Future Treasures: Creatures of Charm and Hunger by Molly Tanzer
Creatures of Will and Temper (2017 cover by Eduardo Recife), Creatures of Want and Ruin (2018, Eduardo Recife),
and Creatures of Charm and Hunger (2020, artist unknown)
When I sold The Robots of Gotham to John Joseph Adams, I learned a lot about the publishing biz, and some of it was weird. For example John taught me that, for various reasons, the acquisition announcement released by the publisher, which includes the title, release date, rights acquired, and a detailed description of the forthcoming book, was traditionally a single sentence. As you can imagine, that results in some pretty tortured sentences. Ever since then I’ve enjoyed dropping by John’s blog at John Joseph Adams Books to read the acquisition announcements, and I was delighted to see this artfully crafted sentence a year ago:
Molly Tanzer’s Creatures of Charm and Hunger, the third book in her series that began with Creatures of Will and Temper, WWII-era fantasy set in England where two teenage girls seek to become full members of an international society of diabolists, a quest that will nearly ruin their friendship and take them down dark paths when one girl learns her parents were taken to a concentration camp and the other summons a powerful and mysterious demon, to John Joseph Adams Books, for publication in Spring 2020…
The first novel in Molly’s series, Creatures of Will and Temper, was nominated for the Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel, and Jeff VanderMeer called it “A delightful, dark, and entertaining romp.” The follow up, Creatures of Want & Ruin, was selected as a Barnes & Noble Best Science Fiction Fantasy Book of November 2018,” and the B&N Sci-Fi Blog said “Molly Tanzer does it all; from her debut novel, named best book of 2015 by i09, to the “thoughtful erotica” she edits at her magazine, Congress, she’s proven to be one of the most distinct voices in contemporary SFF.”
Creatures of Charm and Hunger rounds out the Diabolist’s Library trilogy, one of the most acclaimed fantasy series of recent memory. It arrives from John Joseph Adam Books on April 21. Here’s an excerpt from the starred review at Publishers Weekly.
Miriam Cantor wants nothing more than to discover the fate of her parents, who were part of the diabolist resistance against the Nazis until they disappeared. Miriam’s foster sister, Jane Blackwood, is preoccupied with becoming a master diabolist, motivated by her fear of the painful fate of being “rendered for parts” that awaits apprentices who fail to meet expectations. As both girls delve deeper into the diabolic arts, Jane to ensure her safety and Miriam to find her parents, their friendship is tested and they must each answer the question of how much they’re willing to sacrifice…. Series fans and new readers alike will be entranced.
Our previous coverage of Molly’s books includes:
Creatures of Will and Temper
Creatures of Want and Ruin
Swords v. Cthulhu: Swift Bladed Action in the Horrific World of H.P. Lovecraft, edited by Jesse Bullington and Molly Tanzer
Creatures of Charm and Hunger will be published by John Joseph Adams Books on April 21, 2020. It is 320 pages, priced at $16.99 in paperback and $9.99 in digital formats.
See all our coverage of the best upcoming fantasy novels here.
I wish that they had stayed with Eduardo Recife on the third cover.
Margo MacDonald asked the same question on Facebook when I posted a link to this article (specifically, she asked: “Weird how the cover art was changed so much for the third book, though, eh?”)
Molly Tanzer stopped by to share some of the publisher’s reasoning:
“They were interested in attempting to market it as a literary crossover is all, as the third book can be read as a standalone.”
That certainly makes sense to me.
Here’s the whole Facebook conversation: