Reviews :: Book Genre :: Fantasy :: Page 3

Review

Bloodwitch

Bloodwitch

After WINDWITCH’s exciting ending, you had to know the story continued, right? Now we’re at BLOODWITCH and the continuation of the stories of Safi, Iseult, Aeduan, Vivia, and Merik and their role in protecting the world against the machinations of The Raider King.

Who also happens to be Aeduan’s father. Poor kid.
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Review

The Red-Stained Wings

Posted: May 21, 2019 by Vanessa in Books We Like Meta: Elizabeth Bear, Epic Fantasy
The Red-Stained Wings

Once upon a time, the Alchemical Emperor created an empire among the ruins of former kingdoms. With his own magic he created a palace like no other. Now his posterity fight over the fractured lands inherited by his children. Two ranji queens rule the sister Sarathi palaces, but their two male cousins (each cursed with the inability to procreate their own heirs), attempt to take power for themselves via subterfuge or outright war.
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Review

A Brightness Long Ago

A Brightness Long Ago

Imagine you’re a chef and at your restaurant you only make one meal. It’s beautiful and satisfying and no one’s complaining about the plate of gorgeous food in front of them. In fact, you have plenty of repeat customers, because hey, a lot of people go to restaurants and order the same thing every time. Why venture into the unknown towards probable disappointment?

But no matter how great your one meal is, some of your customers are eventually going to wonder what the dessert menu might look like.

And that analogy is close to where I find myself as a Guy Gavriel Kay fan. I’ve been reading him for close to a decade now and I’m a completist (except his poems, haven’t read those). His books make me cry. They’re lovely and poetic and full of ordinary and extraordinary people alike trying to make good choices when the world doesn’t seem to give them any.

Even as a fan, I’m cognizant that his books tend towards a certain… sameness. He works with archetypes — the poet, the warrior, the artist, the lover, the priest — and continually revisits themes of fate and choice. He does it well, but while reading his latest offering I found myself wondering what else he has to offer.
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Review

Amnesty

Posted: May 9, 2019 by Jane Funk in Books We Like Meta: Lara Elena Donnelly, Fantasy
Amnesty

AMNESTY (Amazon) is the final book in the AMBERLOUGH DOSSIER and if you’ve read my earlier reviews for AMBERLOUGH (EBR Review) and ARMISTICE (EBR Review) you know that I love a good character driven, unrelentingly grim novel. If that isn’t your scene, I recommend browsing through some of our other reviews because AMNESTY follows closely in the same vein as the first two novels in the series both in attention to characters and level of grimness.
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Review

Chains of the Heretic

Chains of the Heretic

A while back I decided to finally listen to our reviewer, Nick, and picked up SCOURGE OF THE BETRAYER (EBR Review). His review of that one (forever ago) was blisteringly positive, but for whatever reason I didn’t immediately put it on my list of books to read. When I got the book in the mail, I was somewhat bemused and slightly disappointed by its apparent size. Quite small. But then again, the book had been relatively inexpensive to begin with… in fact, as of the writing of this review, the paperback is only $5. Whoa. If you haven’t read this book yet, you totally need to go out and buy it. Like now. For five bucks, it’s worth taking a chance on an author that you’re sure to enjoy, if you’re a fan of the authors we praise here at EBR. Link at the bottom of the review.

For those of you that already know the greatness of the first, read on.
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Review

Storm Cursed

Posted: April 30, 2019 by Vanessa in Books We Love Meta: Patricia Briggs, Urban Fantasy
Storm Cursed

Ever since those years ago when Mercy moved to a trailer house near the home of the Columbia Basin Pack’s alpha, her life has been drastically different. She sometimes wonders if it’s because she became involved with Adam and his werewolves, but she understands that her relationship with Coyote, the god of chaos more likely has something to do with it. If you read book #10, SILENCE FALLEN (EBR Review), when Mercy was kidnapped by the vampire king of Europe, we learned that Coyote does have his hand in influencing events, and uses his children to clean up the messes that disrupt the world. I suspect that is the reason why Mercy’s life has grown more dangerous over the years.

That’s what she gets for being Coyote’s daughter.
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Review

The Silver Scar

Posted: April 25, 2019 by Jane Funk in Books that are Mediocre Meta: Betsy Dornbusch, Urban Fantasy
The Silver Scar

Betsy Dornbusch’s writing in THE SILVER SCAR is spare and lean, which gives the novel an immediacy that works in concert with her grim vision of a post-apocalyptic Colorado. While the book builds steadily, the beginning was rocky enough that I had a hard time getting into it and I bumped it down a ratings category or two.
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Review

Sixteen Ways to Defend a Walled City

Posted: April 18, 2019 by Writer Dan in Books We Love Meta: K.J. Parker, Fantasy, Humor
Sixteen Ways to Defend a Walled City

It’s been a good long while since I last read a K.J. Parker book, and he’s one of my favorites; so that’s kind of annoying. The most recent spate of story he pumped out prior to this book was the Two of Swords trilogy, which was originally released as a serial novel — meaning a small section at a time with oodles of sections. I wasn’t much into paying the exorbitant amount of money that serial novel would have cost me to get them all as they were e-published, so I put off purchasing them until they’d been happily compiled into three “books”. But, unfortunately, I’ve never gotten back to them. Need to rectify that, I know, but who has the time? Seriously. Maybe after Dark Age is finally out and my reading queue has settled down a bit.
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Review

Scythe

Posted: April 16, 2019 by Vanessa in Books We Like Meta: Neal Shusterman, Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Scythe

In a world where immortality means death is no longer natural, scythes are employed to keep the population under control. Rowan is a typical middle child in a big family whose life flies under the radar. Until the Honorable Scythe Faraday notices him and asks him to become his apprentice. Citra excels at school and when a scythe comes to their house just to have a meal with them, she can’t help but question his behavior. They both — reluctantly — end up as apprentices to the same scythe and are dropped into a world of death, pain, grief. They must learn how to kill, but also be compassionate. Scythe Faraday believes that a scythe shouldn’t enjoy killing.

But Scythe Faraday is old school, and there are newer scythes who think that there are too many restrictions, that there are better interpretations of the scythe 10 Commandments. When conclave arrives and Citra and Rowan must take their first tests of their apprenticeship, events go poorly and they learn the hard way that death has become a political battlefield.
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Review

Windwitch

Posted: April 11, 2019 by Vanessa in Books We Like Meta: Susan Dennard, Fantasy, Young Adult
Windwitch

It’s been a while since I read the first book of The Witchlands, TRUTHWITCH, so I was a little bit lost when starting WINDWITCH; fortunately I already have book three, BLOODWITCH, ready to read soon, so I won’t suffer quite so much. This might be the kind of series that would be easier to read in quick succession so you aren’t lost. So much happens over the series that if you do go a while between books, a refresher would be in order, since Dennard starts the story back up where she left off, without much reminders.

WINDWITCH easily improves on TRUTHWITCH, despite our heroines being separated at the end of TRUTHWITCH. Dennard builds on everything that went before, on the characterization, on the story, on the magic, on the world–all toward creating a world with more depth, which I rather like seeing in a YA series.
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