Women in SF&F Month Banner

As has become a Women in SF&F Month tradition, Renay is the first guest of this year’s series! She’s one of three bloggers who run the excellent site Lady Business, which is a great place for book reviews, discussion of television and movies, and insightful commentary on subjects related to speculative fiction and fandom.  Renay also writes columns for Strange Horizons, is one of the editors of Speculative Fiction 2014, and co-hosts the podcast Fangirl Happy Hour. And she began a wonderful project as part of this annual event—but I’ll let her tell you more about that and the reasons for its existence!

Lady Business

Some Assembly Required: Recommendation Lists for a More Inclusive Fandom

It’s no secret that I love Women in Science Fiction and Fantasy Month. It’s one of my favorite blogging events. It may be safe to say that I am its #1 fan after Kristen. I know this technically makes me the #2 fan, but let me have the #1 spot for the rest of this post; I’ll give it back at the end. It takes a lot of love to run a project this large for this long every year. She does it each time and makes it look like a breeze. Thank you, Kristen! You’re a star. ✭

As a teenager I didn’t have access to a lot of genre fiction by women, much less cool blog projects with women writers as a focus. My choices were limited. I’ve been frank about the lack of women SF writers in my life and have made it a goal to fix it: to go back to the 1990s, and 1980s, the 1970s, and even before, to find the women that helped build the genre I love so much.

The lack of women in my genre literature development has made me sensitive to issues of representation in the community and beyond. It’s the old “once you see the Fed-Ex arrow, you can never unsee it.” problem, where I walk around going, “This erasure is so blatant!” unable to look at anything without evaluating how well it’s doing including women writers. Whether it’s a of lack women in main character roles, background character roles, women over 35 as important to the plot, or actual women writers in genre being brushed aside, I’ve seen it and have trouble not seeing it. I want everyone else to be able to see it, too. But it’s really hard; everyone has wildly different reading pasts.

This was discussed another way in a book I read a few years ago titled Made to Stick and it’s possibly the most useful thing I took away from that text. In the book, the authors described a concept called The Curse of Knowledge. Once you have a piece of knowledge it’s very hard to not imagine having it, and therefore easy to get frustrated with people around you if they don’t have the same pieces. It’s also frustrating when they have the same pieces but they haven’t put them together yet in the way you have, as they’re still learning. This was a book about the persistence of ideas and marketing, but surprisingly I’ve found it applies in tons of different situations, especially in regards to representation and social issues. It’s very common these days. If you google it, you’ll find places talking about the concept and how to apply it to everything from writing books to teaching psychology. The way the authors illustrated the concept stuck with me: imagine if you and a friend are in a room, and your friend is asked to think a common song you would both know. They tap the the beat of the song on the table with a single finger and then it’s your job to guess it.

If you follow this test, it’s actually really hard, if not impossible, to guess the song unless its beat is really distinct (or unless the song is “Cups“, which this concept had no way to predict would take over the world). To you, it only sounds like random taps, but to your friend it’s easy for them to recognize via the taps because the song is already in their head. This is how hard it can be to pass knowledge one person has to another person who doesn’t have it. You can’t unknow something to look at how it would be to not know it again.

(Also, you can stop tapping out “Cups” now.)

So these days, I often spend a lot of time frustrated when I see things that are egregious about women writing SF and their place in genre history. Maybe it’s a list of the Best New SF, and two of the fifteen books are by women. Maybe it’s a list of the best space opera or the best epic fantasy, and there’s a token woman from a recent year, but the other nine books are by men and span decades. Maybe it’s a list of the books coming out in the next six months and the ratio for men and women writers is 2:1 or even, in some cases 5:1, like some lists I saw in late 2014. Maybe it’s listening to an author interview, and when asked for great books, the author throws down man, after man, after man, after man. When asked for influences, it’s the same thing: a long list of men. Maybe it’s a collection of Year’s Best SF novels by SF book bloggers, and no list has more than two or three books by women—and I wonder what their reading ratio looks like and how many books by women they read when what gets the most marketing dollars and word of mouth power is books by men. I see these things, and they’re so frustrating. Why can so few people see them?

I’m able to look back to my young adulthood and see the lack of women, and see all these lists that erase women’s contributions to the field. It’s a curse because so many people still can’t see. They don’t see the issue, the systemic problems, the institutionalized sexism, or the cultural biases against women writers. Whether their reasoning is “I don’t see gender.” to “The gender of the author doesn’t matter to the story.”, it’s always frustrating. It’s even more frustrating knowing that you might have thought that once upon a time, but can’t figure out how to make what’s become obvious to you obvious to anyone else. It’s constant, never-ending work.

But sometimes the work is really worthwhile. This month-long project has been so important to me and my genre reading experience, because it has slowly, each year, brought more and more women into my sphere of knowledge. That’s so valuable to me, because now I can’t imagine not knowing them, and I can’t imagine a genre where they’re not integral to where science fiction and fantasy currently are, and the scope of what I have to discover is still infinite. I’ll never get to it all in my whole lifetime. That’s sad in some ways, but it’s also very, very exciting in others. So even if I do have to work on showing how women writers are marginalized over and over, the benefits of my continuing education about women in genre is irreplaceable.

Probably also not a secret is that I love lists and recommendations for how they can address these problems even if only in small ways. Combine these into a recommendation list and for me, that’s a party. So, take a moment to do a quick exercise with me. Without looking at your shelves (physical or digital) or browsing around the internet, think of five of your favorite women writers. SF writers, romance writers, nonfiction writers, fan writers—whoever they may be, because some of you may be new to SF. Bring five of them to mind and tell me who they are in the comments. If you have time, link me to their blog, or your favorite book by them, or an essay they wrote that you loved. Share their names to put them into the public consciousness, share their names so they’re remembered for what they write, share their names so the people who haven’t discovered them yet can find a new perspective, or even maybe another favorite author.

While you’re doing this remember that readers are powerful and influential — that’s us, with that power and influence. We read and we recommend and we have a voice. Because the hard truth is that there probably isn’t an endgame. Once one of us sees the problem, it becomes clear how many people still don’t, and we have to continue pushing back against the erasure of women writers as part of being well-read individuals. We have to work for ongoing representation because there are so many others who don’t see it; we’re tapping out that tune they don’t yet recognize when we talk about it. Here are some other things you can do to keep bringing women’s voices and contributions into the conversation:

1. The next time that you’re asked for recommendations by someone, make a point to pause and recommend a woman for every man you recommend, too. Perhaps keep a short list on your phone or in your wallet—maybe two or three for different genres you’re often asked to recommend books in. Make recommending women as natural as recommending men in as many genres as possible, if it’s not already.

2. When you make a list of books for whatever reason—a recommendation post, a best of list, a reading list—look at the gender breakdown and see what you find.

3. Pay attention to lists you read recommending books: blogger lists (whether they’re looking forward to books or reccing their favorites), Best SF To Read Before You Die, Very Important SF Classics, BuzzFeed articles, bestseller lists, online awards like the GoodReads award campaign that happens at the end of each year, etc. See what perspective that list is telling you to read from. Who’s telling you the story?

4. Point out the lack of representation around you when you see it and its safe for you to do so without retribution (take care of yourselves in discussions of sexism online and off, friends!).

5. And last, but certainly not least: The Big Giant List of Fantasy and Science Fiction Books by Women has been updated with all the recommendations from last year, with all the times those books were recced. This list is a way to show, year to year, the women writers we love and the stories from them we value. If you have a moment, you can help us keep building it up by recommending ten of your favorite individual books by women writers. Every contribution helps us keep pushing back against the erasure of women writers, and gives us all a place to point people who want to explore the history of women in the genre.

Now I’m handing the #1 fan sign back to Kristen. Thank you so much, Kristen, for hosting this huge recommendation list and for going along with my wild idea, for your dedication to women in genre, and for organizing and running this month long series of writing from excellent bloggers, authors, reviewers, and critics that will keep this conversation going for weeks to come, so we don’t forget to keep doing the work of representation in genre spaces.

Here’s to a great month, friends. Let’s roll. ♥

Women in SF&F Month Banner

Tomorrow marks the beginning of the fourth annual Women in SF&F Month at Fantasy Cafe! For the last few years, I’ve set aside reviews and other book coverage during the month of April and instead held a month-long series of guest posts highlighting some of the women doing amazing work in speculative fiction. Throughout the month, guests will discuss a variety of topics—many of which will be related to women in science fiction and fantasy but not necessarily all since the goal is simply to gather a group of women invested in the genre in one place for a month and showcase the wonderful work they are doing. Past contributions have ranged from women discussing their own work and process to what they find best about the works of other women to issues of representation and equity in fandom.

Before the first Women in SF&F Month, I had been making an effort to read and review a lot of speculative fiction books by women on this blog—but it wasn’t always that way. After I started reading fantasy and seeking more book recommendations online, I found that very few of the books I heard about the most were written by women. I didn’t actually notice this for quite awhile since I just read the books that were supposed to be good without giving much thought to who wrote them beyond whether or not I considered them an author worth reading.

It wasn’t until I saw an online discussion about women writing science fiction and fantasy that I realized I found it a lot easier to name men writing books in these genres than women. After that, I started paying more attention to women’s names when they were mentioned (which was usually here and there instead of everywhere like a lot of well-known fantasy and science fiction authors). I discovered there were all kinds of women writing speculative fiction that I’d missed out on since I read a lot of the (mostly male) authors praised all over the Internet. While many of these recommended authors do write books I enjoy, there are also many women who deserve to be read and lauded just as often.

Once I realized women’s books did not seem to be discussed as much, I turned to reading and reviewing more books by women to try to make my small corner of the Internet a place where some of these books were featured. Then, in 2012, there were a couple of discussions on the Internet about both review coverage of books by women and the lack of blogs by women suggested for Hugo Awards in the fan categories. After these discussions and some of the responses to them (one of which was that women weren’t being reviewed or mentioned because they weren’t writing and reviewing science fiction and fantasy), I wanted to show that there were lots of women writing, reviewing, and discussing speculative fiction whose work should be recognized. I decided to see if I could pull together enough guest posts to spend about a month highlighting women in science fiction and fantasy. At the time this decision was made, it seemed most reasonable to aim for an April event—and that’s how April became Women in SF&F Month on Fantasy Cafe!

And now, this brings me to announcing the first guests of the month! Here’s the schedule for the first (partial) week of April:


April 1: Renay from Lady Business
April 2: Rachel Hartman (Seraphina, Shadow Scale)
April 3: Genevieve Valentine (Persona, Mechanique, Catwoman)
April 4: Book Giveaway

The Leaning Pile of Books is a feature where I talk about books I got over the last week – old or new, bought or received for review consideration (often unsolicited). Since I hope you will find new books you’re interested in reading in these posts, I try to be as informative as possible. If I can find them, links to excerpts, author’s websites, and places where you can find more information on the book are included.

This week there are three books to discuss. It’s been rather quiet here lately for various reasons, but that will be changing soon since one of those reasons is I’ve been spending a lot of my blogging time preparing for the fourth annual Women in SF&F Month, which will be starting later this week!

On to this week’s books.

Blood Sisters edited by Paula Guran

Blood Sisters: Vampire Stories by Women edited by Paula Guran

Genre: Horror/Fantasy (Anthology)
Release Date: May 5 (Paperback, Ebook)

View Table of Contents

Neither short stories nor vampires are my favorites yet I am really interested in this anthology after looking through it! It has stories by many wonderful authors—Freda Warrington, Elizabeth Bear, Tanith Lee, Tanya Huff, Nalo Hopkinson, Storm Constantine, Catherynne M. Valente—and many others I’ve heard are also wonderful such as Holly Black, Kelley Armstrong, Charlaine Harris, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Carrie Vaughn, Caitlin R. Kiernan, and Laurell K. Hamilton. There’s also a little about the history of vampire literature in the introduction with particular focus on women’s contributions, including stories written before the publication of Dracula.


A tantalizing selection of stories from some of the best female authors who’ve helped define the modern vampire.

Bram Stoker was hardly the first author—male or female—to fictionalize the folkloric vampire, but he defined the modern iconic vampire when Dracula appeared in 1897. Since then, many have reinterpreted the ever-versatile vampire over and over again—and female writers have played vital roles in proving that the vampire, as well as our perpetual fascination with it, is truly immortal. These authors have devised some of the most fascinating, popular, and entertaining of our many vampiric variations: suavely sensual . . . fascinating but fatal . . . sexy and smart . . . undead but prone to detection . . . tormented or terrifying . . . amusing or amoral . . . doomed or deadly . . . badass and beautiful . . . cutting-edge or classic . . .

Blood Sisters collects a wide range of fantastical stories from New York Times bestsellers Holly Black, Nancy Holder, Catherynne M. Valente, and Carrie Vaughn, and critically acclaimed writers Chelsea Quinn Yarbro and Tanith Lee, all of whom have left their indelible and unique stamps on the vampire genre. Whether they are undeniably heroes and heroines or bloodthirsty monsters (or something in between), the undead are a lively lot. This anthology offers some of the best short fiction ever written by the “blood sisters” who know them best: stories you can really sink your teeth into.

Hannu Rajaniemi: Collected Fiction

Hannu Rajaniemi: Collected Fiction by Hannu Rajaniemi

Genre: Science Fiction (Short Stories)
Release Date: May 12 (Limited Hardcover)

View Table of Contents

Hannu Rajaniemi, author of the Jean le Flambeur series beginning with The Quantum Thief, has received the Tahtivaeltaja Award and the third place John W. Campbell Memorial Award.


Inside the firewall the city is alive. Buildings breathe, cars attack, angels patrol, and hyper-intelligent pets rebel.

With unbridled invention and breakneck adventure, Hannu Rajaniemi is on the cutting-edge of science fiction. His post-apocalyptic, post-cyberpunk, and post-human tales are full of exhilarating energy and unpredictable optimism.

How will human nature react when the only limit to desire is creativity? When the distinction between humans and gods is as small as nanomachines—or as large as the universe? Whether the next big step in technology is 3D printing, genetic alteration, or unlimited space travel, Rajaniemi writes about what happens after.

The Unremembered by Peter Orullian

The Unremembered: Author’s Definitive Edition (Vault of Heaven #1) by Peter Orullian

Genre: Fantasy (Epic)
Release Date: April 7 (Paperback)

Read an Excerpt (may not be the same edition)

The Unremembered is being re-released shortly before the publication of Trial of Intentions (Vault of Heaven #2) on May 26.


Peter Orullian’s epic fantasy debut The Unremembered has been critically acclaimed, earning starred reviews and glowing praise. But now it gets even better. In anticipation of the second volume in Orullian’s epic series, and for one of the few times in our publishing history, we at Tor are choosing to relaunch a title with an author’s definitive edition.

In addition to stunning updates to the original text, we’re also including an exclusive short story set in the world of Vault of Heaven as well as a sneak preview of the sequel, Trial of Intentions, and a glossary to the universe.

The gods who created this world have abandoned it. In their mercy however, they sealed the rogue god—and the monstrous creatures he created to plague mortal kind—in the vast and inhospitable wasteland of the Bourne. The magical Veil that protected humankind for millennia has become weak and creatures of nightmare have now come through. Those who stand against evil know that only drastic measures will prevent a devastating invasion.

Tahn Junell is a hunter who’s unaware of the dark forces that imperil his world, in much the same way his youth is lost to memory. But an imperious man who wears the sigil of the feared Order of Sheason and a beautiful woman of the legendary Far have shared with Tahn the danger. They’ve asked him, his sister, and his friends to embark with them on a journey that will change their lives . . . and the world . . . forever. And in the process, he’ll remember . . .

Today I am delighted to welcome fantasy, science fiction, and alternate history author Beth Bernobich to the site! She is the author of the River of Souls trilogy, The Time Roads, A Handful of Pearls & Other Stories, and more. (I especially liked her short story “River of Souls”—you can read it by clicking the artwork for this story at the end of this post.) The entire River of Souls trilogy has been released, but there is currently a Kickstarter in progress for the production of a novelette set thirty-five years after the end of Allegiance, “Nocturnall.” Rewards include books (of course!), writing critiques, and the LOL Cat Reward.

Nocturnall by Beth Bernobich

Quiet Moments in Epic Fantasy

EPIC, adj.: Vast in scope. Grand and heroic.

I love epic fantasy. I love the drum roll of its vast armies, the crescendo when kingdom battles kingdom for the fate of the world. I love its thousand­-voice chorus of political intrigue, secret agendas, of heroes and heroines. I love its quests and sweeping drama of events writ large. It’s the 1812 Overture with extra cannons.

But you know what else? I love the quiet moments in epic fantasy too.

In between the explosions, I want to catch my breath, to absorb what all that action means for the characters. Most important, I need to connect with individual people, and not nations.

The epic story needs this contrast or all those cannons are just noise.

Tolkien knew all about quiet moments. The Lord of the Rings is stuffed with heroes and battles and a quest to save the world. But Tolkien chose to make his hobbits the central characters, and hobbits are all about the quiet and the ordinary. One of my favorite scenes in The Two Towers comes in the chapter “The Road to Isengard.” Gandalf, Aragorn, and company are riding into Isengard, having just fought the Battle of Helms Deep…

…and suddenly they were aware of two small figures lying at their ease, grey-­clad, hardly to be seen among the stones. There were bottles and bowls and platters laid beside them, as if they had just eaten well, and now rested from their labour. One seemed asleep; the other, with crossed legs and arms behind his head, leaned back against a broken rock and sent from his mouth long wisps and little rings of thin blue smoke.

It’s unexpected. It’s humorous. And it’s deeply emotional because here in this quiet moment, the long-­separated friends are reunited. This is the epic made personal.

The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien Alamut by Judith Tarr

Those quiet moments are not the relic of an older era. Judith Tarr’s Alamut is set in the times of the Crusades, with all the swords and assassins and grand events you expect from epic fantasy. There are also luminous moments of the personal, both for the men and women in this story.

Here’s one interlude that hooked me:

Odd how one could feel a presence, even without sun to cast a shadow, even without step on stone. She stiffened, but she would not turn. In the three days since he came, she had not seen him…

…It fixed her eyes on the fish. Even when a hand filled itself from her bowl, and cast as she had cast, rousing them to a new dance. For him they leaped high, even into the air, as if they would fill his hands with their living gold. Even they knew what he was.

A quiet moment, an ordinary one, with two people feeding fish in the fountain, but one with layers upon layers of emotion that a battle scene cannot provide. (And OMG, everyone should go out and buy every one of this woman’s books. Really.)

Then there’s Harry Connolly’s epic fantasy trilogy, The Great Way, which had the working title of Epic Fantasy With No Dull Parts. He’s not kidding. The first book starts with monsters invading through a magic portal. The world ends, then things get worse.

But “no dull parts” doesn’t mean the books are all cannons and monsters. After six chapters of death and mayhem, the main characters gain a temporary respite and look back over the city they escaped:

“Lost,” Doctor Warpoole suddenly said. Her voice was full of sorrow, but her expression was blank and deadly. “Peradain, the Morning City, and everything we were trying to build there….All lost.”

One of the protagonists, Tejohn, realizes that Warpoole meant more than things lost. They had, all of them, lost children, friends, spouses…people. And he goes on to remember the people, grand and ordinary alike, whom he had encountered that morning, and who were now dead. That is where my heart breaks, that is where I engage with the story of people, as well as their epic struggle to survive.

The Way Into Chaos by Harry Connolly The Hidden City by Michelle West

Sometimes the quiet interlude is much (much) longer than a scene. Michelle Sagara West’s series The Sun Sword is a grand and sweeping epic fantasy, with armies marching to battle and the fate of kingdoms at stake. The she wrote a second series, The House Wars, with events that overlap the first. The first book, The Hidden City, starts with the small and the personal, with an orphan girl and the man who gives her shelter. The child Jewel’s goals are also small and personal. Pay her debts. Feed and shelter other orphans. Rescue the ones she sees in her nightmares. West doesn’t hurry her characters, so we readers have a chance to walk alongside Jewel as she takes these first steps on her journey into the epic.

Epic fantasy is grand. The best epic fantasy knows when to set aside the drums and cymbals and play a quiet measure.

River of Souls by Beth Bernobich

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Beth Bernobich is the author of the epic fantasy trilogy, River of Souls, from Tor Books. Her latest book is The Time Roads, an alternate history about mathematics, murder, and time. You can read more about her on her website: http://www.beth-bernobich.com.

The Leaning Pile of Books is a feature where I talk about books I got over the last week – old or new, bought or received for review consideration (often unsolicited). Since I hope you will find new books you’re interested in reading in these posts, I try to be as informative as possible. If I can find them, links to excerpts, author’s websites, and places where you can find more information on the book are included.

I’m doing some catching up this week since I ended up unexpectedly busy most of last weekend. This post includes last week’s books as well as this week’s.

One book showed up in the last week that I’ve already talked about. Here it is in case you missed it:

On to the rest of the books!

Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson

Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson

Genre: Science Fiction
Release Date: July 7 (Hardcover, Ebook, Audiobook)

Kim Stanley Robinson is both a New York Times bestselling and award-winning author whose works have won Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and World Fantasy Awards. The Mars Trilogy, which contains books that have each won at least one of these awards, is being adapted for television.


A major new novel from one of science fiction’s most powerful voices, AURORA tells the incredible story of our first voyage beyond the solar system.

Brilliantly imagined and beautifully told, it is the work of a writer at the height of his powers.

Our voyage from Earth began generations ago.

Now, we approach our destination.

A new home.


Artemis Invaded by Jane Lindskold

Artemis Invaded (Artemis Awakening #2) by Jane Lindskold

Genre: Science Fiction
Release Date: June 30 (Hardcover, Ebook)

Previous Book in the Series:

  1. Artemis Awakening (Read an Excerpt)

Jane Lindskold is a New York Times bestselling author. Her work includes The Firekeeper Saga beginning with Through Wolf’s Eyes, Thirteen Orphans, Child of a Rainless Year, and more.


In Artemis Invaded, Jane Lindskold returns to the world of Artemis, a pleasure planet that was lost for millennia, a place that holds secrets that could give mankind back unimaginable powers.

Stranded archaeologist Griffin is determined to make his way back to his home world with news of the Artemis discovery. He and his gene-modified native companion, the huntress Adara, and her psyche-linked puma Sand Shadow, set out to find another repository of the ancient technology in the hope that somehow Griffin will be able to contact his orbiting ship.

In the midst of this, Adara wrestles with her complex feelings for Griffin–and with the consequences of her and Sand Shadow’s new bond with the planet Artemis. Focused on his own goals, Griffin is unaware that his arrival on Artemis has created unexpected consequences for those he is coming to hold dear.  Unwittingly, he has left a trail–and Artemis is about to be invaded.

The Crow of Connemara by Stephen Leigh

The Crow of Connemara by Stephen Leigh

Genre: Fantasy (Contemporary)
Release Date: March 3 (Hardcover, Ebook)

Read an Excerpt

Stephen Leigh, who also writes as S. L. Farrell, is the author of Immortal Muse, the Hoorka trilogy beginning with Slow Fall to Dawn, and more. He has also contributed to some of the Wild Cards books edited by George R. R. Martin.


The Crow of Connemara is a contemporary Celtic fantasy set primarily in Ireland.  Picking up threads from ancient Irish mythology and folktales, this story is fantasy, drama, and tragic romance all at once, a tale caught in the dark places where the world of ancient myth intersects our own, where old ways and old beliefs struggle not to be overwhelmed by the modern world.

Colin Doyle is young Irish-American musician from Chicago, whose interest is traditional Irish music.  Maeve Gallagher is an Oileánach, an “Islander” from Ireland’s west coast. Islanders are outcasts treated with suspicion by the locals, who think them responsible for wild and strange happenings in the area. Colin soon discovers that he’s connected to Maeve in ways he never could have imagined.

Jinn and Juice by Nicole Peeler

Jinn and Juice (The Jinni #1) by Nicole Peeler

Genre: Fantasy (Urban)
Release Date: April 7 (Paperback); Ebook and Audiobook Available Now

Read an Excerpt

Nicole Peeler is also the author of the Jane True series beginning with Tempest Rising.


Cursed to be a jinni for a thousand years, Leila nears the end of her servitude—only to be bound once again against her will. Will she risk all to be human?

Born in ancient Persia, Leila turned to her house Jinni, Kouros, for help escaping an arranged marriage. Kouros did make it impossible for her to marry—by cursing Leila to live a thousand years as a Jinni herself.

If she can remain unBound, Leila’s curse will soon be over. But Ozan Sawyer, a Magi with the ability to See, Call, and Bind jinn has other plans. Oz needs Leila to help him penetrate Pittsburgh’s steel-soaked magic, a juice potent but poisonous to supernatural creatures, in order to find a missing girl with her own mysterious connection to Kouros. Unfortunately for Leila, becoming Bound to Oz may risk more than just her chance to be human once more—it could risk her very soul…

Jinn and Juice is the first in a new series by fantasy writer, Nicole Peeler, set in a world of immortal curses, powerful jinni and belly dancing.

The Leaning Pile of Books is a feature where I talk about books I got over the last week – old or new, bought or received for review consideration (often unsolicited). Since I hope you will find new books you’re interested in reading in these posts, I try to be as informative as possible. If I can find them, links to excerpts, author’s websites, and places where you can find more information on the book are included.

Before I get to this week’s book, a couple of reminders:

There’s still time to enter to win a copy of Cry Wolf (Alpha and Omega #1) by Patricia Briggs (US only). The fourth book in the series, Dead Heat, releases next week.

Courtney Schafer shared four concluding volumes that she thought were the best book in the entire series last week. I now want to read all the books she mentioned that I haven’t read yet!

On to this week’s book.

Vision in Silver by Anne Bishop

Vision in Silver (The Others #3) by Anne Bishop

Genre: Urban Fantasy
Release Date: March 3 (Hardcover, Ebook, Audiobook)

Read an Excerpt
View Upcoming Book Events (including five with Patricia Briggs for the release of Dead Heat!)

Previous Books in the Others Series (with at least two more to come):

  1. Written in Red (Read an Excerpt)
  2. Murder of Crows

New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop has also written the Black Jewels series. I’ve heard good things about both series, and Written in Red was actually on my wish list after reading Angie’s review at Dear Author so now I might have to order it…


The Others freed the  cassandra sangue  to protect the blood prophets from exploitation, not realizing their actions would have dire consequences. Now the fragile seers are in greater danger than ever before—both from their own weaknesses and from those who seek to control their divinations for wicked purposes. In desperate need of answers, Simon Wolfgard, a shape-shifter leader among the Others, has no choice but to enlist blood prophet Meg Corbyn’s help, regardless of the risks she faces by aiding him.

Meg is still deep in the throes of her addiction to the euphoria she feels when she cuts and speaks prophecy. She knows each slice of her blade tempts death. But Others and humans alike need answers, and her visions may be Simon’s only hope of ending the conflict.

For the shadows of war are deepening across the Atlantik, and the prejudice of a fanatic faction is threatening to bring the battle right to Meg and Simon’s doorstep…