Seven Blades in Black – Sam Sykes

Releases: 4.9.19.

Synopsis: Among humans, none have power like mages. And among mages, none have will like Sal the Cacophony. Once revered, now vagrant, she walks a wasteland scarred by generations of magical warfare. The Scar, a land torn between powerful empires, is where rogue mages go to disappear, disgraced soldiers go to die and Sal went with a blade, a gun and a list of names she intended to use both on. But vengeance is a flame swift extinguished. Betrayed by those she trusted most, her magic torn from her and awaiting execution, Sal the Cacophony has one last tale to tell before they take her head. All she has left is her name, her story and the weapon she used to carved both.

Vengeance is its own reward. Continue reading “Seven Blades in Black – Sam Sykes”

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The Steel Remains – Richard Morgan

Synopsis: A dark lord will rise. Such is the prophecy that dogs Ringil Eskiath—Gil, for short—a washed-up mercenary and onetime war hero whose cynicism is surpassed only by the speed of his sword. Gil is estranged from his aristocratic family, but when his mother enlists his help in freeing a cousin sold into slavery, Gil sets out to track her down. But it soon becomes apparent that more is at stake than the fate of one young woman. Grim sorceries are awakening in the land. Some speak in whispers of the return of the Aldrain, a race of widely feared, cruel yet beautiful demons. Now Gil and two old comrades are all that stand in the way of a prophecy whose fulfillment will drown an entire world in blood. But with heroes like these, the cure is likely to be worse than the disease. Continue reading “The Steel Remains – Richard Morgan”

Jade City – Fonda Lee

Synopsis: Jade is the lifeblood of the island of Kekon. It has been mined, traded, stolen, and killed for — and for centuries, honorable Green Bone warriors like the Kaul family have used it to enhance their magical abilities and defend the island from foreign invasion.

Now, the war is over and a new generation of Kauls vies for control of Kekon’s bustling capital city. They care about nothing but protecting their own, cornering the jade market, and defending the districts under their protection. Ancient tradition has little place in this rapidly changing nation.

When a powerful new drug emerges that lets anyone — even foreigners — wield jade, the simmering tension between the Kauls and the rival Ayt family erupts into open violence. The outcome of this clan war will determine the fate of all Green Bones — from their grandest patriarch to the lowliest motorcycle runner on the streets — and of Kekon itself. Continue reading “Jade City – Fonda Lee”

Arm of the Sphinx – Josiah Bancroft

Synopsis: The Tower of Babel is proving to be as difficult to reenter as it was to break out of. Forced into a life of piracy, Senlin and his eclectic crew are struggling to survive aboard their stolen airship as the hunt to rescue Senlin’s lost wife continues.

Hopeless and desolate, they turn to a legend of the Tower, the mysterious Sphinx. But help from the Sphinx never comes cheaply, and as Senlin knows, debts aren’t always what they seem in the Tower of Babel.

Time is running out, and now Senlin must choose between his friends, his freedom, and his wife.

Does anyone truly escape the Tower? 
Continue reading “Arm of the Sphinx – Josiah Bancroft”

The Gutter Prayer – Gareth Hanrahan

Review originally published on Grimdark Magazine

Synopsis: A group of three young thieves are pulled into a centuries old magical war between ancient beings, mages, and humanity in this wildly original debut epic fantasy.

The city has always been. The city must finally end.

When three thieves – an orphan, a ghoul, and a cursed man – are betrayed by the master of the thieves guild, their quest for revenge uncovers dark truths about their city and exposes a dangerous conspiracy, the seeds of which were sown long before they were born. Cari is a drifter whose past and future are darker than she can know.

Rat is a Ghoul, whose people haunt the city’s underworld.

Spar is a Stone Man, subject to a terrible disease that is slowly petrifying his flesh.

Chance has brought them together, but their friendship could be all that stands in the way of total armageddon. Continue reading “The Gutter Prayer – Gareth Hanrahan”

The Wolf in the Whale – Jordanna Max Brodsky

Review originally published on Fantasy Book Review

Releases: 1.29.19.

Synopsis: A young Inuit shaman’s epic quest for survival in the frozen lands of North America in 1000 AD.

Born with the soul of a hunter and the language of the gods, Omat is destined to become a shaman like her grandfather. To protect her people, she invokes the spirits of the sky, the sea, and the air.

But the gods have stopped listening, the seals won’t come, and Omat’s family is starving.

Desperate to save them, Omat journeys through the icy wastes, fighting for survival with every step. When she meets a Viking warrior and his strange new gods, together they set in motion a conflict that could shatter her world…or save it.

The Wolf in the Whale is a powerful tale of magic, discovery and adventure, featuring an unforgettable narrator ready to confront the gods themselves. Continue reading “The Wolf in the Whale – Jordanna Max Brodsky”

Top 15 of 2018!

One cannot end the year without a Best Of list. It’s impossible not to love a good list, amirite?! You better fucking believe I do! Especially a book list.

I made it easy for myself because life is hard enough as it is, my dudes, without having to sweat out how I’m going to narrow this impressive list down. I ended up going with all of my 5 star reads throughout the year, then if there were multiple books by the same author, I chose my favorite of those. Keeping it simple! Now.. because I have a slight rebellious streak, I counted the glorious Seanan McGuire (also writing as Mira Grant) as two different entities. I DO WHAT I WANT!!

2018 was a mixed bag personally.. but when it came to the books I read, it was on some next level shit! I loved that I had such a great blend of older releases with the brand-new ones. Some of my favorite books of all-time were ones I had read this year. It’s just been an absolutely brilliant time for books! 2019 is looking like it will be another incredible year for new releases as well. My excitement is through the goddamn roof!

AHEM. I’ll save that for another post in the new year.

Without further ado, my top 15 books read in 2018! ::throws confetti:: Continue reading “Top 15 of 2018!”

The Free – Brian Ruckley

Synopsis: They are the most feared mercenary company the kingdom has ever known. 

Led by Yulan, their charismatic captain, the Free have spent years selling their martial and magical skills to the highest bidder – winning countless victories that shook the foundations of the world. Now they finally plan to lay down their swords.

Yet when Yulan is offered a final contract, he cannot refuse – for the mission offers him the chance to erase the memories of the Free’s darkest hour, which have haunted him for years.

As The Free embark on their last mission, a potent mix of loyalty and vengeance is building to a storm. Freedom, it seems, carries a deadly price. Continue reading “The Free – Brian Ruckley”

Queen of Sorcery – David Eddings

Synopsis: Legends told of how the evil God Torak had coveted the power of the Orb of Aldur, until defeated in a final battle. But prophecy spoke of a time when he would awake and again seek dominance over the world. Now the Orb has been stolen by a priest of Torak, and that time was at hand. 

The master Sorcerer Belgarath and his daughter Polgara the arch-Sorceress were on the trail of the Orb, seeking to regain it before the final disaster. And with them went Garion, a simple farm boy only months before, but now the focus of the struggle. He has never believed in sorcery and wanted no part of it. Yet with every league they traveled, the power grew in him, forcing him to acts of wizardry he could not accept. Continue reading “Queen of Sorcery – David Eddings”

Senlin Ascends – Josiah Bancroft

Synopsis: The Tower of Babel is the greatest marvel in the world. Immense as a mountain, the ancient Tower holds unnumbered ringdoms, warring and peaceful, stacked one on the other like the layers of a cake. It is a world of geniuses and tyrants, of airships and steam engines, of unusual animals and mysterious machines.

Soon after arriving for his honeymoon at the Tower, the mild-mannered headmaster of a small village school, Thomas Senlin, gets separated from his wife, Marya, in the overwhelming swarm of tourists, residents, and miscreants. 

Senlin is determined to find Marya, but to do so he’ll have to navigate madhouses, ballrooms, and burlesque theaters. He must survive betrayal, assassination, and the long guns of a flying fortress. But if he hopes to find his wife, he will have to do more than just endure. 

This quiet man of letters must become a man of action. Continue reading “Senlin Ascends – Josiah Bancroft”