Head below for the full list of science fiction titles heading your way in September!
Keep track of all the new SFF releases here. All title summaries are taken and/or summarized from copy provided by the publisher. Release dates are subject to change.
Week One (September 5)
Androne — Dwain Worrell (47North)
In one terrifying event called the Ninety-Nine, all major military installations on earth were eviscerated. But by whom? Foreign powers, AIs, ETs? Every conceivable adversary was ruled out. Reeling from massive casualties and amid hundreds of conspiracy theories, humanity creates Andrones: bipedal android drones piloted remotely by soldiers who will never again need to be on the field of battle. Newly minted Androne pilot Sergeant Paxton Arés has now been deployed into a fight against an enemy no one understands or has ever seen. Passing mostly uneventful days patrolling an unidentified desert, Paxton spends time communicating with his pregnant girlfriend back home and reflecting on his impending fatherhood. But as he is drawn deeper into military camaraderie and begins quickly rising up the ranks on the strength of his father’s military legacy, Paxton starts to question the swirling rumors about the nature of the conflict. What he’s encountered in the shifting dunes—something inexplicable, indomitable—fills him with the fear that whatever is out there is destined to win. Whether it’s curiosity, ambition, or a newfound paternal instinct, Paxton has a driving need to understand the dangerous truths of this strange, invisible war. And the choices he must make have the power to change everything.
Exadelic — Jon Evans (Tor Books)
When an unconventional offshoot of the US military trains an artificial intelligence in the dark arts that humanity calls “black magic,” it learns how to hack the fabric of reality itself. It can teleport matter. It can confer immunity to bullets. And it decides that obscure Silicon Valley middle manager Adrian Ross is the primary threat to its existence. Soon Adrian is on the run, wanted by every authority, with no idea how or why he could be a threat. His predicament seems hopeless; his future, nonexistent. But when he investigates the AI and its creators, he discovers his problems are even stranger than they seem… and unearths revelations that will propel him on a journey—and a love story—across worlds, eras, and everything, everywhere, all at once.
Alpha Wave — Weston Ochse, Jonathan Maberry (Aethon Books)
We were outnumbered, outfought. Mankind was about to fall to the alien Flock. Our only chance was a desperate gamble, transforming Tier One SpecOps agents into deadly super soldiers. In the end, we won the war, but we lost the peace. The Flock surrendered and spent the next two hundred years making reparations, indentured to humanity, doing everything humans did not want to do. And the evolved super soldiers were consigned to an endless sleep. Ready if ever needed, but in time they became myths. Abandoned and forgotten. And then, when we were content in our dominance, the Flock revolted against all of humanity across the whole of the galaxy. We fell in a single day. Which is when the dreams began. People across the settled worlds began dreaming of the Sleepers. The evolved saviors. Acts of rebellion and terrorism swept the galaxy, and in response the Flock ground us under heel. Lexi Chow, descendant of a hero of the Flock War, believes the Sleepers are real, and are humanity’s only chance against the alien conquerors. With a crew of misfits, criminals, and believers, she sets out to wake the Sleepers. Hoping they will once more save us. If the betrayed Sleepers are willing. If the Sleepers are even human. If the Sleepers are on our side at all.
1638: The Sovereign States (Ring of Fire #36) — Eric Flint, Paula Goodlett, Gorg Huff (Baen)
The United Sovereign States of Russia struggles to set in place the traditions and legal precedents that will let it turn into a constitutional monarchy with freedom and opportunity for all its citizens. At the same time, they’re trying to balance the power of the states and the federal government. And the USSR is fighting a civil war with Muscovite Russia, defending the new state of Kazakh from invasion by the Zunghars, building a tech base and an economy that will allow its money to be accepted in western Europe, establishing a more solid claim to Siberia, and, in general, keeping the wheels of civilization from coming off and dumping Russia back into the Time of Troubles. Or, possibly even worse, reinstalling the sort of repressive oligarchy that they just got rid of.
Week Two (September 12)
The Death I Gave Him — Em X. Liu (Rebellion)
Hayden Lichfield’s life is ripped apart when he finds his father murdered in their lab, and the camera logs erased. The killer can only have been after one thing: the Sisyphus Formula the two of them developed together, which might one day reverse death itself. Hoping to lure the killer into the open, Hayden steals the research. In the process, he uncovers a recording his father made in the days before his death, and a dying wish: Avenge me… With the lab on lockdown, Hayden is trapped with four other people—his uncle Charles, lab technician Gabriel Rasmussen, research intern Felicia Xia and their head of security, Felicia’s father Paul—one of whom must be the killer. His only sure ally is the lab’s resident artificial intelligence, Horatio, who has been his dear friend and companion since its creation. With his world collapsing, Hayden must navigate the building’s secrets, uncover his father’s lies, and push the boundaries of sanity in the pursuit of revenge.
The Sky Vault (Comet #3) — Benjamin Percy (William Morrow)
The comet, Cain, came from beyond our solar system, its debris containing elements unknown. Now, in the isolated region of Fairbanks, Alaska, the skies shift and stretch as an interstellar dust cloud seeds the atmosphere. When a plane shudders its way through pulpy, swirling, bruise-shaped clouds, lit with sudden cracks of lightning, the sky opens and the aircraft vanishes…but only for a minute. When the flight lands, everyone on board and in the community will be changed forever. Chuck Bridges, a local DJ and conspiracy theorist, was on board and later reported dead to his family, but not before proclaiming that something inside the clouds was speaking to him. Now his son, Theo, must chase down answers to the mystery his father unlocked. He’ll find himself at odds with Sophie Chen, an agent with a shadowy employer desperate to secure the black box from the airplane, as well as Rolf Wagner, a widowed sheriff investigating a series of increasingly strange and unsettling reports. And then there is Joanna Straub, a contractor reconstructing a top-secret government lab active during WWII and shuttered deep within the nearby White Mountains. The answer to the comet’s origin is about to be unveiled, and its impact on Earth is more treacherous and sublime than humanity could imagine.
Promise — Christi Nogle (Flame Tree Press)
Promise collects Christi Nogle’s best futuristic stories ranging from plausible tech-based science fiction to science fantasy stories about aliens in our midst: chameleonic foils hover in the skies, you can order a headset to speak and dream with your dog, and your devices sometimes connect not just to the web but to the underworld. These tales will recall the stories of Ray Bradbury, television programs such as Black Mirror and The Twilight Zone, and novels such as Little Eyes by Samanta Schweblin or Under the Skin by Michel Faber. They are often strange and dreadful but veer towards themes of hope, potential, promise
The Free People’s Village — Sim Kern (Levine Querido)
In an alternate 2020 timeline, Al Gore won the 2000 election and declared a War on Climate Change rather than a War on Terror. For twenty years, Democrats have controlled all three branches of government, enacting carbon-cutting schemes that never made it to a vote in our world. Green infrastructure projects have transformed U.S. cities into lush paradises (for the wealthy, white neighborhoods, at least), and the Bureau of Carbon Regulation levies carbon taxes on every financial transaction. English teacher by day, Maddie Ryan spends her nights and weekends as the rhythm guitarist of Bunny Bloodlust, a queer punk band living in a warehouse-turned-venue called “The Lab” in Houston’s Eighth Ward. When Maddie learns that the Eighth Ward is to be sacrificed for a new electromagnetic hyperway out to the wealthy, white suburbs, she joins “Save the Eighth,” a Black-led organizing movement fighting for the neighborhood. At first, she’s only focused on keeping her band together and getting closer to Red, their reckless and enigmatic lead guitarist. But working with Save the Eighth forces Maddie to reckon with the harm she has already done to the neighborhood—both as a resident of the gentrifying Lab and as a white teacher in a predominantly Black school. When police respond to Save the Eighth protests with violence, the Lab becomes the epicenter of “The Free People’s Village”—an occupation that promises to be the birthplace of an anti-capitalist revolution. As the movement spreads across the U.S., Maddie dreams of a queer, liberated future with Red. But the Village is beset on all sides—by infighting, police brutality, corporate-owned media, and rising ecofascism. Maddie’s found family is increasingly at risk from state violence, and she must decide if she’s willing to sacrifice everything in pursuit of justice.
Week Three (September 19)
The World Wasn’t Ready for You — Justin C. Key (Harper)
Justin C. Key has long been obsessed with monsters. Reading R. L. Stine’s Goosebumps as a kid, he imagined himself battling monsters and mayhem to a triumphant end. But when watching Scream 2, in which the movie’s only Black couple is promptly killed off, he realized that the Black and Brown characters in his favorite genre were almost always the victim or villain—if they were portrayed at all. The World Wasn’t Ready for You is a gripping, provocative, and distinctly original collection that demonstrates Key’s remarkable literary gifts—a skill at crafting science fiction stories equaled by an ability to sculpt characters and narrative—as well as his utterly fresh take on how genre can be used to delight, awe, frighten, and ultimately challenge our perceptions. Wildly imaginative and powerfully resonant, it introduces an unforgettable new voice in fiction.
The Never Wars — David Pedreira (Blackstone)
Special Forces are accustomed to crazy ops, but orbiting a black hole to slow down time and fight Earth’s dirty wars in the future? That’s new, even for them. But that’s the mission for Owen Quarry, Anaya Pretorius, and the rest of COG, a company of elite, disgraced, soldiers from around the globe. They join a defrocked company commander, an AI warship with self-confidence issues, and a crew of misfit troopers on a dizzying time-quest: prove the concept of stationing armies in space-time. If they complete ten missions, they’ll be redeemed as citizens in good standing. But the cost will be heavy–in time and in souls. And as one of their own hunts them down and another rises from the past with a key to freedom, Quarry and Pretorius find that redemption and survival are two very different things.
Starter Villain — John Scalzi (Tor Books)
Charlie’s life is going nowhere fast. A divorced substitute teacher living with his cat in a house his siblings want to sell, all he wants is to open a pub downtown, if only the bank will approve his loan. Then his long-lost uncle Jake dies and leaves his supervillain business (complete with island volcano lair) to Charlie. But becoming a supervillain isn’t all giant laser death rays and lava pits. Jake had enemies, and now they’re coming after Charlie. His uncle might have been a stand-up, old-fashioned kind of villain, but these are the real thing: rich, soulless predators backed by multinational corporations and venture capital. It’s up to Charlie to win the war his uncle started against a league of supervillains. But with unionized dolphins, hyper-intelligent talking spy cats, and a terrifying henchperson at his side, going bad is starting to look pretty good. In a dog-eat-dog world… be a cat.
Week Four (September 26)
Shadow Speaker (Desert Magician’s Duology #2) — Nnedi Okorafor (DAW)
Niger, West Africa, 2074: It is an era of tainted technology and mysterious mysticism. A great change has happened all over the planet, and the laws of physics aren’t what they used to be. Within all this, I introduce you to Ejii Ugabe, a child of the worst type of politician. Back when she was nine years old, she was there as her father met his end. Don’t waste your tears on him: this girl’s father would throw anyone under a bus to gain power. He was a cruel, cruel man, but even so, Ejii did not rejoice at his departure from the world. Children are still learning that some people don’t deserve their love. Now 15 years old and manifesting the abilities given to her by the strange Earth, Ejii decides to go after the killer of her father. Is it for revenge or something else? You will have to find out by reading this book. I am the Desert Magician, and this is a novel I have conjured for you, so I’m certainly not going to just tell you here.
The Light Runner — DW Allen (Gemini Press)
What starts off like any other day for Dr. Ella Kelly, quickly becomes extraordinary. When news breaks that Hannah Haskell, the wife of the young and charismatic Senate hopeful Captain Oliver Haskell, has been murdered, the world seems to go off-kilter. When Captain Haskell is admitted to Fairbright Psychiatric Hospital, where Ella is a newly minted psychiatrist, she is thrust into the middle of a mystery that extends well beyond murder. In fact, her search for answers takes her to places… and times… she never thought existed or were even possible. She even begins to suspect that her patients may have known these secrets all along.
The Fractured Dark (Devoured Worlds #2) — Megan E. O’Keefe (Orbit)
Naira and Tarquin have escaped vicious counterrevolutionaries, misprinted monsters, and the pull of a dying planet. Now, bound together to find the truth behind the blight that has been killing habitable planets, they need to hunt out the Mercator family secrets. But, when the head of Mercator disappears, taking the universe’s remaining supply of starship fuel with him, chaos breaks loose between the ruling families. Naira’s revolution must be put aside for the sake of humanity’s immediate survival.