Sleeps With Monsters: What I’m Looking Forward to in 2019


Personally, I’m looking forward to getting married to the woman whom I love. But that’s not exactly the kind of content for which you guys read this column, I think. (Although if you want to hear about wedding-planning-on-a-budget trials, I’m sure some of that will spill onto my Twitter feed in the coming year.)

2018 was a hell of a year, both in political terms, and for me, in personal ones. (I got engaged to be married! My fiancée and I bought a house!) It had some fantastic books in it, though, despite a political landscape determined to find higher and higher cliffs to dive from. Several of those fantastic books have sequels or continuations due out in 2019, which means I’m eagerly awaiting:


Alice Payne Rides by Kate Heartfield

Kate Heartfield, Alice Payne Rides ( Publishing, March 5th) is the sequel to weird and engaging time-travel novella Alice Payne Arrives.


Storm of Locusts by Rebecca Roanhorse

Rebecca Roanhorse’s Storm of Locusts (Saga Press, April 23rd), the sequel to Trail of Lightning, is set among the Navajo people in a future where magic and technology coexist.


Hexarchate Stories by Yoon Ha Lee

Yoon Ha Lee’s Hexarchate Stories (Solaris, June 25th) is a collection of stories set in the same universe as Ninefox Gambit, Raven Stratagem, and Revenant Gun.


Jade War by Fonda Lee

Jade War (Orbit, July 23rd) is the sequel to Fonda Lee’s amazing Jade City—which came out in 2017, but I’m counting it here anyway.


The House of Sundering Flames by Aliette de Bodard

Aliette de Bodard’s The House of Sundering Flames (Gollancz, July 25th) is a new volume in her gothic Paris series that started with The House of Shattered Wings and continued in The House of Binding Thorns.


The Ascent to Godhood by J.Y. Yang

Based on past form, J.Y. Yang’s The Ascent to Godhood ( Publishing, July 30th), the latest volume in Yang’s Tensorate series, is sure to be interesting, even if it doesn’t make me fall in love with its characters and narrative mode.


To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers

To Be Taught, If Fortunate (Harper Voyager, Sept 3rd) is a new novella from Becky Chambers about which I have seen few details—but I’m very eager for it nonetheless.


When She Reigns by Jodi Meadows

When She Reigns (Katherine Tegen, Sept 10th) is the culmination of Jodi Meadows’ Fallen Isles trilogy.


The Warrior Moon by K. Arsenault Rivera

K. Arsenault Rivera’s The Warrior Moon (Tor Books, Sept 24th) is the sequel to The Phoenix Empress and the culmination of the epic story (and romance) begun in The Tiger’s Daughter.


Down Among the Dead by K.B. Wagers

K.B. Wagers’ Down Among the Dead (Orbit Books), sequel to There Before the Chaos, and the second volume in a new trilogy starring ex-gunrunner and current empress Hail Bristol.


…and I’m holding out hope for sequels from R.E. Stearns (author of pirates-and-engineers-and-lesbians-in-space novels Barbary Station and Mutiny at Vesta) and Theodora Goss (author of The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter and European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman), because—while I’ve seen nothing announced as yet—I’m deeply looking forward to reading more from them.

I haven’t enumerated here the standalone novels and new first-books-in-series that I’m looking forward to in 2019, because I’m planning to talk about them in another column. But I do want to mention two serials that I’m looking forward to reading, both out of Serial Box Publications: Ninth Step Station, created by Malka Older and written by Malka Older, Fran Wilde, Jacqueline Koyanagi, and Curtis C. Chen, set in a future Tokyo and based around a series of mysteries; and The Vela, a space opera starring a mercenary with the fate of the universe at stake, written by Yoon Ha Lee, Becky Chambers, Rivers Solomon, and S.L. Huang. I’m interested to see how these talented teams handle the serial form: they look very promising to me.

Here’s to a 2019 that improves on 2018!

Liz Bourke is a cranky queer person who reads books. She holds a Ph.D in Classics from Trinity College, Dublin. Her first book, Sleeping With Monsters, a collection of reviews and criticism, was published in 2017 by Aqueduct Press. It was a finalist for the 2018 Locus Awards and was nominated for a 2018 Hugo Award in Best Related Work. Find her at her blog, where she’s been known to talk about even more books thanks to her Patreon supporters. Or find her at her Twitter. She supports the work of the Irish Refugee Council, the Transgender Equality Network Ireland, and the Abortion Rights Campaign.

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