Posts Tagged ‘Adrian Tchaikovsky’

Guns of the Dawn

Posted: June 5, 2015 by Steven Diamond in Books We Love
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dawn“The secret of gunpowder is that anyone—a man, a woman, a child, a cripple—can kill with it.”

I think the above quote perfectly sets the tone for Adrian Tchaikovsky’s stand-alone, gunpowder fantasy novel, GUNS OF THE DAWN. I’ve been a big fan of Tchaikovsky’s for a while now, with his Shadows of the Apt series being one of my favorite Fantasy series out there. (more…)


Over the last couple of years, Adrian Tchaikovsky has become one of my favorite authors. Very few authors actually take their setting and story and move it forward technologically. In Tchaikovsky’s Shadows of the Apt series, we get exactly that, along with huge amounts of character progression, thrilling large-scale battles, and intense small-scale fights.

THE SEA WATCH is the sixth book in this projected 10-book story. I guess the best way to describe it is by saying THE SEA WATCH, in a way, is the Shadows of the Apt series’ 20,000 leagues under the sea. The results overall are great, but that doesn’t mean the novel is absent some missteps. (more…)

Adrian Tchaikovsky is gold! Gold, we say! We have stated over and over in our reviews that one of the main things we look for in a series is growth. Growth in the story, growth in the characters, and especially growth in the author. The instant we began reading Tchaikovsky’s work we were hooked. Sure, EMPIRE IN BLACK AND GOLD had some problems–what authors don’t have problems in their first novel? But even with those problems, EMPIRE was awesome. With each novel he got better. The problems slowly vanished. The characters in the series matured. The setting, somehow, got infinitely better. It got to the point where we were mentioning Tchaikovsky in the same breath as our favorite authors. (more…)

Adrian Tchaikovsky, we hate you…but in that way that results from loving you too much, and being jealous of your skills. Let’s start by saying how worried we were about Tchaikovsky’s fourth novel in the Shadows of the Apt series, SALUTE THE DARK. With three completely excellent novels released, isn’t it about time that Tchaikovsky had a misstep?

No. No it isn’t. (more…)

We love Adrian Tchaikovsky. There really is no way around it. It can be an inconvenience at times, seeing as we stare at other novels and wish that they were another novel in the Shadows of the Apt series. It turns out Tchaikovsky just keeps putting out novels that continually feel fresh, and that are immensely fun to read. Now the third book of the series, BLOOD OF THE MANTIS, could have been awful. Tchaikovsky could have tried to go even bigger than DRAGONFLY FALLING. That would have been a terrible mistake. There was such huge-scale warfare in book 2, that to try to one-up it would have been nearly impossible. And yet we see it all the time. (more…)

We love when sequels improve upon their predecessors. You’ll recall we gave a favorable review to Adrian Tchaikovsky‘s EMPIRE IN BLACK AND GOLD. Sure, there were issues with it, but that doesn’t mean the book wasn’t good. The second book in Tchaikovsky’s Shadows of the Apt series is DRAGONFLY FALLING, and for the most part it improves upon the original in every way.

DRAGONFLY picks up right where EMPIRE ends. The Wasp Empire is is poised to invade the Lowlands, and are beginning with strategic cities used in trade and manufacturing. Our main cast of characters from EMPIRE are all here, and are in different corners of the known world trying to convince different races to band together against the Wasps. Really, this sounded like it could have become bogged down in people talking and negotiating. This kind of thing bugs us (Get it? Bugs? Never mind…) Did that happen? Uh, no.

You see, DRAGONFLY FALLING is all about war. Lots and lots and lots (that’s a lot of lots) of war. (more…)

If there was one 2010 fantasy series that had us chomping at the bit, it was Adrian Tchaikovsky’s Shadows of the Apt. Finally, after salivating over its inevitable US release, we finally got to taste the dish that the UK has enjoyed without us; EMPIRE IN BLACK AND GOLD.

How about we start from the outside? The cover art on EMPIRE is simply unbelievable (and yes, the covers are as awesome on the two sequels we also have in our hands; DRAGONFLY RISING and BLOOD OF THE MANTIS). You know we judge books on their covers all the time. The cover of EMPIRE lends perfectly to its content, and gives the immediate impression of war and chaos. It is in our personal opinions that our US covers for this series are far superior to their UK counterparts. About time, right?

So, after gazing lovingly at the cover for a good long while, we opened up EMPIRE hoping the unique premise we had read about was delivered. It could have gone wrong. Horribly wrong, even. It wasn’t perfect, but it was a far cry from bad, or even mediocre. (more…)