We’d probably love Ferrett Steinmetz’ Flex trilogy for the premise alone—it’s a gritty, hilarious contemporary fantasy series about magic users in a world where your obsessions can can bore a hole through the fabric of spacetime and give you the ability to manipulate reality at will. But it’s all the extra bits (characters you will ache for, twisy plots, the baddest baddies, killer action sequences) that put it over the top, and onto our list of 2015’s best reads.
We’ve been eagerly awaiting conclusion of the series since mainlining Flex and The Flux, and Angry Robot has just given us another reason to get excited: below, we show off the cover of Fix, courtesy of designer Steven Meyer-Rassow. It brings to a close the story of bureaucromancer Paul Tsabo, his videogamemancer sidekick Valentine, and his damaged daughter Aliyah, who may be the most powerful ‘mancer alive. After the first two covers featured Aliyah and Valentine, this one finally gives us a look at Paul, drowning in paperwork (naturally). You can see the complete image after the publisher’s blurb.
America’s long sent its best SMASH agents overseas to deal with the European crisis. As of today, they decided dismantling your operation was more important than containing the Bastogne Broach. Now you’re dealing with the real professionals.
Paul Tsabo: Bureaucromancer. Political activist. Loving father. His efforts to decriminalize magic have made him the government’s #1 enemy – and his fugitive existence has robbed his daughter of a normal life.
Aliyah Tsabo-Dawson: Videogamemancer. Gifted unearthly powers by a terrorist’s magic. Raised by a family of magicians, she’s the world’s loneliest teenager – because her powers might kill anyone she befriends.
The Unimancers: Brain-burned zombies. Former ‘mancers, tortured into becoming agents of the government’s anti-‘mancer squad. An unstoppable hive-mind.
When Paul accidentally opens up the first unsealed dimensional broach on American soil, the Unimancers lead his family in a cat-and-mouse pursuit all the way to the demon-haunted ruins of Europe – where Aliyah is slowly corrupted by the siren call of the Unimancers…
And just for fun, here are all three eye-catching covers, side-by-side-by-side.
Ferrett Steinmetz is a graduate of both the Clarion Writers’ Workshop and Viable Paradise, and has been nominated for the Nebula Award, for which he remains stoked. He has a moderately popular blog, The Watchtower of Destruction, wherein he talks about bad puns, relationships, politics, video games, and more bad puns. He’s written four computer books, including the still-popular-after-two-years Wicked Cool PHP. He lives in Cleveland with his wife, who he couldn’t imagine living without. Find Ferrett online or follow him @ferretthimself on Twitter.