Dangerous Games

Released 4 December 2014

By Rebecca Levene, Paul Kearney, Libby McGugan, Gary McMahon, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Jonathan Oliver, Ivo Stourton, Chuck Wendig

buy now: UK|US|eBook

In a world ruled by chance, one rash decision could bring down the house, one roll of the dice could bring untold wealth, or the end of everything.

The players have gathered around the table, each to tell their story—often dark, always compelling. Within you will find tales of the players and the played, lives governed by games deadly, weird, or downright bizarre.

In this anthology of the weird and the macabre, award-winning editor Jonathan Oliver brings together a diverse collection of voices from some of today’s finest writers, to create an original and fresh collection that’s unlike anything you’ve read before.

Dangerous Games features new works from Hugo award-winners, brilliant new talents and best-selling authors, including:

Introduction, Jonathan Oliver  
Big Man, Chuck Wendig  
The Yellow Door, Silvia Moreno-Garcia 
Die, Lavie Tidhar
Chrysalises, Benjanun Sriduangkaew
South Mountain, Paul Kearney
The Game Changer, Libby McGugan
Distinguishing Characteristics, Yoon Ha Lee
Captain Zzapp!!! – Space Hero from 3000 AD, Gary Northfield
Death Pool, Melanie Tem
The Bone Man’s Bride, Hillary Monahan
Honourable Mention, Tade Thompson
Loser, Rebecca Levene
Two Sit Down, One Stands Up, Ivo Stourton
Ready or Not, Gary McMahon
The Monogamy of Wild Beasts, Robert Shearman
The Stranger Cards, Nik Vincent
All Things Fall Apart and Are Built Again, Helen Marshall
Lefty Plays Bridge, Pat Cadigan

"In recent years, no one publisher has done as much for the short form of speculative fiction in Britain as Solaris."

UK: 9781781082650 
US: 9781781082685 



Rebecca Levene

Rebecca Levene has been a writer and editor for sixteen years. In that time she has storylined Emmerdale, written a children's book about Captain Cook, several science fiction and horror novels, a novelisation and making-of book for Rebellion's Rogue Trooper video game, and a Beginner's Guide to Poker. She has also edited a range of media tie-in books. She was associate producer on the ITV1 drama Wild at Heart, story consultant on the Chinese soap opera Joy Luck Street, script writer on Family Affairs and Is Harry on the Boat? and is part of the writing team for Channel 5's Swinging. She has had two sit-coms optioned, one by the BBC and one by Talkback, and currently has a detective drama in development with Granada Television.


Paul Kearney

Paul Kearney is the critically-acclaimed author of The Monarchies of God and the Sea Beggars series. He has been long-listed for the British Fantasy Award. In the eight years subsequent to the publication of The Way to Babylon, Kearney lived in Copenhagen, New Jersey, and Cambridgeshire, but at present he makes his home a stone's throw from the sea in County Down, with his wife, two dogs, a beat-up old boat, and far too many books.


Libby McGugan

Libby McGugan was born 1972 in Airdrie, a small town east of Glasgow in Scotland. She enjoyed a mixed diet of quantum physics, spiritual instinct, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg. A practising doctor, she has worked in Scotland, in Australia with the Flying Doctors service and, for a few months, in a field hospital in the desert. Her biggest influences are Joseph Campbell, Lao Tzu, David Bohm, Brian Greene and Yoda.


Gary McMahon

Gary McMahon’s fiction has appeared in magazines and anthologies in the U.K. and U.S and has been reprinted in both The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror and The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. He is the British Fantasy Award-nominated author of Rough Cut, All Your Gods Are Dead, Pieces of Midnight and To Usher, The Dead, and has edited an anthology of original novelettes titled We Fade to Grey. For Abaddon Books and Solaris he has written Hungry Hearts and the Concrete Grove trilogy, and for Angry Robot he has written the Thomas Usher books.

For more information visit the official Gary McMahon website


Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Mexican by birth, Canadian by inclination, Silvia Moreno-Garcia lives in beautiful British Columbia with her family and two cats. Her speculative fiction has been collected in This Strange Way of Dying. Signal to Noise is her debut novel.

Follow Silvia on Twitter, and for more information visit the official Silvia Moreno-Garcia website


Jonathan Oliver

Jonathan Oliver is the multi-award winning editor of The End of The Line, Magic, House of Fear, End of the Road and Dangerous Games. He’s also written a couple of novels and a bunch of short stories. He lives in Abingdon with his family and their cat.

Follow Jon on Twitter


Ivo Stourton

Ivo Stourton is the author of The Happier Dead, and two previous non-SF novels The Night Climbers (Doubleday, 2007) and The Book Lover’s Tale (Doubleday, 2011). He is married and lives in London.


Chuck Wendig

Chuck Wendig is a novelist, screenwriter and self-described 'penmonkey'. He sold his first story when he was 18. After working in the computer and role-playing game industries he began scripting TV- and film-projects, including a horror film script which won him a place at the prestigous Sundance Screenwriter Lab 2010. He currently lives in the wilds of Pennsyltucky with a wonderful wife and two very stupid dogs.

Follow Chuck on Twitter, and find out more at Terrible Minds


Review Round Up: Signal to Noise

4 years ago

Out now, Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s debut novel Signal to Noise is a beautiful literary fantasy about music, magic and Mexico:

Mexico City, 1988: Long before iTunes or MP3s, you said “I love you” with a mixtape.

Meche, awkward and fifteen, has two equally unhip friends – Sebastian and Daniela – and a whole lot of vinyl records to keep her company. When she discovers how to cast spells using music, the future looks brighter for the trio. The three friends will piece together their broken families, change their status as nonentities,and maybe even find love…

Mexico City, 2009: Two decades after abandoning the metropolis, Meche returns alone for her estranged father’s funeral.

It’s hard enough to cope with her family, but then she runs into Sebastian, reviving memories from a childhood she thought she buried a long time ago. What really happened back then? What precipitated the bitter falling out with her father? Is there any magic left?

Here are just some of the lovely things people have been saying about it so far:

"Haunting and beautifully nuanced, Signal to Noise is a magical first novel."
- The Guardian

“One of the outstanding debut fantasy novels this year.”
Chicago Tribune

“You’ve never read a book about Magic and Loss like Signal to Noise
- i09

“This accurate depiction of outcast teenage life cycles effortlessly between eras. Meche, Sebastian, and Daniela are deeply believable characters, and numerous ’80s musical references make this unusual story a welcome blast from the past.”
Publisher’s Weekly

“Fans of Eleanor and Park, meet Meche and Sebastian.”
- Schools Library Journal

"The power of music and its effect on people is at the heart of Silvia Moreno-Garcia's Signal to Noise."
- Strange Horizons

“I know it’s very early in the year but I can already tell this is one of the Notable Reads of 2015.”
Kirkus Reviews

“In a poignant, graceful coda, Moreno-Garcia brings the book full circle, slyly subverting the expectations of a linear narrative and punctuating Meche's story with a hushed, lovely flourish. In many ways, Signal to Noise is a coming-of-age tale, but it's also the tale of what comes after — and what happens when forces beyond our control, magical or otherwise, are better left that way.”

“Moreno-Garcia has a solid and convincing prose style, robust and subtle in all the right places… a successful debut, and a very interesting book.”

“If you like well drawn characters, cool tunes and lashing and lashings of nostalgia, then you should check this out.”
Starburst Magazine

Signal to Noise is an utterly gorgeous book, and will make you want to get out your old turntable and records and give them a spin or two (or three.) Don’t miss out on this one.”
My Bookish Ways

“Suffused with the music – English-language and Spanish, pop and punk – that Meche and friends use to make their magic and soundtrack to their lives, this is both a spiky and charmingly sweet romance of making amends and starting again. 4 stars.”
– SFX Magazine

Kirkus Reviews top SFF picks for February

“Beautiful, descriptive language and authentic character banter are both essential parts of Moreno-Garcia’s lyrical storytelling… Refreshing, lively and unique, Moreno-Garcia’s debut novel is a triumph. 4 ½ Stars”
RT Book Reviews, Top Pick review

“This book is about mood, about adolescence and adulthood, about growing up and accepting loss and a whole lot of other things. It's solid and intense… Signal to Noise is an amazing read.”
Nerds Feather

“I don’t feel like I’ve been peering over someone’s shoulder into a brand-new world. Instead it feels like Moreno-Garcia has peeled back a curtain that lets me see what’s been hiding in this one all along.”
Lisa Shininger

“Each of the two temporal layers is interesting in its own right but is, of course, enriched by the information given in the complementary one. The few cross-overs between them, allowed by magic, are a quite elegant touch. The frequent dialogues in the narration are always believable and often amusing. Moreno-Garcia succeeds at the very difficult task of convincingly giving voice to both teenage and adult characters.”
Future Fire

“What’s particularly wonderful about Signal to Noise is that this is a novel about Mexican kids living in Mexico City. It mentions Timbiriche and Los Fabulosos Cadillacs as well as Billy Idol and Joy Division. Silvia Moreno-Garcia, who writes in her bio she is “Mexican by birth and Canadian by inclination,” delivers a reading experience full of cultural references that are often sorely missing from the genre.”
Far Beyond Reality

“This is the book that rocketed me out of a reading slump when I zipped through it in 24 hours… a great coming-of-age story that isn’t YA, but I think would definitely appeal to YA readers and adult readers alike.”
The Book Riot

“An evocative, powerful, and beautiful tale of magic, dreams, love and hate, betrayal and redemption, this book is heartbreaking and heartwarming, and one of the best I have read so far this year.”
The Book Adventures

“It’s rare to find a book that captures both the feeling of a teenager and the feeling of looking back on that time in a way that isn’t all sunshine and roses… The characters are messy and complex, the music evocative, and the magic shines through all of it.”
- sepiidae

“Readers can expect to feel every one of Meche’s mistakes and heartbreaks as if it were their own… [a] heartwarming masterpiece.”
Gnome Reviews

Signal to Noise is a fun, peculiar novel. It’s magical in and of itself, enjoyable, and you can’t help but feel captivated by the plight of the awkward trio”

 “Signal To Noise isn’t a flashy novel, or one that is particularly trying to impress you with its theatrics; it’s a very human, personal novel, a beautiful and painful story about love, loss, family, friendship, and the idea of home.”

 “Unusually accurate portrayal of Mexican pop culture (and the 1980s) as the backdrop for a coming-of-age story with magic and lots of music. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed Jo Walton's 'Among Others'.”
- murmuju

“Apart from the excellent characters, the novel manages (at least for me) to give a very good impression of how life for a teenager in 80s Mexico City might have been like.”
Reading SFF

“breathtakingly perfect”
A.C. Wise

Signal to Noise is an original, unique, and compelling début novel and a wonderful introduction to the work of Silvia Moreno-Garcia.”
Urban Fantasy Magazine

“If you like Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell, read Signal to Noise by Silvia Moreno-Garcia”
- The Moor Maiden

“This is a Mexico City that its residents live and love in, a mysterious place to a gringo americano, but it's simply a Home, like barrios we grew and grow up in. Abject realism, centered on the characters.”
La Bloga

“Unusual and intellectual fantasy fare.”
Strange Charm Books

“An evocative, powerful, and beautiful tale of magic, dreams, love and hate, betrayal and redemption, this book is heartbreaking and heartwarming, and one of the best I have read so far this year.”
- Live to Read

And finally don’t forget to check out the book’s goodreads page where the good vibes continue to roll in!