It’s Cranky Writer Week in this edition of Science Fiction Books New Releases! The third week in September is a slow one for science fiction titles but I’ve scoured the internet and found some very interesting reads. A new Star Trek title, a couple of graphic novels, a gigantic 1000 page techno thriller, and yes, more vampires. I compiled this list while suffering through a late summer cold so bear that in mind as we preview new books scheduled for publication September 18th through the 24th, 2011.

Halo Encyclopedia by DK Publishing and Tobias Buckell (Sep 19, 2011)368 pages DK Adult

This book promises that it has everything you wanted to know about Master Chief and the Halo Universe. Learn about the origins of the Spartan program and detailed information about all the characters, vehicles, locations, and weapons. Technical drawings, tons of amazing images, and everything Halo within your reach.

Critical Millennium: The Dark Frontier by Andrew E. C. Gaska and Daniel Dussault (Sep 20, 2011)168 pages Archaia Entertainment GN

Thomm Coney leads a group of explorers out of the solar system for the first time in search of a planet to replace a dying Earth. 2000 years in the future and mankind is still plagued by selfish political agendas and terrorists. Add to that a volatile star drive and good, old fashioned greed and it’s a wonder that Thomm’s crew even made it this far.

Reamde: A Novelby Neal Stephenson (Sep 20, 2011)1056 pages William Morrow

Amazon has made this title one of the Best Books of the Month so you know it has to be good. An online virus  brings together a Chinese hacker, a Russian Mobster, a Hungarian software programmer, an African beauty queen, a wealthy CEO, an MMORP, and tons of guns for a straight up techno-thriller novel. Amazon says that the author’s breakneck narrative makes the 1000 pages fly by. I can not wait for this one.

Star Trek: The Next Generation: Sins of Commission by Susan Wright (Sep 24, 2011)288 pages Pocket Books

The crew of the Enterprise is sent to save a planet on the brink of environmental collapse when the alien survivors respond in pain and anger, crippling the ship with an emotional onslaught.  Worf and one of his oldest friends are accused of murder and must find a way to clear their names. Let’s be serious for a second, Pocket Books. You publish books based on one of the best loved, most iconic science fiction series in history, and, with less than a week before the latest story hits shelves, you still don’t know what the cover looks like? REALLY?  We have to put up this lame, generic placeholder instead of an actual book cover. NOT COOL POCKET BOOKS!

Mass Effect Volume 2: Evolution by Mac Walters, John Jackson Miller, Omar Francia and Michael Atiyeh (Sep 21, 2011)112 pages Dark Horse GN

Mass Effect fans will want to pick this up as the origin story of the Illusive Man is revealed. Created by the people that brought you Star Wars: Knight Errant, and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2. I wish I had more to say but DH is giving me nothing. So, we all know that the Illusive Man is just a blatant rip-off of The X-Files’ Cigarette Smoking Man, right?

Star-Crossed Saga: ProtoStar by Braxton A. Cosby (Sep 25, 2011)356 pages Firefly Publishing

This YA book is an exciting blend of science fiction and romance. Sydney Elaine is being hunted by an intergalactic bounty hunter. This bounty hunter doesn’t fly around in a ship called the Slave 1 though. His name is William Derry and he has been sent  by his father to destroy the Star-children in order to stop a huge galactic evil AND restore honor to his family. But mostly to stop the huge galactic evil, I’m sure.  But is Sydney really evil or is William just a part of a manipulative regime?

Doctor Who Classics Volume 7 by Simon Furman, Mike Collins, Grant Morrison and Dan Abnett (Sep 20, 2011)128 pages IDW Publishing GN

IDW has been “remastering” old Doctor Who comics for a while now. This time they collect a number of tales focusing on Sylvester McCoy’s portrayal of the Seventh Doctor featuring the reptilian Ice Warrior race of beings, among others. On a side note, WTF Amazon? Why give customers the option to filter out graphic novels in your Advance Search system if it’s not going to work? Ugh, I need an aspirin. I think I’m coming down with something.  Moving on to the next book. Man, I hope it’s not another vampire book…

The Rift Walker (Vampire Empire, Book 2) by Clay Griffith and Susan Griffith300 pages Pyr

…DANG IT! Well, at least the vampires in this title seem to be bad guys. Mixing high adventure, steampunk, and alternative history, The Rift Walker series returns with a good amount of romance and heroism in this second book of the Vampire Empire tale. Princess Adele’s empire is on the brink of war with the vampire clans of the north. She disagrees with her allies’ strategy of all out genocide and abandons her duties to run off with a mysterious stranger in order to investigate her new found mystical powers.

Daniel X: Game Overby James Patterson and Ned Rust240 pages Little, Brown and Company

In this YA novel, a couple of evil extraterrestrials are plotting to turn all the children in the world into an unstoppable army through videogames and Daniel X takes it upon himself to put an end to it. Since brainwashing kids with gaming consoles isn’t evil enough, they also run an endangered species hunting club. It’s up to Daniel X to convince the aliens’ rebel son to stand up to his parents.