This week in new hardcovers: A wind rider faces new problems; an immortal hero teams with King Arthur, against the wishes of his creator; a vast war expands with new seagoing hardware; Faust’s magic intrudes into our world, bringing untold danger; an American miracle-worker raises red flags for a British demonologist; an in-depth exploration of the magis’ servants, the grogs; elves fend off their enemies in a Pittsburgh elfhome; plus a scholarly look at British imperialist fantasy, the hundred scariest Doctor Who monsters, new Batman and Buck Rogers compendia, and much more.
by David Weber
The Bahzell. "In Wind Rider’s Oath, Bahzell became a wind rider—the first hradani wind rider in history. And, even if Bahzell is the War God’s champion, because the wind riders are the elite of the elite among the Sothoii, Bahzell’s ascension is as likely to stir resentment as respect. What’s more, Baron Tellian’s daughter, the heir to the realm, seems to be thinking that he is the only man—or hradani—for her. Now, War Maid’s Choice continues the story—and things really get complicated." Baen, 608 pages, Jul 3.
by Ben Bova
"Orion has fought across time and space at the whims of his Creators, godlike beings from the future who toy with human history like spoiled children playing with dolls. Orion has been both assassin and hero, all the while striving to be reunited with Anya, the ageless goddess who is his one true love. Now Orion finds himself in Britain in the years after the Romans abandoned the island kingdom. Minor kings and warlords feud among themselves even as invading hordes threaten to sweep over the land. There Orion befriends a young warrior named Arthur, who dreams of uniting his quarreling countrymen and driving the invaders from their lands. Along with a few brave comrades, Arthur hopes to the stem the tide of barbarism and create a new era of peace and prosperity. But Orion’s Creator, Aten, has other plans for the timeline. Arthur’s noble ambitions interfere with Aten’s far-reaching schemes to reshape history to his own ends. He wants Arthur dead and forgotten—but Orion does not. Orion will battle the gods themselves to see that Arthur fulfills his destiny. But can even he save Arthur from the tragedy that awaits him?" Tor Books, 384 pages, Jul 3.
"It's a big universe and there are some truly terrifying monsters out there! Here are the 100 scariest monsters the Doctor has ever encountered so far, from the devious Daleks to the weird Weeping Angels and the sinister Cybermen. With facts and stats on all the most fearsome scary monsters, this book will have you cowering behind the sofa!" Penguin UK, 208 pages, Jul 3.
by Taylor Anderson
Destroyermen. "War has engulfed the—other earth. With every hard-won victory and painful defeat, Matt Reddy and the Allies encounter more friends—and even more diabolical enemies. Even, at last, in the arms of the woman he loves, there is little peace for Reddy. The vast sea, and the scope of the conflict, have trapped him too far away to help on either front, but that doesn’t mean he and Walker can rest. Cutting short his “honeymoon,” Reddy sails off in pursuit of Hidoiame , a rogue Japanese destroyer that is wreaking havoc in Allied seas. Now that Walker is armed with the latest “new” technology, he hopes his battle-tested four-stacker has an even chance in a straight-up fight against the bigger ship—and he means to take her on." Roc Hardcover, 448 pages, Jul 3.
by James Treadwell
"1537. A man hurries through city streets in a gathering snowstorm, clutching a box in one hand. He is Johann Faust, the greatest magician of his age. The box he carries contains a mirror safeguarding a portion of his soul and a small ring containing all the magic in the world. Together, they comprise something unimaginably dangerous. London, the present day. Fifteen-year-old Gavin Stokes is boarding a train to the countryside to live with his aunt. His school and his parents can’t cope with him and the things he sees, things they tell him don’t really exist. At Pendurra, Gavin finds people who are like him, who see things too. They all make the same strange claim: magic exists, it’s leaking back into our world, and it’s bringing something terrible with it." Atria/Emily Bestler Books, 464 pages, Jul 3.
by Charles Stross
A Laundry Files Novel. "For outstanding heroism in the field (despite himself), computational demonologist Bob Howard is on the fast-track for promotion to management within The Laundry, the super-secret British government agency tasked with defending the realm from occult threats. Assigned to “External Assets,” Bob discovers the company—unofficially—employs freelance agents to deal with sensitive situations that may embarrass Queen and Country. So when Ray Schiller—an American televangelist with the uncanny ability to miraculously heal the ill—becomes uncomfortably close to the Prime Minister, External Assets dispatches the brilliant, beautiful, and entirely unpredictable Persephone Hazard to infiltrate the Golden Promise Ministry and discover why the preacher is so interested in British politics. And it’s Bob’s job to make sure Persephone doesn’t cause an international incident." Ace Hardcover, 336 pages, Jul 3.
by DK Publishing
"Who hides in the shadows, an often constant but unseen presence? Who strives to rid the city of the evil that lurks through the streets? Who is he? BATMAN. Follow every punch, kick, twist, and turn of the Dark Knight's story in Batman: The World of the Dark Knight. Tracing Batman's entire career, with full detail of his signifi cant adventures, battles, loves, allies, and enemies, this ultimate guide will leave nothing unexplored. DK's Batman: The World of the Dark Knight includes everything from how Batman came to be created and how the character was developed through the decades to key events in Batman's life that have continued to develop his story over the years. With a new, fresh look featuring intricate full-color comic book art, Batman: The World of the Dark Knight is a comic enthusiast's dream come true!" DK CHILDREN, 200 pages, Jul 2.
by Mark Shirley, Christian Rosenkjaer Andersen, Evangeline Cheng, Camo Coffey, Mark Faulkner, Timothy Ferguson, Mark Lawford
Ars Magica. "They are the majority in almost every covenant, and without them things would come to an immediate halt. They spend their lives serving magi, and may lay those lives down to defend them. They are the cooks, servants, warriors, craftsmen, and hunters who keep the Order of Hermes running smoothly. They are the magi's trusted grogs. Grogs have much to offer any saga, from heroic death to comic relief, or even both at the same time. However, creating and maintaining dozens of characters can be a strain on the creativity and patience of even the finest troupes, and so grogs may be overlooked in favor of magi and companions. This book aims to right the balance. It contains dozens of fully developed grog concepts, complete with typical Abilities, and guidelines to simplify creating and maintaining grogs. It also includes suggestions on the roles grogs can play in covenants, and in sagas." Atlas Games, 144 pages, Jul 2.
by John Kucich
"British imperialism's favorite literary narrative might seem to be conquest. But real British conquests also generated a surprising cultural obsession with suffering, sacrifice, defeat, and melancholia. "There was," writes John Kucich, "seemingly a different crucifixion scene marking the historical gateway to each colonial theater." In Imperial Masochism, Kucich reveals the central role masochistic forms of voluntary suffering played in late-nineteenth-century British thinking about imperial politics and class identity. Placing the colonial writers Robert Louis Stevenson, Olive Schreiner, Rudyard Kipling, and Joseph Conrad in their cultural context, Kucich shows how the ideological and psychological dynamics of empire, particularly its reorganization of class identities at the colonial periphery, depended on figurations of masochism. Drawing on recent psychoanalytic theory to define masochism in terms of narcissistic fantasies of omnipotence rather than sexual perversion, the book illuminates how masochism mediates political thought of many different kinds, not simply those that represent the social order as an opposition of mastery and submission, or an eroticized drama of power differentials. Masochism was a powerful psychosocial language that enabled colonial writers to articulate judgments about imperialism and class. The first full-length study of masochism in British colonial fiction, Imperial Masochism puts forth new readings of this literature and shows the continued relevance of psychoanalysis to historicist studies of literature and culture." Princeton University Press, 270 pages, Jul 2.
by John F. Dille, Rick Yager
"The saga of the Sunday version of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, the world's most famous science-fiction newspaper strip, continues with Volume 2 of Hermes Press' critically acclaimed, full-color, large-format, complete reprint of this ground-breaking title. Featuring Buddy Deering and Alura, these strips, showcasing art by Rick Yager, include four more years of the strip, from 1933 to 1937. Volume 2 also includes a special 16-page introductory essay jam-packed with production artwork, toys, and promotionals." Hermes Press, 208 pages, Jul 3.