The Sunday Times Bestselling Author
The epic fantasy and science fiction series author
El, or L.R. Lam, is the Sunday Times bestselling, award-winning author of nine novels, with three more under contract. Their books include the epic fantasy romance Dragonfall, the beginning of the Dragon Scales trilogy, the Micah Grey trilogy (Pantomime, Shadowplay, Masquerade), cyberpunk near-future thrillers False Hearts and Shattered Minds, space opera Seven Devils and Seven Mercies, co-written with Elizabeth May, and near-future thriller, Goldilocks.
They also come from an academic background, having studied English and creative writing at undergraduate (California State University East Bay) and postgraduate level (University of Aberdeen) before lecturing for seven years on the Creative Writing MA at Edinburgh Napier University.
Over the years, El has worked with most of the big SFF publishers across both sides of the pond: DAW, Hodderscape, Wildfire, Orbit, Tor, and Angry Robot, and they are represented by Juliet Mushens of Mushens Entertainment. Their work has been praised by authors such as Robin Hobb, Leigh Bardugo, Andrea Stewart, and Samantha Shannon.
El’s work runs the gamut of speculative fiction and takes them from researching cutting-edge science to write books set a blink from now, to crafting fantasy secondary worlds and dreaming up elaborate history, languages, and societies. Their work aims to make the Other familiar, straddles boundaries, and breaks binaries. Many of their protagonists are queer and trans, and Pantomime was the first young adult novel in any genre to have an intersex protagonist. Their work often focuses on themes of identity, bodily autonomy, and the corruption of power. El also writes queer romance as Laura Ambrose.
When not writing, El reads, lifts weights inconsistently, and is regularly distracted by their cats. El would be an ideal coach for writers playing in most science fiction and fantasy subgenres. One of their favourite parts of mentoring is when they see someone’s eyes light up as they realise exactly how to fix a particular problem and are creatively re-vitalised and ready to continue tackling their story.
If you’re seeking a writing coach to help you tackle the challenges with your exciting speculative fiction ideas, El would be right for you.
Science fiction and fantasy can be escapist and entertaining but also deeply subversive: warnings us of future danger, or helping us imagine a world freed of certain constraints.
— L.R. Lam
The last male dragon. A desperate thief. A bond that will save the world . . . or shatter it.
Long ago, humans betrayed dragons, stealing their magic and banishing them to a dying world. Centuries later, their descendants worship dragons as gods. But the ‘gods’ remember, and they do not forgive.
Since they were orphaned, Arcady has scraped a living thieving on the streets of Vatra, dreaming of life among the nobility – and revenge. When the chance arises to steal a powerful artefact from the bones of the Plaguebringer, the most hated person in Lumet history, they jump at it, for its magic holds the key to their dreams.
But the spell has unintended consequences and drags Everen - the last male dragon who was once foretold to save his kind - into the human world. Trapped and disguised as a human, Everen soon realises that the key to his destiny and regaining his true power lies in Arcady.
After an ambush leaves the Novantae resistance in tatters, the survivors scatter across the galaxy. Wanted by two great empires, the bounty on any rebel’s head is enough to make a captor filthy rich. And the Seven Devils? Biggest score of them all.
The Devils take refuge on Fortuna where Ariadne gets a message with unimaginable consequences: the Oracle has gone rogue. The AI has developed a way of mass programming citizens into mindless drones. The Oracle’s demand is simple: it wants its daughter Ariadne back at any cost.
Time for an Impossible to Infiltrate mission: high chance of death, low chance of success. The Devils will have to use their unique skills, no matter the sacrifice, even if that means teaming up with old enemies. Their plan? Get to the heart of the Empire. Destroy the Oracle. Burn it all to the ground.
Seven resistance fighters will free the galaxy from the ruthless Empire – or die trying.
After Eris faked her death, she thought she had left her old life as Princess Discordia – heir to the galaxy’s most ruthless empire – behind. But joining the Novantaen Resistance, an organisation opposed to the Empire’s voracious expansion, throws her right back into the fray.
Resistance fighter pilot Clo has been given a mission: infiltrate an Empire spaceship ferrying deadly cargo to gain vital intelligence. A task made all the more difficult when she’s forced to partner with an old enemy - Princess Discordia herself, Eris.
They discover more than they bargained for on the ship: fugitives with first-hand knowledge of the Empire’s inner workings. With this information, these women might just bring the Empire to its knees. But the clock is ticking: Eris’s brother Damocles, new heir to the throne, plans to disrupt a peace summit with the only remaining free alien people, ensuring the Empire’s total domination. Unless this band of unlikely rebels stops him, millions will die...
Despite increasing restrictions on the freedoms of women on Earth, Valerie Black is spearheading the first all-female mission to a planet in the Goldilocks Zone, where conditions are just right for human habitation.
It’s humanity’s last hope for survival, and Naomi, Valerie’s surrogate daughter and the ship’s botanist, has been waiting her whole life for an opportunity like this – to step out of Valerie’s shadow and really make a difference.
But when things start going wrong on the ship, Naomi starts to suspect that someone on board is concealing a terrible secret – and realises time for life on Earth may be running out faster than they feared...
She can uncover the truth, if she defeats her demons
Ex-neuroscientist Carina struggles with a drug problem, her conscience, and urges to kill. She satisfies her cravings in dreams, fuelled by the addictive drug ‘Zeal’. Now she’s heading for self-destruction – until she has a vision of a dead girl.
Sudice Inc. damaged Carina when she worked on their sinister brain-mapping project, causing her violent compulsions. And this girl was a similar experiment. When Carina realizes the vision was planted by her old colleague Mark, desperate for help to expose the company, she knows he’s probably dead. Her only hope is to unmask her nemesis – or she’s next.
To unlock the secrets Mark hid in her mind, she’ll need a group of specialist hackers. Dax is one of them, a doctor who can help Carina fight her addictions. If she holds on to her humanity, they might even have a future together. But first she must destroy her adversary – before it changes us and our society forever.
To save her twin, she must take her identity.
One night Tila stumbles home, terrified and covered in blood. She’s then arrested for murder, the first by a civilian in decades. The San Francisco police suspect that the drug Verve is involved, and offer her sister Taema a chilling deal to save her sister’s life. Posing as Tila, she must infiltrate the crime syndicate running the drug to help bring it down. However, Taema’s inquiries raise dangerous questions.
The sisters were raised by a cult which banned modern medicine. Yet as conjoined twins, they needed surgery to replace their failing heart, so had to escape. Now Tila discovers disturbing links between the twins’ past and their present. Once unable to keep secrets, the twins now learn the true cost of lies.
In a land of lost wonders, the past is stirring once more . . .
Gene’s life resembles a debutante’s dream. Yet she hides a secret that would see her shunned by the nobility. Gene is both male and female. Then she displays unwanted magical abilities – last seen in mysterious beings from an almost-forgotten age. Matters escalate further when her parents plan a devastating betrayal, so she flees home, dressed as a boy.
The city beyond contains glowing glass relics from a lost civilization. They call to her, but she wants freedom not mysteries. So, reinvented as ‘Micah Grey’, Gene joins the circus. As an aerialist, she discovers the joy of flight – but the circus has a dark side. She’s also plagued by visions foretelling danger. A storm is howling in from the past, but will she heed its roar?
Old magics are waking. But will the world survive their return?
Micah Grey almost died when he fled the circus with Drystan - now he and the ex-clown seek to outrun disaster. Drystan persuades his old friend Jasper Maske, a once-renowned magician, to take them in. But when he agrees to teach them his trade, Maske is challenged to the ultimate high-stakes duel by his embittered arch-nemesis.
Micah must perfect his skills of illusion, while navigating a tender new love. An investigator is also hunting the person he once seemed to be – a noble family’s runaway daughter. As the duel draws near, Micah increasingly suffers from visions showing him real magic and future terrors. Events that broke the ancient world are being replayed. But can Micah’s latent powers influence this deadly pattern?
The gifted hide their talents, but dare they step into the light?
Micah’s Chimaera powers are growing, until his dark visions overwhelm him. Drystan is forced to take him to Dr Pozzi, to save his life. But can they really trust the doctor, especially when a close friend is revealed to be his spy?
Meanwhile, violent unrest is sweeping the country, as anti-royalist factions fight to be heard. Then three chimaera are attacked, after revealing their existence with the monarchy’s blessing – and the struggle becomes personal. A small sect decimated the chimaera in ancient times and nearly destroyed the world. Now they’ve re-emerged to spread terror once more. Micah will discover a royal secret, which draws him into the heart of the conflict. And he and his friends must risk everything to finally bring peace to their land.
Masquerade is the third and final novel in L. R. Lam’s Micah Grey trilogy.
‘Bold, feminist sci-fi from a singular, visionary talent.’
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