Hello 2020! Have some reading recs.

Hello, friends!

It is January 22nd and I have officially survived 2019! The year took about three weeks longer than usual, alas, because I spent half of December nursing a dreadful wisdom tooth extraction. Sacrifices were made to the bone gods, then partially rejected by the bone gods, then many prayers and promises of atonement followed, and at last my face holes healed in time to eat a Christmas dinner.

Despite the harrowing woes of toothageddon, I did manage to make my 2019 holiday card, and it was a very good year if I do say so myself. *_*

NOW FOR SOME READING RECS. These are all 2019 releases, if you’re reading for awards, and they are some of my faves of the year, if you’re reading for the joy of reading!


Desdemona and the Deep by C.S.E. Cooney. Beautiful and strange, in the way I always want faerie stories to be beautiful and strange. I wish it had been longer.

The Light Brigade by Kameron Hurley. A timey-wimey military scifi. The end comes together so satisfyingly I literally did a finger kiss.

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir. It’s on everyone’s list AND WITH REASON. Come for the skeleton memes, stay for the surprisingly emotional character arcs and well-fleshed cast (pun intended).


Sisters of the Vast Black by Lina Rather. It’s about an order of nuns in space and it holds SO much heart, just read it, all right??

This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone. Another one that’s everywhere with good reason. Two agents on opposing sides of a time war…fall in loooorve.

Short Stories:

“We Are Here to Be Held” by Eugenia Triantafyllou. All I have to say is: “The first time your mother swallows you whole you don’t really see it coming.” In Strange Horizons.

“Boiled Bones and Black Eggs” by Nghi Vo. In which the owner of an inn that serves the living and the dead is trying to get rid of a difficult customer. In Beneath Ceaseless Skies.

“Due By the End of the Week” by Brandon O’Brien. A super cute superhero story AND ALSO an entertaining unreliable narrator story. In Fireside Magazine.

ETA: I have a longer, still growing list of 2019 recs at http://samtasticbooks.com/2020/01/23/2019-reading-roundup/. Enjoy!

Next time on Samtastic News:

I have a short story coming out in Translunar Travelers Lounge next month! “Kiki Hernández Beats the Devil,” in which Kiki Hernández, rock legend of the Southwest, takes a gig that might be too much for her. I’ll have the live link next newsletter.

Till then!

New Voices and next steps!

November has been a whirlwind of a month!

First came the official release of The New Voices of Science Fiction, edited by Hannu Rajaniemi and Jacob Weisman. Spoiler: I’m in it!!

Description from Tachyon Publications: In this daring anthology of cutting-edge short stories, new science fiction luminaries including Rebecca Roanhorse, Amal El-Mohtar, and Sam J. Miller, are showcased with the rising stars that are transforming their genre. Discover exciting writers who are already out of this world, in this space-age sequel to the 2018 World Fantasy Award-winning anthology, The New Voices of Fantasy.

I’m among the …AND MORE! 😀 “Strange Waters” was originally published in Strange Horizons in April 2018, was reprinted with the Podcastle treatment in August 2019, and now has a gorgeous paperback home with fantastic company. Go, little story, go!

And in even more spectacular news (I’ve definitely buried the lede here, I know):

🎉🎉🎉I’ve just signed with a literary agent! 🎉🎉 🎉

I’m now one of the supremely pleased clients of Lisa Rodgers at Jabberwocky Literary Agency. That’s right! To actually try to sell some of my samtastic books! Will my standard web handle finally become a reality? Well… stay tuned to find out. XD

All that said, the blog/newsletter will be fairly quiet on book news until there is book news to share. This part of the journey can be just as long as the whole rest of it, and I’ve got some strategizing and prepping and editing to do, but… woo! It sure is exciting to reach the next step.

Till next time!

My proud parents. :’)

Introducing Samtastic News!

Welcome to Samtastic News! In which you will find only the most excellent news items pertaining to the writing career of Samantha Mills. I post on an as-needed basis, no more than once per month.

You can also find my longtime blog at www.samtasticbooks.com, where I talk about life, reading, writing, and my favorite female action heroes. Moving forward, new posts will be linked in this newsletter, along with reading recommendations, news items, and whatever other oddities I dig up through the month and feel compelled to share.

Oh, and of course, these are your hosts, Mr. and Mrs. Cat:


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