Perhaps most famous for her debut novel, The Sunne in Splendour, about Richard III, Penman now turns her attentions further back to that king's namesake, Richard I, the Lionheart. Dividing her plot between affairs of state and heart in England and Richard's daring battlefield exploits in the Holy Land, Penman conjures up a tangible world both alien and familiar, where cultures clashed and larger-than-life personalities turned the wheel of history.

April 23: " 'A job,' the woman repeated again, smiling, as if I hadn't heard her. 'Would you like one?' "

Kenneth Calhoun (Black Moon) and Lysely Tenorio (Monstress) of the Discover Great New Writers program on B-movies, heritage, and finales.