Harry Connolly, author
Seattle at Dusk

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Twenty Palaces (aka my books)

My Books

The Great Way

Cover for The Way Into Chaos
The Way Into Chaos

The city of Peradain is the heart of an empire built with steel, spears,and a monopoly on magic… until, in a single day, it falls, overthrown by a swarm of supernatural creatures of incredible power and ferocity. Neither soldier nor spell caster can stand against them.

The empire’s armies are crushed, its people scattered, its king and queen killed. Freed for the first time in generations, city-states scramble to seize neighboring territories and capture imperial spell casters. But as the creatures spread across the land, these formerly conquered peoples discover they are not prepared to face the enemy that destroyed an empire.

Can the last Peradaini prince, pursued by the beasts that killed his parents, cross battle-torn lands to retrieve a spell that might—just might—turn the battle against this new enemy?
“It's Epic Fantasy that reads like a Thriller.”  -- Kat Richardson

"... one hard-hitting, take-no-prisoners, breathtaking holy shit of a book." --  C.E. Murphy
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The Way Into Magic Cover
The Way Into Magic

BOOK TWO OF THE GREAT WAY: Continuing the story from book one.
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The Way Into Darkness Cover
The Way Into Darkness

BOOK THREE OF THE GREAT WAY: Concluding the story
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The Twenty Palaces Novels
Twenty Palaces Cover

Twenty Palaces

When Ray Lilly was 13 years old, a handgun accident landed his best friend, Jon Burrows, in a wheelchair and turned Ray into a runaway and petty criminal. Fifteen years later, Ray returns home after a stint in prison; he’s determined to go straight, but he knows he can’t do that without making peace with his old friend.

What Ray doesn’t expect is to discover that Jon has just received a mysterious cure–not only is he out of his wheelchair, he seems stronger and faster than… well, pretty much anyone. Worse, his cure has drawn all sorts of unwanted attention: the media are camped out on his block, the police are investigating him for insurance fraud, and weird shadowy figures have begun to draw closer, figures who clearly do not mean to do Jon any good.

Can Ray atone for the biggest mistake of his life by protecting his oldest and best friend? What’s more, should he?

The prequel to the Twenty Palaces series, published by Del Rey.
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Cover of Child of Fire

Child of Fire

Ray Lilly is living on borrowed time. He’s the driver for Annalise Powliss, a high-ranking member of the Twenty Palace Society, a group of sorcerers devoted to hunting down and executing rogue magicians. But because Ray betrayed her once, Annalise is looking for an excuse to kill him–or let someone else do the job.

Unfortunately for both of them, Annalise’s next mission goes wrong, leaving her critically injured. With the little magic he controls, Ray must complete her assignment alone. Not only does he have to stop a sorcerer who’s sacrificing dozens of innocent lives in exchange for supernatural power, he must find–and destroy–the source of that inhuman magic.
“[Child of Fire] is excellent reading and has a lot of things I love in a book: a truly dark and sinister world, delicious tension and suspense, violence so gritty you’ll get something in your eye just reading it, and a gorgeously flawed protagonist. Take this one to the checkout counter. Seriously.”  -- Jim Butcher

"Unique magical concepts, a tough and pragmatic protagonist and a high casualty rate for innocent bystanders will enthrall readers who like explosive action and magic that comes at a serious cost."  -- Starred review from Publishers Weekly, and one of PW's Best 100 Books of 2009

"One of the few urban magic books — for lack of a better term — novels I enjoyed last year was Harry Connolly’s Child of Fire. And I loved it.” -- John Rogers, writer/producer LEVERAGE

“Every page better than the last. Cinematic and vivid, with a provocative glimpse into a larger world.” -- Terry Rossio, screenwriter (Shrek, Pirates of the Caribbean)
Read a sample chapter here

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The Audiobook
Cover of Game of Cages

Game of Cages

A secret high-stakes auction:

As a wealthy few gather to bid on a predator capable of destroying all life on earth, the sorcerers of the Twenty Palace Society mobilize to stop them. Caught up in the scramble is Ray Lilly, the lowest of the low in the society—an ex–car thief and the expendable assistant of a powerful sorcerer. Ray possesses exactly one spell to his name, along with a strong left hook. But when he arrives in the small town in the North Cascades where the bidding is to take place, the predator has escaped and the society’s most powerful enemies are desperate to recapture it. All Ray has to do is survive until help arrives. But it may already be too late.
"Game of Cages is a tough, smart, unflinching urban fantasy novel." -- Andrew Wheeler

"This has become one of my must read series." -- Carolyn Cushman, Locus Magazine
Read three sample chapters starting here

 You can order this book from any of these sellers:

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Cover of Circle of Enemies

Circle of Enemies

Former car thief Ray Lilly is now the expendable grunt of a sorcerer responsible for destroying extradimensional predators summoned to our world by power-hungry magicians. Luckily, Ray has some magic of his own, and so far it’s kept him alive. But when a friend from his former gang calls him back to his old stomping grounds in Los Angeles, Ray may have to face a threat even he can’t handle. A mysterious spell is killing Ray’s former associates, and they blame him. Worse yet, the spell was cast by Wally King, the sorcerer who first dragged Ray into the brutal world of the Twenty Palace Society. Now Ray will have to choose between the ties of the past and the responsibilities of the present, as he and the Society face not only Wally King but a bizarre new predator.

“An edge-of-the-seat read! Ray Lilly is the new high-water mark of paranormal noir.” -- Charles Stross, author of Rule 34

“Ray Lilly is one of the most interesting characters I’ve read lately, and Harry Connolly’s vision is amazing." -- Charlaine Harris
Read a sample chapter here

You can order this book from any of these sellers:

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Other Works
Cover for Key/Egg

A Key, an Egg, an Unfortunate Remark


After years of waging a secret war against the supernatural, Marley Jacobs put away her wooden stakes and silver bullets, then turned her back on violence. She declared Seattle, her city, a safe zone for everyone, living and undead. There would be no more preternatural murder under her watch.

But waging peace can make as many enemies as waging war, and when Marley's nephew turns up dead in circumstances suspiciously like a vampire feeding, she must look into it. Is there a new arrival in town? Is someone trying to destroy her fragile truce? Or was her nephew murdered because he was, quite frankly, a complete tool?

As Marley investigates her nephew's death, she discovers he had been secretly dabbling in the supernatural himself. What, exactly, had he been up to, and who had he been doing it with? More importantly, does it threaten the peace she has worked so hard to create? (Spoiler: yeah, it absolutely does.)

A very different Urban Fantasy from the author of the grimly noirish CHILD OF FIRE.

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Short fiction collection cover

Bad Little Girls Die Horrible Deaths

 And Other Tales Of Dark Fantasy

A short fiction collection of dark fantasy (some edging into horror, some humor, some both). Features the first appearance of the Twenty Palaces novelette "The Home Made Mask," along with rare reprints and some completely original fiction.
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King Khan cover

Spirit of the Century Presents: King Khan

Professor Khan, learned ape, has traveled through time, fought psychic dinosaurs and shark-men, visited Atlantis, and battled across the sands of Mars. He has seen it all-—until an arrow shooting out of the sky sends him to the strangest place yet…


This is the first game-tie-in novel I've ever written, a 30's pulp adventure with shrink beams, Aztec mummies, and super-science archery.

It's very different from the Twenty Palaces novels, much more upbeat and (hopefully) funny. Follow the "Find out more" link to connect to sample chapters.
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Watch the Twenty Palaces trailer here!