C.E. Murphy’s The Queen’s Bastard is released today. This is the first of a brand new series called “The Inheritors’ Cycle.” It scored a starred review in Booklist:
“In a world in which women are considered weak and lesser than men, three remarkable women wind up ruling three powerful kingdoms in the first of what promises to be an outstanding series featuring a masterfully intricate dance of politics and intrigue in a world with parallels to the Elizabethan era. Belinda Primrose, supposedly an orphan but truly the bastard of Queen Lorraine and her secret spymaster, Robert Drake, learns to hide her thoughts and feelings at a very young age, masters several combat skills, and executes her first assassination before she is 12. Assuming the identity of Beatrice Irvine, a young widow from a Scotland-like country, her pious attendance at church draws the attention of a wealthy young merchant prince who is an intimate of young Javier, who will be king when his mother steps aside as regent. Belinda and Javier recognize in each other a kinship in their ability to harness powers and do things that would ensure their execution as witches should anyone discover them. Readers will be eagerly awaiting their story’s next installment in The Inheritors’ Cycle.”
Also, Jay Lake’s first novel in his clockwork earth setting, Mainspring, is now available in paperback. The second book, Escapement, is due to be published this summer.
“In Mainspring, Lake has created a grandiose, thoroughly engaging blasphemy. This book blends the best of nostalgic adventure fiction with a genuinely fresh voice and ideas. An instant steampunk classic.” – Cory Doctorow
“The gears that propel this story run — yes — like clockwork. The world Jay’s created here is one of the best wind-up toys a reader could ever want.” – John Scalzi
“From the sweeping mechanisms of his clockwork world, down to the subtle movements of his characters, all drawn with a clockmaker’s eye, Lake gives us a story both grand and intimate, smart and savvy…and a whole lot of fun to boot.” – Hal Duncan