Demon Road is a new young adult novel from Skulduggery Pleasant author Derek Landy. Mixing horror and fantay with a touch of teenage angst, it’s a never-ending road trip of legends, monsters and yes, demons. I enjoyed it.
Amber is not having a good day. First: she’s just found out that her parents are demons, and so is she. Second: they and their friends are going to kill and devour her to absorb her demonic energy as they have been doing with all their previous children over the last century. To escape she goes on the run aided by mysterious driver Milo, who may or may not be the manifestation of an urban legend, and Glen, a talkative and slightly annoying young Irish man doomed by a death curse. Together they travel the Demon Road, a metaphysical highway linking the supernatural underworld that hides in plain sight throughout the dark heart of America. Read the rest here.
Zero World is equal parts sci-fi, action thriller and espionage mystery. It first gradually draws you in to the seemingly impossible enigma of its setup, then throws you somewhere entirely unexpected.
Promised the greatest mission he’s ever faced, assassin Peter Caswell finds himself sent through a wormhole and transported to a planet that appears to be a less technologically advanced copy of Earth. There he must hunt down a missing scientist using her futuristic knowledge to play god with the world before any damage her actions cause becomes irreparable. Read the rest here.
Out of Time is a surreal but amusing one-shot comic about the employees of a corporate time travel company battling with office tedium and people wreaking havoc with the space-time continuum.
As new girl Lizzie is shown the ropes by cynical time traveller Redmond, we are introduced to a bizarre set of people and a surreal world is haltingly revealed, her presence facilitating a series of vignettes that takes us through the incongruous everyday of futuristic life. Imagine the crew of Red Dwarf starring in a 2000AD Future Shock and you’ll be some of the way there. Read the rest here.
The Hive Construct is a fast-moving sci-fi with an enganging moral ambiguity and angry intensity.
The metropolis of New Cairo is a domed city built within a massive crater and lit by an artificial sun. It’s also a high-tech powder keg teetering on the brink of all-out chaos. As a virus sweeps the city that targets the artificial limbs and organs almost everyone needs to survive, the poorer areas are the ones hit hardest. And when extreme inequality pushes people beyond breaking point, their response can be equally intense. Read the rest here.
Skin is a fantasy set in Brythonic times about a young girl becoming a woman and who may be also the reincarnation of a tribal godess
The seamless weaving of the historical with the fictional and the fantastical is what gives the story its magic, and the equal importance placed in all aspects of it mean that it feels just as natural for Ailia to giggle about boys with her friends as it does for her to hold the attention of earth goddesses. Read the rest here.
Lock In is a sci-fi police prcedural in a world where lock-in syndrome has become epidemic and technology has allowed such people to mentally control androids to interact with the world. Then murders happen.
Engagingly merging sci fi with police procedural is a neat idea with nigh on limitless potential, and while Lock In never veers towards outright comedy, Scalzi’s talent for balancing tone prevents the story from ever becoming too serious, and thus consistently remains an absorbing read. Read the rest here.
Purity Ring is a series that mashes together the concept of pledges of teenage virtue with the tropes of slasher movies. Great fun.
The eve of a tragedy’s first anniversary sees a murderer begin to stalk the quiet streets of Wexworth, a small town dripping with classic Americana where the annual Purity Ball is the highlight of the social calendar. But like any place whose populace make a concerted effort to convince themselves how perfect life there is, it soon becomes apparent that things are anything but. Read the rest here.