Few things are as transportive or immersive as a good fantasy story--tales about faraway, magic-filled kingdoms, fearsome creatures, valiant heroes and vicious villains. Here is a spectacular selection of adult fantasy novels and novellas by 2022 debut authors who have built compelling worlds and created characters that won't soon be forgotten.
Second Star to the Left by Megan Van Dyke
City Owl Press, February 15, 2022
In this Peter Pan retelling, Tinker Bell seeks absolution after being banished for selling the hottest drug in Neverland—pixie dust. Determined to find a way home, Tink doesn’t hesitate to follow the one lead she has, even if that means seducing a filthy pirate to steal precious gems out from under his…hook.
The Circus Infinite by Khan Wong
Angry Robot Books, March 8, 2022
Hunted by those who want to study his gravity powers, Jes makes his way to the galaxy's infamous pleasure moon. But it doesn’t take long for him to catch the attention of the crime boss who owns the resort-casino where he lands a circus job, and finds himself faced with a choice: he makes an offer: do anything and everything asked of him, or face vivisection.
The Blood Trials by N.E. Davenport
Harper Voyager US, April 5, 2022
Blending fantasy and science fiction, this fast-paced, action-packed debut kicks off a duology of loyalty and rebellion, in which a young Black woman must survive deadly trials in a racist and misogynistic society to become an elite warrior.
Flames of Mira by Clay Harmon
Rebellion Publishing, April 26, 2022
In this stunning debut, Ig is a powerful elemental, forced to work as an enforcer for a corrupt ruler Sorrelo Adriann. When his lord is overthrown in a coup, Ig quickly learns he can do worse — far worse — than what Sorrelo has asked from him so far.
Bad Girls Drink Blood by S.L. Choi
City Owl Press, May 17, 2022
"Part sun fae, part blood fae, all abomination." Readers are sure to be hooked about this story about Lane Callaghan, the only hybrid fae in existence, who runs a Las Vegas detective agency together with her sisters.
Let The Mountains Be My Grave by Francesca Tacchi
Neon Hemlock Press, May 17, 2022
This debut novella is set in 1944 Italy, where Veleno is a partisan fighter intent on avenging his father and killing as many Nazis as he can before leaving this world. He is also beloved of the ancient Italic goddess Angitia, which makes him the perfect person to recover a strange weapon the Nazis are planning to use against the Allies in the battle of Montecassino. Cover to come.
Uncommon Charm by Emily Bergslien and Kat Weaver
Neon Hemlock Press, May 17, 2022
In this 1920s gothic comedy novella, bright young socialite Julia and shy Jewish magician Simon decide they aren’t beholden to their families’ unhappy history. Together they confront such horrors as murdered ghosts, alive children, magic philosophy, a milieu that slides far too easily into surrealist metaphor, and, worst of all, serious adult conversation. Cover to come.
Wrath Goddess Sing by Maya Deane
Harper Collins/William Morrow, June 7, 2022
Drawing on ancient texts and modern archeology to reveal the trans woman’s story hidden underneath the well-known myths of The Iliad, this book weaves a compelling, pitilessly beautiful vision of Achilles’ vanished world, perfect for fans of Song of Achilles and the Inheritance trilogy. https://www.22debuts.com/maya-deane.html
The Last Feather by Shameez Patel Papathanasiou
Flame Tree Press, July 19, 2022
Twenty-two-year-old Cassia's sister is dying, and she doesn't know why. She wakes up in another realm to find her missing best friend, Lucas, who knows how to save her sister. Lucas is part of a community of Reborns, people who were born on earth and after death, were reborn in this realm with magical abilities. The original beings of the realm, the Firsts, rule over them. To keep the Reborn numbers manageable, the king of the Firsts releases a curse to cull them. Cassia needs to break the curse before her time runs out and she is trapped there forever. https://www.22debuts.com/shameez-patel-papathanasiou.html
The Book Eaters by Sunyi Dean
Tor, August 9, 2022
Out on the Yorkshire Moors lives a secret line of people for whom books are food, and who retain all of a book's content after eating it. But besides that captivating premise, this book is also a gripping story of motherhood, sacrifice, and hope; of queer identity and learning to accept who you are; of gilded lies and the danger of believing the narratives others create for you. https://www.22debuts.com/sunyi-dean.html
The Bruising of Qilwa by Naseem Jamnia
Tachyon Publications, August 9, 2022
In this intricately layered debut fantasy, a nonbinary refugee practitioner of blood magic discovers a strange disease causing political rifts in their new homeland. Persian-American author Naseem Jamnia has crafted a gripping narrative with a moving, nuanced exploration of immigration, gender, healing, and family.
Notorious Sorcerer by Davinia Evans
Orbit, September 14, 2022
Since the city of Bezim was shaken half into the sea by a magical earthquake, the Inquisitors have policed alchemy with brutal efficiency. When Siyon Velo, a glorified errand boy, accidentally commits a public act of impossible magic, he’s catapulted into the limelight. Except the limelight is a bad place to be when the planes themselves start lurching out of alignment, threatening to send the rest of the city into the sea. Cover to come.
Bitter Medicine by Mia Tsai
Tachyon Publications, October 18, 2022
Magical calligrapher Elle put her dreams on hold to hide her brother from their murderous family. But when her crush commissions her for a career-defining project, she must choose: risk her brother's life for a brush with fame, or walk away from the art - and the man - she loves. Cover to come.
The Surviving Sky by Kritika H Rao
DAW/PRH, Fall 2022
High above a jungle-planet float the last refuges of humanity—plant-made civilizations held together by tradition, technology, and arcane science. Here we follow the charismatic architect Iravan and his wife, the headstrong Ahilya, who seeks to change the balance of rule in their stratified society.
The Sun and the Void by Gabriela Romero Lacruz
Orbit, Fall 2022
Full of twisted family politics, dark magic, and fantastical beings, this debut transports readers into a lush world inspired by the history and mythology of 1800s South America.
Called to the Deep by Desirée M. Niccoli
City Owl Press, 2022
When the lone survivor of a shipwreck learns she’s descended from the vicious mermaids who devoured her crew, she must find ways to curb her flesh-eating instincts or the sea captain who rescued her could become a tasty snack in more ways than one.
Empire of Exiles by Erin M. Evans
Orbit, November 8, 2022
Magic, mystery, and revolution collide in this fantasy epic where an unlikely team of mages, scribes, and archivists must band together to unearth a conspiracy that might topple their empire.
Curator: Victor Manibo
Blogger: Susan Azim Boyer
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