The world is dying.
The Sunset Lands are broken, torn apart by a war of ideology paid for with the lives of the peasants. Drought holds the east as famine ravages the farmlands. In the west, borders slam shut in the face of waves of refugees, dooming all of those trying to flee to slow starvation, or a future in forced labor camps. There is no salvation.
In the city of Lord’s Reach, Seraphina, a slave with unique talents, sets in motion a series of events that will change everything. In a fight for the soul of the nation, everyone is a player. But something ominous is calling people to Lord’s Reach and the very nature of magic itself is changing. Paths will converge, the battle for the Sunset Lands has shifted, and now humanity itself is at stake.
First, you must break before you can become.
Kristine Ong Muslim's The Drone Outside was published by Eibonvale Press in December 2017.
Information about Kristine Ong Muslim:
Kristine Ong Muslim is the author of several books, including the short story collections Age of Blight (Unnamed Press, 2016), Butterfly Dream (Snuggly Books, 2016), and The Drone Outside (Eibonvale Press, 2017), as well as the poetry collections Lifeboat (University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, 2015), Meditations of a Beast (Cornerstone Press, 2016), and Black Arcadia (University of the Philippines Press, 2017). Her other books are A Roomful of Machines (ELJ Publications, 2015), Grim Series (Popcorn Press, 2012), and We Bury the Landscape (Queen’s Ferry Press, 2012).
Click here to visit her official website.
Information about The Drone Outside:
Watching the end of the world through the cracks. Small windows on massive events – on a doomed civilization drawing its last breaths. A sense of universal decay and collapse conveyed in the smallest of canvasses.
This collection by Kristine Ong Muslim, an author from the Philippines, gathers nine delicate miniatures that pack a strong emotional punch. Stylistically they are rooted in apocalyptic sci-fi and supernatural horror but they are told with a post-modern and surreal touch – like macro photographs of the world's end.
REVIEW: THE DRONE OUTSIDE BY KRISTINE ONG MUSLIM
Risingshadow has the honour of publishing a guest post by Steve Rasnic Tem.
About Steve Rasnic Tem:
Steve Rasnic Tem was born in Lee County Virginia in the heart of Appalachia. He is the author of over 350 published short stories and is a past winner of the Bram Stoker, International Horror Guild, British Fantasy, and World Fantasy Awards. His story collections include City Fishing, The Far Side of the Lake, and In Concert (with wife Melanie Tem). Forthcoming collections include Ugly Behavior (crime) and Celestial Inventories (contemporary fantasy). An audio collection, Invisible, is also available. His novels include Excavation, The Book of Days, Daughters, The Man In The Ceiling (with Melanie Tem), Deadfall Hotel, Blood Kin, Ubo and The Mask Shop of Doctor Blaack.
Click here to visit his official website.
About The Mask Shop of Doctor Blaack:
Fall is Laura’s favorite time of year, but this autumn, things are different. She’s a teenager now, and the season brings new changes and challenges. Laura’s decided she’s too old for trick-or-treating and wants a more grown-up Halloween experience with her friends. Unfortunately for Laura, her parents tell her she has to take her little brother, Trevor, out trick-or-treating first. When they go shopping for Halloween costumes, they stumble upon a very strange shop and its even stranger proprietor. When Trevor tries on the wrong mask, the consequences are exciting... and dangerous.
GUEST POST: Inspirations for The Mask Shop of Doctor Blaack by Steve Rasnic Tem
Juliet Kemp's The Deep and Shining Dark was published by Elsewhen Press in July 2018 (digital edition) / September 2018 (paperback edition).
Information about Juliet Kemp:
Juliet Kemp lives by the river in London, with their partners, child, dog, and too many fountain pens. They have had stories published in several anthologies and online magazines. Their employment history variously includes working as a cycle instructor, sysadmin, life model, researcher, permaculture designer, and journalist. When not writing or parenting, Juliet goes climbing, knits, reads way too much, and drinks a lot of tea.
Information about The Deep and Shining Dark:
You know something’s wrong when the cityangel turns up at your door
Magic within the city-state of Marek works without the need for bloodletting, unlike elsewhere in Teren, thanks to an agreement three hundred years ago between an angel and the founding fathers. It also ensures that political stability is protected from magical influence. Now, though, most sophisticates no longer even believe in magic or the cityangel.
But magic has suddenly stopped working, discovers Reb, one of the two sorcerers who survived a plague that wiped out virtually all of the rest. Soon she is forced to acknowledge that someone has deposed the cityangel without being able to replace it. Marcia, Heir to House Fereno, and one of the few in high society who is well-aware that magic still exists, stumbles across that same truth. But it is just one part of a much more ambitious plan to seize control of Marek.
Meanwhile, city Council members connive and conspire, unaware that they are being manipulated in a treacherous political game. A game that threatens the peace and security not just of the city, but all the states around the Oval Sea, including the shipboard traders of Salina upon whom Marek relies.
To stop the impending disaster, Reb and Marcia, despite their difference in status, must work together alongside the deposed cityangel and Jonas, a messenger from Salina. But first they must discover who is behind the plot, and each of them must try to decide whom they can really trust.
REVIEW: THE DEEP AND SHINING DARK BY JULIET KEMP
Rhys Hughes' The Honeymoon Gorillas was published by Bizarro Pulp Press in June 2018.
Information about Rhys Hughes:
Rhys Hughes was born in 1966. Tartarus Press published his first collection, Worming the Harpy, in 1995, and since that time he has published more than thirty other books. His fiction is generally fantastical and his output mainly consists of short stories, though he has published several novels. His work is frequently compared to that of Boris Vian, Flann O'Brien and R.A. Lafferty, but he cites his major influences as Italo Calvino and Donald Barthelme. His most recent books include the collections Bone Idle in the Charnel House (Hippocampus Press), Orpheus on the Underground (Tartarus Press) and Brutal Pantomimes (Egaeus Press). Fascinated by paradoxes, he incorporates them into his fiction as entertainingly as he can.
Click here to visit his official website.
Information about The Honeymoon Gorillas:
Spud Gunn is the son of Hopalong Beech and Una Gunn. When his parents split up he begins his travels through the West, a place of myths, tall stories and strangeness. On his journey he has many peculiar encounters with the characters who inhabit the West and he begins to suspect that something is not quite right about the world he is living in. Could it be that this West is just a simulation? If so, for what purpose was it created? Before he finds the answer to this and other questions, he will have to evade the unusual attentions of a troupe of lethal roving actors, the schemes of fake orientals, the catastrophic effects of asteroid strikes and the fury of a giant who is one of the original gods of the West and who has been assembled from his scattered parts in order to break down the walls of existence and reveal the truths beyond.... But what does this have to do with gorillas? Rather more than it may seem to the casual eye!
REVIEW: THE HONEYMOON GORILLAS BY RHYS HUGHES
Risingshadow has the honour of publishing a guest post by Ian Stuart Sharpe.
About Ian Stuart Sharpe:
Ian Sharpe was born in London, UK, and now lives in British Columbia, Canada. Having worked for the BBC, IMG, Atari and Electronic Arts, he is now CEO of a tech start up. As a child he discovered his love of books, sci-fi and sagas: devouring the works of Douglas Adams, J.R.R. Tolkien, Terry Pratchett and George MacDonald Fraser alongside Snorri Sturluson and Sigvat the Skald. He once won a prize at school for Outstanding Progress and chose a dictionary as his reward, secretly wishing it had been an Old Norse phrasebook. The All Father Paradox is his first novel.
About The All Father Paradox:
What if an ancient god escaped his fate... and history was thrown to the wolves?
Churchwarden Michaels thought it was just a run-of-the-mill crazy old man who stood in the graveyard, hellbent on studying the thousand-year-old Viking memorial there. But when things start changing and outright disappearing, Michaels realizes there is more to this old man than meets the eye. Now, Michaels finds himself swept up in an ancient god’s quest to escape his destiny by reworking reality, putting history - and to Michaels’s dismay, Christianity itself - to the Viking sword. In this new Vikingverse, storied heroes of mankind emerge in new and brutal guises drawn from the sagas:
A young Norse prince plots to shatter empires and claim the heavens...
A scholar exiled to the frontier braves the dangers of the New World, only to find those “new worlds” are greater than he imagined...
A captured Jötunn plants the dreams of freedom during a worlds-spanningwar...
A bold empress discovers there is a price for immortality, one her ancestors have come to collect...
With the timelines stretched to breaking point, it’s up to Churchwarden Michaels to save reality as we know it...
GUEST POST: “What's in a name?” by Ian Stuart Sharpe