It has been nearly two decades since the revolution, when the people realized that the Augurs, mystics who had visions and other mystical powers, weren’t gods and could die like any mortal men. After the Augurs fell and the world was forever altered, the leaders of the rebellion took control. Those not powerful enough to be Augurs, but possessing the lesser mystical Gift were culled violently until only a very few were left, and those would be forced into the absolute obedience of the Four Tenants in order to control their powers. [Read more…]
Blood of Innocents is the second of the Sorcery Ascendant Sequence by Mitchell Hogan. Having escaped the invading sorcerers from fallen Anasoma, Caldan decides to follow Master Simon’s last request: to take his blade to the Protectors, and to warn the Emperor of the invading forces.
Along for the ride are Bells, the enemy sorceress captured in the final chapters of Crucible of Souls; Miranda, whose mind was lost in the battle; Ammerton, a mysterious shopkeeper with many secrets [Read more…]
In A Crucible of Souls, the first of the Sorcery Ascendant Sequence, allow yourself to be swept into a world of mage craft, violence, and the gritty, witty realism that defines the epic fantasy genre.
After the brutal deaths of his family at a young age, Caldan is taken in by the local monastery. Unaware that the deaths may not have been an accident, he blissfully continues to grow up as a ward there, learning alongside the sons and daughters of the noble class. As he nears his 18th birthday, he longs to become a full apprentice and learn deeper crafting, but his plans are torn to pieces when [Read more…]
Age of Iron by Angus Watson is the first book of The Iron Age series. Very few know the true and detailed history of when the Romans “took” Britain in the late 11th century. History has taken for fact the thinly detailed works of Caesar’s journals saying simply that the Romans went over to Britain, took over, and then left a century or more later simply because they felt like it and didn’t want to bother with the place any more. The Iron Age series is the real account of what happened…or so Watson tells us to believe. [Read more…]
Half a King by Joe Abercrombie is the first book of the Shattered Sea series. Although Joe is revered for his creatively dark worlds and provocative adult books-the Shattered Sea is his first foray into the world of young adult fiction. The same sort of gritty tone and context is used as he usually does, but the spirit of this piece is much different than anything he’s written before. [Read more…]
Fool’s Assassin is the first book of the Fitz and the Fool series by Robin Hobb. A middle aged family man, Tom Badgerlock (aka FitzChivalry Farseer) is living a happy, content life in the familial home of Withywoods and loves his wife Molly and their children dearly. Memories of his past life as assassin and the hated bastard of the family do creep in during times of trouble, but for the most part he is happy and enjoys the life he has built. [Read more…]
Tower Lord by Anthony Ryan is the second book in the Raven’s Shadow series. Vaelin Al Sorna, one of the greatest and most renowned warriors of the realm, has returned home, utterly disgusted and sick of battle. He alone knows the treachery and lies that the fighting has been built upon, and that knowledge haunts him and keeps him from glorying in the fame and notoriety that he once envied. The successor to King Janus’s throne names Vaelin Tower Lord of the Northern Reaches, and he looks forward to the quiet peace of the cold north. Yet peace is not found so easily, as Vaelin soon will find out. Friends and enemies seek him, and there are other dangers to the Realm that have not yet reached fruition but are growing in both ambition and confidence. [Read more…]
Blood Song by Anthony Ryan is the first book in the Raven’s Shadow series. While I don’t know how many books that series is scheduled to have, you can bet that I will be adding them all to my pre-order list on Audible.
I was surprised to find that this was Ryan’s debut novel, as it has such an interesting complexity of plot and imagery that you would expect him to be a tried and true artist of the genre, rather than a youngster. Steven Brand is a new narrator to me, but his lithe and graceful cadence and delightful fluidity of speech helped Blood Song to soar to the heights that it deserves. He did wonderfully interesting things to affect growling harshness and booming adversaries, and helped the characters really come out as unique and different. [Read more…]
Prince of Fools by Mark Lawrence is the first book of The Red Queen’s War series. Fans of Lawrence’s Broken Empire works will be overjoyed at the further expansion of a known and beloved world. Never having read or listened to a Mark Lawrence book, I approached this one with a very open mind. Nearly fourteen hours later, and having had my fill of lightly veiled sarcasm mixed with courtly intrigue, rough and tumble violence, and a storyline to kill for (literally in some senses…) I am proud to say that I’m a newly confirmed fan of all that is Mark Lawrence. To be frank, Lawrence is one hell of a writer. I very rarely get so caught up in a book as I was with Prince of Fools, and the combination of Lawrence’s snark with Tim Gerard Reynold’s narration was enough to have me giggling away into the wee hours and alternating between fearful breathlessness and exhilarating excitement. [Read more…]
Heroes Wanted is a couplet of short stories created by Katharina Gerlach and narrated by Linda Joy, and the theme is clear within the title. Heroes are in need, and they come in many forms. Sometimes, heroes are false and weak, other times they are intensely real and honorable to their own detriment.
The first story in the set was perhaps my favorite, but both were captivating and intriguing in their own ways. Listening to these stories was like seeing two sides of the coin when it comes to heroes. One of my only complaints for the pair of stories was that they were both so very short. I could have very easily kept listening to both stories for hours more than the barely an hour of listening time required for this short. [Read more…]