefine a soul’s worth.

ON SALE 09/28/2021!

Even Greater Mistakes by Charlie Jane Anders

The woman who can see all possible futures is dating the man who can see the one and only foreordained future. A wildly popular slapstick filmmaker is drawn, against his better judgment, into working with a fascist militia, against a background of social collapse. Two friends must embark on an Epic Quest To Capture The Weapon That Threatens The Galaxy, or else they’ll never achieve their dream of opening a restaurant. The stories in this collection, by their very outrageousness, achieve a heightened realism unlike any other. Anders once again proves she is one of the strongest voices in modern science fiction, the writer called by Andrew Sean Greer, “this generation’s Le Guin.”

ON SALE 11/16/2021!

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On the (Digital) Road: Tor Author Events in May 2021

We are in a time of social distancing, but your favorite Tor authors are still coming to screens near you in the month of May! Check out where you can find them here:

Kate Elliott, Unconquerable Sun

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Monday, May 3
Murder by the Book, in conversation with Martha Wells
Register Here
7:00 PM CT

J. S. Dewes, The Last Watch, Arkady Martine, A Memory Called Empire

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Tuesday, May 4
Towne Book Center, in conversation with Martha Wells
Register Here
7:00 PM ET

Jenn Lyons, The House of Always

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Monday, May 10
Mysterious Galaxy
Crowdcast
7:00 PM PT

Tuesday, May 11
Read It Again Books
YouTube
6:00 PM ET

Thursday, May 13
Tubby & Coo’s
YouTube
6:00 PM ET

Friday, May 14
Poisoned Pen
Facebook
6:30 PM PT

Monday, May 17
University Bookstore in-conversation with Suyi Davies Okungbowa
Register Here
6:00 PM PT

Wednesday, May 26
Read the Room: MAYhem panel with Marina Lostetter, Mirah Bolender, Nino Cipri and P. Djeli Clark
Register Here
6:00 PM PT

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On the (Digital) Road: Tor Author Events in March

We are in a time of social distancing, but your favorite Tor authors are still coming to screens near you in the month of March! Check out where you can find them here:

Arkady Martine, A Desolation Called Peace

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Tuesday, March 2
New York Public Library, in conversation with Sarah Gailey
Zoom
8:30 PM ET

Wednesday, March 3
Collected Works Books, in conversation with Ann Leckie
Zoom
6:30 PM ET

Friday, March 5
Poisoned Pen
Facebook Live
6:30 PM ET

Wednesday, March 24
Tor After Dark Presents: OTPs After Dark, featuring Vivian Shaw
Instagram Live
7 PM ET

Friday, March 26
Mysterious Galaxy, virtual group event with S.B. Divya, Premee Mohammed, and Adrian Tchaikovsky
TK

Charlie Jane Anders, Even Greater Mistakes and Annalee Newitz, The Future of Another Timeline

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Wednesday, March 10
Tor After Dark Presents: OTPs After Dark
Instagram Live
7 PM ET

A. K. Larkwood, The Unspoken Name

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Sunday, March 14
Towne Book Center Virtual Book Club
TBD

Sarah Gailey, The Echo Wife and Charlie Jane Anders, Even Greater Mistakes

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Wednesday, March 31
Strand Book Store, Trans Visibility Day virtual panel with Bishahk Som, Neon Yang and two other authors (TK), moderated by Daniel Lavery
TK
8 PM ET

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Six Things I Borrowed Wholesale From History for A Memory Called Empire

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You may not know what a Byzantinist is, and that’s okay. We didn’t either before we read A Memory Called Empire, the first book in Arkady Martine’s Hugo Award-winning Teixcalaan series. The series continues with A Desolation Called Peace this March.

Martine is a Byzantinist—a historian of the Byzantine Empire—and has a Ph.D. in History! Her series takes historical events borrowed from the annals of the human race, and plays them out in a galactic civilization that’s kind of like House of Cards in space.

Check out some of her inspirations below!


Six Things I Borrowed Wholesale From History for A Memory Called Empire

By Arkady Martine

  1. In the year 1044 AD, the Byzantine Empire annexed the small Armenian kingdom of Ani. The empire was able to do this for a lot of reasons – political, historical, military – but the precipitating incident involved the Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic Church, a man named Petros Getadarj, who was determined to prevent the forced conversion of the Armenians to the Byzantine form of Christianity. He did this by trading the physical sovereignty of Ani to the Byzantine emperor in exchange for promises of spiritual sovereignty. When I started writing this book, my inciting question was: what’s it like to be that guy? To betray your culture’s freedom in order to save your culture? Except, y’know, in space.
  2. The number-noun naming system of Teixcalaan is a direct reference to the naming practices of the Mixtec people of Oaxaca, who, like many Mesoamerican peoples, were named for the day in the 260-day cycle of the year on which they were born: a cycle of thirteen numbers and twenty signs (animals, plants, and natural phenomena).
  3. Extemporaneous and extremely political court poetry contests like the one Mahit attends in the City were a centerpiece of Byzantine political life during the Middle Byzantine Period (approximately 900-1204 CE), and were used in much the same way as I’ve used them: to prove an orator’s intelligence and cultural competence, and also to make political arguments. Sometimes both at once. ‘Fifteen-syllable political verse’ is a direct lift from Byzantine literature.
  4. The acclimation by the legions of some general to emperorship – or the threat thereof – was a constant problem in the late Roman empire and into Byzantium, as imperial legitimacy was so tightly linked to military prowess, success, and the celebration of triumphs. Teixcalaan has similar issues.
  5. Blood sacrifice for luck, promises, and the preservation of society is common in many cultures, but I specifically built Teixcalaanli religion in reference to the practices of the Mexica … and in reference to the idea of summer kings, the king being linked to the land, and whose sacrifice might be the only thing sufficient to redeem that land, which is common in European pre-Christian cultures.
  6. Ixhui dumplings are 100% Turkish/Ottoman manti. They’re my favorite food that I can’t make to save my life, so of course I used them.

Order A Memory Called Empire in Paperback:

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Series We’re Saying Goodbye to in 2021

We’re saying hello to the year 2021, but a bittersweet goodbye to some of our favorite SFF series. Find out which ones are wrapping up in 2021 here.


Image Placeholder of - 14A Summoning of Demons by Cate Glass (Chimera series)

Catagna has been shaken to its core. In every street and market, the people of Catagna are railing against magic-users with a greater ferocity than ever before, and magic hunters are everywhere. Meanwhile, Romy has been dreaming. Every night, her dreams are increasingly vivid and disturbing. Every day, she struggles to understand the purpose of the Chimera’s most recent assignment from the Shadow Lord. As Romy and the others attempt to carry out their mission, they find themselves plunged into a mystery of corruption and murder, myth and magic, and a terrifying truth: the philosophists may have been right all along.

ON SALE NOW!

Placeholder of  -33Engines of Oblivion by Karen Osborne (The Memory War duology)

Karen Osborne continues her science fiction action and adventure series the Memory War with Engines of Oblivion, the sequel to Architects of Memory—the corporations running the galaxy are about to learn not everyone can be bought. Natalie Chan gained her corporate citizenship, but barely survived the battle for Tribulation. Now corporate has big plans for Natalie. Horrible plans. Locked away in Natalie’s missing memory is salvation for the last of an alien civilization and the humans they tried to exterminate. The corporation wants total control of both—or their deletion.

ON SALE NOW!

Poster Placeholder of - 12A Desolation Called Peace by Arkady Martine (Teixcalaan duology)

An alien armada lurks on the edges of Teixcalaanli space. No one can communicate with it, no one can destroy it, and Fleet Captain Nine Hibiscus is running out of options. In a desperate attempt at diplomacy with the mysterious invaders, the fleet captain has sent for a diplomatic envoy. Now Mahit Dzmare and Three Seagrass—still reeling from the recent upheaval in the Empire—face the impossible task of trying to communicate with a hostile entity. Their failure will guarantee millions of deaths in an endless war. Their success might prevent Teixcalaan’s destruction—and allow the empire to continue its rapacious expansion. Or it might create something far stranger . . .

ON SALE NOW!

Image Place holder  of - 8Breath by Breath by Morgan Llywelyn (Step by Step series)

The residents of Sycamore River have weathered the Change and the nuclear war it provoked. They emerge to try to build a life from the shattered remains of their town. But for some, the very air has become toxic. The people of Sycamore River have to survived the unthinkable. Can they build something new from the ashes?

ON SALE 4/13/21!

Place holder  of - 58Fortress of Magi by Mirah Bolender

The Hive Mind has done the impossible—left its island prison. It’s a matter of time before Amicae falls, and Laura Kramer has very few resources left to prevent it. The council has tied her hands, and the gangs want her dead. Her only real choice is to walk away and leave the city to its fate.

ON SALE 4/20/21!

Fury of a Demon by Brian Naslund (Dragons of Terra series

Brian Naslund’s epic Dragons of Terra series, beginning with Blood of an Exile, is perfect for comic book readers and fans of heroic fantasy. Action-packed and full of fast-paced adventures, the story follows Bershad, the most successful dragon slayer in history—he’s never lost a fight. But now he’s faced with a dangerous conundrum: kill a king or be killed.

ON SALE 8/31/21!

Invisible Sun by Charles Stross (Empire Games series)

A inter-timline coup d’état gone awry. A renegade British monarch on the run through the streets of Berlin. And robotic alien invaders from a distant timeline flood through a wormhole, wreaking havoc in the USA. Can disgraced worldwalker Rita and her intertemporal extraordaire agent of a mother neutralize the livewire contention between their respective timelines before it’s too late?

ON SALE 9/28/21!

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