Janitors of the Post-Apocalypse

Terminal Peace:

“Hines has a talent for creating interesting aliens, and the Jynx are one of his best yet, with a fascinating culture and backstory. The newest members of Mop’s crew lend some fresh perspectives, and the ending—unexpected as it is—rings true. Hines serves up a satisfying and hopeful conclusion to the series.”


“[A]s funny and clever as the first two, but also features a surprisingly deep exploration of mortality, the ethics of free will, and the perils of war… Terminal Peace is the type of finale fans of Hines’s previous work have come to expect: a zany adventure far deeper than the series title would lead readers to believe.”

-Alana Joli Abbott, Paste Magazine

“[C]aps off what is a fun and interesting trilogy. The story and universe explored are worth jumping into, and I wouldn’t mind at all if Hines finds a way to come back to this universe and explore some other characters and their journeys within it.”

Game Vortex

Terminal Uprising:

“Subtle absurdist humor permeates the narrative, derived from faulty translations, cultural references without context, and unconventional solutions to problems. Clever characterization and action-packed moments round out this thoroughly satisfying outing.”

Publishers Weekly

Terminal Uprising cements the reputation of the Janitors of the Post-Apocalypse as an exciting and rewarding series … Overall, a strong addition to an excellent series that will appeal to fans of Becky Chambers.”


“Hines writes a crackling good action scene… Hines is also damn good at banter and witty repartee, and at evoking strong feelings of empathy in the reader … I really enjoyed this novel, and I look forward to another installment in the full course of time. I can’t imagine what Mops and her crew will get up to next — and that’s, of course, four-fifths of the fun.”

Liz Bourke, Locus

“It’s all good fun, with the exploration of Earth offering lots of adventure and some touching moments to go with the entertainingly offbeat combat that explores the deadly side of cleaning supplies.”

Carolyn Cushman, Locus

“Hines’ humor continues in this book as well, interspersed throughout the story with Douglas Adams-esque alien poetry, lists, and rules. However, what really pulled me into the book was the characters. It was a joy and wonder to see Mops reconnect with Earth’s history. The antagonism between Cate and Wolf, one of Mops’ crew, is fun to watch, even as they learn to work together. And there is a loving shout-out to librarians and the work they do to preserve humanity’s past for the future.”

Lightspeed Magazine

It was everything I was hoping for and more. I really like the direction  the overarching storyline is taking in this series. In addition, I loved all the tongue-in-cheek humor that this novel delivers, but there is also a seriousness to what the characters are uncovering and that is what keeps me so intrigued… Lots to love in Terminal Uprising and I know that I am definitely looking forward to the next installment in this series!!”

Genre Minx Book Reviews

“From the cover and blurb, you’d think they were playing the janitor thing up for laughs, and there’s enough truth there that you can’t say they’re lying, but in reality, this is a terrific piece of mil/space opera with lighter moments.”


Terminal Uprising is a fun, humorous romp through a scarred wasteland and a few corners of a vast universe. There are colorful characters, and a humor that is anything but subtle.”

Green Man Review

“Hines’ writing is always a joy to read, his characters unique… I finished it basically in one go.”

Cannonball Read

“[H]umor is central to Hines’ charm as a writer, giving us any number of asides and hilarious moments. The combination of slapstick and witty banter is infectious, especially amidst this rag-tag bunch… Look to Terminal Uprising if you’re ready to chase mayhem and danger while laughing all the way.”

Reviews and Robots

Terminal Alliance:

“Hines delivers a fantastic space opera that doesn’t skimp on the action and excitement but pairs it with a hefty dose of slightly scatological humor. The author is especially clever in having Mops and her team leverage cleaning tools and a knowledge of spaceship plumbing to fight their enemies.”

Library Journal Starred Review

[R]aises the bar for humorous postapocalyptic science fiction with charming underdogs, fascinating alien races, complex intergalactic politics, and a far-reaching conspiracy…a genuine pleasure to read.”


“Though humorous, the strong first installment of Hines’s Janitors of the Post-Apocalypse military science fiction series takes its core concept very seriously… This solidly entertaining story has plenty of potential for further installments.”

Publishers Weekly

“[A]n exciting white-knuckle adventure awaits to engage sci-fi fans and genre newcomers alike. Hines breathes life into a stunning number of otherworldly beings, but his skills with the human characters really shines here.”

Romantic Times

“It’s delightful. Seriously. In my humble opinion, this is one of Hines’s strongest books. It’s got everything that makes Hines an author to watch: humor, complex characters, complex world-building, and a thought-provoking plot.”

Bookworm Blues

Terminal Alliance works both as amusing comedy and as rousing military SF, and I recommend it to fans of either. Having janitors as heroes not only works as a comedic premise, but Mops and her crew make for perfect underdogs.”

Amazing Stories

Terminal Alliance is the first in a fantastic, new science fiction series. Full of humor, suspense, and intrigue – this story has it all. The characters are fun and the dialog is sharp. It’s well-paced and hard to put down. With several great twists and plenty of action and adventure, SciFi fans will not want to miss this one.”


“Hines can always be relied upon for vivid characterisation and tight pacing. Here, his skills with character shine… [F]ast, fun, and thoroughly enjoyable space opera, and I want to read the next installment as soon as possible.”

-Liz Bourke, Locus

“Action keeps the plot moving nicely, while plumbing and zombie jokes, lots of team banter, and alien misinterpretations of Earth culture provide considerable humor, for a lively start to what promises to be a highly entertaining series.”

-Carolyn Cushman, Locus

“I had great fun reading this and I loved Mops’ resourcefulness and determination to save her people and her crew – who were all awesome. I love found families so much and their team turned out to be just that, with quite a few funny interactions born out of ignorance of human history. I can’t wait to see where else Jim Hines will take them.”

Book Smugglers

“[B]oth fun and endearing… Terminal Alliance is a quick, fun read. And I do find myself appreciating those in the sanitation industry a lot more. If there’s anything this book has taught me, it’s that janitors know the ins and outs of everything.”

Lightspeed Magazine

“I loved all the clever setups and the humor and the shout outs… The maintenance crew makes excellent and often hilarious use of their knowledge of cleaning agents and the excretory habits of other species.”

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

“[T]his is science fiction storytelling at its best and not too serious which makes is a great read for those who might shy away from the genre for one reason or another. Terminal Alliance has action and danger but most of all it has witty, humorous fun with its plot and characters that made this an exciting read.”

All Things Urban Fantasy

“Using everything in their tool belts, from “high-pressure canisters of disinfectants, paints and sealants,” Mops and her band of misfits strive to reveal the truth about what happened to humanity with tenacity, grace and a little humor. It’s a wild and enjoyable ride.”

Second Run Reviews

“…a fun first step into this new universe and the book does a great job of not only telling a complete story, but also showing that there is more to come. I, for one, can’t wait to see what happens next .”

Game Vortex

“From both a sci-fi and a humor perspective, Terminal Alliance is a fantastic book with great characters, wonderful world-building, a riveting fast pace, unusual secrets to uncover, and some great laughs. I highly recommend it.”

Errant Dreams

Terminal Alliance was a perfect read that had all the right components! It was witty, snarky, creative, moving, and even had a great cover-up plot. I absolutely loved it and I am eagerly anticipating its sequel!”

The Genre Minx

“This book is damn hilarious…. It’s witty and sharp, it sneaks in some social commentary, and it skates just on the right side of the line between clever absurdity and complete chaos.”

Ilona Andrews, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Terminal Alliance was a really fun read. Mops is a great POV character, and I enjoyed that the maintenance crew got to be the heroes—but they didn’t just pick up the controls of the ship and fly around as though it were super easy.”

Ann Leckie, New York Times bestselling author

“Jim Hines is one of the funniest, and most fun, writers in our genre! Terminal Alliance skewers science fiction tropes and takes on a wild romp through an original universe.”

Tobias S. Buckell, New York Times bestselling author

“I enjoyed Terminal Alliance very much. It’s a spunky, irreverent interstellar romp with most unlikely heroes and frequent laugh-out-loud moments. I look forward to more adventures featuring this delightful cast of galactic janitors.”

-Author Marko Kloos

“Like the slightly demented love child of Douglas Adams and Elizabeth Moon, Terminal Alliance is clever, silly, full of surprises, and unfailingly entertaining. Apparently Jim C. Hines is capable of being funny in every genre.”

-Author Deborah Blake

“The strength of Terminal Alliance comes from its three-dimensional characters and the questions asked about what makes humans human. As Mops and her crew piece together the truth, readers are taken on a grand adventure across a wild universe where humans are not at the top of the power tower… It’s a wild and enjoyable ride.”

-Terri LeBlanc, The Gazette

“This is deftly told space opera in a new vein – sort of a twisted Star Wars with a quick-thinking heroine in charge, facing increasingly unexpected challenges… It’s great fun! Loyal readers and new fans are already looking forward to more sequels.”

-Ray Walsh, Lansing State Journal

“Hines is an amazing writer and his imagination is second to none.”

-Susan Winlow, Solano County Daily Republic

Magic ex Libris


“This funny and fast-paced series opener, Hines’s first hardcover for DAW, will be sure to surprise and entertain urban fantasy fans … amusing and action-packed from page one; Isaac is sure to be an instant fan favorite, and the secondary characters are vivid and multidimensional.”

Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“Isaac is a likable character, and the unraveling of the mystery is a wildly entertaining story. Libriomancer is a lot of fun, and the promised sequels constitute something to look forward to.”


“In a sense, Libriomancer is the lighter, more escapist flipside of books like Jo Walton’s Among Others. It’s another love letter to science fiction and fantasy, with real emotional weight at the center of it — except this version is a rollicking adventure story full of ridiculous little touches. It’s a seriously fun ride for anyone who’s loved geeky books their whole life.”

-Charlie Jane Anders, io9

“…a fun start to what promises to be a thrilling urban fantasy series.”


“[T]his is a joyful romp through the very concept of pop culture and literature, like the streetwise distant cousin to Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next books. It’s funny, it’s fast-paced, it’s extremely geeky, it’s not afraid to take potshots at genre conventions and its own inherent weirdness, and it’s a great start to a new series. I can’t wait to see what comes next.”

-Michael M. Jones,

“Libriomancer is any book-geek’s dream come true. It is so much fun and an ode to books, to reading as well as to genre-fiction especially Scifi and Fantasy … [and] even though I loved the amusing and fun side of Libriomancer what truly resonated with me was its exploration of power and responsibility.”

The Book Smugglers

“Libriomancer is wonderfully inventive … I thoroughly enjoyed the book and gladly recommend it as a very good read.”

-Juliet E. McKenna, Interzone

“Hines’ quirky, humorous tale is rife with fast-paced action and confrontations; this is an enjoyable, unpredictable fantasy by one of the best new masters of the genre.”

-Ray Walsh, Lansing State Journal

“Isaac Vainio is a hero for the rest of us, the library nerds and bookworms — all of us who read books wishing we could be like our favorite heroes, or that they could be like us … it is ardent wish fulfillment with a hefty dose of action, romance, literary pop trivia and just a pinch of social commentary.”

Romantic Times

“With Libriomancer, Hines succeeds on multiple levels. It works as a heartfelt fan letter to books and storytelling, particularly science fiction and fantasy … an incredibly readable story that’s straightforward without being predictable, and action-packed without being rushed.”

-John Booth, Wired

“[Isaac’s] quirky personality is so well drawn that, even though Isaac is well acquainted with the world readers are being introduced to, he makes a perfect guide. And the world, full of references to books that run the gamut from Twilight to The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes to The Odyssey, is one I am delighted to believe in.”

-Alana Joli Abbott, Black Gate

“I liked Libriomancer, and liked it a lot … this is a book I mainlined into my vein and it felt good.”

-Paul Weimer, Functional Nerds

“Libriomancer is simply a fun book, featuring a great story and some fantastic characters … an addicting read that will leave readers impatiently wanting more.”


“I’m a fan of both Jim Hines’s Goblin Quest series and his Princess series, but I think he’s reached another level entirely with LIBRIOMANCER. He keeps getting better.”

Buzzy Mag

“Libriomancer … communicates a passion for genre fiction that I felt can only be captured with one word–Joy. Jim C. Hines’ novel is an ode to genre and all the joy it’s brought him. A joy that he brought me as I read it … It’s a fantasy novel written by a fan, for fans. I would strongly recommend anyone who’s characterized themselves as such to read Libriomancer as soon as possible.”

Staffer’s Book Review

“Libriomancer, the most recent book by Hines, is an entertaining love letter to the written word, and an examination of the power of fiction … a fun book, full of magic.”

Fantasy Matters

“As thrilling as the main mystery was, it was that subplot regarding the free will (or lack there-of) of people and creatures created through Libriomancy that was so very compelling for me … This is a new and more serious direction for Hines, one I sincerely hope he continues in.”

The Little Red Reviewer

“If you love urban fantasy, or just love anything to do with books, science fiction, fantasy, or any combination thereof, you will find lots of things to like here. There’s some tongue in cheek, knowing references to a whole list of things, a great story and good story telling. The only thing I don’t like is that now I have to wait for the next one!”

The Ranting Dragon

“I loved this book from start to finish … Highly enjoyable to read and re-read.”

Night Owl Reviews

“I picked up the book meaning to read a few pages. My first thought was, ‘This is a cool concept.’ The second thing I thought was, ‘This is really, really clever.’ The third thing I thought was, ‘I should have gone to sleep three hours ago.'”

Patrick Rothfuss, New York Times bestselling author

“This may be Jim Hines’s best work. LIBRIOMANCER is smart, silly, and deadly serious, all at the same time. It’s a book about loving books. This is the magic librarian and ass-kicking dryad adventure story we’ve all been waiting for.”

Seanan McGuire, New York Times bestselling author

“Secret organizations, supernatural threats, and an unknown killer of unimaginable power—LIBRIOMANCER is one of the best reads I’ve had in a long time. It’s a lightning-fast race against time and magic to prevent the darkest secrets from history from unleashing a supernatural war on the world. I can’t wait for the next one. Oh, by the way, never piss off a fire spider.”

Lisa Shearin, national bestselling author of ALL SPELL BREAKS LOOSE

“All writers believe in the magic of books, Jim Hines has created a system where that magic becomes real, useable, and very definitely not always safe. LIBRIOMANCER not only pulls magic from between the pages of books — from Gutenberg to Harris — but puts it there under Hines. This is a book for everyone who has ever wanted to pull Excalibur from the page.”

-Tanya Huff, author of THE WILD WAYS and the BLOOD series

“Butt-kicking librarians, pyrotechnic spiders, and vampires that don’t suck — Jim Hines serves up an incendiary and fun new urban fantasy!”

-Award-winning author Charles Stross

Codex Born:

“Nonstop action and laughter power Hines’s riveting second journey into the ‘peculiar life’ of Isaac Vainio … Hines supplies everything a reader needs—werewolves, ghosts, robot insects, a fire spider that eats candy, and homages to classic SF—for a very good time.”

Publishers Weekly

“The sequel to Libriomancer delivers more pulp fantasy action that’s infused with a genuine love for books and for creating unusual—and unusually likable—characters. VERDICT Bibliophiles and fantasy enthusiasts will enjoy the author’s intelligent approach to both magic and literature.”

-Library Journal

“[Hines] writes joyously for the delight of his specific market … Isaac Vainio is an unlikely hero because he doesn’t see himself as a hero, and the supporting cast of characters is extremely well developed. At times, the plot gets mired in details that will only appeal to the niche — but it is a niche loved by many, including this reviewer.”

Romantic Times

“When it comes to this series, I’m afraid it’s hard for me to process thoughts coherently. There’s so much going on, and so much of it is pure awesome, that I end up flailing for words like Kermit the Frog on a three-day bender … It builds on what’s come before and delivers a thoroughly entertaining adventure. It’s urban fantasy built on top of numerous other layers of fiction, and Hines has just scratched the surface of what he can do. And I can’t wait to see what comes next.”

-Michael M. Jones,

“…packed together with lots of over-the-top action fought with weapons pulled out of books ranging from H.G. Wells’s SF and Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, to the Vorkosigan series from Lois McMaster Bujold. It’s great fun to see just what Isaac and his enemies will come up with next.”


“Bolder with structure and points of view, as well as increasingly insightful … In Codex Born, [Hines] really hits his stride.”

-Juliet E. McKenna, Interzone

“Hines may have a reputation for comedy and action — as well as excellent character development — but in the Magic Ex Libris books, he’s also reaching out to tackle some compelling questions about identity, relationships, cultural relativity, and the dangers of letting the magic of reading actually take over your life … I, for one, can’t wait to follow Isaac on his future adventures.”

-Alana Joli Abbott, Black Gate

“One of the most enjoyable things about Hines’ approach to this book is his willingness to question, explore, and expand his own world-building … I can’t see how any fan of Libriomancer would be anything less than thrilled with the follow-up, and the promise it brings for the rest of the series.”

-John Booth, GeekDad

Codex Born throws our heroes headlong into action and never lets up, as Lena and Isaac investigate a murder and soon find themselves in a series of pitched battles against a mysterious army … this book is page after page of amazing moments that make you cheer. All you need to enjoy the Magic Ex Libris series is a good imagination and a serious love of books, and you’ll have a great time.”

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

“I would recommend this read to bibliophiles of all stripes. Hines does a wonderful job of bringing the reader into the series without a hitch, and though there are loose ends enough for a sequel, still manages to pull off a satisfying conclusion. Besides, with a premise based on the magic of reading and the heroism of librarians, how could it possibly go wrong? Codex Born is as enjoyable and magical as Libriomancer, and a fitting sequel as well.”

-Catherine Russell, Functional Nerds

“[R]eaders will be excited to see where Hines takes his characters with Codex Born, what new books and authors he will plunder for cool magical abilities, and where he’s going with his world. This sequel goes where no reader will predict, blowing it all wide open and changing the entire paradigm … Exactly what a great sequel should do.”

-Alex Telander, Bookbanter

“I’m eagerly looking forward to the next book … This was one of the best science fiction novels I’ve read this year.”

Night Owl Reviews

“Highly recommended. You should absolutely check this out. But read the first book first, okay? Because starting with book two in a series is just wrong….”

-Bestselling author Patrick Rothfuss

“Codex Born has the coolest premise ever … Hines is an engaging writer who is also greatly entertaining, and I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys superior world-building.”

-Bestselling author Charlaine Harris

“I LOVED it! Right now, I’m reading thrillers for fun, so a fantasy has got to knock my socks clean off to make it to the top of my TBR. Jim’s books always land on top of the stack.”

-Bestselling author Lisa Shearin


“There is power when fantasy decides to play in the themes of science fiction and own the possibilities of change and development ‘in real time’. Unbound taps into that, and I give Hines enormous credit for it … The joys of the first two volumes of the possibilities of Libriomancy are transformed and changed here into something very different, and in many ways, greater.”

Paul Weimer, SF Signal

Unbound has a bit of everything in it. Relationships develop, emotions are deepened, tension is constant, and somehow Hines makes it all balance. It’s almost insane to think that a series that I’ve loved this much from the first book only keeps getting better, but it does. Hines is one hell of an author, and his skill keeps developing with each thing he writes. Unbound is the best yet.”

Bookworm Blues

Magic Ex Libris is a sort of reading crack that you just can’t get enough of. Hines never holds back in what his characters do, but also in what happens to them … As with all great series, readers will be left wanting more.”

-Alex Telander, Bookbanter

“Yes, it’s here, my precious, we likes it! Unbound, by Jim C. Hines, the third book in the Magic Ex Libris series is finally out, to my great rejoicing. Yes, you will have to read the previous two books to appreciate this one. Yes, you will love them … This is a great series with a lot of great components, but more than anything else it’s a love-letter to imagination.”

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

“Hines deftly weaves together a plot that ties up many of the loose ends from the earlier novels. Hines has a wicked and dark sense of humor; his characterization is strong and consistent … there seems to be no limit to the exceptional innovative literary talents of Jim Hines.”

Lansing State Journal

“Here are just three indications of how great these books are:

  • At the start of my wife’s final semester working on her master’s degree, Unbound was the only fiction book she wanted to read for fun.
  • In the weeks leading up to the release of Unbound, I actually took the time to reread Libriomancer and Codex Born. (I virtually never re-read books.)
  • I think each novel contains a suggestion that Firefly needs to be brought back, as well as multiple Doctor Who references.”

Andrew Zimmerman Jones, Black Gate

“I had tears in my eyes when I recognized so much of what was going on with Isaac and saw how well it was woven into the story. I have to draw a distinction here: Isaac was depressed, and the depiction is necessarily a bit dark, but it never crosses over the line into the sort of darkness that makes reading it depressing … The fact that Hines could ride that line so beautifully without ever stepping over it in the wrong direction is really kick-ass … Let’s just say that you need to read Libriomancer and Codex Born if you haven’t already, because you really need to catch up so you can read the excellent Unbound!”

Errant Dreams

“I am absolutely loving the momentum of this series because Unbound doesn’t have Isaac dealing with any small-town mysteries anymore. Nope, now the entire world is changing and Isaac is dealing with some very severe consequences … if you haven’t started this series yet you should definitely get on that!”

On Starships & Dragonwings


Sharp wit, rapid-fire action, and strong characterization have become Hines’s trademarks, and the fourth and final entry in the Magic Ex Libris series (after Unbound) is no exception … Hines’s writing is lyrical and fluid as it unsubtly echoes America’s past and present struggles with discrimination. Urban fantasy fans with a bent for social and historical commentary will find this provocative novel thoroughly entertaining.”

Publishers Weekly

“Deeper thematic arguments and questions of political morality aside, Revisionary is an awful lot of fun. I personally really enjoyed the fact that Isaac spends most of the novel simply surrounded by competent women—what’s remarkable is just how much this novel treats this state of affairs as unremarkable. It’s not a big thing. It’s just a thing … A+ fun book adventure, would book again. It’s a solid finale for the series—and I look forward to whatever Hines brings us next.”

“Not only does Hines have an excellent grasp of characterization, all of his characters are brimming with humor, anger and a vibrancy that easily connects with the audience … Hines proves himself to be a master of his craft with this latest book. Once you start, you will be rocketed forward and unable to stop.”

The Maine Edge

“Long-time fans of this excellent, entertaining series will be disappointed that this is the last book in the series… The magical adventures of Vainio, Lena, Nidhi and Smudge will still offer fond, lingering memories for readers who’ve enjoyed one of the genre’s best contemporary urban fantasy series.”

The Lansing State Journal

“A lot of things that have been slowly building are played out, and I can really tell that Hines put a lot of thought, a lot of careful planning, and a lot of love into crafting this perfect ending for his readers. This entire series is one of transformation, but Revisionary is really where readers see just what kind of butterfly has been developing all this time. And damn, folks, it is beautiful.”

Bookworm Blues

“[E]xplores cultural and political concerns in a thoughtful manner, leaving the reader with more food for thought than perhaps one might expect. Hines avoids the pitfalls many writers would struggle to miss in the crafting of this excellent tale.”

RT Book Reviews

“[A]n intense, heart-stopping finale to a really great urban fantasy series.”


“[A] satisfying conclusion to a fun series that contained solid emotional content, an inclusive group of characters, romance, humor, action, and some serious imaginative chops.”

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

“Hines is not an author whose work is for dark and pitiless reading at the midnight hour, with the shadows closing in. Hines is the kind of author whose work has kept you up at the midnight hour because you are smiling, and laughing, and turning pages avidly to just read one more section before bed… [T]his novel really does feel like a send-off letter from Isaac and his companions to his readers, and on that basis, the book not only succeeds, but it moved me. Well done, Mr. Hines.”

Skiffy and Fanty

“My favorite thing about this series as a whole is the amazing growth of the characters … These are characters I want to have in my life. I want Issac to dazzle me by pulling things out of books and pop culture references. I want to spar with Lena (and perhaps pig out on junk food with her, too). I want to have a heart-to-heart conversation with Nidhi.”

Second Run Reviews

Princess Series

The Stepsister Scheme:

“Hines’ strength in his brilliantly plotted, cleverly imaginative book is character concepts and interactions. The action never stops, and the characters are painstakingly real. Readers will laugh and find the tale is over before they’re ready to finish reading.”

-Victoria Frerichs, Romantic Times (January 2008 Top Pick)

“Hines brilliantly remixes and reimagines three of the most popular fairy tale heroines of all time, recasting them as action heroines and secret agents in a world of magic, treachery, intrigue and adventure … There’s strange magics and sharply-executed combat, and some genuine bonding between the three princesses along the way, and hopeless odds to be overcome. In short, this is one hell of a book.”

-Michael Jones, Green Man Review

“THE STEPSISTER SCHEME is a fun read, with great Fantasy elements and three great protagonists. If you like fairytale retellings and strong female characters, look out for this one.”

“THE STEPSISTER SCHEME is a delightful, action-packed, full-tilt ride of a novel, and it is exactly the type of diverting plot-heavy entertainment that is near and dear to my heart.”

The Book Smugglers

“Fantastically fresh and exciting, THE STEPSISTER SCHEME is another hit by Goblin series author Jim C. Hines. Fantasy and fairytale fans will enjoy this quirky and fun adventure of three princesses, each with an incredible story to tell.”


“Readers who discovered Hines through Goblin Quest, Goblin Hero, and Goblin War, are going to find similar strong characterization, the breadth of humorous riffs on fantasy tropes (especially fairy tales), and deftly set up, increasingly complex world building.”

-Sherwood Smith, SF Site

“Hines’s strengths, his quick pacing, humor, energetic wit, lively characterizations combine with imaginative reveals of new facets and facts about the princesses throughout the story … Highly recommended for readers who enjoy Gregory Maguire and Terry Pratchett.”

-E. E. Knight, Black Gate

“THE STEPSISTER SCHEME is yet another winner, one more reason why I will pick up every book Hines writes…. This book is a scream, and possibly his best book yet.”

-Dave Roy, Curled Up with a Good Book

The characters are interesting, the action is fun, and fairyland is full of imaginative and familiar creatures … THE STEPSISTER SCHEME has plenty of action, comedy and fun characters. But it’s really a story of about the power of jealousy, doubt, friendship and love. A great read for young adults, but I’m sure readers of any age would get a kick out this page turner.”

-Andrea Johnson, SF Revu

“[A] rousing tale of sword and sorcery, set in the world of fairytales we all love, with equal parts humor and despair … I recommend reading it, as I recommend all of Hines’ work. His work is always entertaining, and in many ways THE STEPSISTER SCHEME is his best yet.”

-John Ottinger, Grasping for the Wind

“THE STEPSISTER SCHEME is not your Grandma’s fairy tale. Action, intrigue, romance, action, treachery, and did I mention action? These princesses will give Charlie’s Angels a serious run for the money, and leave ’em in the dust. Read it!”

-Esther Friesner, author of NOBODY’S PRINCESS

“What a romp, both light and dark, sometimes sexy, and along the way occasionally quite brutal … an amazing gallop to save a prince, thwart a witch, rescue a kingdom, and turn fairy tale conventions upside down in the process.”

Jane Yolen, author of BRIAR ROSE and two-time Nebula winner

“What fun! In THE STEPSISTER SCHEME, Jim Hines shows that what happens after happily ever after is even more interesting. A thoroughly enjoyable reinvention of the fairy tales you thought you knew. If you like your princesses smart and strong, read this book.”

Theodora Goss, author of IN THE FOREST OF FORGETTING

“An engaging, well-paced romp that sheds a whole new light on some delightfully familiar characters. Make sure you free up some time before starting this one because you won’t be able to put it down.”

Mickey Zucker Reichert, author of THE RETURN OF NIGHTFALL

“THE STEPSISTER SCHEME is a very entertaining read. I loved the magic and fresh twist on the notion of ‘happily ever after.'”

Kristen Britain, author of THE HIGH KING’S TOMB

The Mermaid’s Madness:

“The fairy tale framework provides a hook for the reader into this trio of engaging, effective adventurers taking to the high seas—without any dainty pretensions—to save their kingdom and the people they love … This novel will appeal to anyone who yearns for the heroines of their childhood—or just a witty, well-constructed adventure tale about powerful women stepping up with skill and cleverness.”

-Publishers Weekly

“I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, even more than the first. With a huge twist on the Little Mermaid story, the princesses stand up against the dangers of the sea as well as odd magic from a legendary sea witch. Steeped in adventure and danger, this dark fairytale is like no other. And a huge twist in the story had me at the edge of my seat until the very end. Fantasy and fairytale fans beware; you’ll be hooked on this mermaid’s tale.”


“Hines pulls out the serious artillery in this sequel to THE STEPSISTER SCHEME. The action is quick paced and engaging, and the three main characters flout all princessy cliches. Though known for his humor, Hines leaves much of that behind as he embraces a darker, more ‘Hans Christian Andersen’ type of fairy tale. A great read.”

Romantic Times

“MERMAID’S MADNESS is essentially what would happen if Charlie’s Angels met the Disney Princesses and had a lesbian love affair ending (somehow) in a child that they abandoned to the Brothers Grimm who smacked the poor dear around until marriageable age, at which point it turned into a book, because turning into a pumpkin is just silly.”

-Cassandra Yorgey, Philadelphia Speculative Fiction Examiner

“The story is a strong mix of magic and adventure, with a number of well-portrayed and involving women characters at its heart … enjoyable and leaves one looking forward to more books about this dynamic trio of princesses.”

-Rich Horton, Fantasy Magazine

“THE MERMAID’S MADNESS is another tour de force of characterization … I’m anxiously awaiting the next book in the series already, and no greater compliment can be made.”

-Dave Roy, Curled Up with a Good Book

“Hines once again brilliantly remixes fairy tale elements with a modern action/adventure sensibility, as if the Brothers Grimm had been allowed to watch a Charlie’s Angels marathon. THE MERMAID’S MADNESS is fast-paced, energetic, exciting and amazingly fun … Hines has a winner.”

-Michael Jones, Green Man Review

“THE MERMAID’S MADNESS belongs on your must-read list. It’s an enthralling adventure that takes you back to the stories of your childhood and then folds, spindles and mutilates them–in the best possible way. One of the most entertaining stories I’ve read all year. You’ll never watch the Little Mermaid the same way again.”

Diana Pharaoh Francis, author of THE BLACK SHIP

“The fast-paced adventure gets off to a rousing start and never falters. Hines adds a touch of dark humor to the captivating story, deftly exploring dynamic relationships.”

-Ray Walsh, Lansing State Journal

“In THE MERMAID’S MADNESS, Jim C. Hines continues his darkly humourous exposure of the fairy-tale happy ending — where princesses have to step up and kick ass.”

Violette Malan, author of THE SOLDIER KING

“I found it immensely enjoyable in the same way that I found fairy tales enjoyable. It’s a good adventure story, with magic and evil and a few misunderstood characters in it. The plot doesn’t drag at all, and it was well-paced … an excellent book for anyone who enjoys retellings of fairy tales.”

BSC Review

Red Hood’s Revenge:

“…transcends its predecessors with exciting combat scenes and emotionally complex characters … Far more than a modernized retelling, Hines’s work is a real synthesis of cultural tropes into a unique world that is worth visiting again and again.”

Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

“More dramatic than previous installments, this latest story revolves mainly around Talia and Roudette, bringing to light more of their dark and horrible pasts… There’s plenty of the suspense and action that make this fantasy series great. Hines’ princess heroines from fairy tale lore are truly unique and completely enjoyable from start to finish. I can’t wait to see what comes next from this highly talented fantasy author.”


“Hines excels at world-building and layered storytelling as well as keeping things moving … While Red Hood also has its share of generations-old evils and plot twists, it’s got Hines’ strongest and most straightforward story so far at its core, and it’s easily my favorite in the series.”

-John Booth, GeekDad

Combining the best parts of fantasy and folklore, mixed with action and adventure, tinged with horror (just like the original stories!), RED HOOD’S REVENGE is a thoroughly satisfying continuation of the series, and a worthy updating of these cultural icons.

-Michael Jones, Green Man Review

The Snow Queen’s Shadow:

“Hines fills this volume with heart-wrenching emotional scenes as well as exciting fight sequences, and brings each heroine’s story arc to a reasonable conclusion. There’s plenty of room for readers to imagine further adventures, but the series feels satisfyingly complete.”

Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

“Action and adventure mixes with romance, which should please fans of traditional as well as revisionist versions of the works of the Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen, and Charles Perrault.”

Library Journal

“The fourth and final book in Hines’ Princess series brings a complete, organic, and realistic conclusion to many of the story arcs that have spanned the series. Add to this the exceptional character development and engaging dialogue, and you have a must read for any fan of the series or the fantasy genre.”

Romantic Times (Top Pick)

“Hines not only wraps up this series satisfyingly for the main characters, he manages to click into place several bigger-picture elements which he’s been maneuvering into position over the entire four-book series … The Snow Queen’s Shadow easily takes the top spot in the series and makes me want to re-read the other three all over again.”

-John Booth, GeekDad

“There’s a lot that can be said about this series, and this book as the last chapter in a larger story. It’s been consistently enjoyable, and one of the best fairy tale updates I’ve seen in many years. Hines has worked miracles in turning his fairy tale heroines into full-fledged, complex, fascinating characters…”

-Michael M. Jones, Green Man Review

“[F]ans should be satisfied with the exciting showdown and soulful sendoff. I certainly was. As before, the action and adventure are non-stop with plenty of drama, magic, and inspired characters. Don’t miss this brilliant, action-packed fantasy series.”


Goblin Series

Goblin Quest:

“Jim Hines’ Goblin Quest is a rollicking ride, enjoyable from beginning to end. Jig is a fresh, engaging hero, for a goblin, and takes readers through a whirlwind of magic and adventure that never once fails to entertain and amaze. Hines has just become one of my must-read authors!”

Julie E. Czerneda, Author of the Species Imperative Trilogy

“Most fantasy gamers read fantasy novels. Most fantasy gamers like to slay goblins for fun and profit. After Goblin Quest, most fantasy gamers are going to have a very hard time doing that. Jim C. Hines has given us a wonderful adventure from the goblin’s point of view, and it’s fantastic! I haven’t had this much fun reading a book in ages. I can’t wait to buy a copy for my stepson, who keeps asking me what I’m laughing so hard about.”

Wil Wheaton, Actor & Author of Just a Geek

“…a wonderful story that’ll make anybody who’s ever gamed laugh out loud, and even if you haven’t, is still so well-drawn and considered that there’s almost no way it can fail to charm.”

C. E. Murphy, Author of Heart of Stone

“Jim C. Hines takes us up close and personal with goblins and dungeon adventurers, in a light-hearted but VERY insightful quest tale. Goblin Quest is a hilarious ‘good read.’ One of the funniest dungeon-delving epics ever!”

-Ed Greenwood, Author of Elminster: the Making of a Mage

“…a cleverly written adventure fantasy with a not-so-ordinary goblin hero … I thoroughly enjoyed this fun and exciting fantasy debut and will definitely be following future episodes.”

Goblin Quest is a fun, enjoyable read. Role reversal and jibes at the genre make Jig not only a sympathetic character, but seemingly the only sane one there for the reader to identify with. Of course, if you read this book and drive your spouse into fits of annoyance listening to you snort and giggle at the absurdity the author continually throws at poor Jig, don’t blame me. I merely said it was a great book.”

-Paul Haggerty, SF Revu

“This clever satire is based on fantasy role-playing — something veteran gamers will get a huge kick out of. Reminiscent of Terry Pratchett and Robert Asprin at their best, this is an over-the-top tale that still manages to be genuinely touching, particularly the friendship between Jig the goblin and Riana the elf.”

Romantic Times

“Goblin Quest is a fun way to pass a few hours — its engaging parody of epic fantasy takes a sly wink at heroes, monsters, and the dynamics of adventuring. It’s guaranteed to keep roleplayers and fantasy buffs grinning and, who knows, it may just redefine the role of goblins in fantasy everywhere.”

-Dru Pagliassotti, The Harrow

“Need a book that will make you smile, then grin, then laugh out loud? If your tickle spot’s the same as mine, Goblin Quest is the book you’re looking for. I love an unlikely hero and Jig the goblin is my kind of unlikely love! New kid Jim C. Hines is already an expert at the unlikely but lovable…who could beat Jig’s pet/sidekick/companion animal Smudge, the fire-spider? Bonus 1: How to manage when your companion animal sets your hair on fire. Bonus 2: How to choose the right god to pray to. Bonus 3: Why you should never challenge a goblin to a duel. –I’m still laughing.”

Janet Kagan, Hugo-winning Author of Hellspark & Uhura’s Song

“The book is funny, poignant, sometimes riffing off quest tales, other times plunging the reader into straightforward adventure. I loved Jig and his questions and discoveries, I loved the complexity of the others–including Straum, the dragon. Though this was a quest tale, Hines kept me guessing right until the very last page.”

Sherwood Smith, Author of Inda & Crown Duel

“Goblin Quest is definitely not your traditional fantasy. It’s a skewed, hilarious twist on epic quest fantasy, turning things upside down and showing them from the viewpoint of the cannon fodder. All of the usual troops are here: warriors, wizards, dragons, dungeons, quests, goblins, and so on, but nothing is exactly as you’d expect. Sick of those formulaic epic fantasies? Goblin Quest is the exact opposite of them. It reminds me heavily of Eve Forward’s Villains by Necessity, which likewise showed a fantasy quest from an unusual viewpoint. I had a great deal of fun following Jig as he took control of his own destiny, and I look forward to future installments in his story. Goblin Quest is a very welcome breath of fresh air, and a great addition to the comic fantasy genre.”

-Michael M. Jones, Green Man Review

Goblin Quest is a hilarious piece of work! It’s confident, irreverent and laugh-out-loud funny: one of the easiest fantasy reads I’ve come across in a long time. Jim Hines has a unique voice…when you can hear it between the bouts of laughter, that is.”

-John Kovalic, Creator/Author of Dork Tower

“If you’ve always kinda rooted for the little guy, even maybe had a bit of a place in your heart for the likes of Gollum, rather than the Boromirs and Gandalfs of the world, pick up Goblin Quest — just make sure you keep well away from Golaka’s stewpot.”

-Dr. Georges T. Dodds, The SF Site

“This book is fun for all ages. When I read portions aloud to my kids (who range from 5 – 12) they didn’t want me to stop. Goblin Quest is a stunning first book that reads more like a fourth or fifth book.”


“[Goblin Quest] will appeal to both adults and young adults. Teens will very much enjoy Jig’s quest and his attempt to define himself in a world that doesn’t necessarily value his skills. Adults will enjoy the humor and the upending of various aspects of the fantasy/quest genre. Prepare to be entertained throughout and completely satisfied with Jig’s journey by the time you reach the end.”

-Lori Lake
Midwest Book Review

“…enough humor here to make this a fun adventure with a nice sprinkle of originality that makes you want to continue to read to the end. All in all I found this another good example of a humorous bubblegum fantasy novel with some good original ideas.”

BCS Review

Goblin Quest is a clever inversion of the epic fantasy adventure tale. Brightly written and very entertaining.”

James Lowder, Author of Prince of Lies & Knight of the Black Rose

Goblin Hero:

“In Goblin Hero, as in Goblin Quest, Hines recognizes that wisdom is most often common-sense and that mouthing off to the big guy with the sword is a very bad idea.”

-Tanya Huff, Author of Smoke and Ashes

“I enjoyed Goblin Hero even more than its predecessor. With even more laughs and excitement, Jig becomes the reluctant hero once again. Every character is unique with wonderful quirks … I can’t recommend this series enough.”

“The problem with surviving your first book — your first great adventure — is that someone thinks you’re now a Hero, and can be sent on a second adventure, even greater and funnier than the first. Jim C. Hines gives us another side-splitting, inspiring tale of Jig the runt, Jig the most unpopular goblin in the lair… I loved this book. It has the Path of the Hero, lots of goblins who never live happily ever after, and much wry fun. Highly recommended!”

-Ed Greenwood, Author of Elminster: the Making of a Mage

“Hines makes us like the characters, so their stakes feel real. They matter to us. The stakes get spidier as the doughty adventurers discover what’s behind all the mysterious killings, and the tension ratchets up. That’s not easily done in funny fantasy. Hines manages it with skill and panache. Without forgetting his nose pick.”

-Sherwood Smith, The SF Site

“Once again, Jim C. Hines turns the fantasy world on its ear with this insightfully hilarious look at the traditional cannon fodder of the genre … Hines walks a fine line between self-aware fantasy and comedy, and succeeds in presenting an honestly enjoyable story, mixing adventure and humor. If nothing else, Goblin Hero succeeds in giving us a new kind of protagonist, whose allies are as much a hazard to him as his enemies are. This is a fantasy for those weary of epic quests and seven-book-long sagas.”

-Michael M. Jones, Green Man Review

“I do recommend that you read Jim C. Hines’ work. He is funny, his characters are ones you’ll easily identify with, and his story has all the elements that make a dungeon crawl fun. The Goblin Series is a fun interweaving of a Dungeon and Dragons setting, Mark Twain’s wit, and Steve Martin’s slapstick all from one gifted author, Jim C. Hines.”

-John Ottinger, Grasping for the Wind

“[Goblin Hero] is truly funny… It’s a straightforward adventure story that has some point to make about the human condition and what it takes to be a hero. This book is enjoyable from beginning to end. Goblin Hero is just the perfect tonic for those who have had too much of overly serious fantasy.”

Curled Up With a Good Book

“…a pleasant and easy read. Jig is, as usual, an entertaining protagonist, and his atypical tactics in the face of foes much stronger than he is are amusing and effective.”

Romantic Times

“One can only imagine what Joseph Campbell would have said about this most reluctant Hero attempting to survive using equal portions of cowardice and brains. Much in the spirit of Piers Anthony’s Ogre, Ogre, this amusing fantasy includes plenty of humorous nods to the genre’s standard fare of questing warriors, scary monsters and evil villains for an engaging, lighthearted romp through the goblin underworld.”

Monsters & Critics

Goblin War:

“Hines sidesteps the main question facing elvers — WWTD, or What would Tolkien do? — with a wink and his usual snort. His goofy elves, orcs, trolls, dwarves, humans and even an evil tree conjure laughter, not screams … Readers will need familiarity with earlier books in the series, but Hines’s funny bone is sharp and YA-friendly.”

-Publishers Weekly

“Part farce, part parody, Hines’ rip-roaring narrative has us cheering the highly sympathetic Jig on to victory.”

-Sally Estes, Booklist

“Hines is not only inventive and funny, his people and his world are convincing. That’s amazing, when you stop to think about it. He makes you believe in, and care about, these muck-flinging, garbage-devouring, cowardly, yowling blue goblins. That’s magic of the most powerful kind.”

-Sherwood Smith, The SF Site

“The humor is the most wonderful aspect of this unique series, and this latest had me laughing out loud… Each of these books has been better than the last. This series is a must-read and one of my all-time favorites!”

“Hines takes all of the usual epic fantasy tropes, and pretty much folds, spindles and mutilates them, going against expectations and convention with style and panache… I loved Goblin War. It’s a breath of fresh air in the fantasy field, a wonderful change of pace from the usual bloated epics and never-ending series, a story that remembers to laugh without giving up its dignity (inasmuch as goblins can have dignity…) Whether or not Hines writes anything more in Jig’s saga, or at least in his world, I’ll be following his work with great interest.”

-Michael M. Jones, Green Man Review

“I couldn’t begin to list all the passages which made me laugh so hard I had to put the book down and catch my breath… But while the trademark of Hines’ entire series is his offbeat humor, he also showcases his true strength as a writer by never letting his readers stop caring for Jig. As a result, Goblin War is a top-notch finish to Hines’ trilogy and highly recommended for all fantasy readers”

Monsters and Critics

“This entire series is a strange literary chimera. It’s straightforward fantasy, satirical fantasy, comedy, drama, and all at the same time. Jig’s no hero, but acts like one anyway. The supporting cast crashes around the underbrush, doing what ever they think it will take to accomplish Jig’s goals, secure in the belief that Jig can do no wrong. Jig, in turn, spends most of his time, trying to keep the supporting cast from getting themselves killed doing stupid things, thus reinforcing their beliefs. The mixture of heroism and buffoonery combine to put the Goblin series into a fantasy class of its own.”

SF Revu

“Hines presents hysterically funny, witty and surprisingly intuitive writing in this glimpse into the life of a most unusual goblin. Jig is so refreshingly unique that he outshines the other characters, but only barely, since the whole cast is disarmingly and charmingly wonderful. This is a definite must read.”

Romantic Times

Goblin War is Hines’ best novel so far… [O]nce I have my own children, I may use Hines’ novels to teach them about the nature of heroism, because of the way he shows its natural progression throughout the book, while still being extremely entertaining.”

-John Ottinger, Grasping for the Wind

“[H]ow does an author manage to make you feel nostalgic before you’ve even finished the last page? With a goblin, I’m not sure you can have a perfectly happy ending, but with Hines, you can definitely have a perfect ending. Like the other books in the series, this is a good read for young adults and adults, and I highly recommend it when you want to sit back and not take life too seriously.”

BCS Review

“I loved every page of this novel, and Hines has definitely ensured that I will be picking up anything with his name on it… From the cute cover to wonderful prose inside, this is a winning package.”

Curled Up With a Good Book

Middle Grade

Tamora Carter: Goblin Queen

“The characters in this book are so wonderful that you can’t help but root for them to persevere. They’re smart and clever, but they’re also kids, a fact that the book doesn’t lose sight of. Luckily for them, they’ve got adults who will help without taking over, allowing the kids to be the heroes they deserve to be in this book. I also really enjoyed the portrayal of Mac, Tamora’s older brother who is an autistic, largely non-verbal teenager. This character was handled with sensitivity and care, and it was neat to see that represenation. There’s also cool stuff about different faerie tales than the ones we’re used to woven into the story, and plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing.”

History that Never Was


Rise of the Spider Goddess:

“I laughed my head off at the annotations, but I learned from them too. I would expect this book to be a great tool to a fiction writer. It certainly helped me be a better reviewer… Above all, I found this book to be encouraging.”

-Carrie S, Smart Bitches Trashy Books

“Hines knows what he wrote is very much unpolished tripe, and he goes through it with verve and joy. From the small to the large, Hines looks at his writing weaknesses, his plotting problems, his characterization, and shows why this is bad, and how he has learned better.”

-Paul Weimer, SF Signal

“Every new writer has a Rise of the Spider Goddess inside them. Now it’s been published, there’s no need to write it. Chock-full of essential advice, self-mockery, and compassion for the beginner, it’s a hilarious reminder that we all start somewhere.”

Sean Williams, author of The Slug in the Sky (age 15) and the #1 NYT Bestselling Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (age 39)

“There are things you wish you could un-see, like walking in on your parents in the bedroom. There are also books you wish you could un-read, like Jim C. Hines’ first novel, Rise of the Spider Goddess. Most of wish our unpublished work would just stay buried forever, but Jim’s novel appears to be undead. Lacking a red pen to kill it forever, we at least have Jim’s lively, hysterical, and snarky self-commentary to make the journey worthwhile!”

Stephen Leigh, author of The Best Friends Go Diving (age 12) and Immortal Muse (DAW Books, age 63)

“Jim deserves a Darwin Award for releasing this masterpiece of Words! In! Order! into the wild. I admire him greatly. If the Bulwer-Lytton contest gave prizes for whole books, this one would win by a mile. Eye of Argon look out! The Spider Goddess is about to steal your crown.”

Diana Pharaoh Francis, author of City of Terrible Night (age 16), and Trace of Magic (age 47)

“We can often learn more from the mistakes of others than from their successes. Hines has been kind enough to put his own errors on display as an object lesson for the student writer: everything from cliches of prose to morally dubious characterization, from paper-thin worldbuilding to continuity errors big enough to fly a dragon through. If you want to know what not to do, read this book.”

Marie Brennan, author of World of the Elementals (age 10) and Voyage of the Basilisk (Tor Books, age 33)

“Fans of Jim C. Hines’ delightful novels, or his Hugo-award-winning blog will love this annotated edition of Jim’s first novel (often referred to as a ‘trunk novel,’ because it should be locked in the trunk of a car which is about to be shoved off a pier into the bay, there to be forgotten until the end of time). Jim’s commentary is often laugh-out-loud funny, while the text of the novel suggests the character concerns which shine through in his later work. Whether you are seeking to peer into the mind and process of the author or simply looking for a fun read, this book is for you!”

Elaine Isaak, author of Through Eyes of Fire (age 16) and The Singer’s Crown (age 32)

“Oh my. I remember all too well my misspent youth in worlds much like this one. This book makes me feel … young again. It’s magic.”

Alma Alexander, author of Children of Legend (age 14) and Random, book 1 in the Were Chronicles (age 51)