Swords and Spaceships

Neo-Luddites vs. The Panopticon

Happy Friday, shipmates! It’s Alex, and this time I’ve got for you the double dose of new releases that you didn’t get on Tuesday. I hope you had a safe and peaceful week, if possible. My thoughts are still very much with the people of Maui (and will be for some time, I think) and taken up by how much we all mean to each other on this fragile blue marble of ours. Stay safe out there, space pirates, and I’ll see you on Tuesday.

Delighting velocireaders since 2017, Book Riot’s New Release Index will keep you in the know about all the latest books. All of them! For when my double features are not enough, because there are too many good books. Subscribe today — you won’t be able to read them all, but it’s fun to try!

Let’s make the world a better place, together. Here’s two places to start:

Maui Aloha: The People’s Response, which sends support to those affected by the wildfires on Maui, particularly first responders.

Entertainment Community Fund, which supports entertainment workers who are striking for living wages and a future where humans can continue to create art for each other.

Bookish Goods

mexican gothic painting

Mexican Gothic Painting by MSchueyArtworks

This is cool as heck. It’s a Gouache watercolor painting plainly inspired by Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s Mexican Gothic — whence the pattern of mushrooms, ouroboros symbols, and eyes. $25

New Releases

vampires of el norte book cover

Vampires of El Norte by Isabel Cañas

Nena is the daughter of a rancher in 1840s Mexico; while the Anglo settlers to the north of the ranch are often a threat, she knows of one much more pressing and terrifying: the vampires that attacked her nine years ago, which still lurk near the ranch at night. Her childhood sweetheart Néstor believes her dead in the attack and has been wandering since, working as a vaquero. When the U.S. invades Mexico in 1846, the two are brought back together. But whatever complicated feelings the two may have for each other are quickly overshadowed by the return of the monster that haunts both their nightmares.

the cover of Thornhedge by T Kingfisher

Thornhedge by T. Kingfisher

On the day of her birth, Toadling was stolen away by the fairies, and she grew up safe and loved in their care. Now grown up, the fairies ask a favor of her: return to the human world to offer a blessing to a newborn. It isn’t as simple as that, though; things with the fae never are. Many centuries later, Toadling faces a knight hacking his way through a wall of impenetrable thorns, determined to break a curse that Toadling must uphold.

For a more comprehensive list of new releases, check out our New Books newsletter.

Riot Recommendations

Here’s a double dose of new releases for this week, since I didn’t throw one at you on Tuesday!

cover of The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman

The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman

When Mia is at her lowest point, reading The Scarlet Letter saves her; the story it tells is so familiar to the life Mia knew, growing up in a cult in Massachusetts. As she grows older and begins a strange journey through time, she falls in love with the man who wrote that book.

Cover of More Perfect by Temi Oh

More Perfect by Temi Oh

The Panopticon is a network that connects the minds and dreams of people, allowing one to peer into the thoughts of another. Moremi connects to it, hoping to find a cure for loneliness and depression. Then she meets Orpheus, who was raised as a neo-Luddite, and who views the Panopticon with extreme suspicion, for all its promises of connecting humanity together. Together, they discover the dark side of that promise.

See you, space pirates. If you’d like to know more about my secret plans to dominate the seas and skies, you can catch me over at my personal site.