In the Book of Swords, acclaimed editor and bestselling author Gardner Dozois presents an all-new anthology of original epic tales by a stellar cast of award-winning modern masters — many of them set in their authors’ best-loved worlds. Join today’s finest tellers of fantastic tales, including George R.R. Martin, K.J. Parker, Robin Hobb, Ken Liu, C.J. Cherryh, Daniel Abraham, Lavie Tidhar, Ellen Kushner, and more on action-packed journeys into the outer realms of dark enchantment and intrepid derring-do, featuring a stunning assortment of fearless swordsmen and warrior women who face down danger and death at every turn with courage, cunning, and cold steel.
When assassins ambush her best friend, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing herself as one of a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light, and a queen of blood. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven elemental magic trials. If she fails, she will be executed...unless the trials kill her first. One thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a fairy tale to Eliana Ferracora. A bounty hunter for the Undying Empire, Eliana believes herself untouchable--until her mother vanishes. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain and discovers that the evil at the empire's heart is more terrible than she ever imagined. As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world--and of each other.
Simon Quinn can have any woman he wants, but he prefers them jaded, worldly, and free of illusions. His life is one of danger and temporary pleasures. An Irish commoner, he has nothing more than his expertise as a lover and mercenary to recommend him and no title, property, or family to redeem him. Lysette Rousseau is a deadly beauty who can seduce or betray with equal skill. She should be just the sort of woman Simon entertains, but something about her sets him on edge. At times she is a femme fatale he cannot abide, at others she is warm, sweet, and irresistibly alluring. His reactions to both sides of her are equally powerful, but for opposite reasons. It seems almost as if there are two women in one… Twins! …one wounded and exploited, the other innocent but strong. Lynette Rousseau will do anything to reclaim the sister who doesn’t remember her. She will gain the proficiency required to enter the underworld her sibling occupies. But how will she defend herself against the enigmatic, seductive Simon Quinn? A man who can liberate Lysette, but whose insatiable desires may ensnare Lynette forever…
An orphan girl. A dark and twisted kingdom. An ongoing shadow war resulting in enslaved fairies. This is the world of Cinder. A world where a girl like her can be sold to be human prey for a ritualistic hunt. But on this night, even the predators might have something to fear. On this night, even a royal prince might find himself trapped by the expectations of the Dark King…and a girl like no other.
When Elizabeth Bennet first meets eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited; he is indifferent to her good looks and lively mind. When she later discovers that Darcy has involved himself in the troubled relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, Jane Austen shows the folly of judging by first impressions and superbly evokes the friendships, gossip and snobberies of provincial middle-class life.
The Above and the Under have a tenuous truce that is shattered after the death of both their respective rulers. Gemma, the new queen of Under, must throw history aside and team up with Tollan, the heir to the Above throne, in order to take down a power that seeks to rule them all. Their group of rebels is comprised of an assassin, a sex worker, and a palace servant from Above, and we follow their unique perspectives as they are forced to question previously held beliefs. But even with war looming, romance still grows. Challenging gender roles and the expectation that every prince must have a princess, Tollan discovers love with Elam—a young man, a sex worker, and one of Gemma’s closest friends.
Isabelle should be blissfully happy – she’s about to win the handsome prince. Except Isabelle isn’t the beautiful girl who lost the glass slipper and captured the prince’s heart. She’s the ugly stepsister who’s cut off her toes to fit into Cinderella’s shoe … which is now filling with blood. When the prince discovers Isabelle’s deception, she is turned away in shame. It’s no more than she deserves: she is a plain girl in a world that values beauty; a feisty girl in a world that wants her to be pliant. Isabelle has tried to fit in. To live up to her mother’s expectations. To be like her stepsister. To be sweet. To be pretty. One by one, she has cut away pieces of herself in order to survive a world that doesn’t appreciate a girl like her. And that has made her mean, jealous, and hollow. Until she gets a chance to alter her destiny and prove what ugly stepsisters have always known: it takes more than heartache to break a girl.
This book gives you the events of what happened from some time before Aegon the Conqueror came to Westeros, to the time of Aegon III. Some things are presented as clear facts and other speculations, but it still paints a clear picture of how and why things went down as they did. A lot of questions I had before have now been answered. Like why the Dragon population was so drastically diminished and how/why the Targaryen wedding customs between siblings was even accepted at all.
Enthralled by his own exquisite portrait, Dorian Gray exchanges his soul for eternal youth and beauty. Influenced by his friend Lord Henry Wotton, he is drawn into a corrupt double life; indulging his desires in secret while remaining a gentleman inthe eyes of polite society.
A girl who can speak to gods must save her people without destroying herself. A prince in danger must decide who to trust. A boy with a monstrous secret waits in the wings. Together, they must assassinate the king and stop the war. In a centuries-long war where beauty and brutality meet, their three paths entwine in a shadowy world of spilled blood and mysterious saints, where a forbidden romance threatens to tip the scales between dark and light.