BOOKS IN PRINT AND AVAILABLE unless otherwise marked. Click on the covers for more information about the novels

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COMING IN MARCH of 2015! THE CROW OF CONNEMARA is a contemporary Celtic fantasy set primarily in Ireland. Picking up threads from ancient Irish mythology and folktales, this story is fantasy, drama, and tragic romance all at once, a tale caught in the dark places where the world of ancient myth intersects our own, where old ways and old beliefs struggle not to be overwhelmed by the modern world.

Colin Doyle is third generation Irish-American musician, whose interest is traditional Irish music. Maeve Gallagher is an Oileánach, an 'Islander' on Ireland's west coast, outcasts treated with suspicion and disdain by the locals, who think them responsible for wild and strange happenings in the area. Colin's and Maeve's lives will soon intersect and intertwine. Colin will discover that Maeve has been involved with his family for far longer than seems possible, and Maeve will have to make a life-or-death choice in order to achieve what she wants for her people.

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MY LATEST RELEASE! An immortal muse whose very survival depends on the creativity she nurtures within her lovers…  Another immortal who feeds not on artistry but on pain and torment...  A chase through time, with two people bound together in enmity and fury… Magic and science melded together into one… An array of the famous and infamous, caught up unawares in a long battle

That’s IMMORTAL MUSE, a tale that takes the reader on a fascinating journey from Paris of the late 1300s with the alchemists Perenelle and Nicolas Flamel, to contemporary New York City.

"Mythology, alchemy and fantasy all coalesce in Leigh's Immortal Muse, creating the perfect combination for readers looking for their next stellar read. Leigh has masterfully created a fantastical adventure for his audience..." -- Romantic Times Top Pick!

"Leigh seamlessly inserts his two immortals into history, playing with actual people and events to deliver beautifully-rendered glimpses of different eras. Leigh strikes the perfect balance between past and present, real and imagined." -- Pubishers Weekly starred review

 

ASSASSINS' DAWN is a 2013 omnibus edition of the Hoorka Trilogy (my first three novels). The Hoorka are a group of "ethical assassins." They don't guarantee the death of the contracted victim, only that the attempt of the person's life will be made... because only the gods should decide whether a person will live or die.

"Intriguing, deeply-layered stories of assassins in love, war, life and death. Highly recommended." -- Garth Nix, author of Shade's Children.

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THE WOODS is a dark urban fantasy novel where the borders between reality and fantasy are blurred and difficult to see. Here, the wild and romanticized dreamscape of youth intersects the gray, adult world beyond, a strong, riveting, and frank exploration of young adulthood that reminds us that every wish and desire bears its own price.

"I was blown away by The Woods.  It is billed as a dark fantasy, and it is that.  The magic in this story is both beautiful and disturbing... Leigh's prose is elegant, his plotting tight, his character work outstanding.  But it is the voice of his protagonist that drives this story, that gives the book its emotional weight and power" -- David B. Coe, Crawford Award-winning author

 

THE NESSANTICO CYCLE is an intricate tale of murder and magic, deception and betrayal, Machiavellian politics, star-crossed lovers, and a world on the brink of devastating war.... Over the slow centuries, the city of Nessantico spread her influence in all directions. Nessantico gathered to herself all that was intellectual, all that was rich, all that was powerful. There was no city in the known world that could rival her. But there were many who envied her.

"S.L. Farrell is a relative newcomer on the fantasy scene, but he writes like a seasoned pro. A MAGIC OF TWILIGHT is his best yet, a delicious melange of politics, war, sorcery, and religion in a richly imagined world peopled with a varied cast of haughty lords, scheming courtiers, beggars, priests, heretics, zealots, spies, assassins, torturers, tarts, and seductresses. They're vivid and memorable characters, and most are painted in shades of grey, my favorite color. Farrell's Nessantico is a fascinating place, and one that I look forward to visiting again." -- George RR Martin, award-winning and NY Times bestselling author

"Farrell easily wields an immense cast of characters, many of whom take narrative turns. Readers who appreciate intricate world building, intrigue, and action will immerse themselves effortlessly into this rich and complex story." -- Publishers Weekly

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THE CLOUDMAGES series begins as a seventeen-year-old farm girl named Jenna picks up a small but strangely alluring stone on Knobtop Hill-and, with that single act, her peaceful life is forever changed. First, the lights appear-the mage-lights which shone only in legends from the time Before. Then, with the lights, come the trouble and the magic, too...

For what Jenna holds in her hands is the Lamh Shabhala, the master stone of legend which could reawaken all of the stones. And the Holder of this stone is said to pay the greatest price for wielding such powerful magic. Now, Jenna fears for her home, her friends, and her family, and ancient legends are waking-and walking the earth.

"This first volume in 'The Cloudmages' series is an unusual Celtic fantasy set in a land of rival kingdoms skirmishing for power as a long-absent magic returns. [Farrell] spins an absorbing tale full of wonders." -- Carolyn Cushman for Locus Magazine

"Good enough to be cast in gold." -- Booklist, Paula Luedtke, American Library Association.

"Intriguing, fully developed characters abound... can only enhance Farrell's reputation as one of the rising stars of Celtic fantasy." -- Publisher's Weekly

"TOP PICK! ...Farrell offers up a beautifully written tale, intertwining Celtic mythology and epic fantasy, deftly managing political and romantic subplots that add depth and color to the story." -- Romantic Times Book Club

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First contact wasn't supposed to be like this. A sudden rift appears in near-Earth space, causing electronic components to permanently fail, thus creating total chaos. As Earth's fragile technological society disintigrates, no one can answer the obvious question: what is this rift, and who or what created it. The answer is held in THE SHAPE OF SILENCE.

"Thunderously good... Everything you could ask for in a science fiction adventure: a believable, complex protagonist; a brilliantly conceived alien society; and a well-paced story that never drags... It's hard to imagine a sequel that could top the original." -- John C. Snider, SciFiDimensions

"...replete with adventure, mystery, and sociological conflict." -- Publishers Weekly

"There's all sorts of wonderful stuff... A lively, engaging novel..." -- M.C.A. Hogarth, Stardance

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DARK WATER’S EMBRACE is an intricate sf novel, triple-stranded novel exploring sex, gender, and the socio-political ramifications of repopulation. The descendants of a group of humans, stranded on the world Mictlan after an explosion destroyed their interstellar ship struggle to survive in a tiny society whose rules and mores revolve around the necessity for reproduction.

SPEAKING STONES is not a direct sequel to DARK WATER'S EMBRACE, precisely -- it takes place a century later. Where DWE explored sexuality and the reproductive imperative, SPEAKING STONES explores cultural shifts, racial prejudice, and the inevitable conflicts that arise.

DARK WATER'S EMBRACE: 1999 SPECTRUM AWARD WINNER, 1998 LOCUS MAGAZINE RECOMMENDED READING LIST. Both book were on the Tiptree Award Long List. "...this haunting and thought-provoking story belongs in most sf collections." --Library Journal

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Even though ALIEN TONGUE is essentially a first contact novel, it's also about the 'alien-ness' of the relationship between two people, and at the core, about language and how it shapes our perceptions. In fact, the alien Avia come directly from the question "What would a race be like if they had no word in their language for the concept of telling a deliberate untruth?" Complications tumble out from that concept, and the survival of the crew depends on unraveling the consequences.

"A solid, satisfying, intellectually interesting, well-crafted science fiction novel." - Norman Spinrad, award-winning author, reviewing in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine (ALIEN TONGUE is not currently in print)

 

In CRYSTAL MEMORY, it is now 2170, but decades ago, the Great Bust wrecked Earth's economies and trapped humankind in their own solar system. Then the T'Raijek came, flaunting their power and their stardrive, and inflaming those who were determined to obtain the T'Raijek's advanced technology at any cost. Any cost at all...

Free Trader Jemi Charidilis knows little of these tensions. She is simply trying to wrest a living by hauling cargo from Earth to the few outposts in near space. But unexpectedly her ship is attacked and disabled. When she is rescued, Jemi finds that two years of her memories have been stolen from her, including the death of her son Kenis. Who had done this, and why? The answer is bound up in the very fate of mankind as Jemi risks her life to uncover the truth

"A blend of action, fantasy, and science fiction, with effective underpinnings of philosophy and history." - Bob Hahn, Cincinnati Enquirer

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Welcome back to the 1990. It was a time of Big Hair Bands, as well as the start of the personal computer revolution and the all-in-one Macintosh computer from Apple. It was also the time when I was making the transition from being a full-time musician to a writer. I was aching to do a novel that would be a romp, an absurd and zany trip through a fantastic world: contemporary fantasy and magic realism all at once, with echoes of Tom Robbins’ humor (a writer whose zany and imaginative work I’ve always admired), and stealing some autobiographical-but-hyperbolic bits from my brief life as a rock star. That would be THE ABRAXAS MARVEL CIRCUS.

"Simply delightful, and lots of fun!" - Janice Eisen in Aboriginal Science Fiction

"...a real romp, with religion as discord, a comedy with totally insane Tarot characters, from several alternate worlds, in a contemporary world." - Eric Lindsay in Gegenshein

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I'd always wanted to write a book grinding my own particular axe that it's the disciples, not the prophet, who determine the course of any eventual religion, molding the prophet's teaching to their own agendas. I once started to do a fictional account of the life of Christ, but instead decided to take it into the future and widen my scope -- the result was THE BONES OF GOD.

"Here is science fiction at its most profound and relevant best." - T.N. Hackney, reviewing in Locus

"Complex, intriguing, unfailingly interesting... I recommend it enthusiastically!" - C. J. Cherryh, award-winning author

"It cost me an entire night's sleep... The ending was absolutely perfect!" - L. Neil Smith, award-winning author

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The DINOSAUR WORLD series, as well as the SECRET OF THE LONA and THE CHANGELING were done as work-for-hire novels. The publication rights for these novels are not mine, though I believe the ROBOTS & ALIENS series might still be actively in print.

While I enjoyed the work I did for these books, and felt that I added some interesting twists and turns, this was work done in someone else's universe, not mine.

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A website for the fantasy and science fiction writer Stephen Leigh/ S.L. Farrell

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