Indie Speculative Fiction of the Month for November 2023

Indie Speculative Fiction of the Month
It’s that time of the month again, time for “Indie Speculative Fiction of the Month”.

So what is “Indie Speculative Fiction of the Month”? It’s a round-up of speculative fiction by indie and small press authors newly published this month, though some October books I missed the last time around snuck in as well. The books are arranged in alphabetical order by author. So far, most links only go to, though I may add other retailers for future editions.

Once again, we have new releases covering the whole broad spectrum of speculative fiction. This month, we have epic fantasy, urban fantasy, sword and sorcery, paranormal mystery, paranormal thrillers, science fiction mystery, space opera, military science fiction, werewolves, vampires, shifters, half-dragons, starships, space marines, crime-busting witches, chases across the universe and much more.

Don’t forget that Indie Speculative Fiction of the Month is also crossposted to the Speculative Fiction Showcase, a group blog run by Jessica Rydill and myself, which features new release spotlights, guest posts, interviews and link round-ups regarding all things speculative fiction several times per week.

As always, I know the authors at least vaguely, but I haven’t read all of the books, so Caveat emptor.

And now on to the books without further ado:

The Butler Did It by Jerry BoydThe Butler Did It by Jerry Boyd:

The fleet manages to catch the Squirrel responsible for the horrible things they’ve seen recently. That should be a good thing, shouldn’t it? Turns out it’s only the beginning of their troubles, as their journey to collect a bounty on him turns into an adventure. Follow along, as Bob and the fleet get the best of the situation.




Federation Marine Sergeant by Jonathan P. BrazeeFederation Marine: Sergeant by Jonathan P. Brazee:

At last, Sergeant Ryck Lysander has found a home in the United Federation Marine Corps and has proven the temper of his steel in combat.

Stepping up as an NCO, however, is something different. It isn’t enough to be an effective warrior. He has to be able to lead his fellow Marines, all without doubting his own abilities.

Failing will not only lead to his own death, but to those under his command. The responsibility is heavy, and the cost of losing is high.

At the same time, an old ally becomes a new enemy, thrusting Ryck into a life and death situation where success or failure rides on his shoulders.

The question he must answer for himself is whether he has what it takes to lead. . . or if he should have stayed a recruit after all.

Marked by Magic by Lindsay BurokerMarked by Magic by Lindsay Buroker:

Arwen Forester may be a socially awkward introvert, but she’s an expert tracker, archer, and forager who has a pickling recipe for every vegetable in the garden. Unfortunately, none of these skills earn her a lot of money. And when the taxes go up on her father’s farm, she’s not sure how to help him keep the property.

Then someone offers her a lucrative new gig:

Hunt down a haughty half-dragon criminal with the power to incinerate those who irritate him.

Normally, Arwen would reject such a suicidal mission, but with the farm at stake, she’s desperate. Besides, all she has to do is tag the half-dragon with a tracking device. How hard could it be?

Find out in Marked by Magic, Book 1 in the new Tracking Trouble urban fantasy series.

Bound by Blood by Lindsay BurokerBound by Blood by Lindsay Buroker:

Magically compelled by bad guys, Arwen Forester shot her half-dragon ally in the thigh. She longs to make amends to him, but she’s busy with a new quest:

Get rid of the tattoo that lets dark elves control her.

Unfortunately, such magical marks aren’t easily removed. When the troll tattoo artist she visits is killed, she’s framed for murder.

Soon, hired guns are after her, and the troll’s clan is trying to get Val Thorvald, the Ruin Bringer, to hunt her down.

Arwen could use the help of a powerful half-dragon, but will Azerdash Starblade forgive her after her previous betrayal?

Galaxy Under Siege by M.R. ForbesGalaxy Under Siege by M.R. Forbes:

Caleb Card always knew that fighting back against overwhelming odds would be a thankless slog. And with Legion forces expanding across the galaxy, his opportunities to hit them where it hurts are fast running out. When a well-played hand and an unexpected betrayal nearly put a stop to both the rebellion and his life, all signs point to a quick and ugly end.

Only Caleb’s never quit anything before, and he isn’t about to start now. Not when he still has a few more aces up his sleeve…

…and with any luck, a Queen.

Whispers of the Dead by Elle GrayWhispers of the Dead by Elle Gray:

Storyville is a small town with world altering mysteries. Here the impossible is this town’s reality.

In the wake of her partner’s disappearance, FBI agent Cora Pratt calls for backup and accepts the aid of Sheriff Highsmith.

As the search for Nolan continues, Cora ventures deeper into the many mysteries in the supernatural small town.
When the hunt for answers leads her to a secret library within a library.
She is finally able to learn what lies behind some of the towns’ many secrets.

As Cora unravels her own tangled past connections to Storyville and the town’s secrets. Her dreams become far more jarring.

With dreams and reality converging and more truths finally found.

Cora must now follow the whispers from the past to save the future of Storyville and maybe even humanity itself…

Against the Witchy Tide by Lily Harper HartAgainst the Witchy Tide by Lily Harper Hart:

Hali Waverly is gearing up for a big change. The hip surgery she’s been dreading is only two weeks out, and that means it’s time to get things in order before she’s down for the count to recuperate. She has a plan….and then the unthinkable happens.

When leaving the doctor after scheduling surgery, a bank robbery suspect crosses Hali’s path. When his mask is removed, her boyfriend Gray Hunter recognizes him as a fellow shifter, and the questions only grow from there.

It seems there are a lot of strange shifters hanging around St. Pete Beach, and they don’t belong to the same faction. The one spot they agree to meet is Hali’s tiki bar…and sparks—and fur—are about to fly.

Hali doesn’t want to get involved in pack politics, but she might not have a choice. For Gray, who turned his back on the pack years ago, the appearance of warring factions on his turf means bad things are about to happen. He has no choice but to stand up and fight, however.

Hali knows what she wants for her future. Unfortunately for her, she’s going to have to go to war to get it. This fight—so many claws and teeth to contend with—might be out of her reach.

That won’t stop her from fighting…even to the death.

Clashing Blades by Matt HiltonClashing Blades by Matt Hilton:

Monsters, magic, savage action and clashing blades.

Sword and sorcery and heroic fantasy tales in the tradition of Robert E. Howard’s Conan and Kull, Lin Carter’s Thongor, and Karl Edward Wagner’s Kane, featuring Matt Hilton’s Korvix the axe warrior and other mighty heroes.



White Witchmas by Amanda M. LeeWhite Witchmas by Amanda M. Lee:

Chestnuts are roasting. Jingle bells are rocking. The halls are about to be decked.

In other words, Christmas is about to hit Hemlock Cove. Hard.

There’s just one little problem…or maybe two. Okay, there are three big problems plaguing Bay Winchester before she can enjoy the holidays.

The first is that the warden who lost his job thanks to a prison break weeks before is determined to stalk Bay until she magically fixes his life. He keeps showing up in the oddest of places and making the sort of demands she can’t fulfill.

The second involves Aunt Tillie, who has decided to gift her nemesis Margaret Little a special spell rather than a lump of coal this holiday season. It involves her Christmas decorations taking on a life—and voice—of their own. The spell, however, isn’t nearly as contained as it was supposed to be.

When a body shows up at the local private school, that means it’s one problem too many for Bay. And she doesn’t know which problem to solve first.

The headmistress of the school was involved in a convoluted affair with father of one of her students. The list of suspects who wanted her dead was long and sundry, however.

All Bay wants is to surprise her husband with a dog for Christmas and to eat her weight in cookies. She has to save the day first, though.

Murder, mayhem, and mistletoe are on the menu.

Death might not be far behind.

Buckle up, because the Santa decorations are coming to town.

Magic By Any Other Name by Alison LevyMagic by Any Other Name by Alison Levy:

Ivy Nichols O’Reilly has grown up in a wealthy family full of magic, fantasy creatures, and emotional abuse—but when her narcissistic mother arranges an unwanted marriage for her, the young witch reaches her breaking point. She drops out of college, changes her name to Georgette, and flees across the country with her best friend, a Wood Nymph named Mei-Xing.

Georgette is determined to build a new identity and a new life. But her journey leads her to cross paths with a number of magical characters—a Werehyena searching for his kidnapped wife; a Vampire who runs a unique magical business; a curandero, a shamanistic practitioner of traditional medicine; and a Valkyrie who, along with her raven partner, wants to make a risky deal—who make it clear to her that the past is not so easily left behind. In order to grow into her new identity, help her new friends, and develop a healthy relationship with a man she’s beginning to care for, Georgette will have to confront the privileges that have shielded her from the pain and ugliness of the magic community in which she was raised—and find the strength to overcome the trauma of her childhood.

Scarper by Jenny SchwartzScarper by Jenny Schwartz:

A fate-defying chase across the universe.

Fate is a tricky witch.

On the run across federation space, Cherry has stuffed far too many dangerous secrets into her scout ship. Now the Delphic Dame is the most hunted spaceship in the universe.

It may also be the only force in the universe capable of saving humanity.

Cherry just has to stay one step ahead of her enemies – and, maybe, of her allies.

Honor and Renown by Glynn StewartHonor and Renown by Glynn Stewart:

A peacetime Navy has many roles.
Presence. Protection. Preparation.
Commerce. Sales.

A century before the Kenmiri ever touched humanity’s stars, Admiral Christopher Macleod commands the Extrasolar Squadron of the Commonwealth Space Force. His job, above all else, is to sell British military technology to the rest of humanity.

The Admiral has long ago accepted his role as the pony in the Commonwealth’s dog and pony sales show—but as war between the United States Colonial Administration and the Russian Novaya Imperiya twists ever closer to neutral stars, every nation must choose what neutral means for them.

And Admiral Macleod must choose what matters most to him: the Commonwealth’s neutrality—or the thousand-year-old traditions of Her Majesty’s Navy!

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