Indie Speculative Fiction of the Month for March 2024

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 February 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 urban fantasy, science fantasy, paranormal mysteries, paranormal thrillers, space opera, military science fiction, dystopian fiction, alternate history, weird western, horror, elves, dragons, alien invasions, starships for rent, space marines, science fiction by women, Norse gods, ancient evils, crime-busting witches 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:

Different Kinds of Defiance by Renan BernardoDifferent Kinds of Defiance by Renan Bernardo:

Defiance has many faces, and in DIFFERENT KINDS OF DEFIANCE, they are as varied as they are gripping. In a world teetering on the brink of moral ambiguity, each story is a testament to the spirit that resists, rebuilds, and redeems.

From the sunbaked docks of a Rio de Janeiro, change yet still familiar, to the oil-streaked shores of Barra Nova, Renan Bernardo weaves takes if characters caught in the throes of life’s tempests. Meet Hamilton, whose pursuit of a stolen yacht morphs into a crusade for healthcare for the forgotten, his acts a mosaic of bravery and necessity. Walk with Vitória as she battles the relentless tide of pollution with a fleet of smart-bots at her side, her resolve as persistent as the oil that stains her beach. And stand by Jota, who faces the storms of parenting in the shadow of a past that is never quite done with him or his defiant bloodline.

DIFFERENT KINDS OF DEFIANCE is a collection for the rebels at heart—for those who find courage where hope seems lost and for whom every act of resistance is an act of sheer will.

Can one steal for the greater good? Can technology heal a land left for dead? Can a single act of love withstand a legacy of struggle? Dive into these stories of resilience and witness the many forms defiance can take when faced with the precipice of change.

Federation Marine: Lieutenant Colonel by Jonathan P. BrazeeFederation Marine: Lieutenant Colonel by Jonathan P. Brazee:

As a lieutenant colonel, Ryck is given command of the Second Battalion.

With the Marine Corps anxious to certify the resurfaced concept of integrated operations units, the battalion is thrown right into the fire.

With his new command, Ryck has the opportunity to prove his ability to be a true combat leader and not just as a warrior. But with that opportunity come the risk that he cannot handle the manager aspect of command: the logistics, training, maintenance, admin, and support aspects that allow every unit to maximize its combat potential.

A proven fighting Marine, Ryck still has to master every requirement of command—the tactical and the support—if he is going to keep his career alive in the Corps.

Tested by Temptation by Lindsay BurokerTested by Temptation by Lindsay Buroker:

In the final installment of the Tracking Trouble series, Arwen must confront her dark-elven kin once and for all while helping Azerdash win a war against all of dragon kind.

Ambitious tasks under any circumstances. But, to make matters worse, Gemlytha, the powerful woman Azerdash has admitted having feelings for, isn’t as dead as everyone believed.

When he comes face to face with her again, will he choose Arwen? Or Gemlytha?

Starship for rent 2 by M.R. ForbesStarship for Rent 2 by M.R. Forbes:

Starship rental gone wrong. Very wrong.

Trapped on the other side of the galaxy, Ben, Noah, and their companions are dragged into the midst of war by the mysterious Warden. Relentlessly hunted, they must choose the best of bad options and learn the ultimate lesson to prevail.

If they ever want to go home, they have no choice but to fight…and kill.


Shadows of the Past by Eric GoebelbeckerShadows of the Past by Eric Goebelbecker:

It’s 1915, twenty years after the Martian invasion chronicled in the War of the Worlds failed. The aliens left behind advanced technology and weapons, and now humanity is on the brink of a catastrophic war. Caught in the middle of the chaos are two unlikely heroes: Emil Zimmerman, a young German soldier, and James Brogan, an introverted radio engineer.

Emil dreamed of escaping his small village and making his way to the big city, but finds himself in the trenches fighting for an army that indiscriminately wields deadly Martian weapons. Meanwhile, James just wants to be left alone, but is pulled into a web of conspiracy when he’s called upon to repair crucial radios on Long Island.

As the world hurtles towards the brink of destruction, Emil and James find themselves on a collision course with fate, each struggling to survive and make sense of a new reality.

Shadows of the Past is a science fiction, alternate history, survival adventure. Do you love War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells? Then the thrilling journey of The Great War of the Worlds, where humanity grapples with the legacy of Martian technology is the ride you’re looking for.

The Way Back Home by Elle GrayThe Way Back Home by Elle Gray:

The end is here, and judgement has come.

FBI agent Cora Pratt came to Storyville searching for the crazed Postcard Killer.

A killer that has taunted her all over the USA.

When she arrived in this quiet town, nothing could have prepared her for the supernatural mysteries that would unfold.

Orphaned as a young child, Cora did not know about her family’s background. Let alone her shocking connection to this strange place.

Until now, the truth of her unusual past has been kept secret to almost everyone.

But as the end draws near, it’s now time for Cora to learn of her special purpose.

It’s a tale as old as time. The battle of good versus evil.

Salvation or eternal condemnation.

The world as we know it will never be the same.

Cold as a witch's tequila sunrise by Lily Harper HartCold as a Witch’s Tequila Sunrise by Lily Harper Hart

The big day has arrived. Hali Waverly is finally getting the surgery she so desperately needs. Her boyfriend Gray Hunter is determined to be by her side for it. She thinks she’s ready for it. Is she, though?

The surgery itself goes off without a hitch. Hali’s recovery is another story. Ceding control of her beloved tiki bar to her brother and her boyfriend’s brother only amps up her anxiety. Things get worse when a storm hits, and it’s of the magical variety instead of the natural. When a body is found in the aftermath, things are bad.

Things get worse when the body is identified as belonging to a local pack member, and the last person seen with the woman is Gray’s mother. Helene, of course, denies being up to anything nefarious. Unfortunately for her, Hali is in on her big secret, and it’s time to share it.

Hali thought the hardest thing in the world would be the surgery. She was wrong. Now she has to tell the man she loves about his mother’s betrayal and keep him from cutting his parents out of his life forever because of it.

It’s not just the pack closing in, though. The dark merrow are also making their move. Hali’s small sliver of beach is about to become very crowded.

Even though this is the exact worst time for a war, Hali finds herself embroiled in one. One side will fall forever. Hali wants to be on the winning team because if she’s not, they’ll all die.

The big battle is here.

Chilled to the Crone by Amanda M. LeeChilled to the Crone by Amanda M. Lee:

Winter has descended on Hawthorne Hollow like a chilly blanket, and all Scout Randall wants to do with her days is snuggle in bed with her gas station chicken and wait for spring to arrive.

Nothing in her life ever goes the way she planned, however.

There are gods afoot, as if Scout didn’t have enough to deal with. The Nordic goddess Skadi is in town, and she has something specific on her mind.
With the new lamia apex down for the count—whether she’ll survive her ultimate transition, nobody can say—Scout thinks she has some breathing room to get to know the family that’s only recently come to town. Instead, she’s got a god to deal with, and Skadi means business.

Scout’s magic is ever-evolving but is she strong enough to face a god?

When another god arrives hellbent on fighting it out with the first god, Scout thinks things can’t get worse. She’s wrong. Things can always get worse.

A god fight is not what Scout was anticipating it. It’s upon her, though. Worse, it seems one of the gods might be partnering with the lamia apex with domination on their minds. What does that mean? An end for them all.

Scout has been reticent about facing her new reality. She’s out of time, though. She either has to agree to take on the mantle of the pixie apex, or Hawthorne Hollow—and ultimately the world—will fall into ruin.

It’s time for a war. Is Scout ready?

Rediscovery Volume 3Rediscovery Science Fiction by Women Volume 3 (1964 – 1968), edited by Gideon Marcus:

Surfing the New Wave

In the ’60s, the New Wave swept over science fiction. Women rode that wave and pushed beyond, into new waters.

These stories are darker, exploring psychological horrors in ways that their older sisters didn’t dare to. They’re innovative, playing with form and structure. They’re challenging, forcing us to confront the demons not just outside us, but within us.

Come Rediscover nineteen of the era’s best works—and dive into a whole new frontier.

Includes 19 stellar pieces of fiction, with Afterwords by luminaries from Seanan McGuire to Marie Vibbert, as well as by relatives of the authors!

Terror at Tierra de Cobre by Michael MerriamTerror at Tierra de Cobre by Michael Merriam

An ancient evil has awakened…

Strong women, ancient magic and the walking dead make for a heady mix. In Michael Merriam’s tale, seven women are called to protect a small mining town in the New Mexico Territory, Tierra De Cobre, against an evil that has killed or stolen the town’s men and is twisting the souls of the townswomen. The Sihuanaba is part siren, part shapeshifter, possessed of the body of a beautiful woman, her face a horse’s skull with flaming eyes. Once she is freed from her copper prison in the mine, she feeds off the miners to regain her strength, then consumes or twists all the men who come to rescue them. Maria Garcia, recently widowed and quietly fierce, has the answer: hire women to fight the monster. And they do. Taking the classic Western “The Magnificent Seven” as a jumping off point, the town’s defenders are assembled, all women from wildly different backgrounds, united by one mission: to defend the town and defeat the Sihuanaba. All the odds are against them, the price of failure is death or worse and all they have is each other.

The Exodus Gambit by Glynn StewartThe Exodus Gambit by Glynn Stewart

Her family, gone, destroyed from within
Her kingdom, doomed, tainted by blood
Unless a scion rises to become something… more

In a single ruthless blow, Commander Lorraine Adamant’s favorite uncle murders everyone ahead of him in the succession for the Star Kingdom of Adamant. Only luck and the paranoia of her bodyguard, Vigo Jarret, saves Lorraine’s life.

On the run in a single starship Lorraine should never have commanded, with a crew she can not trust, she swiftly learns her uncle’s hounds are hot on her heels. She must gather every skill, every trick, she has ever learned if she is to survive—and pray the uncle who taught her those tricks is a step behind.

Because one thing is certain: Lorraine Adamant will save her Kingdom—or die.

Star Dragons by James David VictorStar Dragons by James David Victor:

What happens when your worst enemy suddenly becomes your best friend?

A Science Fiction adventure with aliens, an all-powerful galactic empire, and space dragons from #1 Bestselling author James David Victor.

Keel Hennity was killed by a dragon. His entire existence as a reincarnated fighting machine has focused on keeping those Star Dragons under control. Now that he’s been mysteriously bonded to one of the deadly creatures, he’s supposed to turn the creature into his best friend and most powerful ally. What could possibly go wrong?

Star Dragons is the third book in the Star Dragon series. If you like incredible stories that are part space opera, part military sci-fi adventure, and full of non-stop action, be sure to check out the Star Dragon series today. Oh, and don’t forget about the space dragons.

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