It was the cover for These Prisoning Hills that first drew my attention to this upcoming novella by Christopher Rowe. With an intriguing premise, if the story is as moody as that image, I’m definitely in. Here’s the synopsis:
Deallocate all implications,
Fortran harrows all the nations.
In a long-ago war, the all-powerful A.I. ruler of the Voluntary State of Tennessee — Athena Parthenus, Queen of Reason — invaded and decimated the American Southeast. Possessing the ability to infect and corrupt the surrounding environment with nanotechnology, she transformed flora, fauna, and the very ground itself into bio-mechanical weapons of war.
Marcia, a former captain from Kentucky, experienced first-hand the terrifying, mind-twisting capabilities of Athena’s creatures. Now back in the Commonwealth, her retirement is cut short by the arrival of federal troops in her tiny, isolated town. One of Athena’s most powerful weapons may still be buried nearby. And they need Marcia’s help to find it.