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On My Radar: UNSEAMING by Mike Allen, THE GENOME by Sergei Lukyanenko, FEARSOME MAGICS edited by Jonathan Strahan

Here’s a trio of upcoming books I’m really looking forward to!

UNSEAMING by Mike Allen
(Antimatter Press | Oct 7 2014, | Cover illustration artist: Danielle Tunstall)


Everyone in the world awakens covered in blood-and no one knows where the blood came from. A childhood doll arrives to tear its owner’s reality limb from limb. A portal to the spirit realm stretches wide on the Appalachian Trail, and something more than human crawls through on eight legs. Words of comfort change to terrifying sounds as a force from outside time speaks through them. The buttons in the bin will unseam your flesh to bare your nastiest secrets.

Opening with “The Button Bin,” a finalist for the Nebula Award for Best Short Story, and culminating with its sequel, “The Quiltmaker,” which Bram Stoker Award and Shirley Jackson Award winner Laird Barron has hailed as Mike Allen’s masterpiece, this debut collection gathers fourteen horror tales that, in the words of Barron’s introduction, “rival anything committed to paper by the likes of contemporary masters such as Clive Barker, Ramsey Campbell, or Caitlín Kiernan. This is raw, visceral, and sometimes bloody stuff. Primal stuff.”


Allen’s debut novel The Black Fire Concerto was a lot of fun, and through his Clockwork Phoenix series of anthologies I discovered new writers that I’ve since become addicted to. This new collection of short stories with a bent towards horror sounds like the perfect lead up to Halloween!

THE GENOME by Sergei Lukyanenko
(Open Road Media | Dec 2nd, 2014 | Cover illustration artist: unknown)


Five months after the horrific accident that left him near death and worried that he’d never fly again, master-pilot Alex Romanov lands a new job: captaining the sleek passenger vessel Mirror. Alex is a spesh—a human who has been genetically modified to perform particular tasks. As a captain and pilot, Alex has a genetic imperative to care for passengers and crew—no matter what the cost.

His first mission aboard Mirror is to ferry two representatives of the alien race Zzygou on a tour of human worlds. His task will not be an easy one, for aboard the craft are several speshes who have reason to hate the Others. Dark pasts, deadly secrets, and a stolen gel-crystal worth more than Alex’s entire ship combine to challenge him at every turn. And as the tension escalates, it becomes apparent that greater forces are at work to bring the captain’s world crashing down.


Lukyanenko’s Nightwatch series were some of my gateway books into urban fantasy. I’ve even seen the movie (and I liked it!). The chance to see how he handles science fiction? Sign me up!

FEARSOME MAGICS Edited by Jonathan Strahan
(Solaris | Oct 7th, 2014 | Cover illustration artist: Tomasz Jedruszek)


cabinet of magic! A cavalcade of wonder! A collection of stories both strange and wondrous, of tales filled with wild adventure and strange imaginings. Fearsome Magics, the second New Solaris Book of Fantasy, is all these things and more. It is, we think, one of the best books you will read all year.

Award-winning editor Jonathan Strahan has invited some of the best and most exciting writers working in fantasy today to let their imaginations run wild and to deliver stories that will thrill and awe, delight and amuse. And above all, stories that are filled with fearsome magic! Authors include Garth Nix, K.J. Parker, Justina Robson, Ellen Klages, Christopher Rowe, Isobelle Carmody, Tony Ballantyne, James Bradley, Karin Tidbeck, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Frances Hardinger, Kaaron Warren, Genevieve Valentine and Robert Shearman.


Just look at that list of contributing authors!  Just look at that cover art! And hello, edited by Strahan? You know it’s going to be good.

About Andrea Johnson (99 Articles)
Andrea Johnson also blogs over at where she reviews science fiction and fantasy novels and talks about other nerdy stuff. She's also an interviewer at Apex Magazine. Her apartment looks like a library exploded, and that is how it should be.

2 Comments on On My Radar: UNSEAMING by Mike Allen, THE GENOME by Sergei Lukyanenko, FEARSOME MAGICS edited by Jonathan Strahan

  1. The Fearsome Magics cover art is by Tomasz Jedruszek

  2. The cover for UNSEAMING is marvelously unsettling. It — and you — made me preorder it.

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