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The City We Became

N.K. Jemisin (Orbit)

The personified boroughs of New York battle cosmic horrors that threaten the soul of their city in the blockbuster urban fantasy that opens Jemisin’s Great Cities trilogy. Equally playful and poetic, this exquisite novel works as an action-packed romp, a searing indictment of gentrification, and a heartfelt ode to N.Y.C.

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Everyone on the Moon Is Essential Personnel

Julian K. Jarboe (Lethe)

Jarboe’s debut collection careens from tongue-in-cheek body horror to incisive science fiction populated by characters on the margins of society and ranging in tone from the incandescently furious to the devotional. Featuring emotional climate apocalypses, playful riffs on Kafka, and tenderly imagined space colonies, this collection is an outstanding showcase of an exciting new voice in genre fiction.

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The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

V.E. Schwab (Tor)

A Faustian bargain fuels this gorgeous, melancholy fantasy from Schwab. The devil grants immortality to Addie LaRue, but curses her so that no one she meets will ever remember her. Rendered in breathless, lyrical prose, this poignant novel sweeps through 300 lonely years of Addie’s life as she searches for a way to make her mark on an indifferent world.

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The Lost Future of Pepperharrow

Natasha Pulley (Bloomsbury)

Pulley pulls off an impressive feat with this sophisticated work of speculative fiction. In an alternate 19th-century Japan, clairvoyant watchmaker Keita Mori uses his knowledge of the future to manipulate the lives of the people around him. The resulting plot is just as intricately constructed and delightful as one of Mori’s clockwork creations

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The Only Good Indians

Stephen Graham Jones (Saga)

Sharp satire blends with gut-wrenching gore as a past mistake comes back to haunt a group of friends from the Blackfeet nation in this frenetic, funny, and genuinely frightening horror novel. This is Jones at the height of his considerable powers, grounding both supernatural and psychological scares in impressive cultural specificity.

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Riot Baby

Tochi Onyebuchi (Tor.com)

Superpowered Black teenage siblings Ella and Kev contend with American racism past, present, and future in this brilliant, brutal novella. When Kev is wrongfully arrested in New York City, Ella uses their preternatural connection to offer him visions of freedom within his prison cell. It may be a novella, but it packs in all the power and awe of an epic.

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Strange Labour

Robert G. Penner (Radiant)

Penner offers a visionary new take on postapocalyptic tropes in his deeply felt debut. When every neurotypical adult is mysteriously compelled to abandon their lives and take up the creation of monumental earth works, it falls to the neurodivergent to navigate the new world and care for its abandoned children. This thought-provoking novel represents a fresh direction for the subgenre.

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