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Word Count: 84000

Summary: Edmund is heir to the throne of Thalassa and a wielder of Water magic. Devoted to his kingdom and his duty to it, Edmund can do nothing but acquiesce to an arranged marriage with the queen of a neighboring kingdom. The marriage and the child it is required to produce will seal an alliance between Thalassa and Aither that is vital to Thalassa’s safety, and far more important than Edmund’s personal misgivings. Arden is the younger brother of Aither’s queen and a wielder of Air magic. Raised in the politics of the court to support his sister’s rule, he understands the alliance is important to Aither, even as he worries about his sister marrying someone she’s never met. When Edmund arrives in Aither to prepare for the wedding, Arden is tasked with helping him settle in at court. As they spend more time together, Edmund and Arden develop a close friendship, then stronger feelings, but with Edmund’s wedding approaching, they must hide their feelings, even from themselves. When someone tries to assassinate the queen, Edmund is blamed, and Arden rescues him before he can be executed for a crime he didn’t commit. To prevent a war between their kingdoms and protect them from a dangerous enemy, Edmund and Arden will have to discover who wants to pit Aither and Thalassa against each other and mend relations between the two kingdoms as they evade those searching for them—all while finding a way to be together.

SALE
A Dance of Water and Air - Antonia Aquilante
A Dance of Water and Air SALE
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Word Count: 85788

Summary: Kris Starr used to be famous. Rock and roll. Sold-out shows. Literal magic. Empathic talents and screaming fans. But he has a problem or two. He's having a hard time writing new music. It's Midwinter, which means he's surrounded by depressing holiday cheer. And he's in love with Justin, his manager, who has a talent for rescuing almost- or once-famous bands ... and who's hiding secrets of his own. Justin Moore, on the other hand, is very good at keeping those secrets -- he's had to be for years. One secret involves a demonic inheritance that would make him a target of suspicion. Another involves his past. And the third involves Justin's feelings for Kris Starr, rock and roll icon and now his client ... and a powerful empath.

A Demon for Midwinter - K.L. Noone
A Demon for Midwinter
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: Welcome to the last of the great flying Cities! It’s 9172, YE (Year of the Empire), and the future has forgotten its past. Soaring miles over the Earth, Autumn, the sole surviving flying city, is filled to the brim with the manifold forms of humankind: from Human Plus “floor models” to the oppressed and disfranchised underclasses doing their dirty work and every imaginable variation between. Valerius Bakhoum is a washed-up private eye and street hustler scraping by in Autumn. Late on his rent, fetishized and reviled for his imperfect genetics, stuck in the quicksand of his own heritage, Valerius is trying desperately to wrap up his too-short life when a mythical relic of humanity’s fog-shrouded past walks in and hires him to do one last job. What starts out as Valerius just taking a stranger’s money quickly turns into the biggest and most dangerous mystery he’s ever tried to crack – and Valerius is running out of time to solve it. Now Autumn’s abandoned history – and the monsters and heroes that adorn it – are emerging from the shadows to threaten the few remaining things Valerius holds dear. Can the burned-out detective navigate the labyrinth of lies and maze of blind faith around him to save the City of Autumn from its greatest myth and deadliest threat as he navigates his feelings for his newest client, the handsome golem Alejandro?

A Fall in Autumn - Michael G. Williams
A Fall in Autumn
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: For three years, Jeth and Kodie and their soldiers have guarded a hostile mountain pass against the invading Dathians in a war that has waged for decades. Jeth has the blood of giants running through his veins, and it has caused bigotry and death to dog his steps his entire life. After a childhood tragedy shatters his world, it takes the courage and loyalty of his best friend, Kodie, to protect him from himself. Jeth knows he’s a danger to everyone around him and joins the army to control and focus the black rage inherited from his bestial bloodline. Kodie follows his friend into the army, determined to stay close to the one he loves most. He has never revealed his deeper feelings for Jeth, and is ignorant of Jeth’s own feelings. Their bond is too precious for either of them to risk rejection. Yet they might have to take the chance when Kodie’s life is threatened, and their enemy forges an alliance with a giant clan. Jeth must call upon his darker heritage to brave the hostile environment to make an alliance of his own—with a giant clan that knows more about him than he does himself.

A Giant's Friend - M.D. Grimm
A Giant's Friend
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: NOMINATED FOR BEST NOVELLA OR SHORT STORY IN THE 2020 PARANORMAL ROMANCE GUILD REVIEWER'S CHOICE AWARDS Taken from the arms of her mother, a girl is raised by a family so alien that she hardly knows how to describe them. They are incredibly feral. She is anything but. As life with them becomes more and more bizarre, she has no choice but to incur the wrath of the pack and plead for her release--risking her life to ask it. Much to her surprise, but even more to his, her chosen mate devises a plan to get her home. It involves considerable deception but if ultimately successful, makes it possible for her to return to the mother and the home she so desperately misses. The plan succeeds. It has, however, unintended consequences since his actions cause her to question his motives and what it is to be his mate. She leaves him, nevertheless, returning home with her faithful dog as her travelling companion. Once there, she has a chance encounter with someone--a man who has a surprising connection to her past. But their joyful and unexpected reunion is short-lived. And in the aftermath of the tragedy that occurs, they learn family is what you make it, the people who love you most are the ones who make the greatest sacrifices, and home is where you belong.

A Girl and Her Dog - Sherry Perkins
A Girl and Her Dog
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Word Count: 86611

Summary: Prince Edmund of Thalassa and Prince Arden of Aither are eagerly anticipating their upcoming wedding, but the danger to their kingdom hasn’t lessened. They have a plan, but they won’t be able to carry it out alone: they need a strong wielder of each Element, whom they can trust implicitly, to carry out the magic. Rhys is a commoner and wielder of Earth magic. He and his sister have made a living from the use of their magic for years and have become highly respected in scholarly circles, though he prefers a more simple life with his plants. When a message from Prince Arden reaches them asking for their help, they don’t hesitate. They stop only to request that Gaz, a strong Fire wielder and the man Rhys has long been enamored of, accompany them on the journey to Thalassa’s royal palace. What no one knows is that Gaz was once known as Prince Gareth of Thalassa and is Edmund’s younger brother, long believed dead. He fled his home after his Fire Affinity made itself known and put him in danger, and he had no intention of ever going back. But he can’t keep himself from going to his brother’s aid, despite the risk of discovery and of the weight of his secrets potentially crushing his fledgling relationship with Rhys. Working against time, they must find a way to come together in a magical working the likes of which none of them has ever imagined, or their homelands will surely burn.

SALE
A Harmony of Fire and Earth - Antonia Aquilante
A Harmony of Fire and Earth SALE
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Word Count: 22000

Summary: A sellsword’s bargain. A burgeoning desire. A future balanced on the point of a blade. Sellsword Des is travelling alone in a dry and dusty southern land, after a spectacular bust up with her best friend. She’s running low on coin, so when former client Karina offers her a job leading her caravan’s security through brigand country, it feels like a gift. Des has done the route before, but she isn’t sure about leading solo. She recommends Karina hire Cap, a rugged old mercenary, to head up the crew. Maybe she’ll even learn a thing or two about how to lead, in between the delightful distraction of Karina’s flirtations and keeping the marauders at bay. As they head off on their long trip across Rescalin, though, the wheels start to come off Des’s plan. The crew is drinking too much, even on duty, and Cap is dismissive of the dangers she identifies. Des worries she’s made the wrong call by putting Cap as the lead, and Karina is in her ear, wanting her to take over. As brigands close in, will Des back the merc she put in charge? Or will she take over — and risk the caravan’s safety resting on her blade alone? If you enjoy badass, sword-wielding women, an Australian-inspired setting, sapphic fantasy, and untrustworthy mercenaries, pick up A Hired Blade today, and join Des on her journey.

A Hired Blace - J.C. Rycroft - The Everlands Cycle
A Hired Blade
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: A Scotland Yard Inspector hunts something more dangerous than werewolves through the gaslit streets of London. Royston Jones, unacknowledged bastard of a high-born family, is determined to track the killer before more young women fall to his knife. But his investigation puts him in the way of a lord who is a clandestine werewolf and the man’s fiancée , a woman alchemist with attitude and a secret of her own. Will they destroy Royston to protect their covert identities, or will they join with him to hunt the hunter?

A Hunt by Moonlight - Shawn Reppert - Werewolves and Gaslight Mysteries
A Hunt by Moonlight
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: James Spencer is hardly the typical troubled youth who ends up at Whisperwood School for Boys. Instead of hating the strict schedules and tight oversight by staff, James blossoms, quickly making friends, indulging in his love of writing, and contemplating the merits of sneaking love poems to the elusive and aloof William Esher. The rumours about William’s sexuality and opium reliance are prime gossip material amongst the third years…rumours that only further pique James' curiosity to uncover what William is really like beneath all that emotional armor. And, when the normally collected William stumbles in one night, shaken and ranting of ghosts, James is the only one who believes him. James himself has heard the nails dragging down his bedroom door and the sobs echoing in the halls at night. He knows others have, too, even if no one will admit it. The staff refuses to entertain such ridiculous tales, and punishment awaits anyone who brings it up. Their fervent denial and the disappearance of students only furthers James’ determination to find out what secrets Whisperwood is hiding...especially if it prevents William and himself from becoming the next victims.

A Light Amongst Shadows - Kelley York & Rowan Altwood
A Light Amongst Shadows
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Word Count: 93700

Summary: A princess on the run. A captain on the hunt for treasure. When their paths cross, will they be each other's salvation? Keola is a mermaid – and bound for marriage to a foreign human prince. Unable to face a life cut off from the ocean with a man she despises, she chooses freedom at a terrible cost. Posing as a human wavesinger to remain hidden from her pursuers, she finds work on the ship of the dashing captain Anaar Kahlani.Anaar is searching for a mythical treasure and believes that Keola is the key to finding it. Amidst the hunt for fame and fortune, Anaar begins to fall for the mysterious wavesinger. Confronted with a secret and a dangerous revelation, she must decide what price she is willing to pay for untold riches – and for love. When Keola’s past catches up with her, can they survive the oncoming storm together, or will the trials ahead demand more of them than they are willing to sacrifice?

A Melody in the Deep - Cara N. Delaney
A Melody in the Deep
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: When Selena Dillon is caught in an assassination attempt on her planet’s ruler, she finds herself sentenced to twenty-five years servitude in the most feared military force, the Penal Regiments. Much to her surprise she enjoys the harsh military life and is quickly selected for officer training. But something’s wrong, worlds are falling silent. There’s no cry for help and no warning, just a sudden eerie silence. When a flotilla of ships is despatched to investigate they exit hyperspace to find themselves facing a massive alien armada. Outnumbered and outgunned the flotilla fight a rear-guard action, allowing one of their number to slip away and warn mankind. As worlds fall in battle, and mankind’s fleets are decimated, Selena is selected to lead a team of the Penal Regiment’s most battle-hardened veterans, in a last ditch attempt to destroy the aliens’ home world. If she fails mankind is doomed. Little does Selena know that one of her crew is a psychopathic killer and another is the husband of his victim. Can she hold her team together, get them to their target and succeed in the attack? Selena knows that if she fails then there will be nothing at all left to go home to.

A Pride of Lions - Mark Iles - Darkening Stars
A Pride of Lions
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Word Count: 53,000

Summary: “Orcs are the answer but what is the question?” Elias is a priest at the Temple of the Divine Sibyl. When he becomes lost in the woods after his brother’s hunting party abandons him, it’s just his luck that he’d stumble upon an angry orc caught in a trap. Unable to stomach the suffering of others, Elias throws self-preservation to the wind and frees the orc. Then Gurrkk—that’s a name?—ends up leading him to safety. Gurrkk finds himself rather smitten by the sweet, awkward human. He’s always been fascinated with his people’s sworn enemy, and now he has a life debt to fulfill to maintain his honor. Hiding an orc among the temple’s crypts wouldn’t have been Elias’s first choice but Gurrkk is stubborn about leaving. As they learn each other’s languages and spend more time together, Elias realizes they’ve become friends… and maybe more. And when the dying sibyl gives her last prophecy, Elias knows it wasn’t chance that brought them together, it was the gods. But why? This is a sweet, ace romance, so no sexy times, but plenty of snuggles and cuddles!

A Priest, a Plague and a Prophecy - M.D. Grimm
A Priest, a Plague, and a Prophecy
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary:

In every legend of Fairyland, the fairies have their own reasons for crossing the border…
Oliver has spent his life as the crown prince, preparing to rule but in no hurry about it, enjoying life and taverns with Tirian, his fairy-companion and best friend. But when the traditional Vision Quest calls— and a dragon appears—Oliver finds himself facing difficult questions about heroism, sacrifice… and the emotions he’s discovering about Tir. But Tirian has secrets of his own, about his purpose, his magic, his feelings for Oliver, and a prophecy that will change the fates of two kingdoms forever.

A Prophecy for Two - K.L. Noone
A Prophecy for Two
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: Rudyard Albert Goldstein, inventor of the Biomic Network Algorithm, made piece with death once in the 22nd century, but an idiot doctor hijacked his mind, placing it in the care of Nessie, an impish AI guardian. Nessie preserved him from a civilization-ending asteroid strike so that he could help his descendants survive contact with an alien species 923,000 years, four months, and three days later. Then, he died again, merged with a worm-a-pede alien male who narrowly survived fulfilling his mating duties. They expired peacefully on a cliff top, pondering the nature of existence—and the promise of abominable liaisons.   Two deaths should be quite sufficient for any genius to endure.   Somehow, Nessie resurrected him from oblivion. His descendants needed him again. New hostile aliens roamed the Earth—along with an immortal, alien-human hybrid whose agenda was unclear. Was the healthy young body Nessie had prepared for him, along with the prospect of finally discovering “the meaning of it all” enough of a bribe to risk dying a third time?   Apparently so.   Readers of Raham’s A Singular Prophecy (Biostration, 2011), and A Once-Dead Genius in the Kennel of Master Morticue Ambergrand (Penstemon Publications, 2018) will reconnect with old friends (both human and alien). But even those new to the author’s quirky sense of humor will enjoy this third and final adventure that spans the breadth of time and space.

A Twice-Dead Genius Comporting With Misunderstood Abominations - R. Gary Raham
A Twice-Dead Genius Comporting With Misunderstood Abominations
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Word Count: 56000

Summary: New Hopeland was built to be the centre of the technological age, but like everywhere else, it has its dark side. Assassins, drug dealers and crooked businessmen form a vital part of the city’s make-up, and sometimes, the police are in too deep themselves to be effective. But hey, there are always other options … For P.I. Cassie Tam, business has been slow. So, when she’s hired to investigate the death of a local VR addict named Eddie Redwood, she thinks it’ll be easy money. All she has to do is prove to the deceased’s sister Lori that the local P.D. were right to call it an accidental overdose. The more she digs though, the more things don’t seem to sit right, and soon, Cassie finds herself knee deep in a murder investigation. But that’s just the start of her problems. When the case forces Cassie to make contact with her drug dealing ex-girlfriend, Charlie Goldman, she’s left with a whole lot of long buried personal issues to deal with. Then there’s her client. Lori Redwood is a Tech Shifter, someone who uses a metal exoskeleton to roleplay as an animal. Cassie isn’t one to judge, but the Tech Shifting community has always left her a bit nervous. That wouldn’t be a problem if Lori wasn’t fast becoming the first person that she’s been genuinely attracted to since splitting with Charlie. Oh, and then there’s the small matter of the police wanting her to back off the case. Easy money, huh? Yeah, right. Rainbow Award Honorable Mention

Honorable Mention: Rainbow Awards 2017 - Lesbian Sci-Fi Category

Addict - Matt Doyle
Addict
Published:

Word Count: 161705

Summary: An underground city, built centuries ago to ride out the devastating heat. A society under attack. And a young solar engineer whose skills may be the key to saving her city…if she doesn’t get herself killed first. When Jossey was ten, the creatures of the aboveground took her brother and left her for dead, with horrible scars. Now, years later, she’s a successful solar engineer, working to keep her underground city’s power running, but she’s never really recovered. After she saves dozens of people during a second attack, she is offered a top-secret assignment as a field Engineer with Patrol, but fear prevents her from taking it…until Patrol finds bones near where her brother disappeared. She signs on and finds herself catapulted into a world that is far more dangerous, and requires far more of her, than she ever imagined. The creatures and the burning heat aboveground are not the only threats facing the City, and what she learns during her assignment could cost her her life: one of the greatest threats to the City may in fact lie within. With thousands of lives at stake, can she act in time? Aestus is an adult dystopian science-fiction series set centuries after climate change has ravaged much of Earth. An epic story of vengeance, power, shifting loyalties, and survival that looks at just how far people will go to protect what they love, brought to you by science writer S.Z. Attwell, Aestus paints a picture of a world in which far too little has changed. 

Aestus - S.Z. Attwell - The City
Aestus, Book 1: The City
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: Seven stories of the gap year for the Children of Amargosa between Storming Amargosa and Suicide Run: Tishla must decide if Hanar can accommodate a group of socially inept sentient turtles. JT Austin has a ghost. Eric Yuwono must deal with his former enemies, who are now refugees on Amargosa. Davra Andraste tries to save a group of mean girls in space. Connor Duffy hacks the Boston sewer system. Ellie Nardino ponders her future, which might include terraforming. Mitsuko Yamato confronts squid people

COMING SOON
After Amargosa - TS Hottle
After Amargosa
Available on:

Word Count: 73,151

Summary: Time travel. For mages, it violates their number one rule: what the Mother has written, let no one unwrite. The Mother writes the destinies of the creatures on the world of Karishian. If her writings were undone, it is feared that Creation itself could be undone. The dark mage Morgorth takes this rule to heart, but there are others who do not. Morgorth is about to claim a stone of power when it is stolen from him by a female mage he hasn't seen in decades. As they struggle for the stone, she activates it, and Morgorth is unwillingly plunged into another time and another place. It isn't long before he realizes what time he's found himself in and there are a few familiar faces. Most notable is a much younger version of Aishe. His mate. Living with a tribe who will be massacred, caring for a young lad who will become his mate, and fighting a battle against a mage who can travel from past to future at a whim—Morgorth's life has never been easy but now he must contend with the will of the Mother. Unable to change the future and the tragedies of Aishe's life, he must decide what his role in his mate's past will be, and ask himself one vital question: how does one defeat time?

Agate: Then and Now - M.D. Grimm - Stones of Power
Agate: Then and Now
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Word Count: 22700

Summary: When yet another wave of colonizing Felters arrives to strengthen their fortress on the forest’s edge, Velu, an indigenous hunter, knows they bring only pain and death. But with them arrives an intriguing older woman who hunts legends. When Velu learns the woman, Lady Greyback, shares his terrifying visions of the ancient scorpion god, Ajakava, she invites him to research what they mean. But the Felters grow hostile, blaming Velu and the other hunters for deaths in a doomed expedition through the forest. Meanwhile, the visions become ever more persistent, hinting the god is awakening. When a second Felter expedition seeks to extend their reach to the capital beyond the forest, only Velu and Lady Greyback know they will walk straight into Ajakava's clutches. While the lady sees new destruction, Velu sees memories of a long-forgotten massacre. What vengeance does the old god have in store, and for whom? Find out what happens in Ajakava by Chaitanya Murali

Ajakava - Chaitanya Murali
Ajakava
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Word Count: Information not available

Summary: Step through a portal in time - and steal a piece of history! Iria and Madge, witches extraordinaire, have summoned Joshua Norton I, self-declared Emperor of the United States, back from the nineteenth century to help them save the city of San Francisco from a demon of greed. Mammon, their infernal adversary, is running a real estate scam to end all real estate scams, and he's got his own helping hand from the city's past: Etta Place, famous in her day as the accomplice of Butch Cassidy and partner of the Sundance Kid. As Norton dodges mafia foot soldiers alongside another of San Francisco's larger-than-life figures from yesteryear on the fog-shrouded streets of Chinatown long ago, Iria and Madge find themselves face to face with Mammon and Etta in modern day - and trapped in very different timelines. It'll take all their ingenuity, bravery, and prowess to fix time itself, steal the prize, and get these three heroes back together!

All the Pomp of Earthly Majesty - Michael G. Williams - Shadow Council Archives
All the Pomp of Earthly Majesty
Published:
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