Bank Square Books and Savoy Bookshop & Café present a virtual author talk with Naseem Jamnia and R. B. Lemberg in partnership with Tachyon Publications LLC.
See registration details at the bottom of the page.
About The Bruising of Qilwa
In this intricate debut fantasy introducing a queernormative Persian-inspired world, a nonbinary refugee practitioner of blood magic discovers a strange disease that causes political rifts in their new homeland. Persian-American author Naseem Jamnia has crafted a moving, nuanced exploration of immigration, gender, healing, and family.
Firuz-e Jafari is fortunate enough to have immigrated to the Free Democratic City-State of Qilwa, fleeing the slaughter of other traditional Sassanian blood magic practitioners in their homeland. Despite the status of refugees in their new home, Firuz has a good job at a free healing clinic in Qilwa, working with Kofi, a kindly new employer, and mentoring Afsoneh, a troubled orphan refugee with powerful magic.
But Firuz and Kofi have discovered a terrible new disease that leaves mysterious bruises on its victims. The illness is spreading quickly through Qilwa, and there are dangerous accusations of ineptly performed blood magic. In order to survive, Firuz must break a deadly cycle of prejudice, untangle sociopolitical constraints, and find a fresh start for both their blood and found family. Powerful and fascinating, The Bruising of Qilwa is the newest arrival in the era of fantasy classics such as the Broken Earth Trilogy, The Four Profound Weaves, and Who Fears Death.
About Naseem Jamnia
Naseem Jamnia is a former neuroscientist and recent MFA graduate from the University of Nevada, Reno. Their work has appeared in the Washington Post, Cosmopolitan, The Rumpus, The Writer’s Chronicle, and other venues. Jamnia is a 2018 Bitch Media Fellow in Technology and a 2019 Lambda Literary Fellow in Young Adult Fiction, and they recently received the 2021 inaugural Samuel R. Delany Fellowship. In addition to cowriting the academic text Positive Interactions with At-Risk Children, Jamnia’s work has been included in the Lambda Literary EMERGE anthology (2020) and We Made Uranium! And Other True Stories from the University of Chicago’s Extraordinary Scavenger Hunt. A Persian-Chicagoan and child to Iranian immigrants, Jamnia now lives in Reno with their husband, dog, and two cats. Find out at more at www.naseemwrites.com and on Twitter and Instagram at @jamsternazzy.
About The Unbalancing
In this first full-length novel from the acclaimed Birdverse, new love blossoms between an impatient starkeeper and a reclusive poet as they try together to save their island home. Nebula, Locus, and Ignyte finalist R. B. Lemberg (The Four Profound Weaves) has crafted a gorgeous tale of the inevitable transformations of communities and their worlds. The Unbalancing is rooted in the mystical cosmology, neurodiversity, and queerness that infuses Lemberg’s lyrical prose, which has invited glowing comparisons to N. K. Jemisin, Patricia A. McKillip, and Ursula K. LeGuin.
Beneath the waters by the islands of Gelle-Geu, a star sleeps restlessly. The celebrated new starkeeper Ranra Kekeri, who is preoccupied by the increasing tremors, confronts the problems left behind by her predecessor.
Meanwhile, the poet Erígra Lilún, who merely wants to be left alone, is repeatedly asked by their ancestor Semberi to take over the starkeeping helm. Semberi insists upon telling Lilun mysterious tales of the deliverance of the stars by the goddess Bird.
When Ranra and Lilun meet, sparks begin to fly. An unforeseen configuration of their magical deepnames illuminates the trouble under the tides. For Ranra and Lilun, their story is just beginning; for the people of Gelle-Geu, it may well be too late to save their home.
About R. B. Lemberg
R. B. Lemberg is a queer, bigender immigrant from Eastern Europe to the U.S. R.B.’s Birdverse novella The Four Profound Weaves (Tachyon, 2020) was a finalist for the Nebula, Ignyte, Locus, and World Fantasy awards and was an Otherwise Award honoree. R. B.’s poetry memoir Everything Thaws was published by Ben Yehuda Press in 2022. Their stories and poems have appeared in Lightspeed Magazine’s Queers Destroy Science Fiction!, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, We Are Here: Best Queer Speculative Fiction 2020, Sisters of the Revolution: A Feminist Speculative Fiction Anthology, and many other venues. You can find R.B. on Twitter at @rb_lemberg, on Patreon at http://patreon.com/rblemberg, and at their websites rblemberg.net and birdverse.net.
"I loved this gorgeous book about blood magic, chosen family and refugees in a hostile city. Naseem Jamnia has created a rich, complex world."STARRED REVIEW] "A delight to read. Highly recommended."
--Charlie Jane Anders, author of All the Birds in the Sky
In this first full-length novel from the acclaimed Birdverse, new love blossoms between an impatient starkeeper and a reclusive poet as they try together to save their island home. Nebula, Locus, and Ignyte finalist R. B. Lemberg (The Four Profound Weaves) has crafted a gorgeous tale of the inevitable transformations of communities and their worlds.