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Young Adult Fiction General

The Swan Riders

by (author) Erin Bow

Margaret K. McElderry Books
Initial publish date
Sep 2016
General, Survival Stories, LGBT
Recommended Age
14 to 18
Recommended Grade
9 to 12
Recommended Reading age
14 to 18
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2016
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Sep 2016
    List Price
    $8.99 USD
  • Downloadable audio file

    Publish Date
    Sep 2016
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2017
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


Treacherous twists await Greta as the stakes get even higher in this stunning follow-up to the “masterful” (School Library Journal, starred review) novel, The Scorpion Rules.

Greta Stuart has become AI. New transmitters have silvered her fingerprints. New receptors have transformed her vision. And the whole of her memory has become one book in a vast library of instant knowledge. Greta is ready to rule the world.

But the new technology is also killing her.

Greta is only sixteen years old, but her new enhancements are burning through her mortal body at an alarming rate. Of course the leader of the AIs, an ancient and compelling artificial intelligence named Talis, has a plan. Greta can simply do what he’s done when the time comes, and take over the body of one of the Swan Riders, the utterly loyal humans who serve the AIs as part army, part cult.

First though, Greta will have to find a way to stay sane inside her new self. Talis’s plan for that involves a road trip. Escorted by Swan Riders, Greta and Talis set out on a horseback journey across the strange and not-quite-deserted landscape of Saskatchewan. But there are other people interested in Greta, people who want to change the world…and the Swan Riders might not be as loyal as they appear…

About the author

Erin Bow is the author of The Scorpion Rules, which received three starred reviews and was a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year and it’s sequel, The Swan Riders, which received two starred reviews. She also wrote the acclaimed Russian-flavored fantasy Plain Kate, which received two starred reviews and was a YALSA Best Book of the Year, and the terrifying YA ghost story Sorrow’s Knot, which received five starred reviews and was a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year. Visit her at

Erin Bow's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"This is fearfully superlative storytelling- electrical tension crackles in every elegant word. The finest fiction I've read this year."

, on The Scorpion Rules

“Bow's amoral artificial intelligence overlord is one of my favorite characters in a while.”

Maggie Stiefvater, author of The Raven Boys, on The Scorpion Rules

*"Masterful, electric prose... Bow delivers a knockout dystopian novel that readers will devour with their hearts in their mouths."

School Library Journal, Starred Review, on The Scorpion Rules

*"A fascinating follow-up and stunning story that is a must-read."

August 2016

"I don't know which is more delicious, the storytelling or the villain."

Tone Almhjell, author of The Twistrose Key, on The Scorpion Rules

"Bow's vision of our apocalypse is stark, beautiful and terrifying. This is my favourite book."

EK Johnston, author of The Story of Owen, on The Scorpion Rules

"Elegant world-building, white-knuckle plot, and wonderful characters make The Scorpion Rules an extraordinary tale. I couldn't put it down."

V.E. Schwab, author of A Darker Shade of Magic, on The Scorpion Rules

" This is a smart, compelling read that explores the complicated nature of love, family, peace, war, and technology; fans of Johnson’s Summer Prince and Collins’s Hunger Games who are searching for an empowering and intelligent read-alike need look no further."

The Horn Book Magazine, on The Scorpion Rules

"Bow has crafted a true sci-fi narrative around the AI premise, utilizing an imaginative world and well-developed characters. Through Greta’s conflicts, the author explores what it means to be human."

Booklist, on The Scorpion Rules

The Scorpion Rules is one of the most inventive, devious, exciting and thoroughly enjoyable books I’ve read in years. Very highly recommended!”

, on The Scorpion Rules

*"Bow continually yanks the rug out from under readers, defying expectations as she crafts a masterly story with a diverse cast, shocking twists, and gut-punching emotional moments."

Publishers Weekly, starred review, on The Scorpion Rules

“THE SCORPION RULES is a bloody, breath-taking, beautiful book… As a fellow craftsperson I'm leftin awe, and as a reader I'm left feeling transformed.”

Zoe Marriott, author of The Name of the Blade series, on The Scorpion Rules

“Clever and unexpected, THE SCORPION RULES is a game-changing novel about the consequence of war and the brutality of peace. Unforgettable!”

Suzanne Young, New York Times bestselling author of The Program series, on The Scorpion Rules

*"Slyly humorous, starkly thought-provoking, passionate, and compassionate—and impeccably written to boot: not to be missed."

Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review, on The Scorpion Rules

*"Brilliant and compelling: don't miss this."

Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

Other titles by Erin Bow