K.M. Alexander’s The Stars Were Right is a story about people getting murdered and other people trying to figure out why.
After three weeks on trail, caravan master Waldo Bell returns to the fantasy city of Lovat. With nothing on his mind but a shower and dinner, he collects his payment and sets out to do his errands. However, a grisly spree of murders begins the same day and Waldo finds himself a prime suspect. Continue reading
This story is about a pretty typical teenage boy. Seventeen-year old Marvin resents his stepfather, struggles to communicate with his mother, cannot hold a coherent conversation with a female, and is indefatigably determined to do exactly the opposite of his father.
Pretty standard, right?
Until it isn’t.
Let me begin with an “I love Neil Gaiman.” I want to be completely honest about the potential bias (though I don’t think it exists here). Gaiman’s writing is everything I love when reading. Now, let’s move on.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane is a story of childhood reminiscence. Our unnamed protagonist and narrator finds himself in his childhood hometown for a funeral. In an attempt to get some peace of mind and fresh air, he drives himself to the neighborhood where his childhood home no longer exists but Hempstock Farm, at the end of the lane, still does.
Abuse of Power is a fantasy novella introducing Brian W. Foster’s Rise of Mages series. It tells the tale of the meeting of August Asher and Alaina. August is a duke’s son and heir to his duchy, Alaina is a fugitive accused of being a mage.
Set in a realm referred to as the three kingdoms, magic is outlawed and the crime of being a mage is punishable by death. The argument for this is that it constitutes a threat to the rule of the nobles. Continue reading
GS Scott warned me before reading this novella that the themes were dark, and he wasn’t lying. Torture, rape and imprisonment all feature in this dark fantasy that pulls no punches when in comes to content.
It was an interesting introduction to what the author clearly wants to be an ongoing series. Telling the story of “The Girl” who is held prisoner of a Priest of Chaos, Master Ruddick, in a dark world in the control of the Lord God of Chaos. The priest is experimenting on children with the aim of imbuing them with the spirit of chaos. Continue reading
Taliesin is the first book in The Pendragon Cycle by Stephen R. Lawhead.
The Pendragon Cycle as a whole is an interpretation of the Arthurian myth, drawing on Celtic history with liberal dashings of fantasy thrown in. The author’s research and knowledge of the era and the legend are apparent throughout, even the few inconsistencies can be put down to artistic interpretation.
Taliesin tells the story of the love of the eponymous hero and an Atlantean princess, Charin, who escaped the catastrophe that engulfed the island kingdom.
The second book in Ursula K. Le Guin‘s Earthsea Saga, the review of the first book can be found here, is another that I read many years ago that I have very strong memories of.
I can vividly remember being disappointed in this book the first time around. A far cry from the island hopping adventures that Ged undertook in A Wizard of Earthsea, the events in this book are all focused in one location, a temple complex dedicated to the Nameless Ones.
Ged is not the main character in this sequel either, though he is the main focal point of the story. This adventure is seen through the eyes of Tenar, a young priestess whose life has been taken into servitude for the Nameless Ones, some old and evil Gods.