Monday, February 01, 2016

2016 Debut Author Challenge - February Debuts

There are 10 debuts for January. Please note that we use the publisher's publication date in the United States, not copyright dates or non-US publication dates.

The February debut authors and their novels are listed in alphabetical order by author (not book title or publication date). Take a good look at the covers. Voting for your favorite February cover for the 2016 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will take place starting on February 15, 2016.

If you are participating as a reader in the Challenge, please let us know in the comments what you are thinking of reading or email us at "DAC . TheQwillery @ gmail . com" (remove the spaces and quotation marks). Please note that we list all debuts for the month (of which we are aware), but not all of these authors will be 2016 Debut Author Challenge featured authors. However, any of these novels may be read by Challenge readers to meet the goal for February 2016 The list is correct as of the day posted.

Jordanna Max Brodsky

The Immortals
Olympus Bound 1
Orbit, February 16, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 464 pages

Manhattan has many secrets. Some are older than the city itself.

The city sleeps. Selene DiSilva walks her dog along the banks of the Hudson. She is alone -- just the way she likes it. She doesn't believe in friends, and she doesn't speak to her family. Most of them are simply too dangerous.

In the predawn calm, Selene finds the body of a young woman washed ashore, gruesomely mutilated and wreathed in laurel. Her ancient rage returns. And so does the memory of a promise she made long ago -- when her name was Artemis.

Eve Chase

Black Rabbit Hall
G.P. Putnam's Sons, February 9, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 384 pages
(US Debut)

For fans of Kate Morton and Sarah Waters, here’s a magnetic debut novel of wrenching family secrets, forbidden love, and heartbreaking loss housed within the grand gothic manor of Black Rabbit Hall.

Ghosts are everywhere, not just the ghost of Momma in the woods, but ghosts of us too, what we used to be like in those long summers . . .
Amber Alton knows that the hours pass differently at Black Rabbit Hall, her London family’s country estate, where no two clocks read the same. Summers there are perfect, timeless. Not much ever happens. Until, of course, it does.

More than three decades later, Lorna is determined to be married within the grand, ivy-covered walls of Pencraw Hall, known as Black Rabbit Hall among the locals. But as she’s drawn deeper into the overgrown grounds, half-buried memories of her mother begin to surface and Lorna soon finds herself ensnared within the manor’s labyrinthine history, overcome with an insatiable need for answers about her own past and that of the once-happy family whose memory still haunts the estate.

Stunning and atmospheric, this debut novel is a thrilling spiral into the hearts of two women separated by decades but inescapably linked by the dark and tangled secrets of Black Rabbit Hall.

Mo Daviau

Every Anxious Wave
St. Martin's Press, February 16, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 288 pages

Good guy Karl Bender is a thirty-something bar owner whose life lacks love and meaning. When he stumbles upon a time-travelling worm hole in his closet, Karl and his best friend Wayne develop a side business selling access to people who want to travel back in time to listen to their favorite bands. It's a pretty ingenious plan, until Karl, intending to send Wayne to 1980, transports him back to 980 instead. Though Wayne sends texts extolling the quality of life in tenth century "Mannahatta," Karl is distraught that he can't bring his friend back.

Enter brilliant, prickly, overweight astrophysicist, Lena Geduldig. Karl and Lena's connection is immediate. While they work on getting Wayne back, Karl and Lena fall in love -- with time travel, and each other. Unable to resist meddling with the past, Karl and Lena bounce around time. When Lena ultimately prevents her own long-ago rape, she alters the course of her life and threatens her future with Karl.

A high-spirited and engaging novel, EVERY ANXIOUS WAVE plays ball with the big questions of where we would go and who we would become if we could rewrite our pasts, as well as how to hold on to love across time.

Julie Christine Johnson

In Another Life
Sourcebooks Landmark, February 2, 2016
Trade Paperback and eBook, 368 pages

She has fallen for a man who shouldn’t exist

Historian Lia Carrer has finally returned to southern France, determined to rebuild her life after the death of her husband. But instead of finding solace in the region’s quiet hills and medieval ruins, she falls in love with Raoul, a man whose very existence challenges everything she knows about life—and about her husband’s death. As Raoul reveals the story of his past to Lia, she becomes entangled in the echoes of an ancient murder, resulting in a haunting and suspenseful journey that reminds Lia that the dead may not be as far from us as we think.
Steeped in the rich history and romantic landscape of rural France, In Another Life is a story of love that conquers time, and the lost loves that haunt us all.

Idra Novey

Ways to Disappear
Little, Brown and Company, February 9, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 272 pages

A debut novel about the disappearance of a famous Brazilian novelist and the young translator who turns her life upside down to follow her author's trail.

Deep in gambling debt, the celebrated Brazilian writer Beatriz Yagoda is last seen holding a suitcase and a cigar and climbing into an almond tree. She abruptly vanishes.

In snowy Pittsburgh, her American translator Emma hears the news and, against the wishes of her boyfriend and Beatriz's two grown children, flies immediately to Brazil. There, in the sticky, sugary heat of Rio, Emma and her author's children conspire to solve the mystery of Yagoda's curious disappearance and staunch the colorful demands of her various outstanding affairs: the rapacious loan shark with a zeal for severing body parts, and the washed-up and disillusioned editor who launched Yagoda's career years earlier.

Idra Novey's exhilarating debut is an international romp: a madcap blend of mystery, romance, noir, and humor.

Jamie Sawyer

The Lazarus War 1
Orbit, February 23, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 544 pages
(US Debut)

Artefact is book one of The Lazarus War, an explosive new space adventure series from one of the brightest new stars in science fiction - perfect for fans of The Edge of Tomorrow, Alien and James S. A. Corey's Expanse series. Jack Campbell, author of the Lost Fleet novels calls it "a gripping read that moves at warp speed."

Mankind has spread to the stars, only to become locked in warfare with an insidious alien race. All that stands against the alien menace are the soldiers of the Simulant Operation Programme, an elite military team remotely operating avatars in the most dangerous theatres of war.

Captain Conrad Harris has died hundreds of times - running suicide missions in simulant bodies. Known as Lazarus, he is a man addicted to death. So when a secret research station deep in alien territory suddenly goes dark, there is no other man who could possibly lead a rescue mission.

But Harris hasn't been trained for what he's about to find. And this time, he may not be coming back . . .

Artefact is an action-drenched tale of elite space marines, deep space exploration and galactic empires. Discover The Lazarus War - the thrilling new space opera series from one of the most exciting new voices in science fiction.

R. H. Scott

Chosen Soldiers
Harper Voyager Impulse. February 9, 2016
    eBook, 304 pages
Harper Voyager Impulse, March 1, 2016
    Mass Market Paperback, 352 pages

After the missiles tore up the Earth, societies crumbled, leaving scattered patches of humanity struggling to survive. Slowly, a group came together, helping each other regrow a world worth living in.

And then the Others attacked.

Realizing the need to truly protect themselves, they formed the Academy: a place where young people could be built into an elite military force. The training is intense…and so are the consequences for failure.

Sloan Radcliffe is not a failure. In fact, she’s the best of the best—the girls’ Senior Champion—and the only one who can match her is matched to her: her betrothed, Jared Dawson. They are the perfect couple: exemplary fighters, pure leaders, and exceptional role models. But as their time at the Academy draws to a close, Sloan is starting to see signs that maybe their life is built upon secrets…and that secrets are never a strong foundation.

With the battlefront looming and whispers growing louder, Sloan is caught up not only between her loyalties to her people, but also to the man she loves.

A combination of military sci-fi and dystopian thriller, R. H. Scott’s Chosen Soldiers is an intense look at a young woman’s world shattering under the weight of its own illusions.

Mark de Silva

Square Wave
Two Dollar Radio, February 9, 2016
Trade Paperback and eBook, 394 pages

Carl Stagg, a writer researching imperial power struggles in 17th century Sri Lanka, ekes out a living as a watchman in a factionalized America where confidence in democracy has eroded. Along his nightly patrol, Stagg finds a beaten prostitute, one in a series of monstrous attacks. Suspicious of his supervisor's intentions, Stagg partners with a fellow part-time watchman, Ravan, to seek the truth. Ravan hails from a family developing storm-dispersal technologies, whose research is jointly funded by the Indian and American governments.

The watchmen's discoveries put a troubling complexion on Stagg's research, giving it new shape and impetus, just as the weather modification project begins to appear less about dispersing storms than weaponizing them.

By gracefully weaving a study of the psychological effects of a militarized state upon its citizenry with topics as diverse as microtonal music and cloud physics, Square Wave signals the triumphant arrival of a young writer certain to be considered one of the most ambitious and intelligent of his generation.

James Thompson

The Anthrax Protocol
Pinnacle, February 23, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook,416 pages

It Kills Slowly…

In an excavation site in Mexico, a team of archeologists uncovers the lost tomb of Montezuma--and a deadly strain of anthrax as ancient as the Biblical plagues. One by one, the team falls violently ill, bleeding from their eyes and ears before succumbing to a slow, painful death. Whatever was buried with the Aztec chief is still active, infectious--and now airborne…

It Spreads Quickly…

In Austin, a young archeologist listens to the dying words of her mentor in Mexico--a warning to quarantine the site before all hell breaks loose. In Atlanta, the CDC's Dr. Mason Williams leads an emergency squad on a life-or-death mission--into the hot zone. At Fort Detrick, an army officer sends a trained team to secure the anthrax--as a biological weapon. But time is running out. The disease is spreading rapidly across the border, into the airports, and across the globe, killing thousands. With no cure, no vaccine, and no way to contain it, there will be no hope for humanity--to survive…

Tamara Valentine

What the Waves Know
William Morrow Paperbacks, February 9, 2016
Trade Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

In the tradition of Sue Monk Kidd and Beth Hoffman comes a compelling debut novel about a young woman's quest to find herself—and her voice—on the island where she lost both.

The tiny state of Rhode Island is home to even tinier Tillings Island—which witnessed the biggest event of Izabella Rae Haywood's life. For it was there, on Iz's sixth birthday, that her father left...and took her voice with him.

Eight years later in the summer of 1974, Iz’s mother is through with social workers, psychiatrists and her daughter's silence. In one last attempt to return Iz’s voice, the motley pair board the ferry to Tillings in hopes that the journey will help Izabella heal herself by piecing together splintered memories of the day her words fled.

But heartbreak is a difficult puzzle to solve, and everyone in Tillings seems to know something Iz does not. Worse, each has an opinion about Izabella's dreamer of a father, the undercurrents of whose actions have spun so many lives off course.

Now, as the island's annual Yemayá festival prepares to celebrate the ties that bind mothers to children, lovers to each other, and humankind to the sea, Izabella must unravel the tangled threads of her own history and reclaim a voice gone silent…or risk losing herself—and any chance she may have for a future—to the past.

What the Waves Know is a moving, magical novel that asks us to consider the stories which tell the truth and the stories we tell ourselves.


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