18 fantasy and science fiction books to read in April 2024

A new month has dawned, and that means a slew of new fantasy and science fiction books are coming. May your bookshelves groan under the weight of another epic book haul!
Wicked Problems by Max Gladstone. Image: Tordotcom
Wicked Problems by Max Gladstone. Image: Tordotcom /

Somehow, it's already the beginning of a new month, and you know what that means: it's time for another monthly book round-up! Every month we go over the hottest fantasy and science fiction book releases heading to bookstore shelves so that you can plan out your reading list. Whether you want horror in space; fantasy of the epic, romantic or cozy persuasions; or magical realism set in interesting time periods, there are plenty of new titles to choose from this month. There are also some intriguing short story collections, which is always a nice way to switch it up, especially when your reading time is at a premium.

So pull up Goodreads or get a notepad ready, and let's find you your next favorite read of the month!

Crystal Lattice by Joshua Palmatier. Image: Zombies Need Brains
Crystal Lattice by Joshua Palmatier. Image: Zombies Need Brains /

1. CRYSTAL LATTICE by Joshua Palmatier (Crystal Cities #1) — April 1

This month will see the launch of a brand new series from Joshua Palmatier, the fantasy author behind series like The Throne of Amenkor, The Well Trilogy and The Ley Trilogy. Palmatier is also known these days as the prime mover behind Zombies Need Brains, an independent publishing company which specializes in short fiction.

In April, Palmatier begins his next fantasy trilogy with Crystal Lattice. Featuring a magic school setting and drawing on Palmatier's real-life experience as a mathematician, it follows a powerful magician who is unable to wield magic, set against the backdrop of a crystalline city. Throw in some magical schools and societal upheaval, and it sounds like a promising start to his latest series.

"The Most Powerful Magician in the World…
Can’t Do Magic.

Devon Alamort has failed his mathematics challenge for the School of Science at the Lyceum twice already. He now has one last chance to pass so that he can escape his life of crime as a gang member in the lower levels of the Crystal City of Iandolo, a life his mentor saved him from after a job for his gang leader went sour and landed him in prison. Except he’s fresh out of new ideas. In desperation, he turns to his newest—and possibly only—friend…

Lane Illea is a mage student who can’t seem to master the most basic sigil forms needed to create magic, no matter how hard she tries. Daughter of one of the Councilors that rule Iandolo, she’s not used to failure. But when Devon approaches her with a strange new way to view the magical system she’s struggling with, she discovers that it’s not her ability that’s been blocking her…but something—someone—else entirely.

As a War student at the Lyceum, Dalton Trent has wanted nothing more than to graduate and become part of the Iandolan army, where he will work to protect the mages who keep Iandolo in power. He has only a few more months left before his dreams will come true. But then he meets Devon…and suddenly the world isn’t as simple, concrete, and stable anymore.

Because the Crystal Cities aren’t all color and glamour and shimmer. The crystal has cracked, the glow dimmed. And when it finally shatters, all three will be caught up in the shards of destruction that follow: a deadly insurrection that could bring the entire delicate balance of the Crystal Cities to a crashing end!"

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Someone You Can Build a Nest In by John Wiswell. Image: DAW
Someone You Can Build a Nest In by John Wiswell. Image: DAW / DAW

2. SOMEONE YOU CAN BUILD A NEST IN by John Wiswell — April 2

John Wiswell is another author with plenty of short fiction bonafides, but in April he's releasing his debut novel: a cozy monster romance/horror book called Someone You Can Build A Nest In. At least "cozy monster romance horror" is how I'm describing this thing; by some of the early impressions for the book, it's a hard one to classify — which feels just right for how quirky and original the story sounds.

Someone You Can Build A Nest In is about a monster who goes on the run from monster hunters, only to end up falling love with a human...who may or may not believe that they cursed her family. What could go wrong?

"Shesheshen has made a mistake fatal to all monsters: she's fallen in love.

Shesheshen is a shapeshifter, who happily resides as an amorphous lump at the bottom of a ruined manor. When her rest is interrupted by hunters intent on murdering her, she constructs a body from the remains of past meals: a metal chain for a backbone, borrowed bones for limbs, and a bear trap as an extra mouth.

However, the hunters chase Shesheshen out of her home and off a cliff. Badly hurt, she’s found and nursed back to health by Homily, a warm-hearted human, who has mistaken Shesheshen as a fellow human. Homily is kind and nurturing and would make an excellent co-parent: an ideal place to lay Shesheshen’s eggs so their young could devour Homily from the inside out. But as they grow close, she realizes humans don’t think about love that way.

Shesheshen hates keeping her identity secret from Homily, but just as she’s about to confess, Homily reveals why she’s in the area: she’s hunting a shapeshifting monster that supposedly cursed her family. Has Shesheshen seen it anywhere?

Eating her girlfriend isn’t an option. Shesheshen didn’t curse anyone, but to give herself and Homily a chance at happiness, she has to figure out why Homily’s twisted family thinks she did. As the hunt for the monster becomes increasingly deadly, Shesheshen must unearth the truth quickly, or soon both of their lives will be at risk.

And the bigger challenge remains: surviving her toxic in-laws long enough to learn to build a life with, rather than in, the love of her life."

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A View From The Stars by Cixin Liu. Image: Tor Books.
A View From The Stars by Cixin Liu. Image: Tor Books. /

3. A VIEW FROM THE STARS by Cixin Liu April 2

Right now, one of the big sci-fi television series we're talking about is 3 Body Problem, a mind-bending tale of first contact with aliens from Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss. The series is based on a trilogy of sci-fi books by Chinese author Cixin Liu, Rememberance of Earth's Past. The whole thing is out already and has been translated into English, so you don't need to wait to get an idea of where the Netflix series is headed.

But hey, maybe you want other works from Liu as well. If that's the case, then Tor Books has you covered this month with A View From the Stars, a collection of Liu's short fiction, essays and interviews.

"A View From the Stars features a range of short works from the past three decades of New York Times bestselling author Cixin Liu's prolific career, putting his nonfiction essays and short stories side-by-side for the first time. This collection includes essays and interviews that shed light on Liu's experiences as a reader, writer, and lover of science fiction throughout his life, as well as short fiction that gives glimpses into the evolution of his imaginative voice over the years."

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Lake of Souls by Ann Leckie. Image: Orbit
Lake of Souls by Ann Leckie. Image: Orbit /

4. LAKE OF SOULS by Ann Leckie — April 2

Since we're on the topic of short fiction from big names in the sci-fi space, here's another: for the first time ever, Imperial Radch author Ann Leckie is releasing a collection of shorter works! If you're fan of Leckie's writing, this one's pretty much a no-brainer. It includes tales set in the sci-fi universe of Imperial Radch, as well as some set in the same world as her 2019 fantasy novel The Raven Tower. And of course, there's also a brand new tale, the titular Lake of Souls.

"Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke award-winner Ann Leckie is a modern master of the SFF genre, forever changing its landscape with her groundbreaking ideas and powerful voice. Now, available for the first time comes the complete collection of Leckie's short fiction, including a brand new novelette, “Lake of Souls.”

Journey across the stars of the Imperial Radch universe.

Listen to the words of the Old Gods that ruled the Raven Tower.

Learn the secrets of the mysterious Lake of Souls.

And so much more, in this masterfully wide-ranging and immersive short fiction collection from award-winning author Ann Leckie."

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The Familiar by Leigh Bardugo. Image: Flatiron Books
The Familiar by Leigh Bardugo. Image: Flatiron Books /

5. THE FAMILIAR by Leigh Bardugo — April 9

Another exciting book hitting shelves in April is The Familiar, the latest from Shadow and Bone author Leigh Bardugo. This is a standalone historical fantasy novel which takes place in late 16th Century Madrid, Spain, and sees a young woman caught in a dangerous game of politics and social maneuvering as various forces seek to use her magical gifts for their own ends.

"In a shabby house, on a shabby street, in the new capital of Madrid, Luzia Cotado uses scraps of magic to get through her days of endless toil as a scullion. But when her scheming mistress discovers the lump of a servant cowering in the kitchen is actually hiding a talent for little miracles, she demands Luzia use those gifts to improve the family's social position.

What begins as simple amusement for the nobility takes a perilous turn when Luzia garners the notice of Antonio Pérez, the disgraced secretary to Spain's king. Still reeling from the defeat of his armada, the king is desperate for any advantage in the war against England's heretic queen—and Pérez will stop at nothing to regain the king's favor.

Determined to seize this one chance to better her fortunes, Luzia plunges into a world of seers and alchemists, holy men and hucksters, where the lines between magic, science, and fraud are never certain. But as her notoriety grows, so does the danger that her Jewish blood will doom her to the Inquisition's wrath. She will have to use every bit of her wit and will to survive—even if that means enlisting the help of Guillén Santángel, an embittered immortal familiar whose own secrets could prove deadly for them both."

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The Book That Broke the World by Mark Lawrence. Image: Ace
The Book That Broke the World by Mark Lawrence. Image: Ace / Ace

6. THE BOOK THAT BROKE THE WORLD by Mark Lawrence (The Library Trilogy #2) — April 9

The highly-anticipated second book in Mark Lawrence's Library Trilogy is also slated for release in April. This is the sequel to The Book That Wouldn't Burn, which features a magical library that links worlds and holds dark secrets. The first book received a lot of praise when it was released last year.

Lawrence is such a fixture of the fantasy genre at this point that if you've been in the SFF section of a bookstore sometime in the last decade, you've almost certainly seen his books. For fans of his work, The Book That Broke the World is cause for plenty of excitement. Plus, I have to shout out that gorgeous cover artwork.

"Two people living in a world connected by an immense and mysterious library must fight for those they love in the second book in a new trilogy from the international bestselling author of The Book That Wouldn’t Burn.

The Library spans worlds and times. It touches and joins distant places. It is memory and future. And amid its vastness Evar Eventari both found, and lost, Livira Page.

Evar has been forced to flee the library, driven before an implacable foe. Livira, trapped in a ghost world, has to recover the book she wrote—one which is the only true threat to the library’s existence—if she's to return to her life.

While Evar's journey leads him outside into a world he's never seen, Livira's path will taker her deep inside her own writing, where she must wrestle with her stories in order to reclaim the volume in which they were written.

The secret war that defines the library has chosen its champions and set them on the board. The time has come when they must fight for what they believe, or lose everything."

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The Hemlock Queen by Hannah Whitten. Image: Orbit
The Hemlock Queen by Hannah Whitten. Image: Orbit /

7. THE HEMLOCK QUEEN by Hannah Whitten (The Nightshade Crown #2) — April 9

Hannah Whitten is the author behind the New York Times bestselling Wilderwood duology, which consisted of For the Wolf and For the Throne. Last year she kicked off a new dark romantic fantasy duology with The Foxglove King, in which a young woman named Lore, who possessed sought-after death magic, became embroiled in the courtly intrigues of the mysterious King August. The Hemlock Queen concludes the story of Lore and Prince Bastian...and it sounds like a happy ending is far from certain.

"In the second installment of New York Times bestselling author Hannah Whitten’s lush romantic epic fantasy series, the glittering and dangerous world of the Sainted King’s royal court is upended when Prince Bastian seizes control and a mysterious dark force begins to take over.

The corrupt king August is dead. Prince Bastian has seized the throne and raised Lore—a necromancer and former smuggler—to his right-hand side. Together they plan to cut out the rot from the heart of the royal court and help the people of Dellaire. But not everyone is happy with the changes. The nobles are sowing dissent, the Kirythean Empire is beating down their door, and Lore’s old allies are pulling away. Even Prince Bastian has changed. No longer the hopeful, rakish, charismatic man Lore knows and loves, instead he’s become reckless, domineering, and cold.

And something has been whispering in her ear. A voice, dark and haunting, that’s telling her there’s more to the story than she knows and more to her power than she can even imagine. A truth buried deep that could change everything.

With Bastian’s coronation fast approaching and enemies whispering on all sides, Lore must figure out how to protect herself, her prince, and her country before they all come crumbling down and whatever dark power has been creeping through the catacombs is unleashed."

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Ghost Station by S.A. Barnes. Image: Tor Nightfire
Ghost Station by S.A. Barnes. Image: Tor Nightfire /

8. GHOST STATION by S.A. Barnes — April 9

There's something especially terrifying about horror novels set in space; even without aliens or some other creature on the loose, the isolation of it all is hard to replicate on a populated planet. Enter Ghost Station, the latest novel from Dead Silence author S.A. Barnes. When an exploration crew lands on an ancient, abandoned planet, it soon becomes clear that whatever caused the previous colonizers to mysteriously flee may still be a danger. Throw in a gruesome murder and an organization that seems to have some conflicting goals, and we're off.

"An abandoned plant. A hidden past. A deadly danger.

Psychologist Dr. Ophelia Bray has dedicated her life to the study and prevention of ERS—the most famous case of which resulted in the brutal murders of twenty-nine people. It's personal to her, and when she's assigned to a small exploration crew who recently suffered the tragic death of a colleague, she wants to help. But as they begin to establish residency on an abandoned planet, it becomes clear that crew is hiding something.

And Ophelia's crewmates are far more interested in investigating the eerie, ancient planet and unraveling the mystery behind the previous colonizers' hasty departure than opening up to her.

That is, until their pilot is discovered gruesomely murdered. Is this Ophelia’s worst nightmare starting—a wave of violence and mental deterioration from ERS? Or is it something even more sinister?

Terrified that history will repeat itself, Ophelia and the crew must work together to figure out what’s happening. But trust is hard to come by…and the crew isn’t the only one keeping secrets."

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The Last Phi Hunter by Salinee Goldenberg. Image: Angry Robot
The Last Phi Hunter by Salinee Goldenberg. Image: Angry Robot /

9. THE LAST PHI HUNTER by Salinee Goldenberg — April 9

Next up is The Last Phi Hunter, the debut fantasy novel from Salinee Goldenberg. Early rumblings among readers have compared this novel to stories like The Witcher and Princess Mononoke, which is more than enough to snag my attention. It follows a Phi Hunter (think monster hunter) who has to aid a pregnant woman in getting through a mysterious, magical forest. The influences on this one are pretty intriguing; it combines Thai culture with Buddhism and martial arts. It sounds like a pretty magical mix!

"Ambitious Phi Hunter and perpetual lone wolf, Ex, finds his road to glory interrupted when a heavily pregnant runaway enlists his help to escape through the ghost-infested forest…

Ex, the youngest member of the Phi Hunters Order, has spent his life slaying the ghosts and demons of Suyoram Kingdom. While he takes great pride in his mystical trade, collecting dwindling bounties and peddling butchered spirit organs lacks the glory he craves. He’s determined to hunt down Shar-Ala, a demon of nightmares, of madness – who has eluded even Ex’s masters.

In a provincial village along the way, Arinya, a charming muay-boran champion, manages to save Ex him from a brutal ass-kicking, despite being nine months pregnant. In return, she asks him to escort her through the dangerous, spirit-filled forest, where ghosts salivate over the scent of the unborn.

Feeling responsible for Arinya’s safety, Ex vows to help her return home. But as more of Arinya’s secrets emerge, and the elusive demon nears, Ex must face dangers from both men and monsters, or lose not only the respect and sanctuary of his guild, but also the woman he’s trying not to fall in love with.

The Last Phi Hunter is a mythic dark fantasy, equal parts smart, exhilarating, and delightfully fun."

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Lyorn by Steven Brust. Image: Tor Books
Lyorn by Steven Brust. Image: Tor Books /

10. LYORN by Steven Brust (Vlad Taltos #17) — April 9

Next up we have Lyorn, the 17th novel in Steven Brust's long-running Vlad Taltos series. Vlad Taltos is one of fantasy's underrated gems; Brust often uses new genres and tones for each entry, making them fairly unpredictable compared to a lot of other fantasy series.

The story follows the titular assassin and crime boss Vlad Taltos, who is anything but your usual run-of-the-mill fantasy assassin. These books are known for their wit as well as their expansive fantasy world, so if you're looking for a series with a lot of entries that will probably make you laugh as often as it makes you gasp in shock, Lyorn and Vlad Taltos may be just the ticket.

"Another Opening…Another Cataclysm?

Vlad Taltos is on the run. Again. This time from one of the most powerful forces in his world, the Left Hand, who are intent on ending his very lucrative career. Permanently.

He finds a hidey-hole in a theatre where the players are putting on a show that was banned centuries ago…and is trying to be shut down by the House that once literally killed to keep it from being played.

Vlad will take on a number of roles to save his own skin. And the skins of those he loves.And along the way, he might find a part that was tailor-made for him.

One that he might not want…but was always his destiny."

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Wicked Problems by Max Gladstone. Image: Tordotcom
Wicked Problems by Max Gladstone. Image: Tordotcom /

11. WICKED PROBLEMS by Max Gladstone (The Craft Wars #2) — April 9

Remember how last year, a Trigun stan going by the name of Bigolas Dickolas Wolfwood tweeted about his love for the acclaimed sci-fi novel This Is How You Lose The Time War, and it blew up to such an extent that the book hit The New York Times Bestseller List for the first time, four years after it was initially published? Of course you do!

Well, in April we're getting a new novella from Max Gladstone, one of the two authors of Time War. Wicked Problems is the second entry in Gladstone's fantasy series The Craft Wars, which sees a god and a young woman join forces to stave off an apocalypse.

"Gods and lawyers battle for the soul of the world in the action-packed second volume of Max Gladstone's Craft Wars, an epic fantasy like no other.

A deadly force has been unleashed into the world. With apocalypse on the horizon, a girl and a god have joined in order to turn back the coming end. Young, brash, and desperate, they are willing to destroy anything and everything that stands between them and their goals. The structures of the Craft are theirs to overturn, with billions of lives in the balance. And it is all Tara Abernathy’s fault.

The battle for the world of the Craft is heating up. A dead god will rise. A mountain will fall. Ancient fire will be stolen. And while Tara races to stop Dawn’s plans, the end draws ever closer, skittering across the stars to swallow the world. The Craft Wars enter their second stage in Wicked Problems."

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The Practice, the Horizon, and the Chain by Sofia Samatar. Image: Tordotcom
The Practice, the Horizon, and the Chain by Sofia Samatar. Image: Tordotcom /

12. THE PRACTICE, THE HORIZON, AND THE CHAIN by Sofia Samatar — April 16

Next up, we step back into the realm of shorter fiction. The Practice, the Horizon, and the Chain is a new novella from acclaimed author Sofia Samatar, whose works range from epic fantasy to literary fiction analysis and more. This book examines prison systems and privilege in a sci-fi setting, and is being dubbed a novella which carries on in the tradition of other thought-provoking authors like Ursula K. Le Guin.

"The boy was raised as one of the Chained, condemned to toil in the bowels of a mining ship out among the stars. His whole world changes—literally—when he is yanked “upstairs” and informed he has been given an opportunity to be educated at the ship’s university alongside the elite.

Overwhelmed and alone, the boy forms a bond with the woman he comes to know as “the professor,” a weary idealist and descendent of the Chained who has spent her career striving for validation from her more senior colleagues, only to fall short at every turn.

Together, the boy and the woman will embark on a transformative journey to grasp the design of the chains that fetter them both—and are the key to breaking free."

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Immortal Pleasures by V. Castro. Image: Del Rey
Immortal Pleasures by V. Castro. Image: Del Rey /

13. IMMORTAL PLEASURES by V. Castro — April 16

Two words for you: Aztec vampire. That's it. That's the whole pitch, and if it doesn't make you want to read this book then I don't know what to say.

Immortal Pleasures is the latest from V. Castro, the author of the surrealist horror novel The Haunting of Alejandra as well as last year's Rebel Moon Part One — A Child of Fire tie-in novel. This one follows a vampire who was born in the days of the Aztecs as she navigates the modern world, reclaiming the artifacts that were stolen from colonized civilizations. She gets more than she bargained for when her quest brings her into contact with two men who will appeal to different sides of her carnal appetites.

Alright I lied, four words: Aztec vampire love triangle. Even better, really.

"Hundreds of years ago, she was known as La Malinche: a Nahua woman who translated for the conquistador Cortés. In the centuries since, her name has gone down in infamy as a traitor. But no one ever found out what happened to La Malinche after Cortés destroyed her people.

In the ashes of the empire, she was reborn as Malinalli, an immortal vampire. And she has become an avenger of conquered peoples, traveling the world to reclaim their stolen artifacts and return them to their homelands.

But she has also been in search of something more, for this ancient vampire still has deeply human longings for pleasure and for love.

When she arrives in Dublin in search of a pair of Aztec skulls—artifacts intimately connected to her own dark history—she finds something else: two men who satisfy her cravings in very different ways.

For the first time she meets a mortal man—a horror novelist—who is not repelled by her strange condition but attracted by it. But there is also another man, an immortal like herself, who shares the darkness in her heart.

Now Malinalli is on the most perilous adventure of all: a journey into her own desires."

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Dragon Rider by Taran Matharu. Image: Harper Voyager
Dragon Rider by Taran Matharu. Image: Harper Voyager /

14. DRAGON RIDER by Taran Matharu (The Soulbound Saga #1) — April 23

Our next book comes from Taran Matharu, the author of the Summoner and Contender series. His latest book, Dragon Rider, kicks off a brand new series that's being classified as cultivation fantasy — that's an offshoot of progression fantasy (think LitRPG novels). While progression fantasy typically features a character gaining material power, cultivation fantasy such as Dragon Rider often has more of a focus on spiritual power and enlightenment.

Matharu's new series will follow a young orphan named Jai who will gradually become more powerful as he unravels the secrets needed to become a dragon rider and overthrow the corrupt empire which has conquered his people.

"Can an orphan captive learn the secrets of the Dragon Riders to stand up and avenge his people?

Jai lives as a royal hostage in the Sabine Court—ever since his father Rohan, leader of the Steppefolk, led a failed rebellion and was executed by the very emperor Jai now serves.

When the emperor’s son and heir is betrothed to Princess Erica of the neighboring Dansk Kingdom, she brings with her a dowry: dragons. Endemic to the northern nation, these powerful beasts come in several forms, but mystery surrounds them. Only Dansk royalty know the secret to soulbonding with these dangerous beasts to draw on their power and strength. This marriage—and the alliance that forms—will change that forever.

But conspirators lurk in the shadows, and soon the Sabine Court is in chaos. With his life in danger, Jai uses the opportunity to escape with the Dansk handmaiden, Frida, and a stolen hatchling. Hunted at every turn, he must learn to cultivate magic and become a soulbound warrior if he has any chance of finding safety, seizing his destiny…and seeking his revenge."

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A Letter to the Luminous Deep by Sylvie Cathrall. Image: Orbit
A Letter to the Luminous Deep by Sylvie Cathrall. Image: Orbit /

15. A LETTER TO THE LUMINOUS DEEP by Sylvie Cathrall — April 23

Romantic fantasy is all the rage this year, and if you're one of those readers who has been loving having your heart stolen by book after book, then perhaps A Letter to the Luminous Deep by Sylvie Cathrall is your next obsession. In a year laden with romantasy titles, Cathrall's debut novel stands as somewhat unique in that it's a penpal romance between a scholar and a reclusive underwater denizen. As their story progresses, they eventually both vanish, leaving their family members to piece together the truth of their clandestine relationship and what it means for the world at large.

"A beautiful discovery outside the window of her underwater home prompts the reclusive E. to begin a correspondence with renowned scholar Henerey Clel. The letters they share are filled with passion, at first for their mutual interests, and then, inevitably, for each other.

Together, they uncover a mystery from the unknown depths, destined to transform the underwater world they both equally fear and love. But by no mere coincidence, a seaquake destroys E.'s home, and she and Henerey vanish.

A year later, E.'s sister Sophy, and Henerey's brother Vyerin, are left to solve the mystery, piecing together the letters, sketches and field notes left behind—and learn what their siblings’ disappearance might mean for life as they know it.

Inspired, immersive, and full of heart, this charming epistolary tale is an adventure into the depths of a magical sea and the limits of the imagination from a marvelous debut voice."

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Necrobane by Daniel M. Ford. Image: Tor Books
Necrobane by Daniel M. Ford. Image: Tor Books /

16. NECROBANE by Daniel M. Ford (The Warden #2) — April 23

Necrobane is the sequel to Daniel M. Ford's fantasy novel The Warden. Aelis de Lenti, aspiring necromancer and Warden of Lone Pine, has unearthed the source of the mystical problems plaguing the remote village she was assigned to protect. But in so doing, a wave of undead are now descending on the place, and Aelis will have to figure out how to stop it. I don't know about you, but I can never get enough of necromancers whose questionable choices lead to chaotic outcomes.

"Aelis de Lenti, Lone Pine's newly assigned Warden, is in deep trouble. She has just opened the crypts of Mahlgren, releasing an army of the undead into the unprotected backwoods of Ystain.

To protect her village, she must unearth a source of immense Necromantic power at the heart of Mahlgren. The journey will wind through waves of undead, untamed wilderness, and curses far older than anything Aelis has ever encountered. But as strong as Aelis is, this is one quest she cannot face alone.

Along with the brilliant mercenary she's fallen for, her half-orc friend, and a dwarven merchant, Aelis must race the clock to unravel mysteries, slay dread creatures, and stop what she has set in motion before the flames of a bloody war are re-ignited."

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The Dead Cat Tail Assassins by P. Djèlí Clark. Image: Tordotcom
The Dead Cat Tail Assassins by P. Djèlí Clark. Image: Tordotcom /

17. THE DEAD CAT TAIL ASSASSINS by P. Djèlí Clark — April 23

April also holds a new novella from P. Djèlí Clark, the author of Abeni's Song, A Master of Djinn, and a number of other acclaimed speculative fiction works. The Dead Cat Tail Assassins is a gritty fantasy novel about an assassin who is brought back from the dead in order to fulfill contracts for the living.

That sounds intriguing enough, but in order to serve as one of these resurrected assassins, Eveen the Eviscerator had to give up all her memories. That comes back to haunt her in the novella, and something tells me that's just the beginning of the complications coming Eveen's way.

"Eveen the Eviscerator is skilled, discreet, professional, and here for your most pressing needs in the ancient city of Tal Abisi. Her guild is strong, her blades are sharp, and her rules are simple. Those sworn to the Matron of Assassins—resurrected, deadly, wiped of their memories—have only three unbreakable vows.

First, the contract must be just. That’s above Eveen’s pay grade.

Second, even the most powerful assassin may only kill the contracted. Eveen’s a professional. She’s never missed her mark.

The third and the simplest: once you accept a job, you must carry it out. And if you stray? A final death would be a mercy. When the Festival of the Clockwork King turns the city upside down, Eveen’s newest mission brings her face-to-face with a past she isn’t supposed to remember and a vow she can’t forget."

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Relics of Ruin by Erin M. Evans. Image: Orbit
Relics of Ruin by Erin M. Evans. Image: Orbit /

18. RELICS OF RUIN by Erin M. Evans (Books of the Usurper #2) — April 30

Closing out the month in fantasy and sci-fi books is Relics of Ruin, the second novel in Erin M. Evans' Books of the Usurper series. The first novel, Empire of Exiles, was a blend of fantasy and mystery, as a misfit group known as the Archivists sought to solve a murder with the potential to upend an empire. Now that long-standing secrets are out in the open, another mystery rears its head. Will the Archivists be able to get to the bottom of this one? And if they do, what will the empire look like on the other side?

"From a rising star in epic fantasy comes the captivating second novel in a trilogy featuring an unlikely team who must find a way to work together and solve an empire-spanning mystery to defend the last place they call home.

The conspiracy at the heart of the empire has been revealed. The Archivists played a key role in solving a brutal murder and uncovering one of the empire’s longest kept secrets. Now, what’s left in its wake are a series of unearthed artifacts, one shaken city, and the shocking truth not dared spoken aloud. 

Just as the empire has begun to regain normalcy, another mystery unveils itself when a stolen ancient relic is found. Only no one knew that it was missing from its sacred vault in the first place. And now that the real one has been recovered, who replaced it with a fake?

With Quill and Amadea at the heart of another mystery, they will need to quickly follow the clues that all lead back to this new relic.

Because all the while, an old enemy is gathering strength beyond the Salt Wall and the Archivists might come to find there’s nowhere left for them to go but over."

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And so concludes our round-up of new fantasy and science fiction books coming out this April. Happy reading!

Next. 5 wheel of time changes. 5 biggest changes The Wheel of Time show made from the books. dark

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