13 new fantasy and science fiction books to read in May 2023

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Discover Orbit’s “The Lost War” by Justin Lee Anderson on Amazon.

THE LOST WAR by Justin Lee Anderson (The Eidyn Saga #1) — May 16

Justin Lee Anderson’s novel The Lost War was originally a self-published book that gained a ton of acclaim after winning the 2020 Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off (SFPBO). This month The Lost War is being re-released by Orbit Books, kicking off a new era for The Eidyn Saga trilogy.

The Lost War is a quest fantasy story with a party of characters that each have their own complicated dynamics and big personalities, which would probably make it a great fit for anyone who loved movies like Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves.

The war is over, but peace can be hell.

Demons continue to burn farmlands, violent mercenaries roam the wilds, and a plague is spreading. The country of Eidyn is on its knees.

In a society that fears and shuns him, Aranok is the first mage to be named King’s Envoy. And his latest task is to restore an exiled foreign queen to her throne.

The band of allies he assembles each have their own unique skills. But they are strangers to one another, and at every step across the ravaged land, a new threat emerges, lies are revealed, and distrust could destroy everything they are working for. Somehow, Aranok must bring his companions together and uncover the conspiracy that threatens the kingdom—before war returns to the realms again.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Discover Saga Press’ “The Will of the Many” by James Islington on Amazon.

THE WILL OF THE MANY by James Islington (Hierarchy #1) — May 23

James Islington is best known for writing The Licanius Trilogy, a time-bending fantasy saga that recalls The Wheel of Time. This month Islington returns with the start of a brand new trilogy in The Will of the Many. With Roman-inspired worldbuilding and an interesting take on the magic school trope, The Will of the Many delves into the deep corruption behind the government running the world where protagonist Vis Telimus lives. Reminiscent of Red Rising, Vis will have to take it down from the inside.

The Catenan Republic—the Hierarchy—may rule the world now, but they do not know everything.

I tell them my name is Vis Telimus. I tell them I was orphaned after a tragic accident three years ago, and that good fortune alone has led to my acceptance into their most prestigious school. I tell them that once I graduate, I will gladly join the rest of civilised society in allowing my strength, my drive and my focus—what they call Will—to be leeched away and added to the power of those above me, as millions already do. As all must eventually do.

I tell them that I belong, and they believe me.

But the truth is that I have been sent to the Academy to find answers. To solve a murder. To search for an ancient weapon. To uncover secrets that may tear the Republic apart.

And that I will never, ever cede my Will to the empire that executed my family.

To survive, though, I will still have to rise through the Academy’s ranks. I will have to smile, and make friends, and pretend to be one of them and win. Because if I cannot, then those who want to control me, who know my real name, will no longer have any use for me.

And if the Hierarchy finds out who I truly am, they will kill me.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

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