Congrats to all the Hugo Award finalists!
What would you sacrifice for your own ambition? Through dual POV narratives, this book tells the stories of Zhu and Ouyang, two survivors who suffered tragic losses and ruthlessly clawed their way into positions of power through manipulation and bloodshed. When they are set against each other as generals of rival armies, the threads of fate that bind them are set ablaze with their burning for power and their lives will never be the same.
This enthralling epic fantasy that swept me from burning monastery to burning battlefield crushed my open heart in its brutal searing palms and I felt blessed to be present for the entire journey. Heartbreaking, lovely, bloody, and burns with a radiance of ten thousand suns. An unmissable historical fantasy debut! - Jessi
If someone told me this book had queer women in suits, a murder mystery in steampunk Cairo, and LOTS of women fighters with swords, I would have broken down the Tor door for a chance to read it AGES AGO. Fatma is an investigator of supernatural crimes, and is investigating a mass murder when she uncovers a heist, a person who can control all djinn, and powerful memory magic. This story took me in all sorts of unexpected twists and turns and always kept me on my toes. I loved Clark’s immersive writing, and his characters were funny and relatable. - Jessi
A story of found family, embracing your individuality even when the world doesn’t, and finding beauty in life even when it’s full of suffering.
I couldn’t help but fall in love with the flawed but quirky characters. Katrina was so relatable and I just wanted to hold her in her pain.
Anthropologist, or sorcerer? Demon, or alien? This utterly relatable tale of finding one's purpose in the face of depression and anxiety is a must-read for scifi fans. It's comic yet touching. - Lizy
Dex is a traveling tea monk, and although they love making people smile, they are still struggling to feel fulfilled. They seek solitude in the wilds, mysterious lands where robots were set free hundreds of years ago to roam.
When Dex encounters Mosscap, a robot with a childlike sense of wonder for human behavior, and deadly insects, the last thing they want to do is embark on an adventure with it-after all, they are the first person to encounter a robot in two hundred years! However, Dex has no idea that Mosscap will actually be teaching Dex what it means to be human.
Warm, lush and as cozy as a Studio Ghibli film, this book made me want to wander into the woods with my friends and build a yurt commune and never return. This book was the equivalent of talking to a friend about life over coffee and feeling like the world may just end up ok in the end. Dex and Mosscap are the new friendly faces of hopeful sci-fi! - Jessi
As a child, princess Thanh was given to a powerful country to be their glorified hostage to cement an uneasy alliance. When she returned home to serve as an advisor in her mother’s imperial court, she came back haunted by a mysterious fire that engulfed the royal palace and a servant girl who helped her escape.
But when things start magically catching on fire around Thanh, and her domineering ex lover Eldris comes to court to take power and Thanh for herself, will Thanh let others choose for her or will she finally find the courage to blaze her own path through the world? A gorgeously ferocious novella with fangs and claws, I devoured it hungrily. -Jessi
Tetley is a trash girl, living in a lonely trash world called Garbagetown. The planet has been completely flooded, and all that's left of humanity floats on a garbage patch in the Pacific Ocean. It may not be much but it's all they got. Her whimsical optimism and dark humor provided a stark contrast to the savagery and brutality that comes with a world ruined by capitalism and commercialism. Valente makes a statement about how the only thing left at the end of the world is humans trying to escape their reality and gain power. This was an ultimately hopeful story about one girl's bravery and joyful resilience in the face of a bleak existence. - Jessi
Sapphic love, fairytale multiverse theory, and a protagonist with the courage to rewrite her own story make this feminist Sleeping Beauty retelling an absolute delight to read.
Zinnia Gray is a Sleeping Beauty-obsessed terminally ill girl whose entire life has revolved around waiting for the end of it. But on her twenty second birthday, when her best friend throws her a Sleeping Beauty party and she pricks her finger on a needle, she meets a princess being forced into a unhappy marriage, and a not so evil fairy with a tragic backstory, and learns that fairy tales don’t end happily ever after for the girls in the stories.
However, Zinnia soon learns that by banding together with the other Beauties, they will all have the power to rewrite their own stories.
Zinnia is a real character with flaws and fears and a sense of humor that’ll make you want to be her friend. Charm and Zinnia’s friendship was equal parts hilarious and tender, and I LOVED the crossover of all the Beauties and am eager for more. - Jessi
Full of burning rage, this YA sci-fi novel was a war cry for any woman who feels constricted by societal expectations thrust upon them.
Xetian has been raised like a pig for slaughter, along with all the other young girls in her village. Each girl is destined for greatness, which translates to being used as a glorified battery for male pilots to power their mech robots in a fight against alien invaders. After her sister is murdered by a pilot, Xetian vows to seek revenge and destroy the pilot system - even if it kills her.
This book pulses with a searing fury that scorched my fingertips and I'm eager for the next installment.
The second installment of the Scholomance is just as intriguing as the first, as El and her friends prepare themselves to face an army of mals on graduation day. El and Orion's savior complex gets a little out of hand when they both vow to save every last senior.
But the school has a mind of its own, and when mals mysteriously stop attacking everyone except El, she is forced to figure out what the school wants from her and give it to them.
Orion Lake might have other plans, however.
Darkly funny, tense, and heart wrenching with a great group of friends who struggle with trauma and emotional availability but would stop at nothing to save each other, this book is the dark magic school series I've always dreamed of.
Also the cliffhanger ending stopped my heart completely and I demand book 3 NOW. That is all.
Full of heart and a cast of queer found family, this is a rollicking space adventure!
Tina isn't like most teens. She finds out she's a clone of a brilliant alien commander disguised as a human, and one day, a rescue beacon inside her chest will go off, triggering one group of aliens to claim her as their own and another to start to hunt her down and kill her.
This high-stakes thrill ride through the galaxy is about self-discovery, friendship, acceptance, and self-love, perfect for fans of Teen Titans and Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.