Fiction by Linda Nagata

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email: linda at mythicisland dot com

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contact: linda at mythicisland dot com


Linda Nagata

... and welcome to my personal website. I'm Linda Nagata, a science fiction and fantasy writer from Hawaii, with thirteen published novels and numerous short stories.

My science fiction novels are high-tech, "hard" science fiction, with an emphasis on character and story. The Bohr Maker won the Locus Award for best first novel, my novella "Goddesses" was the first online publication to receive a Nebula award, my 2013 story "Nahiku West" was runner-up for the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award, and The Red: First Light was nominated for both the Nebula Award and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award.

My ventures into fantasy have resulted in a duet of short, fast-paced novels collectively titled Stories of the Puzzle Lands. You probably haven't read anything quite like them before. Call them quirky sword and sorcery, or grim-dark with heart.

I invite you to sign up for my occasional newsletter (see the form below). It's the best way to stay in touch, and I'll let you know when I have new work coming out. You can also follow me on Twitter. I'm ever grateful for your support!

contact: linda at mythicisland dot com

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Visit My Blog at Hahví.net

Please visit my blog and let me know what you think! I would love to hear from you.

March 21, 2017

Still she persisted...

A retrospective on the first thirty years of my writing career.

It’s been thirty years since my first publication. That was a short story called “Spectral Expectations” that appeared in Analog magazine. I was twenty-six years old at the time, a stay-at-home mom caring for my first baby, born just a couple of months earlier.

That was a different age. The Internet-as-we-know-it didn’t exist yet and all correspondence was via snail-mail. I don’t remember all the details, but I know I was thrilled when my copy of the magazine finally arrived. I was on my way!

Surely I was on my way?

( Read More >> )

Updated March 2, 2017

Coming in June 2017 From Mythic Island Press LLC

Scarred by war. In pursuit of truth.
A near-future thriller

There's no preorder option yet, but PLEASE DO signup for my newsletter. You'll not only get news about The Last Good Man, but you'll also get news about DEALS on my other books.

Coming in June 2017 From Mythic Island Press LLC

Scarred by war. In pursuit of truth.THE LAST GOOD MAN ★      A near-future thriller

There's no preorder option yet, but PLEASE DO signup for my newsletter. You'll not only get news about The Last Good Man, but you'll also get news about DEALS on my other books.


Eight Short Stories


Visit high-tech future battlefields, surreal other worlds, an orbital habitat, and a distant moon. Embrace action, and harrowing adventure. Half of these stories have appeared in various best-of-the-year anthologies, and each is introduced with brief notes from the author.

Included stories:
Through Your Eyes (Asimov's 2013)
Halfway Home (Nightmare Magazine 2013)
Codename: Delphi (Lightspeed Magazine 2014)
Attitude (Reach For Infinity 2014)
A Moment Before It Struck (Lightspeed Magazine 2012)
Light and Shadow (War Stories 2014)
Nightside On Callisto (Lightspeed Magazine 2012)
The Way Home (Operation Arcana 2015)

The Red Trilogy, book 1


A near-future science fiction thriller

Nominated for the Nebula Award (Novel)
Finalist for the Campbell Memorial Award
On the Locus Recommended Reading List
Publishers Weekly starred review
Publishers Weekly Best Books 2015

"There Needs To Be A War Going On Somewhere"

Lieutenant James Shelley commands a high-tech squad of soldiers in a rural district within the African Sahel. They hunt insurgents each night on a harrowing patrol, guided by three simple goals: protect civilians, kill the enemy, and stay alive—because in a for-profit war manufactured by the defense industry there can be no cause worth dying for. To keep his soldiers safe, Shelley uses every high-tech asset available to him—but his best weapon is a flawless sense of imminent if God is with him, whispering warnings in his ear.

In hardcover, paperback, ebook, and audio editions.

Or check with your favorite retailer!

Mythic Island Press United Kingdom Edition (ebook only):
    ☆ Amazon UK        ☆ Kobo (UK, Ireland, NZ)***

    ***If the Kobo link doesn't work and you are in the UK, Ireland, or NZ, search this id: 9781937197193

" of the best pieces of near future Mil-SF ever written. What's so good about it? The action rocks and the characters are engaging as hell. But this isn't just adventure fiction, it's Mil-SF and very well done, straight out of DARPA's dreambook, not somebody's fantasy."    —Ernest Lilley, SFRevu

"The Red delivers intense action, leavened by a genuinely sympathetic portrait of soldiers caught up in battles they never chose. Best of all are Nagata's well-informed representations of future military tech. This is hard science fiction at its finest, full of devices like bionic limbs, exosuits, autonomous drones, and brain implants that are being developed in labs today. But you've never seen them like this, at play in a realistic field of battle, controlled by people you actually care about."   —Annalee Newitz,

"The Red: First Light is one fantastic speculative fiction novel, from a plotting, characterization, military sci-fi, and thematic standpoint."   —Thea James, Kirkus

Read a Sample Chapter

The Red Trilogy, book 2



A Red Thriller

"No Way Out But Forward"

Lieutenant James Shelley and his squad of US Army soldiers were on a quest for justice when they carried out the unauthorized mission known as First Light. They returned home to America to face a court-martial, determined to expose the corruption in the chain of command that compelled their actions. But in a country still reeling from the nuclear terrorism of Coma Day, the courtroom is just one battlefield of many.

A new cycle of violence ignites when rumors of the elusive, rogue AI known as the Red go publicand Shelley is, once again, pulled into the fray. Challenged by his enemies, driven by ideals, Shelley feels compelled to act. But are the harrowing choices he makes really his own, or are they made for him, by the Red? And with millions of lives at stake in a game of nuclear cat-and-mouse, does the answer even matter?

In hardcover, paperback, ebook, and audio editions.

☆ Audible Audio Edition, narrated by Kevin T. Collins

Or check with your favorite retailer!

Mythic Island Press United Kingdom Edition (ebook only):
    ☆ Amazon UK        ☆ Kobo (UK, Ireland, NZ)***

    ***If the Kobo link doesn't work and you are in the UK, Ireland, or NZ, search this id: 9781937197186

"I really love these books most of all for what they are: some of the most action-packed and intelligent military science fiction to be released in years[...] I can confidently say that, if you loved The Red, chances are that you'll love The Trials too." —Stefan Raets,

"Where other books might have been overshadowed by a book as good as The Red: First Light, The Trials manages to shine." —Anthony Vicino, SF Signal

"The Trials aptly continues the terse and involving story begun in The Red: First Light [...] Like the best middle installments of trilogies, The Trials moves us deeper into the psyches and lives of the characters we have met, while still broadening the threat to the world and setting up a huge payoff."

—Sharon Browning, Litstack

"...wonderfully executed [...] A high-stakes thriller, propulsive action sequences, awesome military tech, and a world inhabited by richly developed characters and nasty political scheming, The Trials has it all. Nagata takes all of these elements and unflinchingly takes them on their natural progression to craft an immensely satisfying and action-filled story." —Michael Hicks, AudioBook Reviewer

Read a Sample Chapter

The Red Trilogy, book 3

Read a Sample Chapter


A Red Thriller

Finalist for the Campbell Memorial Award
On the Locus Recommended Reading List

"No Real Allies,
No Fixed Enemies,
No Certain Battlefields"

Presumed dead by those closest to him and with no intention of setting the record straight, former army Lt. James Shelley is recruited by a black-ops outfit devoted to two things: guarding the Earth from existential threats, and the Red.

Operating for almost two years among soldiers who are enhanced, and controlled, just as he is, Shelley believes he's learned a proper caution in working with the mysterious artificial intelligence—until the Red's increasingly erratic behavior ignites an accidental war, and launches Shelley on a collision course with his old life.

In the final book of The Red Trilogy, Shelley must choose who—or what—to trust, while struggling to contain an escalating conflict that threatens to plunge the world into chaos, and destroy those he loves.

The concluding volume of The Red Trilogy.
In hardcover, paperback, ebook, and audio editions.

☆ Audible Audio Edition, narrated by Kevin T. Collins

Or check with your favorite retailer!

Mythic Island Press United Kingdom Edition (ebook only):
    ☆ Amazon UK

"The final volume of Nagata's The Red trilogy completes an impressive military SF series [...] As much a consideration of the emergence of an artificial intelligence as an action-packed political thriller, The Red trilogy is unparalleled among modern milSF." —B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog

"A riveting technothriller [...] I highly recommend Going Dark and the Red trilogy to anybody looking for some amazing near future military SF." —Anthony Vicino, SF Signal

"The final volume in Nagata's much-praised Red trilogy features the same high-octane action as its predecessors [...] One of the highlights of the series continues to be the author's portrayal of the intense camaraderie of men and women at war. Readers who loved The Red and The Trials will find this a fitting conclusion." Publishers Weekly


"Linda Nagata presents a unique world-view. Every one of her books that I have read has been alien and disturbing. I love and identify with the characters, but the situations they inhabit stretch the mind. This is as true of Linda Nagata's fantasy as her science fiction. Her work is really, really different. And that's a good thing."

—from long-time reader Larry Clough

Stories of the Puzzle Lands - Published by Mythic Island Press LLC

Stories of the Puzzle Lands - Book 1

The Dread Hammer - a tale of love, war, murder, marriage, and fate

An enthralling, dark fantasy:

He lurks beside the forest road, a charming, well-armed young murderer, not altogether human. She draws near, a contrary shepherdess fleeing an unwanted marriage. When he overhears her prayer for help, whispered to the Dread Hammer, he decides to grant it--and love takes him by surprise. But love proves a greater challenge than murder.

Stories of the Puzzle Lands - Book 2

Hepen the Watcher - a tale of exile, rebellion, fidelity, and fire

The demon Dismay's murderous nature has earned him the ire of his beloved wife, who has sent him away in a fit of temper. He ventures into a foreign land, drawn by the prayers of abused and desperate women who beg him to grant them vengeance against the men who cruelly rule their lives--and Dismay is pleased to do it.

Still, murder is hard and dirty work.

An avid desire for a bath brings him to a fine Lutawan estate, where he meets two beautiful young women. They delight in their fierce guest—but their kindness to Dismay earns the wrath of the immortal king, Hepen the Watcher.

Short Story Collections - Published by Mythic Island Press LLC

Goddesses & Other Stories by Linda Nagata

Ten science fiction stories, including my Nebula Award winning novella "Goddesses." This collection brings together for the first time my short fiction, originally published in Analog Science Fiction & Fact, The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, More Amazing Stories, and

Shop for the Print Book

The Nanotechnology Novels . . . now, The Nanotech Succession

The nanotechnology novels were originally published from 1995 through 1998 by Bantam Spectra. In November 2010 they were re-published as ebooks by Mythic Island Press LLC under the collective title The Nanotech Succession. Each novel works as a stand-alone story, but since they share the same story world and sometimes the same characters, they can also be read as a loose series. Tech-Heaven is a near-future prequel. The Bohr Maker is Book 1, followed by Book 2, Deception Well, and culminating in Book 3, Vast.

Tech-Heaven - A Prequel to the Nanotech Succession

A political thriller that imagines the rise of nanotechnology in our world through the eyes of Katie Kishida, a mother and business woman whose life takes an extraordinary turn when she is widowed, and her husband's body is cryonically frozen against a time when advancing technology will allow his resurrection.

The Bohr Maker - Book 1 of the Nanotech Succession

Society has expanded into the great orbital habitats known as the "Celestial Cities" and nanotechnology saturates every aspect of life--but the rules regulating its use are still being written. A brilliantly original, fast-paced thriller, The Bohr Maker won the Locus Award for Best First Novel.

Deception Well - Book 2 of the Nanotech Succession

Advancing technology has allowed human civilization to expand across star systems, establishing settlements divided from one another by vast gulfs of space and time. But all along the frontier, human settlements are under attack by the ancient and deadly robotic warships of a mysterious alien race known as the Chenzeme.

Vast - Book 3 of the Nanotech Succession

Four people are aboard the great ship, Null Boundary. They are bound for the lightless clouds of dust and gas in the galaxy's Orion Arm, determined to find the source of the alien Chenzeme warships that have ravaged human civilization. Vast is an extraordinary adventure embracing the limitless nature of both space and time.

Science fiction writer Alastair Reynolds had some very nice things to say about Vast. Find his blog post here.

The Nanotech Succession Omnibus Edition

All four novels of the Nanotech Succession in one ebook. Includes Tech-Heaven, The Bohr Maker, Deception Well, and Vast.


Other Story Worlds:


A unique far-future adventure set on a world where the past rises up each night to rewrite the future. Finalist for the 2004 John W. Campbell Memorial Award.

Science fiction writer Tobias Buckell talks about Memory. Find his blog post here.

Limit of Vision

A near-future thriller set in the steamy Mekong Delta. Ethics and evolution collide in this tale of runaway biotechnology.


Skye Object 3270a

A far-future, high-adventure young-adult novel aimed at an advanced middle school audience. The story is set in the Deception Well story world, but is otherwise independent of that book and its characters. If you want to infect a new generation with the science-fiction meme, start here!

The Wild

An origin myth and a tale of high fantasy.

Shop for the Ebook