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Perception Check

Perception Check by Astrid Knight

Her favorite tabletop roleplaying game is real, and her kidnapped childhood best friend is trapped in a far off land. Will she be able to save her? Let's roll initiative! Violet Spence wants nothing more than to have a normal life. After witnessing her childhood best friend get abducted by monsters, that’s easier said than done. At twenty-three years old, Violet cannot seem to move past that fateful night ten years ago. Her only solace is Mages of Velmyra, a tabletop roleplaying game filled with goblins, fairies, and all-powerful magicians. But of course, that’s all fantasy. Or, so she thought. As it turns out, the land of Velmyra is very real and the home of the monsters that took her best friend. With the help of her friends (and the creator of the game itself), Violet must navigate the once-fictional creatures and powerful mages of Velmyra to retrieve a set of ancient relics—all in the hopes that the journey will lead her back to her friend. But for Violet, fighting monsters and magic workers doesn’t seem nearly as terrifying as confronting her own demons. And she’ll soon realize fighting the battle within herself can be just as tough as those fought against demigods. Perception Check is the magical first installment of the Mages of Velmyra Saga, great for fans of Dungeons and Dragons, Critical Role, and The Magicians. With endearing and hilarious characters, an exploration of mental health and trauma, LGBTQ+ representation, gut-wrenching twists, and a whirlwind of an ending, you will never want to leave the world of Velmyra.


A Prophecy Unsung

A Prophecy Unsung by Adam R. Bishop

William and Baldric were successful in trekking across the uncharted lands of the elves. After reaching the Viridian Veil and warning Lord Thinduill of Dadro’s deceit, they thought their journey had come to a close. But in truth, it had only just begun—and the more they descend into the battle for Cellagor’s fate, the more they’ll learn about their own mysterious pasts. Preceding their arrival to the Veil, Avolin’s visions revealed that William and Baldric were tied to the Book of No Quarter. Upon learning this, Lord Thinduill insisted they accompany him to the elven capital of Leof Ealdwin. Meanwhile, Rhan is no more, and its ashen remains mark the beginning of a new age. Arnion’s sacrifice may have altered the fate of Cellagor, but his father’s resolve continues to be tested. In the north, houses have reunited once again, and the Braxi army slowly encroaches on the Unspoken Border. Talfryn remains the last standing house to refuse Dadro’s rule—but they must rekindle old alliances if they mean to survive further bloodshed. Word of Dadro’s victory over the elves continues to spread across the realm. Thousands have sworn their fealty to him, and whispers of a promising union linger on the horizon. But war does not come without its price. Dadro’s brother has yet to recover from the Battle of Rhan, and the pyromancer Aleister’s treachery remains unseen. With his ambitions still unknown, neither side is safe during this ushering in of a new age.


The Monsters We Feed

The Monsters We Feed by Thomas Howard Riley

SPFBO9

The morning before he found the dead body, Jathan Algevin thought he had his whole life just the way he wanted it. He knows his city inside and out, and doesn't bother carrying a sword, trusting his wits and his fists well enough to get by, hustling extra coin by ratting out loathsome magi to the law for execution. He and his sister, Lyra, have watched out for each other ever since the day they were orphaned by a bloodthirsty rogue sorcerer, and now they finally have steady work, good friends, and the freedom to spend every night laughing at the bottom of a bottle. But nothing lasts forever.When he stumbles across a brutal murder, Jathan discovers a strange crystal lens that opens his eyes to an invisible world of magick and terror lurking just beneath the surface of his own, making him question everything he thought he knew. But will gazing into this new arcane realm lead Jathan to save lives, or help destroy them?With dangerous people hunting for the lens, monstrous lies unraveling his life, and a hidden underworld calling to him, it is only a matter of time before his whole world comes crashing down. Will he find the answers he is looking for, or will he only find a monster needing to be fed?Rated-R Dark Fantasy Noir in a city of hope, lust, and brutality, where swords are banned, and magick is just as likely to get you killed as it is to save your life.There are always things about ourselves that we don't want to see.There are always things we can't stop doing no matter how hard we try.We all lie. We all have secrets.We are all feeding monsters.


Shadows of Ivory

Shadows of Ivory by T L Greylock and Bryce O'Connor

SPFBO7 SPFBO Finalist

I burned cities and drowned mountains. I pulled stars from the night sky and scorched the world with their flames. I am the Fisher King, and the grave does not bind me. An academic with a taste for adventure, Eska de Caraval has means and influence, wit and charm... and a knack for acquiring artifacts that may not be hers to claim. But when Eska comes into possession of a strange disc of rune-carved bronze, she finds herself abruptly hunted by all manner of adversaries: an assassin in the shadows, a monster in the deep, a bitter rival burning with vengeance. From sword and fang and flame Eska must defend herself, struggling all the while to unravel the mysteries of a dangerous artifact. An artifact so powerful, a dead tyrant will rise again to wield it.


Legacy of the Brightwash

Legacy of the Brightwash by Krystle Matar

SPFBO7 Indie Recs Indie SPFBO Finalist

Follow the law and you’ll stay safe. But what if the law is wrong? Tashué’s faith in the law is beginning to crack. Three years ago, he stood by when the Authority condemned Jason to the brutality of the Rift for non-compliance. When Tashué’s son refused to register as tainted, the laws had to be upheld. He’d never doubted his job as a Regulation Officer before, but three years of watching your son wither away can break down even the strongest convictions. Then a dead girl washed up on the bank of the Brightwash, tattooed and mutilated. Where had she come from? Who would tattoo a child? Was it the same person who killed her? Why was he the only one who cared? Will Tashué be able to stand against everything he thought he believed in to get the answers he’s looking for?


Reign & Ruin

Reign & Ruin by J. D. Evans

SPFBO7 SPFBO Finalist SPFBO Winner

“All magic is beautiful...and terrible. Do you not see the beauty in yours, or the terror in mine? You can stop a heart, and I can stop your breath.” She is heir to a Sultanate that once ruled the world. He is an unwanted prince with the power to destroy. She is order and intellect, a woman fit to rule in a man's place. He is chaos and violence and will stop at nothing to protect his people. His magic answers hers with shadow for light. They need each other, but the cost of balance may be too high a price. Magic is dying and the only way to save it is to enlist mages who wield the forbidden power of death, mages cast out centuries ago in a brutal and bloody war. Now, a new war is coming. Science and machines to replace magic and old religion. They must find a way to save their people from annihilation and balance the sacred Wheel—but first, they will have to balance their own forbidden passion. His peace for her tempest, his restlessness for her calm… Night and day, dusk and dawn, the end, and the beginning.


The Assassin of Grins and Secrets

The Assassin of Grins and Secrets by K.E.Andrews

SPFBO8

Once the infamous assassin who killed with a smile, Serein now waits for death in the fighting pits of the Harpy's Chest. When the crown prince of Sarddon, Rameses al-Amirmoez, seeks her out with an offer of freedom if she serves as his guard, she must decide whether to work for those who ravaged her homeland or die. Rameses wants to believe that the war his father started was justified, but he has heard rumors and seen a cruelty in his father that causes him to question everything he's been told. To find answers, he needs Serein. Uriah Stormheir, Captain of the Oyon's city guard, finds himself caught between his duty to the crown and his friendship with Rameses. His distrust for Rameses' new guard runs deep. As Uriah wrestles with guilt from his past, he must work alongside the dangerous assassin whose true motives are hidden underneath her scars and dark grins. In a land of hot sands and dying magic, Serein plays the game of secrets with Uriah and Rameses, knowing one wrong step could end her life. As the shadows of her past catch up with her, she has to choose between pursuing vengeance and protecting a secret only she knows.


Envoy

Envoy by Andr Moș

SFINCS

When two descendants of a formerly lost people suddenly reappear in Sol System, Kep, an inexperienced guide with few aspirations, is handed the task of showing them around… and figuring out their true motives. But convoluted bureaucracies, hungry corporations and corrupt guilds conspire to acquire any advantage in a technologically stagnant system. So when a secret is revealed, it’s up to Kep to make sure that it doesn’t land in the wrong hands.


The Legend of Black Jack

The Legend of Black Jack by A. R. Witham

SFFOasis SPFBO9

Thrilling fantasy adventure debut from Emmy-winner A. R. Witham. Jack Swift can tell you every element on the periodic table, recite Treasure Island verbatim, and would remember in perfect detail every word you’d ever say to him. He has been alone for a long time, so he has buried himself in books, using them to plan his escape. But no textbook could ever prepare him for the land of Keymark. At 3:33 a.m. on his fourteenth birthday, Jack is kidnapped by a hideous monster to another sphere of existence. Now there are two moons in the sky, and he is surrounded by grotesque creatures and magical warriors training for battle. They want the impossible: Jack must use his abilities to save a life or be trapped in this bizarre world with no chance of rescue. Jack doesn’t have secret magic, a great destiny, or any experience. So why do they all expect him to become a legend?


Cursed Song

Cursed Song by Samantha Krose

Bound by Song. Cursed by Fate Ruyne, Leader of the Dusksinger bards, travels with his band from town to town, thrilling crowds with inspiring music born from an ancient magic. He leads a charmed life with his brother, and two life-long best friends. Disaster strikes when Ruyne ignores a cryptic message from a loved one. The band’s idyllic peace is shattered by a monster from the past, and the horrifying truth behind their magic is revealed, leaving their lives in tatters and the hearts of the four men forever scarred. Scattered and broken, can they harmonize their Song in time to prevent a tragedy of apocalyptic proportions?


The Hunt of the Pumpkin King

The Hunt of the Pumpkin King by Rowena Andrews

Legend speaks of the Pumpkin King, a tale steeped in superstition and fear. But all legends carry a grain of truth, and autumn is coming. CW: Mild body horror, decapitation.


Ringlander: The Path and the Way

Ringlander: The Path and the Way by Michael S. Jackson

SPFBO7

The first book in the Ringlander Series: a fast-paced, epic fantasy adventure full of games, grit and magic. Holes between worlds are tearing through Rengas. Firestorms are raging as multiple realities battle for control of the elements. Even the Way, the turbulent channel that separates Nord, Határ and Kemen, the lifeblood of the city of Tyr, has turned. Kyira’s search for her missing brother draws her away from the familiar frozen lines of Nord and south into the chaotic streets of Tyr where games are played & battles fought. As reality tears Kyira must choose between her family or her path before the worlds catch up with her.


Errant

Errant by Montrez

16 year old Savannah becomes New York's most wanted while struggling to reclaim her life after the devastating loss of her father. As things continue going downhill Savannah witnesses an impossible phenomenon that triggers the emergence of a wild and powerful gift. While being hunted she finds refuge in a group of ragtag misfits. A Supernatural war is coming and Savannah will need to adapt to her new world or die trying.


The Crowman

The Crowman by Gareth Clegg

In a dying world, one lone rider is the only hope for salvation.
 Some say the world is shattered, that our way of life is dying. Our sun fills half the sky and the scorched lands struggle to provide enough to sustain us. Still, there has always been hope. But as that fiery red orb descends below the rocky skyline, then comes the shadow: Dark spirits hell-bent on destroying what’s left of humanity, as if we needed any help. My name is Cheveyo Santiago. I cheated death as a child, but that trauma marked me, and now I sense the evil in others. So here I am, drawn like a moth to the flame. Though I carry a revolver, I’m no gunslinger, there are plenty faster on the draw than me. My real edge is knowledge. Old family recipes passed down through the ages – the secrets to banish the shadow back to the hells that spawned it. Salt, Brimstone, Silver and Tallow shall be my weapons.
 So, hear this, all creatures and spirits of evil. I know you. I see you. Prepare yourself for judgement. The Crowman is the first novella in a Weird West / Supernatural Western Horror series from Amazon best selling author Gareth Clegg.


Those Once Forgotten

Those Once Forgotten by N. C. Scrimgeour

They were a memory once forgotten. For millennia, they waited. Now, they are coming. The galaxy has been plunged into chaos, left reeling from the trap Alvera Renata triggered around the ancient alien waystations. As the leaders of the allied systems desperately try to prepare for what might be coming, Ridley and Kojan go on the hunt in search of answers. But the one person who might hold the key—the rogue starship captain who started it all—is missing in action, and her old friends aren’t the only ones looking for her… Meanwhile, tensions between the Coalition and the Idran-Var are at breaking point in the aftermath of a brutal attack. The only hope for peace may lie in a fragile alliance between Rivus and Niole, old enemies thrown unwillingly onto the same side. But even if they can bury their past, what will it take to overcome the centuries of bloodshed dividing their people? As the mysterious signal coming from the waystations counts down, only one thing is for certain: something is coming, and if the fractured factions of the galaxy can’t find a way to stand against it together, it may be the end for them all.


Of Blood and Fire

Of Blood and Fire by Ryan Cahill

SPFBO7 SFFOasis

Born in fire. Tempered in blood. Epheria is a land divided by war and mistrust. The High Lords of the South squabble and fight, only kept in check by the Dragonguard, traitors of a time long past, who serve the empire of the North. In the remote villages of southern Epheria, still reeling from the tragic loss of his brother, Calen Bryer prepares for The Proving – a test of courage and skill that not all survive. But when three strangers arrive in the village of Milltown, with a secret they are willing to die for, Calen’s world is ripped from under him and he is thrust headfirst into a war that has been raging for centuries. There is no prophecy. His coming was not foretold. He bleeds like any man, and bleed he will.


Obsidian: Awakening

Obsidian: Awakening by Sienna Frost

An epic tale of humanity that survives its ugliest and most admirable moments, one that will change your perception on love, life, and what it means to be human forever. When Hasheem, a legendary male-escort-turned-assassin finally escapes the city that enslaved him as a child, he finds himself trapped in the centuries-long war between his nomadic race of desert warriors and an empire that seeks to rule them. There, a new set of shackles awaits him in the form of a fifteen-year-old girl and her oracle brother whose agenda plunges him into the blood sport of power and politics. As warfare exacts its price and the line between good and evil gets put to the test, the men and women from both sides are forced to fight a common enemy that remains the greatest threat to mankind: humanity and all its flaws.


Privilege: A Trilogy

Privilege: A Trilogy by Bharat Krishnan

SPFBO7 WriteHive Book Club

In this epic saga about privilege and power, Rakshan Baliga will have to choose between the American Dream… and his own. New York’s drug problem is Rakshan's solution. Getting his hands on a super drug called WP could earn him glory, power, and a chance to win back his ex. But stealing it from the Top 1% is costly, and if Rakshan isn’t careful he’ll pay with his life. Discover how Rakshan’s journey sets off a chain of events that changes his city, his country… and the world. This OwnVoices political thriller is perfect for fans of Ocean’s 11 and House of Cards.


Let Loose the Fallen: Book Two of Children of the Nexus

Let Loose the Fallen: Book Two of Children of the Nexus by S. Kaeth

Teacup Dragon Coop SFFOasis

The priestess searches for her faith. The fire-wielder wrestles with her past. The psion dreams of peace. And the hero is torn between his heart and his duty. While grief scatters the four protectors to the winds, outside forces write history according to their own whims. The fate of the Rinaryns lies twined with that of the boy, Eian, caught in a tug of war the heroes are unaware of. But the evidence lies waiting for Taunos and the others to see, if only they can move past their betrayal.


Heroes & Harbingers

Heroes & Harbingers by ARK Horton

Food fights. Detention. Dissecting fairies for science class. Just another day for teachers at a Magical Public School. Ms. Sirin’s fate as a death harbinger has ruined her life. She longs to be more than a herald of doom, aspiring to impact lives in her teaching career. But when a new student with bold dreams joins her class and is picked as this century's Chosen One, Ms. Sirin’s dark power senses a terrible sacrifice to come. Finn MacCool’s warrior past didn’t prepare him for a hundred years of teaching for his community service. Spending the last decade of his sentence at a new school, the immortal develops a crush on his tempting but aloof coworker. The Irish legend blows his chance when he butts heads with the Council of Pantheons’ latest brave heroine—who also happens to be Ms. Sirin’s favorite pupil. However, the Chosen One’s quest isn’t all it seems. Pavlina’s lethal prophecies come to pass, and her gift warns of more to come. Will this daring trio of heroes have what it takes to make the grade, or will they fail before they even make it to Summer Break? Set in an alternate reality of Jacksonville, Florida, this adult urban fantasy is the first book in the Secret of Pantheons series. If you enjoy a hearty helping of mythology, found family, and unbreakable bonds, this book is for you. Class is in session with Heroes & Harbingers—delve in now before the bell rings!


Ordinary World

Ordinary World by Jack T Canis

'Life often boils down to simple questions with complex answers. Olivia Buchanan's question was simple, if twofold: 'Was sixteen year old Olivia Buchanan truly the culmination of a secret 30 year genome project, by a clandestine research organisation, to create the ultimate human in order to save humanity from itself? Or: Has she merely inherited her mother's delusional schizophrenia, spiralling her into a nightmarish hell created by a diseased and fractured mind?' Simple.


Between Starfalls

Between Starfalls by S. Kaeth

SPFBO6 WriteHive Book Club Teacup Dragon Coop SFFOasis

Never leave the path.  It’s sacred law, punishable by exile. When her son goes missing in the perilous mountains, Kaemada defies the law to search for him. She enlists the help of her hero brother, a priestess berserker, and a fire-wielding friend. But the law exists for a reason. When the search party is captured by the mythical Kamalti, they learn that Kaemada’s son was sent to an ancient prison city. As they battle for freedom, they discover a horrible truth that will change the future of both races forever. With their world in upheaval, Kaemada must find a way to peace if she's to save her son—but tensions between the two races are leading to war.


Beneath Black Sails

Beneath Black Sails by Clare Sager

SPFBO6

Pirate versus pirate hunter. To lose is death, but winning just might be worse. With weather magic on her side, Lady Vice is the bane of the high seas, but she isn’t captain of her own ship. Yet. If she can persuade her captain to give her a command, she’ll be in charge of her own fate at last. To pay off his family’s debts, Knigh Blackwood hunts pirates for the Royal Navy. And he’s damn good at it. When the bounty on Lady Vice grows, he’s determined to make her face justice, even if that means using unorthodox methods. Forced to work together, neither can deny their mutual attraction. As they face battles at sea and schemes amongst their crew, they discover hints about a long-lost treasure that could be the answer to both their problems. But treasure isn’t the only thing buried. Secrets best-forgotten lie in wait that could blast them apart. And the closer Vice and Knigh grow, the greater the threat – to her freedom and to his family. Because for one to succeed, the other must fail. If you love cunning heroes, feisty heroines, and enemies to lovers romance, you’ll love this new adult fantasy series that’s perfect for fans of Sarah J Maas and Miranda Honfleur. Buy Beneath Black Sails today to escape on rum-drenched adventures in a world where flags can lie, X marks the spot, and loyalties shift more than sand.


Bad End

Bad End by A M Blaushild

Archangel Michael's death at the hands of Iofiel may have prevented him from forcing the apocalypse, but it's hardly brought peace. The new Archangel Michael is relentless in his quest for revenge, believing Iofiel is still out there- and shirking his duties to prove it. Afraid of his connection to the traitor, Maalik has fled to Hell, also looking for Iofiel- but what he finds instead is an oddly amicable Morningstar with shocking plans that Maalik may be unable to stop. Archie and Salem, abducted and now working as assistants for the devil, struggle to define their place in what is about to unfold. And on Earth, Santiago and Damien have found refuge in a small American town, comfortably leading a coven of witches. But when magic begins to crop up among ordinary humans, their disguises can only last so long. And what ever happened to Iofiel, The Saintkiller, the Second Traitor? The apocalypse may have been averted, but something is clearly going wrong.


World Running Down

World Running Down by Al Hess

Valentine Weis is a salvager in the future wastelands of Utah. Wrestling with body dysphoria, he dreams of earning enough money to afford citizenship in Salt Lake City—a utopia where the testosterone and surgery he needs to transition is free, the food is plentiful, and folk are much less likely to be shot full of arrows by salt pirates. But earning that kind of money is a pipe dream, until he meets the exceptionally handsome Osric. Once a powerful AI in Salt Lake City, Osric has been forced into an android body against his will and sent into the wasteland to offer Valentine a job on behalf of his new employer—an escort service seeking to retrieve their stolen androids. The reward is a visa into the city, and a chance at the life Valentine's always dreamed of. Finding the androids means navigating both pirate territory and Val and Osric's growing feelings for each other. And as they attempt to recover the "merchandise", they encounter a problem: the android ladies are becoming self-aware, and have no interest in returning to their old lives. The prize is tempting, but carrying out the job would go against everything Valentine stands for, and would threaten the fragile found family that's kept him alive so far. He'll need to decide whether to risk his own dream in order to give the AI a chance to live theirs.


Aestus: Book 2: The Colony

Aestus: Book 2: The Colony by S. Z. Attwell

An underground city. A deadly project. And an Intelligence agent who can help Jossey take down the City...if she can trust him again.Jossey grew up believing the Onlar, creatures of the aboveground, were monsters. But when they kidnapped her, she found out terrible secrets about her city and her family. Her choice to help the Onlar against the City almost cost her her life. And the Intelligence agent she'd thought was her friend was the one tasked with carrying out her execution.But he didn't quite succeed.Now Jossey, barely alive, has been sent to the Onlar by a mysterious figure from the City. And time is of the essence - her solar network project could mean disaster not only for the Onlar, but for thousands of citizens as well. She can’t do much from the Onlar camp, but Gavin, Jossey’s Patrol leader and longtime friend, isn’t convinced she’s dead. And Patrol has started to learn the truth.As tentative alliances form, Jossey begins to think this might be easier than she’d thought. But a terrible miscalculation has been made, one that may cost her and her friends both the City and their lives. Can she see it before it’s too late?Aestus is an adult dystopian science-fiction series set centuries after climate change has ravaged much of Earth. An epic story of vengeance, power, shifting loyalties, and survival that looks at just how far people will go to protect what they love, brought to you by science writer S.Z. Attwell, Aestus paints a picture of a world in which far too little has changed.


Keeper of the Fallen

Keeper of the Fallen by Alyssa Lauseng

"The spirits have placed a very important task in your hands." A massacre. An escape. Sonika could have been a warrior and a leader if she hadn't been ripped from her homeland as a child. As the last of the Okami, she will never stop fighting for her right to live. Stalking the shadows is the only world Kulako knows. Heart filled with hatred, death by his blade is inevitable, but who he is beneath that darkness longs for something else. When a twist of fate forces their lives to collide, their choices may be enough to hold back the merciless coils of the Giahatio. But not even the will of the Gods can stop the will of the Emperor.


A Pale Box on the Distant Shore

A Pale Box on the Distant Shore by P.J. Nwosu

A silent killer stalks the slum towers of Death City. In the shadow of a drowned death god, a young soldier risks his life to solve a violent crime. To catch a killer, Soldier Honnan Skyin carves a bloody trail over the behemoth bones of a dead giant and through the deepest forest of a frozen island. But some secrets should stay buried. Welcome to Death City. The Red Kingdom is a new series of dark mysteries in fantasy worlds that delve into a land of vicious crimes, strange lore and Purge House zealots.


The Necromancer's Prison

The Necromancer's Prison by Alec Whitesell and Craig Bonacorsi

She wanted to find her place in the universe. She never imagined it might not be on Earth. When Emily Murphy over slept the morning of her college entrance exam, she thought missing her test was the worst thing that could happen. She never expected she would wind up lost halfway across the galaxy, battling aliens with laser guns and mages hurling lightning. Like most seventeen year olds, Emily’s main concern had been navigating the perils of high school, not surviving shootouts and sorcery. That changed when her school was attacked and a student was kidnapped. While everyone else smartly fled from danger, she recklessly ran toward it mounting an impossible rescue that would lead her on a journey unlike anything she could have imagined. Dropped into a strange world teeming with merciless criminals and ruthless aristocrats, surrounded by violence and betrayal, Emily must untangle a web of intrigue and deceit to solve the mystery behind the abduction, save her classmate, and discover the destiny which awaits her. It is either that, or die trying…


Thief of Souls

Thief of Souls by Emma L. Adams

I'm Liv Cartwright, mage, thief, and unapologetic nerd. Magically talented people like me have two choices: use our powers at the beck and call of the Order of the Elements or be exiled to the realm of monsters. Sounds like an easy choice, right? Not so much. Since my mentor dabbled in forbidden spirit magic and left me to take the fall, I have to pay off his debts without using my magic. I'd rather spend my free time gaming than retrieving valuable objects for the Order, but my latest retrieval job goes from mundane to deadly when I end up on the wrong side of the terrifying King of the Dead. Turns out he doesn’t like thieves, and he likes the Order even less. To make things worse, I run into my ex-boyfriend, a fire mage who's carrying as many secrets as I am, and find my simple thieving job has landed me in the middle of a conspiracy. A second elemental war is brewing, and the key to stopping it lies in my long-buried memories of my mentor's lessons. The catch? If the Order finds out, they'll show me no mercy this time -- and everyone knows there's a good reason spirit magic was banned. People who use it tend to end up dead.


Eldritch Sparks: Shadows of Otherside Book 2

Eldritch Sparks: Shadows of Otherside Book 2 by Whitney Hill

The deal that secured Arden Finch a measure of freedom came with strings, and now everybody wants to pull them. Arden has carved out a place for herself in Otherside—at a price. Pressure mounts as she juggles her day job as a private investigator with her new obligations, fraying relationships, and growing elemental powers. If that wasn't enough, a lich has appeared in the Triangle, sowing violence and raising zombies. Everyone wants Arden to get rid of it⁠, including the gods. But the lich offers something Arden has always wanted: enough power to stand alone. All she has to do is put herself first for once...and betray everyone she cares about. Urban fantasy and paranormal fans of Kim Harrison, Faith Hunter, Seanan McGuire, and the early Anita Blake series will find a kick-ass heroine in Arden. Praise for Eldritch Sparks: Shadows of Otherside Book 2 "A compelling book of Otherside that goes from strength to strength." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)


Effigest

Effigest by Amy Campbell

When the sins of the past demand payment, his magic is the price. ​Blaise Hawthorne never wanted to hurt anyone, and he certainly didn’t want to become a weapon. When using his dangerous magic to free his outlaw friends destroys an enemy fortress, the young mage is imprisoned for his crimes. Abused and at the mercy of his tormenters, Blaise’s only ally is a duplicitous man he’s not sure he can trust. ​After escaping his cruel upbringing, politician Malcolm Wells had everything—or so he thought. He didn’t count on falling for Breaker Blaise Hawthorne. And it’s all his fault that Blaise has been captured as a war criminal. The Breaker is running out of time, and Malcolm’s money, power, and influence have proven useless to win his freedom. ​When a magic-slinging outlaw storms into town, Malcolm seizes the opportunity to form an uneasy alliance. The pair hatch a bold gambit to free Blaise, but their enemy is one step ahead. At the mercy of Malcolm’s dark past, everything they fought for unravels. All the magic in the world may not be enough to save any of them from the nightmare to come.


A Canticle of Two Souls

A Canticle of Two Souls by Steven Raaymakers

A magic sword forged of a demon. A broken boy seeking revenge. A grim coming-of-age tale with a Sanderson-esque magic system. Raziel watched the Rhotian Empire slaughter his family. When a sentient sword promises him the head of the emperor, Raziel carves a bloody path in an epic journey across a land filled with banshees and mercenaries in pursuit of his revenge. But forced to travel with a strange young woman with a dark past, will Raziel even reach his destination? Alicia has plans of her own. Gifted with a terrible magic that can bend others to her will, she also has revenge on her mind and Raziel in her sights. Can two enemies put aside their differences to seek a higher goal, or will mistrust and inner-demons condemn their fates? Magic is a dangerous thing. So is hope. The ‘Aria of Steel Trilogy’ is a heavy-metal power ballad of clashing blades, blood-soaked betrayal, and sweet revenge. Will you walk away or join the fight?


Pallas Lost

Pallas Lost by Jake Morrison

SPSFC 2022 SPSFC 2023

When Ensign Vasyli Nikonov’s ship happened upon a drifting derelict, he had no idea how drastically his life was about to change. Not only had the crew been killed in an impossible manner, the Captain of the ship left a reference to the child’s tale of the lost colony of Pallas. Elsewhere in the Fifteen Systems, scholar Eliot Charter gamely starts his own fool’s quest to prove that Pallas is real. Armed with nothing but naivety and knowledge, he hires mercenary Captain Skadi Ulfsdöttir to help him on his journey. Things quickly spiral out of hand, leaving them all wondering if Pallas was truly Lost...


Lightblade

Lightblade by Zamil Akhtar

SPFBO8 SPSFC 2022

In three days, Jyosh will slay the God Emperor, or die trying. But first he must train his lightblade skills. While asleep. Each hour of sleep equals a day in a lucid dream, plenty of time to master the essential lightblade techniques and hopefully get skilled enough to defeat the monster who enslaved him and beheaded his parents and sister. When Jyosh awakens to learn that the God Emperor has surrendered to an even crueler foe, a mysterious lightblade master who can summon divine dragons to burn whole cities, he’ll face a trial by fire against forces far more frightening than he could ever dream. That is, if he’s not still in one.


The Forgotten Lyric

The Forgotten Lyric by Carolina Cruz

How can an assassin retire and live with everything they’ve done? Some men turn to drink, while others choose to live in denial. Kennet Peders, on the other hand, is just trying to be a better person. Saving a young girl from death by poison seems to be the perfect place to start, yet even as he takes a job that does nothing but good, Kennet can’t fully escape his past… With the supernatural ability to influence other people’s emotions, Asa never felt quite comfortable in the society they were raised in. Luckily, being a bard means they can easily leave that society to find a home somewhere new—and the country of Bladland is very new to them. Here Asa finds themself presented with an opportunity: use their influence to help save a young girl and befriend a mysterious (and handsome) sword-for-hire in the process. It’s an adventure they’d be a fool to pass up on. The Forgotten Lyric is the second book in the Creed of Gethin trilogy.


The Long Lost War

The Long Lost War by Jeff Walker

SFINCS

Far from Earth, in a distant solar system, clone soldiers are stuck in an on-going battle against colonial separatists. John 999801 must battle against an enemy that refuses to give up, and dreams of a woman he feels he's seen before. The life of this low ranking clone soldier is about to take a turn for the worst. Or is it going to open his eyes to the truth? Can one clone soldier make a difference? And who is the woman in his dream? Answers and horrors await him as he joins his fellow replicas to the surface of a planet called... Hell.


The Wolf and the Water

The Wolf and the Water by Josie Jaffrey

Some secrets are worth killing for The ancient city of Kepos sits in an isolated valley, cut off from the outside world by a towering wall. Behind it, the souls of the dead clamour for release. Or so the priesthood says. Kala has never had any reason to doubt their word - until her father dies in suspicious circumstances that implicate the city's high priest. She's determined to investigate, but she has a more immediate problem: the laws of the city require her mother to remarry straight away. Kala's new stepfather is a monster, but his son Leon is something altogether more dangerous: kind. With her family fractured and the investigation putting her life in danger, the last thing Kala needs is romance. She would rather ignore Leon entirely, however difficult he makes it. But when she learns the truth of what really clamours behind the wall at the end of the valley, she faces a choice: share what she knows and jeopardise her escape, or abandon him to his fate along with the rest of the city. If she doesn't move fast, then no one will make it out of the valley alive.


Memories of Blood and Shadow

Memories of Blood and Shadow by Aaron S. Jones

SPFBO8

Guilt cuts deeper than the deadliest of blades. Tavar Farwan lives alone past the Undying Sands. During a violent storm, he is attacked by two young warriors claiming a need for vengeance for pain from ages past. Tavar defends himself, killing one of the intruders and leaving the other to bleed on the floor. Weary and filled with regret, Tavar offers to tell the young man his story: a story of how, in a world of Naviqings, Leviathans, and Shadow Warriors; a poor, nomadic orphan rose to inspire a kingdom, and kill a God.


Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire

Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire by G.M. Nair

SFFOasis SPSFC

Michael Duckett is fed up with his life. His job is a drag, and his roommate and best friend of fifteen years, Stephanie Dyer, is only making him more anxious with her lazy irresponsibility. Things continue to escalate when they face the threat of imminent eviction from their palatial 5th floor walk-up and find that someone has been plastering ads all over the city for their Detective Agency. The only problem is: He and Stephanie don’t have one of those. Despite their baffling levels of incompetence, Stephanie eagerly pursues this crazy scheme and drags Michael, kicking and screaming, into the fray only to find that they are way out of their depth. They stumble upon a web of missing people that are curiously linked to a sexually audacious theoretical physicist and his experiments with the fabric of space-time. And unless Michael and Stephanie can put their personal issues aside and fix the multi-verse, the concept of existence itself may, ironically, no longer exist.


Consequences: A Wilders Finale

Consequences: A Wilders Finale by Cass Kim

The exciting conclusion to the captivating Wilders Series. The virus is morphing and moving fast. Wilders aren't following the three rules anymore. Nobody is safe. Running low on supplies while waiting for a response from their plea for help, the camp in the Adirondak forest can't wait any longer. Emerson is selected to lead a supply run on what should be a short trip into town. With the world sliding dangerously close to a full apocalypse, his team will have to make hazardous decisions. Back in the camp, help arrives. But the form it takes is unexpected. Renna doesn't know who to trust. Or how she'll survive. Bold choices always have consequences. Now it's time to face them.


Cruelty: Unmasked

Cruelty: Unmasked by Ellen Crosháin.

Henry used to be a god. Now, he’s just the gardener. Nearly twenty-five years have passed since the ancient Faroust fell in love with Eliza MacTir. Stripped of his powers and forced to work for the family he used to rule, he can’t avoid the woman who ruined him. But when a chance encounter brings him into contact with Eliza’s daughter Áine, a twenty-one year old student looking for a chance to explore herself, he sees a chance to exact revenge. The affair is sweet and Henry knows that when he finally reveals it to Eliza, it will be even sweeter. But Henry and Áine aren’t the only ones keeping secrets. Áine’s brother Caolán, sixteen and rebellious, has his share of demons and not all is well with Eliza and Cornelius. The veneer of the perfect family has cracks and once the truths start to spill, everything Eliza fought for will start to unravel. Secrets cannot be buried forever and the Veil won’t stay shut. Darker forces are watching and waiting…


Sisters of the Stars: Men Rule Earth - Women The Stars (The Sisters of the Stars Series Book 1)

Sisters of the Stars: Men Rule Earth - Women The Stars (The Sisters of the Stars Series Book 1) by Hellen Allan

When the end came for women they fell, as corn to a scythe. Only a handful could be saved; those with exceptional intelligence, strength and creativity. Sent to the stars, they hid, as darkness descended upon the Earth, knowing that one day that darkness would reach for them – and when it did, it would be worse than the scythe. For it sought not their intelligence, their strength, or their creativity - but their bodies. That time has come. For 20-year-old Selena, just thrown off the Star Biosphere Force for insubordination and anger management issues, this couldn’t have come at a worse time. Finding out her sister has been captured by the men who rule Earth, she resolves nothing is going to prevent her from getting her sister back, even if it means risking her own freedom.


EXODUS 20:3

EXODUS 20:3 by Freydís Moon

Religious eroticism and queer emancipation meet in a claustrophobic monster-romance about divinity, sexuality, and freedom. When Diego López is guilted by his mother into taking a low-key construction job in New Mexico, he doesn’t expect to be the only helping hand at Catedral de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe. But the church is abandoned, decrepit, and off the beaten path, and the only other person for miles is its handsome caretaker, Ariel Azevedo. Together, Diego and Ariel refurbish the old church, sharing stories of their heritage, experiences, and desires. But as the long days turn into longer nights, Diego begins to see past Ariel’s human mirage and finds himself falling into lust—and maybe something else—with one of God’s first creations.


Goodbye to the Sun

Goodbye to the Sun by Jonathan Nevair

SPSFC 2022

A daring rebel pilot. A lost soul pursued by an infamous bounty hunter. One impossible moral choice... On a lone wind-shaped planet, the Motes are on the brink. Razor, a bold and fearless pilot, leads a last-ditch gambit to save her people. The plan - abduct visiting Ambassador Keen Draden and use him as a bargaining chip to restore their independence in the Sagittarius Arm. But when the operation unravels, Razor is forced to renegotiate terms with the arrogant diplomat. GOODBYE TO THE SUN: a nonstop thrill ride across an unstable galaxy, combining moral struggle with character-driven adventure.


Roots and Steel

Roots and Steel by Casey White

SPFBO9

Where monsters go, hunters follow. Hunters of the guild wait all year for the Festival of Knives, when they put their skills to the test and claim new ranks with every fiend they slay. Trapped helping the family business instead of pursuing his own career, Trellin has never been allowed to participate. But when he risks expulsion to sneak out and claim a kill beyond his rank, his hunt is spotted by a senior guildmember. Rather than turn him in, she offers him a chance for freedom: Join her, and sail to the distant isle of Deldynne to compete in the bloody race for the rank of Guildmaster. If they can kill the monster that calls Deldynne home before the other teams do, he'll soar to new heights as apprentice to the leader of the Hunter’s Guild. But not everyone wants his new mentor to be Guildmaster - and if they fail, neither will leave that island alive.


It Haunts the Mind and Other Stories

It Haunts the Mind and Other Stories by Nick Roberts

Nick Roberts delves into the darkest corners of the soul, where horror meets raw emotion. Dive into the chilling depths of the human psyche with Nick Roberts, the acclaimed author behind bestsellers like The Exorcist’s House and Anathema. Presenting a collection of fifteen tales, It Haunts the Mind masterfully weaves horror with raw emotion, leaving an indelible mark on the reader's soul. From the malevolent presence in “Sally Under the Bed” and the eponymous “It Haunts the Mind” to the raw brutality of “The Noose” and “The Bitter End,” Roberts showcases his unparalleled ability to terrify. Yet, it’s not just supernatural dread that lurks in these pages. Stories like “Thanks for Sharing” and “The Weeping Wind” delve into the very real horrors of addiction and grief, while “The Paperboy” and “Voodoo Bay” introduce monsters that defy reality. John Durgin, author of The Cursed Among Us and Inside The Devil’s Nest, praises the collection, stating, “Come for the horror, stay for the heartbreaking emotion that bleeds into every page... It Haunts The Mind is that damn good.” James Aquilone, a Bram Stoker Award-nominated editor and writer, warns of the collection's potency: “Nick Roberts has an uncanny ability to scare the bejesus out of readers... Highly recommended if you don’t want to sleep in the dark again.” Perfect for aficionados of horror short stories, suspenseful tales, and narratives that explore the human condition, It Haunts the Mind is a testament to the power of storytelling, blending supernatural terror with the very real demons that haunt our lives. Whether you're drawn to tales of possession, substance abuse, or coming-of-age horror, this collection promises to both terrify and move you in equal measure. Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.


We Men of Ash and Shadows

We Men of Ash and Shadows by HL Tinsley

SPFBO7 SPFBO Finalist

‘We Men of Ash and Shadow’ is the first book in the Vanguard Series and follows the journey of protagonist, John Vanguard, through the dark and corrupt city of D’Orsee. A Grimdark gas lamp novel, ‘We Men of Ash and Shadow’ explores themes of redemption, loyalty, and betrayal against the backdrop of a world where survival often means compromising your values. Amidst the gas lamp shadows former soldier-turned-mercenary John Vanguard hunts criminals at the behest of his corrupt employer, Captain Felix Sanquain. Shamed by his deserter past and seeking to make amends for his many misdeeds, a chance encounter with Tarryn Leersac – a skilled young would-be-assassin fallen from the graces of high society – leads Vanguard to become an unlikely mentor. Charged with hunting down the killer of two guards left washed up on the banks of the canal, the further Vanguard delves into the underbelly of the city the more he finds himself entangled in a web of secrets and lies. A prominent aristocrat is missing. Crime lords, con men and harlots run amok and the city teeters on the brink of another revolution. With his already precarious reputation hanging by a thread, Vanguard must piece together how and why the last war came to pass, find a way to earn redemption for his mistakes and come to terms with the past in a city where few survive, and even fewer can be trusted.


A Simple Tale of Water and Weeping

A Simple Tale of Water and Weeping by Kami King Larsen

In the frigid waters, off a moonlit beach, a magical transformation is occurring. The Girl Aylee is a shop-keeper’s daughter in a nameless coastal town. Kind, thoughtful, and recovering from a broken heart, she yearns for a life she may never have. She would do just about anything to make her parents happy, including perhaps, living a life she doesn’t want. The Stranger On a brisk autumn morning, Aylee stumbles upon Cailean. He’s an outsider—lost, confused, and very much out of place. Cailean has more than a few secrets, but for reasons Aylee can’t quite explain, the two strike up a quick friendship. The Peril Cailean has lost a very valuable item—one that may mean the difference between life and death. As Aylee and Cailean search for answers, they call on friends and enemies alike in the hope of avoiding tragedy. In the process, Aylee must confront danger in many forms—both human and fey—all while learning just as much about herself as the mysterious people and creatures surrounding her. What will she choose for herself in the end, and who will she lose as she fights for her new friend and her own future? Steeped in Celtic folklore, A Simple Tale of Water and Weeping is a timeless tale sure to bring a smile to your heart and possibly a tear to your eye. It is a magical story of love, friendship, and accepting not only ourselves, but also those around us.


The Scarecrow Hunters: Glint & Shade Book One

The Scarecrow Hunters: Glint & Shade Book One by Eric Shane Love

A new dark fantasy series from Eric Shane Love. An epic quest, strange creatures, and an ancient wood full of sinister mysteries. Join Eliot on his mission to find and destroy the scarecrow. In the valley of Gal-Braith, a tradition has existed for as long as anyone can remember. It is the tradition of the kohlas: a journey all boys begin on their seventh birthday. A quest to find and destroy the scarecrow. Born from an agreement between the people of the valley generations back and the low energy of the Dark Wood, no one remembers how the kohlas began and few question if it should continue. Aided only by a strange group of woodsmen, Eliot begins his kohlas like all the others. But a seed planted deep inside him by his estranged mother makes his journey different from the rest. For readers of the Dark Tower Series, dark fantasy, and gothic horror fiction, this is a satisfying fever dream of twisted characters set in a macabre forest in the land of Glint & Shade.


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