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The Hidden King (The Coming of Áed #1)

The Hidden King (The Coming of Áed #1) by E.G. Radcliff

SPFBO6 Indie Recs Indie SFFOasis

Hidden truths. Hidden power. Hidden destiny. On the shores of a rusty sea, in the streets of a starving city, a young man named Áed scraps to build a life for himself and the makeshift family he loves. Scarred by a trauma he cannot remember, and haunted by the brutal damage it left behind, he has no idea of the courage his future will demand. When tragedy strikes, a desperate Áed risks a treacherous, life-changing journey in his last chance to save the only family he has left - but an ancient legacy smoldering within him is about to turn deadly. Neither he - nor a kingdom - will ever be the same.


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...


Three Kings

Three Kings by Freydís Moon

Ethan Shaw—lighthouse keeper and local witch—lives a charmed life in his chilly, coastal hometown. Blessed with a flourishing garden and a stable livelihood, Ethan can’t complain. But when his husband, Captain Peter Vásquez, brings home a wounded leopard seal after an impromptu storm, Ethan is faced with a curious situation: caring for a lost selkie named Nico Locke. As Ethan struggles with the possibility of being infertile, insecurities surrounding his marriage, and a newly formed magical bond with a hostile, handsome selkie, his comfortable life begins to fracture. But could breakage lead to something better? With autumn at their heels and winter on the horizon, Ethan, Peter, and Nico test the boundaries of a new relationship, shared intimacy, and the chance at a future together.


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 Reanimator's Heart

The Reanimator's Heart by Kara Jorgensen

A reluctant necromancer, a man killed before his time, and the crime that brings them together. Felipe Galvan’s life as an investigator for the Paranormal Society has been spent running into danger. Returning home from his latest case, Felipe struggles with the sudden quiet of his life until a mysterious death puts him in the path of the enigmatic Oliver Barlow. Oliver has two secrets. One, he has been in love with the charming Felipe Galvan for years. Two, he is a necromancer, but to keep the sensible life he’s built as a medical examiner, he must hide his powers. That is until Oliver finds Felipe murdered and accidentally brings him back from the dead. But Felipe refuses to die again until he and Oliver catch his killer. Together, Felipe and Oliver embark on an investigation to uncover a plot centuries in the making. As they close in on his killer, one thing is certain: if they don’t stop them, Felipe won’t be the last to die.


Where Shadows Lie

Where Shadows Lie by Allegra Pescatore

SPFBO6

The Chosen One Is Dead. Magic Is Going Haywire. Time Is Running Out. When the King of Lirin murders Elenor's brother during a failed coup attempt, she must choose between turning a blind eye to her people's suffering or joining the rebellion and helping bring down the tyrant king. There's only one problem--the king is her father. Helped along the way by a grouchy old doctor, a boisterous group of nobles, and a well-meaning assassin, Elenor is forced to dance between duty and defiance as she tries to save her kingdom. Meanwhile, from the rainy streets of Lirin to the scorching dunes of the Mondaer Desert, the ripples of her actions have inadvertently broken a chain of events five centuries in the making. Ancient forces move in the shadows, calling in debts and striking deals. A monster with a thousand faces fingers his knife, ready to kill, and a pair of fugitives run for their lives. Where Shadows Lie is a non-stop, epic fantasy ride featuring an lgbtq+ and disabled protagonist and filled with court intrigue, sizzling romance, adorable baby dragons, and the battle between oppression and freedom. Dive in and get swept away!


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.


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.


Kit & Basie

Kit & Basie by Tess Carletta

Immortality is a dangerous affair when it isn’t done right. Basie Yeats knows he’s doing immortality all wrong, spending endless days in the same place, but he doesn’t see a reason to leave the home he loves in Long Lily, Pennsylvania. Once the impossible death of his mother leaves him the only immortal person he knows, Basie decides that the only thing he wants to do is get out of Long Lily and start doing immortality the right way—alone. Kit Elliot has wandered the world looking for the right place to call home, so when a church-turned-cottage suddenly goes up for sale in a quaint Pennsylvania town, it feels like it was meant to be. It takes only a few days at Wellhead Cottage for Kit to decide that the man who sold it to him is frustrating, awkward, and terribly handsome. He offers to help Basie find a new home away from Long Lily—but as days turn to months, Kit finds himself wishing he could make Basie stay.


The Merry Maids

The Merry Maids by Stefanie Contreras

SPSFC

Alyvia Tippin is done with her training at the Academy, and ready to serve the Order. Her abilities with movement and telekinesis earn her a spot with The Merry Maids, a small black-ops team that works on the Order's behalf to unofficially clean up official messes. As the new Courier for The Merry Maids, Alyvia's training is immediately put to the test when the Order sends them on a mission to collect the disassembled pieces of an artifact called the Starkiller. The pieces are hidden across the galaxy like a deadly scavenger hunt, and the person who hid them wants Alyvia to destroy the Starkiller instead of turning it over to the Order. Luckily, The Merry Maids have her back. She's going to need it.


Heart, Haunt, Havoc

Heart, Haunt, Havoc by Freydís Moon

Laced with romance, gothic imagery, Catholic mysticism, diaspora, and horror… When lonely transgender exorcist, Colin Hart, finds himself challenged by an unruly haunted house in Gideon, Colorado, he’s kept awake by ghosts, demons, ghouls, and the handsome nonbinary owner of the house, Bishop Martínez. Unlike the simple hauntings Colin is accustomed to, Bishop’s house is a living beacon, attracting a plethora of inhuman creatures, including a vengeful wolf-headed spirit who might be the key to quieting their sleepless nights. But as a heartbreaking mystery unravels, Colin comes face-to-face with the past Bishop tried to bury, opens a closet full of bloody skeletons, and trips into an accidental romance. As paranormally skilled as Colin might be, this particular haunting may be too messy for him to handle…


The Wild Court

The Wild Court by E. G. Radcliff

SFFOasis

What perils await on the other side of the veil? In the seventh year of Áed's reign, night descends on the autumn festival. But a time of revelry turns into one of fiery destruction—as fae pour across the veil and the Gut becomes a battlefield in an otherworldly war. Determined to protect his kingdom and the people he loves, Áed finds himself catapulted into a realm as unfamiliar as it is dangerous, where magic is king and wild courts vie for supremacy. While the faerie Queen's missing consort holds the key to life and death, tenuous alliances raise questions about Áed’s connection to the mysterious Bone Court. His survival hinges on cunning as much as illusion. On a mission like no other, only one thing is certain: no one will survive unscathed.


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?


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?


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 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.


Scribbles and Scrawls: A Short Story Collection

Scribbles and Scrawls: A Short Story Collection by Bethany Votaw

Bethany Votaw gives you sixteen short stories featuring the darkness and the monsters surrounding us. Experience the uncomfortable realities lurking beneath the surface. Meet a devil at a coffee shop, discover what the Night Man is really after, and stumble upon strange creatures and events lurking just beneath the surface. If you like supernatural horror, psychological thrills, and mind-bending twists, then you’ll love this debut short story collection by Bethany Votaw. Unlock Scribbles and Scrawls and begin the journey into madness.


Red Darkling

Red Darkling by L. A. Guettler

SPSFC 2023

Red Darkling’s ship is a weevil-infested piece of junk. Her smuggling business barely brings in enough credits to buy cheap beer. Alien creeps think a blaster can get them favors when their charm fails. Her only company is a glitchy cat and the occasional hook-up. Her life is dirty, dangerous, and lonely: just how she likes it. It all takes a turn for the worse when things start going well. A little too well. Partying with movie stars, weekends in paradise, troublesome people turning up dead—it’s maddening. Who is this anonymous benefactor, and why does he think she needs protecting?


Neglected Merge

Neglected Merge by Eve Koguce

SPFBO7

“Neglected Merge” is an inspirational thought-provoking futuristic fantasy romance novel. The story of fated lovers developed against a backdrop of a new post-apocalyptic world painted in bright tones. A fortuitous meeting of Tauria, an independent woman living in one utopian-style world, and Doron from high society of the other world, is destined to be the new beginning for both worlds. Tauria, aged 32, lives in the society that seems to believe that happiness is a universal concept. People, who had survived the near apocalyptic experience, have built a whole new world full of pleasure and easiness. It is designed to make everyone feel happy every minute of their lives. Work brings satisfaction, hobbies are encouraged, relationships are supposed to bring out only positive emotions. Does it matter that things that don’t fit into the general happy pattern get discarded and disappear? Things like friendship and commitment. Things like true love. It is supposed to be enough with lightness and never-ending joy. But there are two worlds now. They are forced to exist side by side. Can they find a way to live together? The Chinese proverb says: “When the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills.” What will the people of two worlds, so utterly different and at the same time so similar, choose?


The Last Lunar Witch

The Last Lunar Witch by S.F. Henne

Gryphons And Grimoires

I only wanted to control my magic, but a single potion catapulted my life into chaos… I’m Nyssa Thornheart, a witch with broken magic. I escaped to the big city to pursue my passion for alchemy and hide from my coven until I fix my powers. If my unstable gifts are exposed, they will be stripped away. To live without magic, that’s a fate worse than death. So I drank a long-forgotten potion in a desperate bid to harness my volatile powers. But when I’m cornered by thugs, I unleash a rare and dangerous magic, tearing the veil between our world and a demonic realm. My new powers are growing stronger and resisting every attempt to subdue them. Now I’m a hunted witch, pursued by both demonic creatures and the authorities determined to protect the realm from the threat I pose. Can I master my magic or will I have to sacrifice my powers before the city falls to demons? For fans of Heather G. Harris and Lindsay Buroker, The Last Lunar Witch is the first book in the fast-paced Lunar Order Chronicles. An urban fantasy series filled with strong women, found family, inner growth, and cozy vibes mixed with heart-pounding action. Dive into S.F. Henne’s gripping adventure now!


Bring Her Home

Bring Her Home by R.N. Barbosa

Forbidden love… If Susana’s sister knew she was dating, she’d sequester her ass to the tallest tower so fast her head would spin. Her boyfriend is everything Cassandra hates, an Outcast and a biker, and it’s only a matter of time before their clandestine rendezvous blows up in her face. A missing sister… Fighting professionally might be Cassandra Dayan's livelihood, but it's her sister that's her life. When she comes home to a wrecked house and a missing sister, her desperate search upsets the brutally maintained balance of the North Californian coast. At any cost… Going against the Order is a death sentence, but doing nothing is not an option. Cassandra will find her sister even if it means endangering the lives of everyone who crosses her path or joins her cause. She doesn’t care who gets hurt or what promises get broken. All that matters is bringing her sister home.


Paths of Malice (The Venatrix Chronicles Book 3)

Paths of Malice (The Venatrix Chronicles Book 3) by Sylvia Mercedes

Poisoned. Trapped. At the mercy of a ghost . . . She can handle this. A month into her competition with Venator Terryn, Ayleth seems no closer to winning the Golden Prince’s trust. Why else would he call Terryn to serve at the castle on some secret mission, leaving Ayleth to manage the borough on her own? No matter. She’ll prove her worth to the prince come what may. Plenty of mysteries plague the land under her protection . . . including the mystery of Terryn himself and the strange, dangerous talisman he’s been keeping hidden in his room. Her search for answers soon finds Ayleth on the trail of her deadliest foe yet. A ghost from the prince’s past has returned to haunt the present, possessed of a powerful phantom shade capable of walking the dark paths of the Haunts. Ayleth is totally outmatched and unprepared to face such an enemy alone. But when has she ever backed down from a fight? Welcome back to a world where enemies and friends can be difficult to distinguish, where angels are deadly and demons desirable, and shadows of the past loom dark across the future. If you like your heroines brave, your heroes tormented, and your action non-stop, try The Venatrix Chronicles today!


Jack of Thorns (Inheritance, 1)

Jack of Thorns (Inheritance, 1) by AK Faulkner

SFFOasis SPFBO8

You’d think seeing the future would make life easy, but Laurence Riley knows better. No matter how hard he tries to master the chaos, everything slips out of control. His violent ex-boyfriend, his supernatural talents, his drug addiction—seeing what’s coming doesn’t help with any of them. He needs help and he knows it. Help that only a god can provide. The answer to his prayers is Jack, who offers aid with reining in his powers and mastering his life. In exchange, all Jack asks is regular offerings of sexual energy from Laurence's conquests. A month ago, that would have been just fine with Laurence. If not for Quentin, it still would be. Devastatingly handsome, incredibly desirable, and so far out of Laurence’s league it’s not even funny, Quentin is the flame to Laurence’s moth. Laurence doesn’t want anyone else, he can’t think of anyone else, and neither Quentin’s frustratingly chaste behavior nor his uncontrollable telekinesis are enough to put him off. Not even if his focus on Quentin means breaking his bargain with Jack and facing the consequences of disappointing a god. Laurence doesn’t need to see the future to know that’s a bad idea, but he has no clue how dangerous Jack really is…


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)


The Soul's Aspect

The Soul's Aspect by Mark Holloway

SPFBO8

A healer forced to become a killer for an empire that would grind his country to dust. Kehlem, the sickly son of a widowed physician, has devoted his life to learning his father’s craft. Wanting to finally step out of his father’s shadow, he embarks on a project of his own, seeking out the help of Themia, the town's newly arrived Alchemist and a rare wielder of magic. But Themia has secrets of her own, secrets carried from the heart of the empire itself, secrets that would steal Kehlem away from his home and into the empire’s Academy for magic users. The Isale Academy beckons, but can Kehlem survive the academy and its brutal regime? And if so, what would he have to become?


Spirits of Vengeance

Spirits of Vengeance by Rob J. Hayes

SPFBO8

He'll die as many times as it takes. The Ipian Empire was once a land that welcomed dragons and spirits alike, but a century of war and bloodshed saw them all but vanish. Now, the lost things are returning and the Onryo have gathered. Five legendary spirits with mysterious powers, bent on freeing an ancient evil that would wreak havoc on humanity. Haruto swore his soul to the God of Death for the chance to hunt down the vengeful ghost of his wife. Now an onmyoji, he’s tasked by the Imperial Throne to hunt down monsters and malicious spirits. But he knows not all spirits are evil and not all deserve the peace of the sword. Kira is a student at Heiwa, an academy for children with dangerous techniques. But she has a secret, she’s not like the other students. When the school is attacked, she flees with one of the tutors, determined to hide both from those who would kill her, and those who would use her. As a plague of spirits sweeps across the land, the Onryo leave a bloody trail for Haruto to follow. But who’s hunting who? The Mortal Techniques novels are a series of stand-alone stories that can be read entirely independently, set in the award-winning Mortal Techniques universe.


The Reanimator's Soul

The Reanimator's Soul by Kara Jorgensen

An autistic necromancer, his undead lover, and the case that could destroy everything. When a necromancer turns up dead, Oliver and Felipe think it will be the perfect, straightforward case for their new partnership. That is, until it leads them to a clinic promising a cure for magic, but they aren’t the only ones investigating the Institute for the Betterment of the Soul. Oliver’s ex, Ansley, is in town, and he’s certain the clinic isn’t the paragon of righteousness it claims to be. Forced to help Ansley infiltrate the institute, Oliver fears he is out of his depth in his work and in love as old wounds and bad habits resurface. But Oliver isn’t the only one struggling. Pulled between his cases, Oliver, and his daughter returning home for the summer, Felipe is drowning. Just when he thinks he finally has everything under control, a new reminder of his untimely demise threatens to throw his life into a tailspin once more. Between festering wounds and secrets, Oliver and Felipe’s lives stand upon a knife’s edge. To face the evil lurking behind the clinic’s genteel smiles, they must stand together or face the destruction of the place they call home.


 Strong Fort Spathi

Strong Fort Spathi by Heather C. Wright

Sinikka is returning home after a late meeting, but never makes it. Her best friend, Jordan, discovers she’s missing. Before Jordan and his werewolf pack can begin looking for her, he finds himself host to Andrew Farkas. Andrew hopes to gain the support of Jordan’s pack in his bid to become the leader of all the American packs. When Andrew’s ward, Tyler, disappears as well, the entire situation becomes even more complicated. Will Jordan and Andrew be able to find Sinikka and Tyler? Will they be in time?


Elevated Inferno

Elevated Inferno by Carlotta Ardell

Monet Parker wasn't a sucker for a man in uniform. Even if he was a firefighter with dimples deep enough to swim in and ebony skin painted by the gods. She was just trying to get her dream internship and prepare herself for a career in social robotics. She had no idea how her life would change with the simple push of a button. When the elevator taking her to her interview at Real World Robotics stops, Monet isn't sure if she will live, let alone make her interview. She's rescued by Rhys Banks: the gorgeous hunk of a fireman. As much as their magnetism is palpable, Monet is trying to ignore her feelings. Focusing on her career and navigating her chaotic family drama is more than enough excitement for her. Still, it's hard to ignore #FiremanBae when her sister is hosting an Instagram Live video of the rescue and getting the whole internet buzzing. What happens when the internet becomes a third wheel in Monet's love life? What happens when past hurts, career goals, and family baggage are in conflict with their desires? Will these distractions win out and quash the elevated inferno? Can Monet have it all, including love?


Helpless: A Short Story Collection

Helpless: A Short Story Collection by Tiffany Christina Lewis

WriteHive Book Club

A Short Story Collection Women are powerful and can be rational thinkers under pressure. They can also be devious and vengeful. A woman is not just a ball of emotion. Women can fight, they can protect, and they can win. These eight stories of women kicking ass, standing tall, and refusing to be victims are Tiffany’s opposition to the tropes of true crime. With stories from five genres including Paranormal, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Romance, and Crime Fiction, you are sure to find a story you love. Content warnings: https://tiffanychristinalewis.com/2021/02/25/helpless-warnings/


The Headsman

The Headsman by Christina Mîrzoi

Take a glimpse into the world of a headsman, a gloomy village in which each dweller has a secret: an evil witch, a shrewd florist, a naive young man, a foreign merchant, a dreadful husband, a mischievous maid, and a lustful duke. These stories are intertwined, weaving a dark narrative of love, trickery, brutality, and loss. Under the bleak aesthetic, raw human emotions unravel themselves in a gripping story about moral decay. In a world that belongs to the wicked, how far can one walk this path while keeping a clean conscience? The Headsman is a collection of short stories that focus on interconnected characters, sometimes looking at the same event from a different perspective. As a genre, it falls somewhere under dark fiction territory.


The Catalyst

The Catalyst by Anttimatti Pennanen

Jon and Gus comes face to face with the legend of an ancient weapon, the Catalyst. Is this mysterious artefact the answer in the fight against the Breathers, a way home, or something else?


The Wolf in Me: Survive

The Wolf in Me: Survive by Alex Smith

The 23rd century is nearing its end. Having been treated as subhuman (and worse) for over 300 years, the Wolves - a race of wolf-human hybrids - have reached their breaking point. With a clear threat of war rising daily, the US Military devises a plan to destroy the beasts they helped create. However, utilizing their intelligence and raw bestial instincts, the Wolves hatch a plan of their own: plunge the entire world into a war to end all wars! In the aftermath of a deadly airship crash, Percy - a six-year-old human boy - finds himself behind enemy lines; in the claws of the creatures he's been taught to fear his entire life. Xander - a twenty-eight-year-old elite black ops Wolf, finds himself with a very difficult choice to make; kill the innocent child he has found, or be ostracized by his own kind and protect the boy? What is a small, frail, boy to do when surrounded by beasts fighting to end his very existence? Survive!


Bad Grains

Bad Grains by Susanne Schmidt

SFINCS

Eleven-year-old Jo loves Halloween and all things horror, but she doesn't believe anything bad could ever happen in Fels, her small German hometown. When Hektor, her annoying older brother, disappears on his way home from school, Jo assumes he is playing a prank on her. But then both her father and grandma forget Hektor's name, and his stuff mysteriously disappears from his room. With the adults of no help whatsoever, Jo starts an investigation of her own, uncovering an old legend that has haunted the children of Fels for centuries. A monster lives in the rye fields, and draws children into its world under the roots. With two days until the gate between their worlds closes, and only Hektor's obnoxious best friend to help her, Jo must figure out a way to rescue her brother, or lose him forever.


10 Things That Never Happened

10 Things That Never Happened by Alexis Hall

Sam Becker loves—or, okay, likes—his job. Sure, managing a bed-and-bath retailer isn't exactly glamorous, but it's good work, and he gets on well with the band of misfits who keep the store running. He could see himself being content here for the long haul. Too bad, then, that the owner is an infuriating git. Jonathan Forest should never have hired Sam. It was a sentimental decision, and Jonathan didn't get where he is by following his heart. Determined to set things right, Jonathan orders Sam down to London for a difficult talk…only for a panicking Sam to trip, bump his head, and maybe accidentally imply he doesn't remember anything? Faking amnesia seemed like a good idea when Sam was afraid he was getting sacked, but now he has to deal with the reality of Jonathan's guilt—as well as the unsettling fact that his surly boss might have a softer side to him. There's an unexpected freedom in getting a second shot at a first impression…but as Sam and Jonathan grow closer, can Sam really bring himself to tell the truth, or will their future be built entirely on one impulsive lie?


The Dryad's Crown

The Dryad's Crown by David Hopkins

SPFBO10

Four titans sleep beneath the earth. Only one fae can keep them from waking. Silbrey is an orphaned wood nymph, taken from her forest home and raised in the corrupt city of Penderyn. The fae child grows up unaware of who she is, what she can do, and the calling of her kind. Under the control of a cruel guildmaster, Silbrey is trained as an assassin. As an adult, she escapes her violent past to start a new life and a family. But a tragic death brings her back to the familiar cobbled streets to seek revenge. This dark path leads Silbrey to uncover an even darker secret: An ancient evil will wake the titans and break the world. Silbrey must travel with her daughter across a war-torn land to defeat that evil. What begins as a fairy tale transforms into a multi-generational epic fantasy about love and loss—and a woman with a strange connection to nature. The Dryad's Crown is an emotional, coming-of-age fantasy debut. The first volume in a gritty saga, set in the immersive world of Efre Ousel. Booklife describes the story as "a fantasy unlike any other."


The Last Sun

The Last Sun by K.D. Edwards

Rune Saint John, last child of the fallen Sun Court, is hired to search for Lady Judgment's missing son, Addam, on New Atlantis, the island city where the Atlanteans moved after ordinary humans destroyed their original home. With his companion and bodyguard, Brand, he questions Addam's relatives and business contacts through the highest ranks of the nobles of New Atlantis. But as they investigate, they uncover more than a missing man: a legendary creature connected to the secret of the massacre of Rune's Court. In looking for Addam, can Rune find the truth behind his family's death and the torments of his past?


The Order of the Key

The Order of the Key by Justine Manzano

WriteHive Book Club Teacup Dragon Coop

Jacklyn Madison never expected to be attacked by a beast on an evening snack run. Add a rescue mission enacted by a trained regiment of teenaged warriors, and her night officially becomes just like a scene from one of her beloved comic books. Turns out, her parents were once members of the Order of the Key, gifted humans that protect humanity from creatures spilling through inter-dimensional rifts. Unable to control her newfound abilities, Jacklyn and her family rejoin the Order. After an attack on their headquarters leaves Jacklyn questioning their leadership, Kyp—the boy who led her initial rescue—reveals a darker secret. The Order’s leader may be corrupt, and Jacklyn’s questions could put her family in danger. Drawn into the search for proof, Jacklyn must use her guts and magical brawn to protect her family, her friends, and herself from the monsters spilling from rifts, and those hiding within the Order.


The Look of a King

The Look of a King by Tom Dumbrell

SPFBO7

Two young men. One with a dark past, the other with a bright future. Cyrus is a storyteller frustrated by the mundane trappings of village life, while Prince Augustus struggles to meet high expectations after an upbringing of royal privilege in the bustling capital. As both try to forge their own paths, a royal assassination unexpectedly closes the gap between them. The nation of Easthaven is thrown into war with their oppressive neighbours, and so begins a conflict from which neither can walk away. Will a young prince finally measure up to his destiny? Will a storyteller create a legend of his own? Cyrus and Augustus's lives may seem worlds apart, but perhaps they aren't so different after all...


Mistletoe & Mishigas

Mistletoe & Mishigas by M.A. Wardell

Beauty and the Bear: Can these opposites fake their way into something real? Sheldon Soleskin should be having a horrible day. Even though he’s been unexpectedly transferred to a new school right before the holidays, has only one day to set up his new classroom, and just discovered his twin sister's been hiding an invitation to his ex-boyfriend’s Christmas Eve wedding, he’s still ready to take on the world with a smile on his face and a skip in his step. Theo Berenson just wants to be left alone to his custodial duties. But when the chipper new first-grade teacher needs help moving furniture the Sunday after Thanksgiving, he's forced to do something he detests. Help. To make matters worse, Theo's overbearing parents are coming for Hanukah in a few weeks, and he's told them he has a boyfriend. Except he doesn't. Because who would want to date an oaf like Theo? Working together, these opposites discover they might be able to help each other out. Agreeing to be each other’s dates, they become friends as they practice for their upcoming events. But when all the rehearsing starts feeling a little too real, and both men's pasts come roaring back to haunt them, will they be able to pull off the ultimate holiday masquerade?


Blanky

Blanky by Kealan Patrick Burke

In the wake of his infant daughter's tragic death, Steve Brannigan is struggling to keep himself together. Estranged from his wife, who refuses to be inside the house where the unthinkable happened, and unable to work, he seeks solace in an endless parade of old sitcoms and a bottle of bourbon. Until one night he hears a sound from his daughter's old room, a room now stripped bare of anything that identified it as hers...except for her security blanket, affectionately known as Blanky. Blanky, old and frayed, with its antiquated patchwork of badly sewn rabbits with black button eyes, who appear to be staring at the viewer... Blanky, purchased from a strange old man at an antique stall selling "BABY CLOSE" at a discount. The presence of Blanky in his dead daughter's room heralds nothing short of an unspeakable nightmare that threatens to take away what little light remains in Steve's shattered world. Because his daughter loved Blanky so much, he buried her with it. A new novella from the Bram Stoker Award-Winning author of SOUR CANDY and KIN.


The Glowing: 2

The Glowing: 2 by Tom Rimer

The itsy bitsy spider went up the water spout... Six months have passed since the Bokai swarmed the Earth. Kamryn Coe, Quinn Flowers, and their friends are just trying to make it through. When Lucy has a dream that an old friend might still be alive, Kam runs head long into danger on a rescue mission. ...down came the rain and washed the spider out... With the group divided and dangers lurking around every corner, do they have any hope of surviving? Will Kam discover her truth? Or will she meet a sticky end? BEWARE THE SPIDER


Black Table

Black Table by Anttimatti Pennanen

SPSFC 2022

Jon and Gus, science fiction fans from Finland with a penchant for fist bumping and pop culture references, travel to the Portland Comic Con where tragedy strikes. Their hero, Dr Wells, suffers a heart attack. With his dying breath, the doctor exhorts Jon to “find the …” as he pushes a book into Jon’s hands. Following clues inscribed in the book, Jon and Gus discover an alien structure with a mysterious Black Table which they accidently activate, transporting them to an alien world. Jumping from world to world via the Black Table galactic transportation network, Jon and Gus embark on the adventure of a lifetime where they encounter monsters, alien tech, giant vessels made of water and make new friends. But those friends are facing an unstoppable and mindless enemy. An enemy that is destroying the galaxy, and Earth is next in its path. Can two fans from Finland save the day? Black Table is a rollicking yarn of two likeable, wise-cracking friends who like nothing better than pranking each other. That is, except when they are not doing something more serious, like saving the universe. JOIN THE FIGHT, JOIN THE BLACK TABLE NETWORK!


Not Your Mountain

Not Your Mountain by Greg Yates / AJ Alexanders

He wanted to be an adventurer, but adventure could cost him his home. Matty has spent his whole life working in the mines, it's all he's ever known to do: sing to the stone, extract its riches, and learn its properties. But after an unexpected visit from a dwarven adventurer, his life takes a seismic shift. Dwarves never leave Craig'n Dell and guests never visit, but now Matty wants to change all of that. With his cunning, bravery, and will, Matty sets off with his left foot forward... and stumbles. Join Matty as he embarks on a comedic fantasy adventure meant to captivate and amuse; where monsters, adventure, and unlikely companionship await!


Three Meant To Be

Three Meant To Be by M N Bennet

Telepathic high school teacher Dorian prepares teen witches for professional casting because going in unprepared is what killed one of his partners. But new state mandates on magical proficiency make it nearly impossible, and Dorian worries he can’t give his students the education they really need. Seeking a distraction from work, Dorian kisses his still-living on-again off-again clairvoyant boyfriend, Milo. Instead of a distraction, Dorian glimpses Milo’s vague vision involving the murder of Caleb—one of Dorian’s new students. Already devastated by the loss of his partner, Dorian refuses to stand aside and let Caleb die. He searches for clues by delving into Caleb’s mind. Rooting through Caleb’s memories alongside teaching classes leads Dorian to two more students: Caleb’s ex-best friend turned rival and the prodigy with connections to dangerous warlocks. However, each step further into his students’ minds forces Dorian to confront his deteriorating relationship with Milo. After discovering a link involving illegal casting, Dorian resolves to work with Milo to prevent the impending vision. To succeed, Dorian will have to explore the potential of a future with Milo and find closure on their third partner, whose loss looms between them. But meddling with fate to save Caleb inadvertently draws the warlocks near, putting all his students in danger. Dorian will have to risk his life and gamble his second chance with Milo to keep his students alive.


Teacher of the Year

Teacher of the Year by M.A. Wardell

Love: Not as easy as ABC. They were supposed to keep things casual. Who’d expect they’d be schooled in love? Those who can, teach. Marvin Block is one of the best kindergarten teachers out there. And despite his anxiety, Marvin’s life is sweet. He knows what he wants. And what he wants is the Teacher of the Year Award. Not just for himself – his school needs him to win. Returning from break, the New Year finds Marvin all set to welcome a new pupil to his class. But when Illona walks in with her cute-as-hell single dad beside her, Marvin’s focus starts to slide. Sure, his students always come first, but he deserves to have a life outside the classroom, too, right? As their friendship starts to deepen, Marvin realizes Olan has the potential to teach him things about love he never thought possible. But with the Teacher of the Year award and his school’s future on the line, now’s not the time for anything complicated. Education has always been Marvin’s world. And he needs to keep a cool head if he wants to win the award and save his school. But will it be worth it if he loses Olan in the process? With Olan’s past and Marvin’s present colliding, their experiment in love hangs in the balance. Marvin knows what he wants out of life. But now he’s forced to consider what he wants out of love. Will Marvin chalk the relationship up to experience? Or can they revise their story into a textbook romance?


When the Devil

When the Devil by Emma E. Murray

In When the Devil, Libby finds salvation in a new sapphic partner, homebrewed poison, and facing a God she no longer believes in.


A Sea of Cinders

A Sea of Cinders by Adam R. Bishop

SPFBO8

In Cellagor—a land segregated between humans and Elves—fear, manipulation and war are inevitable. Nearly one hundred years have passed since the War of the Fallen, a cataclysmic battle between human and Elf which left both races teetering on the brink of extinction. Now, the Age of Tranquility is finally nearing its end, and the northern King of Havelmir is hungry for power and revenge. The Elven peace of mind remains unchanged—that is, until the Kingdom of Rhan is threatened by unknown forces. Soon it becomes clear that the tranquil Elven existence is once again at risk of crumbling. However, even with the element of surprise, the road to victory is not as smooth as it may seem. Ulterior motives are afoot, ancient magic is resurfacing, and an unlikely friendship between two young men may just pose the biggest threat of them all.


Cutting Your Teeth

Cutting Your Teeth by Caylan MacRae

Ezra Santos is tired of running. Of burning bridge after bridge and going through new names like used matches. He desperately wants something he was never destined to have—a future all his own. Having escaped his hell of a home two years ago, he can’t go a day without looking over his shoulder. Putting down roots was never in the cards when the family that raised Ezra relentlessly hunts him across the country. Right as he’s about to restart the cycle—new name, new life, the whole nine yards—his plans come to a screeching halt when he crosses paths with a mysterious and charismatic vampire, Killian Hale. He promises a way out from a life on the run. Ezra knows there's no helping a man with the devil on his heels—but there's something about Killian that makes him believe he could finally break free of the Espinas once and for all. It’s only a matter of time before the clock winds down and the rest of Ezra's troubles come home to roost. There's something sinister in his blood—a dark fate passed down through generations. Can the two survive an ancient family curse or will Ezra doom them both?


The 5-Day Plan

The 5-Day Plan by Ashish Rastogi

Curly-haired, bespectacled, Dr. Akhil can replace your hip without a sweat, but he is a rambling, fidgeting fool outside the operation room. The worst qualifications to have for a man in search of love. However, one can overcome any obstacle with a bit of planning. Right? Plan A is simple. Unfortunately, the heart-to-heart blows up in shouting hysterics, tears, and abandonment. Worry not; time for Plan B. A year in London, and Plan B goes belly up. All because of a reality dating show. Anyway, who cares. Akhil has his plant babies. They are not traitors like the stars that Akhil loves gazing at night. The twinklers conspire to bring the dark enemy back into his orbit. Nope, not happening. Akhil has a plan. This time a three-letter one. Plan KDA- Keep Dan Away. But it is not easy blocking "the player" hell-bent on dribbling his way past Akhil's defences one accident at a time- ready to score. Add the nosy Keely matriarch and her two sidekick clowns to flying forks, tripping legs, and an accomplished kiss coach; our Akhil is in deep trouble.


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