Reconstruction (Preorder)

Alaya Dawn Johnson

January 5, 2021

trade paper · 300 pages · $17 · 9781618731777 | ebook · 9781618731784

An immersive, rich collection from an author whose work reaches across time and continents to explore unexpected and untold stories.

In Reconstruction, award-winning writer and musician Johnson digs into the lives of those trodden underfoot by the powers that be: from the lives of vampires and those caught in their circle in Hawai’i to a taxonomy of anger put together by Union soldiers in the American Civil War, these stories will grab you and not let you go.


“Johnson breaks down genre boundaries, combining elements of  fantasy, mystery, science fiction, and horror, in settings ranging from the historical and familiar to the wildly imaginative. Unified by Johnson’s sensuous prose, these stories will delight existing fans and serve as an excellent introduction for those new to Johnson’s work.”
Publishers Weekly

“The first story in this collection, the Nebula award-winning ‘A Guide to the Fruits of Hawai’i,’ opens in a prison where vampire conquerors imprison humans to feast upon. Key is a human caretaker doing what she  can to survive in a world where hope and integrity are seemingly impossible. This theme of resilience in inhumane conditions continues throughout the collection. In the title story ‘Reconstruction’ — one of two stories original to the collection — Sally uses her grandmother’s spells to help protect a Black Civil War regiment while meditating on anger. These ten immersive stories embrace multiple speculative genres and take place in worlds both real and unreal. Much like Lovecraft Country, the stories combine horror and fantastical elements with anti-racist themes.”
— Margaret Kingsbury, Buzzfeed

Table of Contents

A Guide to the Fruits of Hawai’i [read]
They Shall Salt the Earth with Seeds of Glass
Their Changing Bodies
The Score
A Song to Greet the Sun
Far and Deep
Down the Well
Third Day Lights
The Mirages

Praise for Alaya Dawn Johnson’s books:

“Juju assassins, alternate history, a gritty New York crime story…in a word: Awesome.”
― N.K. Jemisin, author of The Fifth Season

“Great, fresh audacity.”
Entertainment Weekly

“Like leaping into cold water on a hot day, this original dystopian novel takes the breath away, refreshes, challenges, and leaves the reader shivering but yearning for another plunge.”
Booklist, starred review

Publishers Weekly, starred review

“An art project, a rebellion and a sacrifice make up this nuanced, original cyberpunk adventure. . . . Luminous.”
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Beautiful prose.”

“Magnificent beguilement,” — Kelly Link, author of Get in Trouble

“This book will steal your heart!”
― Marika McCoola, Odyssey Bookshop, South Hadley, MA


Cover art “Marie-Thérèse and Dieunie” copyright © 2020 by Tessa Mars ( All rights reserved.

Alaya Dawn Johnson (@alayadj) is the author of seven novels for adults and young adults. Her most recent novel for adults is Trouble the Saints. Her young adult novel The Summer Prince was longlisted for the National Book Award and Love Is the Drug won the Norton Award. Her short stories have appeared in many magazines and anthologies, including Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy. She lives in Mexico City where she received a master’s degree with honors in Mesoamerican Studies at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, for her thesis on pre-Columbian fermented food and its role in the religious-agricultural calendar.


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