Epic Fantasy on a Small Scale : The Lies of the Ajungo by Moses Ose Utomi

Release Date: March 21, 2023
Publisher: Tordotcom
Genre: Fantasy


They say there is no water in the City of Lies. They say there are no heroes in the City of Lies. They say there are no friends beyond the City of Lies. But would you believe what they say in the City of Lies?

In the City of Lies, they cut out your tongue when you turn thirteen, to appease the terrifying Ajungo Empire and make sure it continues sending water. Tutu will be thirteen in three days, but his parched mother won’t last that long. So Tutu goes to his oba and makes a deal: she provides water for his mother, and in exchange he will travel out into the desert and bring back water for the city. Thus begins Tutu’s quest for the salvation of his mother, his city, and himself.

The Lies of the Ajungo opens the curtains on a tremendous world, and begins the epic fable of the Forever Desert. With every word, Moses Ose Utomi weaves magic.

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Review of Blood Like Fate by Liselle Sambury

Release Date: August 9, 2022
Series: Blood Like Magic #2
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy


Voya Thomas may have passed her Calling to become a full-fledged witch, but the cost was higher than she’d ever imagined.Her grandmother is gone.

Her cousin hates her.

And her family doesn’t believe that she has what it takes to lead them.What’s more, Voya can’t let go of her feelings for Luc, sponsor son of the genius billionaire Justin Tremblay–the man that Luc believes Voya killed. Consequently, Luc wants nothing to do with her. Even her own ancestors seem to have lost faith in her. Every day Voya begs for their guidance, but her calls go unanswered.As Voya struggles to convince everyone–herself included–that she can be a good Matriarch, she has a vision of a terrifying, deadly future. A vision that would spell the end of the Toronto witches. With a newfound sense of purpose, Voya must do whatever it takes to bring her shattered community together and stop what’s coming for them before it’s too late.Even if it means taking down the boy she loves–who might be the mastermind behind the coming devastation.

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Review: Voodoonauts Presents: (Re)Living Mythology by Shingai Njeri Kagunda, Yvette Lisa Ndlovu, H.D. Hunter, & LP Kindred, eds.

Release Date: November 22, 2022
Publisher: Android Press
Genre: Anthologies


From the Voodoonauts Afrofuturist collective for Black science fiction and fantasy writers.

When a desperately mundane woman borrows clothing from her mother, a soucouyant goes searching for her skin. A Nigerian parent climbs mountains to heaven to steal a name and glorious destiny for their newborn. A master tailor gets her skills tested when a spectral customer enters her workshop and she can’t say no. A preacher casts dark magic from his pulpit when the Word ain’t enough to run his church. These tales and more populate Voodoonauts Present: (Re)Living Mythology.

Called from the imaginations of its inaugural fellows and a handful of solicited authors including Christopher Caldwell, TL Huchu, and Eden Royce, Voodoonauts curates a coterie of short fiction and poetry that paints across the breadth of magic and Blackness. Co-editors/founders Shingai Njeri Kagunda, Yvette Lisa Ndlovu, Hugh “HD” Hunter, and LP Kindred ask Black Writers to interrogate their mythologies, folklores, superstition, and wives’ tales to create the book within your hands.

Continue reading “Review: Voodoonauts Presents: (Re)Living Mythology by Shingai Njeri Kagunda, Yvette Lisa Ndlovu, H.D. Hunter, & LP Kindred, eds.”

Queer Slice-of-Life Episodes of SFF Television

How are we feeling, cannibal fungus fans? Still floating in the cozy feels of the third episode of The Last of Us? Episodes like that where we spend time watching people exist in the world largely outside bigger plot dynamics don’t happen often—less so in the age of “diverse” shows getting canceled after a single season. When you narrow the field down to just speculative shows and just queer characters, that slice gets thinner and thinner. So let’s take this opportunity to celebrate queer life, queer joy, and queer people just being themselves.

Read the rest of this spotlight at Tor.com.

Something Old Yet New: Lost in the Moment and Found by Seanan McGuire

Release Date: January 10, 2023
Publisher: Tordotcom Publishing
Series: Wayward Children #8
Genre: Fantasy


A young girl discovers an infinite variety of worlds in this standalone tale in the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning Wayward Children series from Seanan McGuire, Lost in the Moment and Found.

Welcome to the Shop Where the Lost Things Go.

If you ever lost a sock, you’ll find it here.
If you ever wondered about a favorite toy from childhood… it’s probably sitting on a shelf in the back.

And the headphones that you swore this time you’d keep safe? You guessed it….

Antoinette has lost her father. Metaphorically. He’s not in the Shop, and she’ll never see him again. But when Antsy finds herself lost (literally, this time), she discovers that however many doors open for her, leaving the Shop for good might not be as simple as it sounds.

And stepping through those doors exacts a price.

Lost in the Moment and Found tells us that childhood and innocence, once lost, can never be found.

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Must-Read Speculative Short Fiction: 12 Works You May Have Missed in 2022

Every month I read a couple dozen or so short speculative fiction stories from 60+ publications in order to put together my monthly short SFF/H column. That’s a lot of reading! It’s always impossibly hard to narrow down to just my ten favorite pieces; if I had the time and energy, I’d do a massive list every month. So this year, instead of doing a best of list, I thought I’d put together a little collection of my alternates, one story from each month that I loved but that didn’t make my original spotlight. Let’s take a walk back through last year and some absolutely epic short fiction.

Read the rest of this spotlight at Tor.com.

10 Great Young Adult Space Operas

You know, I really want to thank the authors that looked at young adult fiction and space opera and thought “why not both?” Because this is one of my favorite subgenres of YA science fiction. There’s adventure, there’s romance, there’s danger, there’s high stakes, there’s a pack of outcasts who have the fate of the galaxy in their hands. What more could you want? Here are ten great YA space operas from the last few years.

Read the rest of this spotlight at Tor.com.