The Scar, by China Mieville, is a sequel of sorts to the dark steampunk fantasy Perdido Street Station, which I have reviewed previously. It’s set in Bas-Lag, the same world as PSS, and we learn at one point that one of the main characters once had a romantic relationship with one of the characters from PSS. But The Scar could be read as a stand-alone novel quite easily. If anything, it’s even darker than the first novel, and takes us on a grand adventure involving a hidden pirate city, an island inhabited by ravenous mosquito-people, giant sea creatures, weird magicks, and almost more riddles and conspiracies than you can shake a Possible Sword at.
This time around I read the The Jalakh Bow, by Jamie Edmundson. This is the third book in the four-part Weapon Takers saga–I’ve also reviewed the first book in the series, Toric’s Dagger, and the second book, Bolivar’s Sword. I think it’s a good sign for the series that I’ve chosen to come back to it–it’s been gnawing at my mind a bit, which isn’t the case for some of the other fantasy series where I’ve recently reviewed the first book and never felt the need to return. At this point, I’ll almost definitely come back in a month or two for the final book.
An old man’s secret will alter the course of Aku’s life forever…
The ink on his mother ink tattoo is hardly dry when Aku makes a disappointing discovery. Disappointment leads him to make a rash, dangerous decision. When an old man with a bad eye rolls in, knowing far too much for being new in town, Aku follows him one night.
The man has a secret, one that will alter the course of Aku’s life forever…and maybe change the history of Atlantis. But is the old man’s theory correct? Or is he simply crazy?
Meanwhile, in the small town of Moku Harbor, Keki the crow brings disturbing news to newlyweds Lono and Hulu. Prioress Wa’e back in Atlantis has gone missing and it’s believed she’s been kidnapped. Will the young lovers offer their assistance to come help oust the Shabengee guards profaning the sacred Observatory? To complicate the decision further, Lono has a surprise that will change everything for the young couple…
Read Brother Flute, book two in The Last Days of Atlantis trilogy, now!
Sworn to the Gods is a fantasy romance by Lexi Caine. I came across it as it was listed on Amazon as an “other books you may like” for one of my own fantasy books. This struck me as odd, as fantasy romance and epic fantasy don’t often mix. When I investigated, I discovered the Amazon recommendation is likely because Caine’s book has a mythological setting, like the Atlantis setting of my “Last Days of Atlantis” series. In the case of SttG this setting is ancient Greece. I was intrigued and decided to go ahead and purchase it.
Tree of Ages, by Sara Roethle, opens with Finn waking up, which is odd, since she’s a tree. Although now she seems to have arms and legs, and she finds the air is so, so cold. She tries to dig her feet in the ground like roots but it just doesn’t work. A kindly older man by the name of Aed happens by and takes her into his rustic cabin. He lets her stay a few weeks, until she’s gotten this being human thing down.
I recently did an interview with the Hourlings podcast, a cool podcast on various writing topics related to science fiction and fantasy. The podcast is hosted by authors Martin Wilsey, Shea Megale, and David Keener. We covered all kinds of topics about how I wrote Mother Ink and my approach to writing in general. Check it out!
Bolivar’s Sword, by Jamie Edmundson, is the second book in the Weapon Takers Saga. I reviewed the first novel in the series here. This review will be a bit shorter than that one, as most of the same strengths and weaknesses in the writing apply to both books.
The weapons in question in the Weapon Takers Saga are seven mystical weapons, blessed by the gods, that date back to when the lands of Dalriya united to defeat the malevolent kingdom of Ishari. Unfortunately, the Ishari, under the leadership of Lord Erkendrix, who is possessed by an evil demon, were not totally destroyed then. Now, centuries later, the Ishari kingdom is again invading its neighbors with the goal of subjugating all of Dalriya.
I was looking for a fantasy book with a bit of a twist, and thought Jamie Edmundson’s Toric’s Dagger looked like a fun heist novel–something like a team of fast-talking professional thieves out to steal valuable weapons.
And it does start out that way, with a heist going wrong in the first couple chapters, and introducing us to some of the main characters. But after that, it shifts into a story of medieval political intrigue involving nearly every kingdom in the land of Dalryia. Still, it’s quite good, even if it turned out not to be exactly what I was expecting.