fifth season I keep wondering where on earth to start with all of the exciting news for N.K. Jemisin, and decided I couldn’t go wrong with the author’s own words. From Twitter, “OhdearGodIthoughtIwasgonnablowagasketholdingthisin. Big news re THE FIFTH SEASON! https://t.co/FslJC4OrpM“. If you followed the link (or have already seen the news all over social media), yup, you’ve read that right: “N.K. Jemisin’s Hugo Award-winning sci-fi fantasy novel The Fifth Season is getting the drama series treatment at TNT.” (Read the whole article from Deadline.com.)

obelisk gate So, HUGE congratulations to N.K. Jemisin for the option and development. HUGE congratulations to her on her second Best Novel Hugo Award win last week for the sequel to THE FIFTH SEASON, THE OBELISK GATE, and HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY for her Tuesday release of the conclusion to the Broken Earth series, THE STONE SKY! For those of you who haven’t dipped into this incredible, riveting series yet, that means you can binge read the whole series. No waiting!

stone sky THE STONE SKY by N.K. Jemisin

The shattering conclusion to the post-apocalyptic and highly acclaimed bestselling trilogy that began with The Fifth Season, winner of the Hugo Award for Best Novel in 2016, and The Obelisk Gate, winner of the Hugo Award for Best Novel in 2017.

 

The Moon will soon return. Whether this heralds the destruction of humankind or something worse will depend on two women.

 

Essun has inherited the power of Alabaster Tenring. With it, she hopes to find her daughter Nassun and forge a world in which every orogene child can grow up safe.

 

For Nassun, her mother’s mastery of the Obelisk Gate comes too late. She has seen the evil of the world, and accepted what her mother will not admit: that sometimes what is corrupt cannot be cleansed, only destroyed.

THIS IS THE WAY THE WORLD ENDS… FOR THE LAST TIME.

“Extraordinary.” – New York Times on The Fifth Season

For more from N. K. Jemisin, check out:
The Inheritance Trilogy

 

The Inheritance Trilogy (omnibus edition)
The Awakened Kingdom (e-only novella)

Dreamblood Duology

I was out of the office a couple of days last week, one for a fun day at Epcot with a few other #publishingprincesses in town for the Romance Writers of America National Conference, and one for meetings and publishers’ parties at RWA National.

(“London”: (top) Louisa Bacio, Tera Cuskaden Norris, Kathy Williams, Lexi Post, (bottom) Heather Long and me; “France”: (top) Me, Tera Cuskaden Norris, Heather Long, Louisa Bacio, (bottom) Lexi Post; “Germany” Saharra Sandhu and me)

Thus, I did not get to post my usual Happy Book Birthday blog last Tuesday. I am remedying that now! For your reading pleasure, I’m so happy to announce these new releases:

Under the Parisian Sky UNDER THE PARISIAN SKY by Alli Sinclair

(Kensington Lyrical Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Indiebound)

In the City of Light, one dancer must confront her fears about love and loss before she can step into a brighter future . . .

Lily Johannson has returned to Paris, the city that broke her heart and destroyed her ballet career, with two goals in mind: to overcome the grief surrounding her fiancé’s death, and to make amends with her estranged sister, Natalie, also a ballerina. But when Lily meets charming composer Yves Rousseau, he is convinced she has a third mission—as his muse . . .

Struggling to finish a score about an infamous Ballets Russes dancer from 1917, Yves believes Lily is meant to help him. Despite her resistance, she is swept once more into the exhilarating arms of the dance—and into Yves’ passionate embrace. But when her sister is cast as the infamous dancer and begins to imitate her tragic life, she soon goes missing. Now Lily and Yves must set out to find her—and along the way face their own demons, while also discovering that art, like love, should not be abandoned so easily . . .

Check out Alli’s profile as AusRom Today’s Author of the Month for July!

And her blog tour and giveaway for UNDER THE PARISIAN SKY! (Today’s stop: Jazzy Book Reviews.)

inferno squad STAR WARS: BATTLEFRONT II: INFERNO SQUAD by Christie Golden

(Del Rey, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Indiebound)

Set in the aftermath of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, this action-packed prequel to the hotly anticipated videogame Battlefront II introduces the Empire’s elite force: Inferno Squad.

After the humiliating theft of the Death Star plans and the destruction of the battle station, the Empire is on the defensive. But not for long. In retaliation, the elite Imperial soldiers of Inferno Squad have been called in for the crucial mission of infiltrating and eliminating the Partisans—the rebel faction once led by notorious Republic freedom fighter Saw Gerrera.

Following the death of their leader, the Partisans have carried on his extremist legacy, determined to thwart the Empire—no matter the cost. Now Inferno Squad must prove its status as the best of the best and take down the Partisans from within. But the growing threat of being discovered in their enemy’s midst turns an already dangerous operation into a do-or-die acid test they dare not fail. To protect and preserve the Empire, to what lengths will Inferno Squad go . . . and how far beyond them?

The Rebellion may have heroes like Jyn Erso and Luke Skywalker. But the Empire has Inferno Squad.

Valerian VALERIAN AND THE CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS, novelization by Christie Golden

(Titan, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Indiebound)

In the 28th century, Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline (Cara Delevingne) are a team of special operatives charged with maintaining order throughout the human territories. Under assignment from the Minister of Defense, the two embark on a mission to the astonishing city of Alpha—an ever-expanding metropolis where species from all over the universe have converged over centuries to share knowledge, intelligence and cultures with each other.

There is a mystery at the center of Alpha, a dark force which threatens the peaceful existence of the City of a Thousand Planets, and Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the marauding menace and safeguard not just Alpha, but the future of the universe.

All five books in the Vamped series (think Clueless meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer) are now out, so the whole series is available for binge-reading! In celebration of the all new fifth book, the conclusion to the series, Let’s Talk! Promotions is running a FANGDEMONIUM blog tour with a tour-wide giveaway of four copies of FANGDEMONIUM or a 20 dollar gift certificate! (Open to US residents only.) I hope you’ll check out the tour and enter to be part of the giveaway! Just four days left!

The stops thus far:

7/17/2017  I Smell Sheep (Character Court and Excerpt)

7/17/2017  The Million Words (Q & A and Excerpt)

7/18/2017  Fang Freakin Tastic Reviews (Review & Excerpt)

7/20/2017  Ctrl, Alt, Books!  (Q & A and Excerpt)

7/21/2017  YABooksCentral (Q & A and Excerpt)

7/22/2017  Faith Hunter (Guest Post by Gina Covello, fashionista of the fanged)

7/23/2017  Ken Schrader  (Q & A and Excerpt)

7/24/2017  Fantasy Fun Reads (Review and Excerpt)

Huge congratulations today to Rachel Caine, whose amazing suspense novel STILLHOUSE LAKE is not only a Kindle bestseller, but a USA Today bestseller as well!

Happy Ten Year Anniversary to Orbit Books in the US! To celebrate, they’re making the e-books for ten of their most popular titles, including N.K. Jemisin’s award winning SFF novel THE FIFTH SEASON, available for only $2.99 for a limited time. There are other amazing options from Ann Leckie, Brent Weeks, Joe Abercrombie, Mira Grant, Gail Carriger, M.R. Carey, Kim Stanley Robinson, James R.A. Corey and Andrzej Sapkowski!

Big happy book birthday to a novel close to my heart, NO GOOD DEED by Kara Connolly, quotes and cover copy below!

no good deed NO GOOD DEED by Kara Connolly (Delacorte Press)

“This cheeky take on the Robin Hood legend is pure fun. Connolly’s swashbuckling debut will satisfy any adventure fans, and Ellie’s struggle to come to terms with her brother’s decision gives added depth.” —Booklist

“Robin Hood fans will enjoy Ellie’s escapades as she runs around Sherwood Forest, bumping into bad guys, and teens interested in historical fiction with a generous mix of action/adventure will appreciate this page-turner. Read-alikes include fairy-tale and myth retellings such as Renée Ahdieh’s “The Wrath & the Dawn” series, David Almond’s A Song for Ella Grey, and Scott Lynch’s The Lies of Locke Lamora.” —School Library Journal

Cover Copy:

Fans of Dorothy Must Die will love this reimagining of the legend of Robin Hood. Girl power rules supreme when a modern girl finds herself in the middle of a medieval mess with only her smart mouth and her Olympic-archer aim to get her home.

Ellie Hudson is the front-runner on the road to gold for the U.S. Olympic archery team. All she has to do is qualify at the trials in jolly old England. When Ellie makes some kind of crazy wrong turn in the caverns under Nottingham Castle—yes, that Nottingham—she ends up in medieval England.

Ellie doesn’t care how she got to the Middle Ages; she just wants to go home before she gets the plague. But people are suffering in Nottingham, and Ellie has the skills to make it better. What’s an ace archer to do while she’s stuck in Sherwood Forest but make like Robin Hood?

Pulled into a past life as an outlaw, Ellie feels her present fading away next to daring do-gooding and a devilishly handsome knight. Only, Ellie is on the brink of rewriting history, and when she picks up her bow and arrow, her next shot could save her past—or doom civilization’s future.

________

FANGDEMONIUM - ebook In other news, my FANGDEMONIUM blog tour continues today at CTR, ALT, BOOKS! with a Q&A, excerpt and a link to the #giveaway! Looking for the full Vamped series? You can find blurbs and links here.

So much happened last week that I didn’t get a chance to post all of the awesome news here, though I did at least tweet it out! (For those on Twitter who don’t yet follow me but would like to, I’m @luciennediver.) But, I will remedy that today and hopefully get caught up enough by the end of the week that I can post some of the pics from Italy, which was beyond words.

To start, the third book in Rachel Caine’s amazing Great Library series, ASH AND QUILL, sequel to INK AND BONE and PAPER AND FIRE, was released by Berkley in the US and by Allison & Busby in the UK. Barnes & Noble did a wonderful write-up of the book on their blog, “Knowledge is Power in Rachel Caine’s The Great Library“. Fresh Fiction made it their Fresh Pick for July 8th.  Eater of Books did a fascinating Science in Fiction blog based on the book, and there have been many incredible reviews, giveaways and other posts. If you haven’t already started this series, you might want to get caught up!

FANGDEMONIUM - ebook.jpg

And I have a book out today! FANGDEMONIUM, the conclusion to my Vamped series is finally here. In honor of that, Let’s Talk! Promotions is doing a blog tour with a giveaway. I hope you’ll check it out and enter to win. Today’s stops are:

I Smell Sheep: The Character’s Court: Author Lucienne Diver vs. Vampire Gina Covello (Fangdemonium book tour) + giveaway  (Come mock me in my poofy pink dresses and see me answer for my authorial crimes)

The Million Words: Writing YA

Cover copy:

Fanged and fabulous . . . and hunted.

Gina Covella, fashionista of the fanged, and her entourage are primed to reveal the existence of vampires on the popular Ghouligans television show, when their former federal handlers swoop in to shut them down and imprison the vamps in one of their super secret testing facilities. Or not so secret, as the gang knows all about the horror hospitals and has sworn to take them down.

Their daring escape runs them right into the arms of “the resistance”—a group of humans and vampires who’ve joined together to stop the fighting that’s made Gina and her boy Bobby’s hometown a bloody battlefield. Going home brings them back to old nemeses as well, including the psycho psychic who declared Gina “chaos” and Bobby “the key”. They hope he’ll unlock the secret of stopping the Feds’ freakshow experiments for good, because they’re building up to something big. Huge. And they’re consolidating their power in the Big Easy, aka New Orleans, where what’s cooking is nothing less than the final showdown.

First 4 Books in the series: Vamped, Revamped, Fangtastic and Fangtabulous

In other amazing news:

Kalayna Price’s GRAVE RANSOM debuted at #143 on the USA Today bestseller list!

Entertainment Weekly put together a list of 27 Women Who Rule Sci-Fi and Fantasy Right Now, and N.K. Jemisin and Rachel Caine are both featured!

N.K. Jemisin’s Broken Earth trilogy and J. Kathleen Cheney’s DREAMING DEATH made Barnes & Nobles’ great list of “Books that Blend Science Fiction and Magic, Minus the fantasy Tropes”.

LOST BOY by Christine Henry is on Amazon’s list of favorite SF/F hitting shelves this month.

I’ll have a happy book birthday and more news to share tomorrow, so check back then!

Back on my birthday, I posted a special message on Facebook, because I wanted to start with friends and family, but after talking with my husband and daughter, I’m going to post it here as well, because I have a bit more to say on the matter and if I’m going to be an advocate, I can’t limit it to my own circle of friends.

The Post:

On my birthday, what I want most is love and understanding…for my daughter. Some of you are scratching your heads because you’ve known Ty, perhaps since he was born, perhaps through pictures or stories—and there have been a lot, because my child is a sweet, smart, funny, amazing person who I love bragging on. That is not going to change with her form.

Yes, I said her.

For the past few years, Ty (who now goes by Abby, so that’s the name I’ll be using going forward) has been working through issues of identity in counseling and in her day to day life. It’s become clear that Abby is not in the form with which she identifies. She’s been so much happier since she’s made it clear that she wants to transition and since she’s begun telling people and living externally as she feels internally.

Some of you will think it’s a phase. We thought this for a long time—or maybe hoped, not because we’re not supportive, but because we know what a difficult road this will be for her, in terms of the bias and hate she’s likely to encounter and in terms of the actual process—but we’re past that point.

We hope that we’ll have your love and support. We’ll all understand if this takes some adjustment and if you sometimes slip up on the name or pronoun; we still do, though we’re getting better.

If you have negative thoughts on this whole thing, we hope you’ll keep them to yourselves. Please feel free to unfriend. I will feel free to do the same.

Now:

As a comment on that post, a long-time friend asked if I had suggestions for how to talk with her kids about Abby’s transition. I liked the comment at the time, but I didn’t respond, because I didn’t really have an answer then. I think everyone’s approach will be different based on kids’ ages and references. But today we went to see the stage show of The Little Mermaid, and it occurred to me that in many ways it references the transgendered experience. (Disney’s mileage may vary.)

Think about it. The heroine, Ariel, is a mermaid who is obsessed with all things human. She’s never felt like she belongs swimming under the sea; she’s not happy there to the point of self-sabotage—missing practices and ultimately the concert at which she’s the featured performer, etc. She’s not happy with her body or the place in the world she was born into (ex. “Part of Your World”). She wants legs. She wants another life than the one she has. Her father and sisters don’t understand her. No one understands her. She has to sacrifice things to achieve her dreams. In the movie and play, it’s her voice (and her freedom if she can’t get the prince to kiss her within the three day time frame). Ultimately, she achieves her dream form and finds love despite what she’s sacrificed. No, not despite…because of it.

She doesn’t change sex; she changes species—mermaid to human. But for some reason, this is something everyone can accept. Everyone can identify. There’s no problem. Male to female or female to male many people don’t get. Why? We change our hair color and cut without thinking. We wear clothes or make-up or piercings or ink to change our appearance, to say something about ourselves. Yes, gender reassignment is more intensive, but it’s all in line with showing ourselves to the world in the way that makes us happy and valued and that feels true to who we are inside.

That’s what the transformation is about, in Ariel’s case and in Abby’s. It’s about being the way you need to be in order to be happy, and in the end it’s about the family and community’s support for that transformation.

Another friend on that birthday post said something really wonderful to the effect that most major religions agree that the body is just a vessel for the soul, so it shouldn’t matter what form that vessel takes. I thought that was beautiful. It meant a lot to me, as did everyone’s comments that day and everyone’s support since.

Anyway, I wanted to share all of this while it was fresh in my mind. If you’re working to understand gender reassignment or trying to figure out how to talk to your kids about it, maybe watch or rewatch The Little Mermaid and discuss. Ariel was always my favorite Disney princess. Now I get why.

With a million things (no exaggeration!) to do before leaving for vacation in Italy, I’m posting my happy book birthdays for this week and next a little early, but I hope that I can be forgiven for that, especially when I return with wonderful travel experiences and pictures to share with the class!

So, without further ado, happy upcoming book birthdays to…

 Queen-Swords THE QUEEN OF SWORDS by R.S. Belcher | Tor | June 27th

(Barnes & Noble, Amazon, IndieboundBooks-a-million)

“Belcher’s enjoyable third historical fantasy (after The Shotgun Arcana) employs considerable imagination to drop readers into a fully formed world of magic and mysticism, drawing on ancient cultures and rituals while serving up exciting action sequences… Fans of the Golgotha series will adore this, and new readers will find a rich new world to fall into as well as two very strong heroines to root for.” —Publishers Weekly

“Once again letting loose the reins on his formidable imagination and skill, Belcher creates another undeniable winner with his whimsically horrific characters, unparalleled worldbuilding, stimulating narrative and a diabolical storyline teeming with magic, mayhem and dark humor. Fans will cheer the powerful female protagonists who are indeed the queens of this world.” —RT Book Reviews, 4 ½ Stars, Top Pick!

1870. Maude Stapleton, late of Golgotha, Nevada, is a respectable widow raising a daughter on her own. Few know that Maude belongs to an ancient order of assassins, the daughters of Lilith, and is as well the great-great-great-great-granddaughter of Anne Bonney, the legendary female pirate.

Leaving Golgotha in search of her daughter Constance, who has been taken from her, Maude travels to Charleston, South Carolina, only to find herself caught in the middle of a secret war between the Daughters of Lilith and their ancestral enemies, the monstrous Sons of Typhon. To save Constance, whose prophetic gifts are sought by both cults, Maude must follow in the footsteps of Anne Bonney as she embarks on a perilous voyage that will ultimately lead her to a lost city of bones in the heart of Africa―and the Father of All Monsters.

One of the most popular characters from The Six-Gun Tarot and The Shotgun Arcana ventures beyond Golgotha on a boldly imaginative, globe-spanning adventure of her own!

(Excerpt here!)

stillhouse lake STILLHOUSE LAKE by Rachel Caine|Thomas & Mercer| July 1st

(Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieboundBooks-a-million)

“Caine spins a powerful story of maternal love and individual self-realization that cries out for at least one redeeming sequel. Compelling characters and plenty of credible plot twists…” —Publishers Weekly

Gina Royal is the definition of average—a shy Midwestern housewife with a happy marriage and two adorable children. But when a car accident reveals her husband’s secret life as a serial killer, she must remake herself as Gwen Proctor—the ultimate warrior mom.

With her ex now in prison, Gwen has finally found refuge in a new home on remote Stillhouse Lake. Though still the target of stalkers and Internet trolls who think she had something to do with her husband’s crimes, Gwen dares to think her kids can finally grow up in peace.

But just when she’s starting to feel at ease in her new identity, a body turns up in the lake—and threatening letters start arriving from an all-too-familiar address. Gwen Proctor must keep friends close and enemies at bay to avoid being exposed—or watch her kids fall victim to a killer who takes pleasure in tormenting her. One thing is certain: she’s learned how to fight evil. And she’ll never stop.

LostBoy.jpg LOST BOY by Christina Henry | Berkley | July 4th

(Barnes & Noble, Amazon, IndieboundBooks-a-million)

“Bestseller Henry (Red Queen) will delight readers with this thrilling origin story, which reveals the true Peter Pan and the long road that led Jamie the lost boy to become pirate captain James Hook… Multiple twists keep the reader guessing, and the fluid writing is enthralling. Henry perfectly captures what it’s like to live on Peter’s island, and Jamie is a powerful character. Through his perspective, Henry immerses the reader in Neverland and genuinely shocks with the meanings behind Peter’s secrets and the intentions of his adventures. This is a fine addition to the shelves of any fan of children’s classics and their modern subversions.” —Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“…a deeply impactful, imaginative and haunting story of loyalty, disillusionment and self-discovery.” RT Book Reviews, 4 ½ Star Top Pick!

From the national bestselling author of Alice comes a familiar story with a dark hook—a tale about Peter Pan and the friend who became his nemesis, a nemesis who may not be the blackhearted villain Peter says he is…

There is one version of my story that everyone knows. And then there is the truth. This is how it happened. How I went from being Peter Pan’s first—and favorite—lost boy to his greatest enemy.

Peter brought me to his island because there were no rules and no grownups to make us mind. He brought boys from the Other Place to join in the fun, but Peter’s idea of fun is sharper than a pirate’s sword. Because it’s never been all fun and games on the island. Our neighbors are pirates and monsters. Our toys are knife and stick and rock—the kinds of playthings that bite.

Peter promised we would all be young and happy forever.

Peter lies.

Grave Ransom Hi Res Cover GRAVE RANSOM by Kalayna Price | Ace | July 4th

(Barnes & Noble, Amazon, IndieboundBooks-a-million)

“Over the course of this transfixing series, Price has built a uniquely compelling world and made sure her characters were truly unforgettable!” —RT Book Reviews

The world-building in this series is phenomenal, with more intricacies to discover in each and every book… this is one installment of the Alex Craft series that you won’t want to miss.” —The Novel Lady

In the thrilling new novel from USA Today bestselling author Kalayna Price, Alex Craft comes face-to-face with the walking dead….

Grave witch Alex Craft is no stranger to the dead talking. She raises shades, works with ghosts, and is dating Death himself. But the dead walking? That’s not supposed to happen. And yet reanimated corpses are committing crimes across Nekros City.

Alex’s investigation leads her deep into a web of sinister magic. When Briar Darque of the Magical Crimes Investigation Bureau gets involved, Alex finds herself with an unexpected ally of sorts. But as the dead continue to rise and wreak havoc on the living, can she get to the soul of the matter in time?

her guardian shifter HER GUARDIAN SHIFTER by Karen Whiddon | Harlequin Nocturne | July 4th

(Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Books-a-million)

Some boundaries are made to be crossed… 

A rare Vedjorn bear shifter, Eric Mikkelson lives on his own terms. So allying with wolf shifters, even gorgeous Julia Jacobs, bristles his loner instincts. But Eric must protect his infant son from the dangerous shifter cult stalking him. However, keeping JJ at arm’s length proves nearly impossible. She gets under Eric’s skin, exposing them to new risks as their staggering attraction defies Pack laws, and JJ’s own dark secrets fester between them.

When the safe haven of their shifter-friendly town is violated, lying low is no longer an option. Julia and Eric must embrace the power of their inner beasts, even if it means sacrificing their forbidden bond.

 

While we’re on the subject of new releases, right now if you pre-order UNDER THE PARISIAN SKY by Alli Sinclair, you receive exclusive content AND are entered to win a beautiful pendant. It’s a win-win-possible-win situation!