Of Dragons, Feasts and Murders out in the world!


Of Dragons, Feasts and Murders out in the world!

Out today!

Dragons, court drama and relationships…

An unlikely duo of a bookish dragon prince and his ruthless Fallen angel husband have to cooperate with each other to navigate political intrigue and solve a murder. A combination of Asian court drama (think Nirvana in Fire) and Gothic comedy of manners; a fun and fluffy (*) book involving a mismatched couple, dollops of embarrassing moments, and the occasional kiss.

(*)”fluffy” for Bodard values of fluffy. It still involves a murder investigation, and ideas of consent and rulership and change, because, well–
*helpless shrug*
*hashtag on-brand*

Buy now

(Art and cover design: Ravven)

Official blurb:

From the author of the critically acclaimed Dominion of the Fallen trilogy comes a tale of dragons, and Fallen angels — and also kissing, sarcasm and stabbing. 

Lunar New Year should be a time for familial reunions, ancestor worship, and consumption of an unhealthy amount of candied fruit.

But when dragon prince Thuan brings home his brooding and ruthless husband Asmodeus for the New Year, they find not interminable family gatherings, but a corpse outside their quarters. Asmodeus is thrilled by the murder investigation; Thuan, who gets dragged into the political plotting he’d sworn off when he left, is less enthusiastic.

It’ll take all of Asmodeus’s skill with knives, and all of Thuan’s diplomacy, to navigate this one — as well as the troubled waters of their own relationship….

A sparkling standalone book set in a world of dark intrigue.

A Note on Chronology

Spinning off from the Dominion of the Fallen series, which features political intrigue in Gothic devastated Paris, this book stands alone, but chronologically follows The House of Sundering Flames. It’s High Gothic meets C-drama in a Vietnamese inspired world– perfect for fans of The Untamed, KJ Charles,  and Roshani Chokshi’s The Gilded Wolves

Advance praise:

“A delightful and delicious story of court intrigue, tense family relations, and – of course – murder, OF DRAGONS, FEASTS, AND MURDER delivers on all three in a tightly plotted and tensely paced novella in which the fate of a country rests in the hands of a soft-hearted dragon prince and his murder husband. With luscious and lyrical prose, de Bodard effortlessly envelops the reader in a rich and expansive world. A fun read, I look forward to immersing myself in the rest of the Dominion of the Fallen series!”

K.A. Doore, author of the Chronicles of Ghadid trilogy

“Delightful… Beautiful writing, weird and magical world, fascinating culture and politics, and compelling characters: what more do you need?”

KJ Charles, author of Slippery Creatures

I absolutely loved this… Two charming protagonists (in very different ways), beautifully descriptive writing, a cunning plot, and a thoughtful discussion of the ways that rooted injustice in a system can be changed. Also, dragons. Lots of dragons.”

Genevieve Cogman, author of The Invisible Library series

“A delightful political mystery featuring de Bodard’s vibrant world-building, beautiful prose, and compelling characters”.

Juliet Kemp, author of Shadow and Storm

“Fantasy of Manners but with corpses and a stabby husband. The stabby husband may or may not have produced the aforementioned corpses.”

Sara/Sharade, The Fantasy Inn

Buy now

Sale: Fireheart Tiger to Tor Dot Com


I’ve had to sit on this one for a while, but I’m pleased to have sold my novella Fireheart Tiger to Jonathan Strahan at I’m absolutely thrilled, as I’ve loved a great deal many books published by the imprint (and I can’t wait to see the cover art).

The blurb is below. This is a f/f story of politics, magic and resilience in the face of trauma as well as overwhelming odds. It went some rather dark and unexpected places when I was writing it (story of my life lol). It’s set in a universe heavily inspired by Nguyễn Cochinchina in the 18th Century (prior to the actual dynasty, the unification of Vietnam and the French colonisation), but draws a bit from a bunch of other time periods in Vietnamese history. It will be out in 2021 (I know, so far away!).

(Photo by Nguyen Kiet on Unsplash)

Award-winning author Aliette de Bodard returns in this fantasy novella that reads like The Goblin Emperor meets Howl’s Moving Castle in a precolonial Vietnamese-esque world.

Thanh is royalty in a beleaguered nation of scattered provinces pressured on all sides. The daughter of ancestors armed with swords and courage, she was fostered in a foreign capital to seal an alliance, and returned—to her powerful mother’s disappointment—quiet and thoughtful instead of brash and confident.

Propped up by the guns and silver of Ephteria, a far more powerful empire, her country is losing the game of power. In Eldris, an Ephterian princess, Thanh finds both romance and intoxicating risk. Eldris may desire her, but she doesn’t respect what Thanh holds dear.

Giang, Thanh’s humble handmaiden, who appeared to her the night of a terrible fire and who has deep secrets of her own, might be the one who holds the key to love, freedom, and true power.

More info at!

And if you feel minded to preorder:

Amazon US  | Amazon UK | Kobo

Free fiction!


Free fiction!

At a time where a lot of you are in lockdown in circumstances that aren’t exactly great for productivity, I thought I’d point out a few things from me that are available free of charge:

-my story “In the Lands of the Spill” is now available in the Avatars Inc anthology, an anthology about telepresence that includes works by Tade Thompson, Pat Cadigan, Ken Liu, Nino Cipri…

-and I’ve made available a bundle of three of my Xuya stories that aren’t easy to find through my Patreon (this is a public post but do feel free to join my Patreon if you want the exciting paying stuff: this is much much appreciated). Go download them here.


2019 awards consideration post


It’s that time of year again! I’ve had a 2019 and a half to say the least, so I’m afraid this is going to be a brief list, but I did want to highlight a few really really nice things I read last year, so without further ado.

For your consideration

My novel The House of Sundering Flames came out last year from Gollancz/JABberwocky, and wrapped up the Dominion of the Fallen series, a tale of a Gothic devastated Paris, Fallen angels, dragons, politics, colonialism and how to rebuild in the wake of huge devastation (also the cutest dragon toddler, the best murderbirds husbands aka the combination of a totally amoral Fallen and his increasingly distraught dragon partner, and the best Vietnamese aunties that you DO NOT want to cross)

It was long listed for the BSFA Award and is on the Locus Recommended list for Best Fantasy Novel, and here’s what people have said about it:

“A dark saga of ruined cities, fallen angels, and awakening dragons… a must read… an intoxicating blend of gothic mystery, apocalyptic fantasy, and Vietnamese myth—meaty, singular, and satisfying.”

Joel Cunningham, Barnes and Noble

“Incredible… one of the most original, fantasy settings I’ve seen”

Adrian Tchaikovsky, Arthur C. Clarke Award-winning author of Children of Ruin

You can get a copy here:

Buy Now
And you can read here:

Read chapter one online!

I’ve had the question, so yes, the “birthday goes wrong” comedy of manners “Of Birthdays, and Fungus, and Kindness” in my short story collection Of Wars, and Memories and Starlight is eligible for Best Novella if you so enjoyed it. The short story collection as a whole is eligible for Best Collection in awards like the World Fantasy Award.

EDIT: Farah Mendlesohn kindly reminded me that Dominion of the Fallen, as a whole, is eligible for Best Series if you happen to have a spot in your Hugo Awards ballot.

And here’s my list of things I loved this year! (I will, as usual, amend as I catch up on 2019, though I do have to be fair and warn that I’m not committing to this as this continues to be a bit of a wild year).


Elizabeth Bear, “Deriving Life” 

A story about grief and alien symbiotes and a relationship torn apart by death. The characters in this are so strong, fair warning it’s a tear-jerker.

Short story

John Chu, “Probabilitea”

A sweet story about the daughter of a god-like figure who must learn to manipulate the future. Also, tea and maths!

Fran Wilde, “A Catalog of Storms”

Storms, winds’ names and a family–and what it means to be sister to a heroine.

Nghi Vo, “Boiled Bones and Black Eggs”

Hauntings at an inn, and how to banish a ghost. The food descriptions are mouth-watering, but beneath it is quite a sharp story about power and memory.

Eugenia Triantafyllou, “We are Here to Be Held”

A story of motherhood and monsters. I read this one at the beginning of the year and it’s kept sticking with me, it’s haunting and strange and just the right length.

Marie Brennan, “This is How”

Myths, ravens and dead children. Poetic and packs a punch.

Morgan Al-Moor, “The Beast Weeps with One Eye”

Dark bargains, survivals and the hunger of gods. I really loved the worldbuilding and the voice in this.


Tade Thompson, The Rosewater Redemption

Tade had two books out this year, but the finale of the Rosewater series (an alien invasion tale set in the eponymous city in Nigeria) is to me the most memorable, dealing with complex politics, colonialism as alien invasion, and how people from disparate walks of life can rise and fight to make something better.

Arkady Martine, A Memory Called Empire

Arkady’s book follows an ambassador from a space station in an alien and all-encroaching empire, and deals with her fascination and repulsion for her massive neighbour. The world building is amazing, and so is the storyline, which deals with the politics of encroachment and hegemony.

Kacen Callender, Queen of the Conquered

I wasn’t expecting this book to stab me in the chest and tear it apart, but that’s what it did. It’s a raw, unflinching look at slavery and its consequences in a re-imagined Carribean world where people have a  magic called kraft (which is forbidden to slaves), and one woman’s quest to get revenge at any cost and what it does to her.

Tasha Suri, Realm of Ash

Tasha’s strong followup to Empire of Sand follows a young widow who must learn to make her own life and find her own happiness–and, in the process, fight the darkness that has spread over the Ambhan empire. It’s strongly paced, imaginative, and has a delightful set of main characters with great chemistry.

Zen Cho, The True Queen

This was super sweet! The follow-up to the Sorcerer Royal follows a queer Muslim woman looking for her missing sister and dragged into the politics of Faerie. It’s a fun and fluffy English regency, with sharp digs at the reality of Regency for non-white colonial subjects. And also the sweetest dragon and his husband (Pogo is back!!). Can be read standalone from the book that precedes it (but you really should get both).


Fran Wilde, Riverland

This is an unflinching and much needed book about abuse and what it means for children. Sisters Mike and Eleanor hide under the bed at their home to find a safe place, and trade monster stories. But when the bed becomes the opening to a magical land, Eleanor must find a way to heal the land–and help Mike and herself finally find true safety.

Astounding Awards

I believe Tasha Suri is eligible for this one and it’s her last year of eligibility!

Productive Futures (London)

- 0 comments - Events

I’m pleased to be an author guest of the academic conference of the London Science Fiction Research Community, Productive Futures. Come see me and plenty of really smart and talented people talk about economics in the future!

It’ll be happening at Birkbeck School of Arts, 43 Gordon Square, WC1H 0PD.

Get tickets here!

The House of Sundering Flames US edition !


The House of Sundering Flames US edition !

So… a question I’ve gotten asked a lot was about a US edition of The House of Sundering Flames, book 3 in the Dominion of the Fallen series. It’s been… tricky (to cut short a long story, I’m out of contract in the US and it’s not super easy to convince a publisher to pick book 3 of a series).

I’m pleased to announce that The House of Sundering Flames is now available for sale through JABberwocky Literary Agency, with a gorgeous atmospheric cover that matches those of the US editions.

Art and cover design is by Dirk Berger, who also did the UK edition of The Tea Master and the Detective (with thanks to John Berlyne for all the help).

This concludes the Dominion of the Fallen series (after The House of Shattered Wings and The House of Binding Thorns). Expect: more Gothic devastated Paris, more dragons, more snark, queer families, Vietnamese immortals, and creepy trees + creepy hawks!

Here’s the cover copy:

The white-hot conclusion to the Dominion of the Fallen trilogy by the multi-award-winning author…

The Great Houses of Paris—headed by Fallen angels and magicians—have co-existed in fragile peace. When a powerful explosion razes House Harrier, old alliances are torn apart and a race begins to fill the power void.

Thuan, the beleaguered dragon head of House Hawthorn, finds a war on his doorstep. Aurore, once cast out by Harrier and almost beaten to death, seeks power to protect her family—and must venture back to her former home. And, in the ruins of House Harrier, Emmanuelle desperately tries to piece her fragmented memories of the explosion.

But beneath House Harrier awaits a fiery magic that hungers for destruction. And it is time for Houses and Houseless to stand together—or be engulfed in flames…

Praise for The House of Sundering Flames:

Incredible… one of the most original, fantasy settings I’ve seen

Adrian Tchaikovsky, Arthur C. Clarke Award-winning author of Children of Ruin

thrilling and creepy A.F., a definite must for fans of de Bodard and fantastical fiction.

Tade Thompson, Arthur C. Clarke Award-winning author of The Rosewater trilogy

The perfect closure of the trilogy! Really took my breath away more than once.

FrauMiest (Goodreads)

Buy Now

The Dominion of the Fallen Reading Order (Novels Only)

Book 1. The House of Shattered Wings | Book 2. The House of Binding Thorns | Book 3.The House of Sundering Flames

Buy book 1, The House of Shattered Wings:

Buy Now

Buy book 2, The House of Binding Thorns:

Buy now

The House of Sundering Flames is now out!


The House of Sundering Flames is now out!

The third book in Dominion of the Fallen, The House of Sundering Flames, is out now!

Gothic devastated Paris, dragons under the waters of the Seine, flower spirits, ruined houses and monuments–my love letter to the 19th Century with more queer people and more Vietnamese people.

Things are about to burn…

Buy Now

The Dominion of the Fallen Reading Order (Novels Only)

Book 1. The House of Shattered Wings | Book 2. The House of Binding Thorns | Book 3.The House of Sundering Flames

Buy book 1, The House of Shattered Wings:

Buy Now

Buy book 2, The House of Binding Thorns:

Buy now

Dublin worldcon

- 0 comments - Events

I’ll be attending the Worldcon in Dublin in two weeks’ time.

My schedule is below. Note that:

-I’m always happy to stop and chat because this is what I go to cons for: if you see me and I don’t obviously look like I’m hurrying away to go someplace else, feel free to come and say hi.

-I will have copies of my f/f Beauty and the Beast with a dragon retelling In the Vanishers’ Palace and of the Hugo award finalist The Tea Master and the Detective with me at the con: these are self-published and I’m quite happy to sign them (note that this is the only edition of Tea Master that’s going around since the Subterranean one is out of print). The easiest way to find them is at the Hodges Figgis bookstore table in the Exhibits Halls (I think they are in the Dealers’ Area?). I’ll also have some copies for sale at my events, especially my signing on Thursday. Note that this is first come first serve and that once I run out they’re all gone!

-If you’re coming over from North America and would like to grab a copy of The House of Sundering Flames, the concluding volume to the Dominion of the Fallen trilogy, I highly encourage you to hop over to the dealers’ area or to a Dublin bookseller: this title has, right now, no North American release (long story but I’m out of contract in the US) so this is your best chance to get a copy from a bookseller! I’m also quite happy to sign these obviously.

Oppy or Armstrong? Autonomous vs human space exploration

14 Aug 2019, Wednesday 19:00 – 21:00, Fringe (Other)

The Mars Explorer Rover, nicknamed Opportunity (‘Oppy’), launched in 2003, cost US$400 million and operated for 15 years. While an impressive achievement, what more could have been done with a sustained human space programme that was focused on Mars? Can the flexibility of an onsite human team justify the undoubtedly higher cost? What is the role of humans and robot probes in the exploration of space?

Our panelists examine the various (dis)advantages of both human and robotic exploration of Luna and Mars.

This is a free, ticketed event that must be booked in advance, and is taking place at the Science Gallery Dublin, Pearse Street, Dublin 2.

Jeanette Epps (NASA), Noelle Ameijenda PhD (M), Aliette de Bodard, Dr Inge Heyer (Loyola University Maryland), Geoffrey A. Landis


Crime and punishment in the age of superheroes

15 Aug 2019, Thursday 11:00 – 11:50, Liffey Hall-2 (CCD)

Superhero TV shows repeatedly borrow the structures and tropes of cop shows, with many superheroes being ‘Cowboy Cops’ – operating according to the Rule of Cool with a sketchy adherence to notions of due process and civil rights. Can these hybrid narratives really acknowledge the ways in which real law enforcement is tangled up with race, class, and so on, and what do they reveal about attitudes to contemporary policing?

Chris M. Barkley (M), Rachel Coleman, Dan Moren, Aliette de Bodard


Reading: Aliette de Bodard

15 Aug 2019, Thursday 14:00 – 14:20, ECOCEM Room (CCD)


Autographs: Thursday at 16:00

15 Aug 2019, Thursday 16:00 – 16:50, Level 4 Foyer (CCD)


Dublin 2019 fountain pen meetup

16 Aug 2019, Friday 15:00 – 15:50, Wicklow Room-5 (Workshops) (CCD)

An informal meetup for people who love and want to talk about all things fountain pen and ink! Join us to chat about your favourite pens and how you use them.

NB: feel quite free to bring your own pens and inks, or to come look in on us even if you have no pens–we’ll have some starter pens and inks for you to handle!

Aliette de Bodard (M)

Autographs: Saturday 11

17 Aug 2019, Saturday morning 11:00-11:30, Gollancz table in Dealers’ Area (CCD)


Invisible Work: Mothers and Caretakers in SFF

Format: Panel
17 Aug 2019, Saturday 12:00 – 12:50, Wicklow Hall-1 (CCD)

A query online for mothers in SFF led to endless lists of the most badass mothers, but why must mothers always be badass in order to be valid? Do characters like single mother Nicole Reese in Raising Dion represent a change in the depiction of SF motherhood? The panel will discuss the depiction of mothers and carers in SFF and how it aligns with the politics of motherhood in the wider world.

Aliette de Bodard, Kate Elliott, Sylvia Spruck Wrigley (M), Rivers Solomon


What I learned along the way

17 Aug 2019, Saturday 15:00 – 15:50, Wicklow Room-3 (CCD)

Writing is a many wondrous thing filled with highs and lows, but those lows can be really tough to navigate either after a great success or after a lack of success. Rejection is something every writer has to face, but how do writers keep writing in the face of failure? What lessons have they learned along the way? Our panellists share the ups and downs of a writing life.

Aliette de Bodard, Ian R MacLeod (M), Karl Schroeder (Tor Books), George Sandison (Titan Books) , Nina Allan

Kaffeeklatsch: Aliette de Bodard

18 Aug 2019, Sunday 13:00 – 13:50, Level 3 Foyer (KK/LB) (CCD)


Dragons, wyrms, and serpents: why the myth endures

19 Aug 2019, Monday 12:00 – 12:50, Wicklow Hall 2A (Dances) (CCD)

There are a lot of mythical beasts that can and do feature in fantasy, but the dragon/wyrm/serpent seems to be one of the most popular. What are the reasons for this enduring popularity? What roles does it perform? What mythic properties does it embody and why do these continue to resonate (if they do)?

Marie Brennan, Karen Simpson Nikakis (M), Aliette de Bodard, Naomi Novik, Joey Yu (Kino Eye Ltd. / Freelance)