Trysts: A Triskaidecollection of Queer and Weird Stories by Steve Berman, a Shirley Jackson and Lambda Literary Award-nominated editor and author, is a collection of 13 speculative fiction short stories about supernatural encounters, free again courtesy of LGBT specialty publisher Lethe Press.
This was a double-nominee in two categories for the 2002 Spectrum Awards recognizing LGBT-themed works of speculative fiction, and includes dark & urban fantasy and psychological horror stories reprinted from Strange Horizons magazine and other genre outlets.
Offered DRM-free worldwide, available at Amazon.
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Sing the Four Quarters by Canadian author Tanya Huff, one of my personal favourite sf/fantasy storytellers, is the 1st novel in her Quarters series of nature elemental high fantasy with strong political intrigue elements, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Jabberwocky Literary Agency.
This was originally published in 1994 by DAW Books, and is the Barnes & Noble Free Fridays selection for the weekend. The series is set in a fantasy world where specially-trained bards have the magical music ability to “sing the kigh”, summoning and communicating with nature elemental spirits which are viewed as benevolent in one country, and demonic in another.
This story stars an abdicated Princess-turned-Bard who gave up her place in the royal succession in order to train her rare ability to sing all four “quarters”—summon the kigh of earth, air, fire, and water, of which most bards can only communicate with one or two types—who is accused of involvement in a treasonous plot to supplant her brother the King, and goes on the run with another accused co-plotter to uncover the real culprits and prove their innocence. NB: This is one of my favourite series of Huff’s and one of her more imaginative and enjoyable fantasy settings, IMHO. There are also some prominent f/f romantic elements and bisexual characters in this particular novel, if that’s an added attraction.
Offered in most regions worldwide, available at multiple retailers.
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The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson is the 1st novella in his eponymous series of epic fantasy with m/m romantic elements, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Tor Books.
This recently placed 4th in the Locus Awards nominations for Best First Novel (the publisher describes it as a novella, though). This is a sword & sorcery fantasy epic set in a world where the descendants of the gods roam the earth, and this story is described as containing royal intrigue as well as romance betwen the main characters of the titular sorceror—an earthbound demigod—and the caravan Captain he follows.
Offered in Canada & the US only due to geo-restrictions, available DRM-free directly from the publisher through September 21st.
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Wilde Stories 2008: The Best of the Year’s Gay Speculative Fiction edited by Steve Berman, is the 2008 annual installment in the Wilde Stories series of reprint anthologies collecting the yearly best sfnal short stories featuring gay characters and/or thematic elements, free for a limited time courtesy of LGBT specialty publisher Lethe Press.
This contains stories originally published in the Clarkesworld and now-defunct Subterranean sfnal genre magazines, as well as a Gaylactic Spectrum Award-winning short, and the collection itself was nominated for the 2008 Lambda Literary Award in the LGBT Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror category. Offered DRM-free, available worldwide at Amazon.
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The Last Grand Master by Andrew Q. Gordon is the 1st novel in his Champion of the Gods series of classically epic good vs evil high fantasy with m/m romantic elements, free for a limited time courtesy of LGBT specialty publisher Dreamspinner Press’s DSP Publications imprint.
This is being made free to promote upcoming release of the 3rd-in series, due in March. It’s set in a world where an evil old wizard and his obligatory hordes of dark underworld minions are beginning to encroach upon the neighbours, with the result that the usual force of young untried wizards and warriors and unicorns and gods become arrayed against him, and this installment covers the initial battles as the invasion begins.
available worldwide DRM-free
First Love by Andrew Q. Gordon is a novella in his Champion of the Gods series of classically epic good vs evil high fantasy with m/m romantic elements, free on a long-term introductory basis courtesy of LGBT specialty Dreamspinner Press’s DSP Publications imprint.
This is a prequel story giving a slightly romantic tale about the series’ lead wizard, involving some sort of potentially disillusioning intrigue-laden seduction plot.
available worldwide DRM-free