Now Will Machines Hollow the Beast


Vishnu’s Leviathan: a half-beast, half-machine warship famed for its speed and might. The great prize that armies across the galaxies will kill to possess.

Admiral Anoushka was once a ghost. Now she’s the universe’s most brutal commander with a debt to a godlike AI. To repay it—and to complete her long revenge—she’s set her sights on the leviathan. Neither the warship’s flesh horrors nor its ruthless ruler will stand in her way.

But all her plans couldn’t prepare her for what waits in the belly of the beast: a foe that matches her in ferocity and thirst for vengeance . . . and a deep treachery that may prove her undoing.


Now Will Machines Hollow the Beast (Prime Books) is a military/espionage space opera pitched as ‘Warhammer 40K meets Aliens’, starring an all-lesbian cast. Takes place in the Machine Mandate universe but is strictly standalone.

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Content notes

  • Graphic sex. Many instances of explicitly negotiated BDSM, one involving disassembly (done safely to a cyborg partner with modular limbs) and several involving collaring and leashing. 
  • Character death. One queer character dies for reasons unrelated to homophobia, bigotry, or institutional marginalization. (The majority of the cast is queer and the setting is free of transphobia and homophobia; this book does not engage in queer misery.)

Short stories featuring Admiral Anoushka

These stories take place many decades before Now Will Machines Hollow the Beast

‘Where Machines Run with Gold’ in The Future Fire. A soldier takes on a beheading dare and comes to meet her agreed-upon sentence in a small, strange city ruled by a mysterious lord. Space opera Sir Gawain and the Green Knight retelling. This is Anoushka at an earlier part in her carrier before she became admiral, and tells the story of how she meets her first wife Numadesi.

‘Then Will the Sun Rise Alabaster’. On a remote planet, a convent harbors a deadly secret buried beneath quiet violence–a secret that the woman known only as the Alabaster Admiral will obtain at any cost. A story from the perspective of a young woman forced into religion by violent imperialism. Takes place after ‘Where Machines Run With Gold’.