Posts Tagged ‘Heroic Fantasy’

Picture 1 I was in the mood for a straightforward, uncomplicated fantasy story and voila! There on my to-read shelf was THE THORN OF DENTONHILL. I was prepared for tropes and predictability and was even determined to be O.K. with magic system/plot inconsistencies because, really, I rarely notice those details if the characters are engaging and the pacing and story is good . . . but there is simply no margin for error when the writing is poor. Too bad, because this was potentially as good as early Harry Potter and might have satisfied Rowlings fans in search of something similar and good. Except it’s not. (more…)


Steve knows that my favorite author is David Gemmell, whom I consider the epitome of true heroic fantasy. So when a copy of THE CITY by Stella Gemmell crossed his desk, he knowingly tossed it my way.

First off, I confess that my perception going into this book was colored by my adoration of David Gemmell and I was excited to get back to that style of story. This is not that style of story. This is a dark fantasy story, more akin to a combination of Joe Abercrombie and Guy Gavriel Kay.



Posted: June 8, 2012 by Alan in Books We Like
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Being a book critic is sort of like getting to experience Christmas at least once a week. Getting books from your favorite authors months before release is the gift that keeps on giving. Earlier this year I read GREATSHADOW by James Maxey, and despite my cynical reservations it blew me away. Now we have HUSH, the much anticipated sequel that I had to wait excruciating months for. Months! With great excitement I started reading about the most original and colorful fantasy world I have encountered in recent memory.

HUSH picks up almost immediately after the events of GREATSHADOW. If you haven’t read GREATSHADOW please stop with this review and go buy it. Otherwise you may encounter some spoilers, though I will try to keep those to a minimum. (more…)


Posted: March 13, 2012 by Alan in Books We Love
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Reviewing books has its ups and downs. On one hand you are given free books to read and asked to give your opinion of them. Reading and stating my opinion are serious hobbies of mine. On the other hand, sometimes you are asked to read books about dragons. Dragons. I do not like dragons. I have not enjoyed reading about dragons for a long, long time. You’ll imagine my surprise then, when I completely fell in love with James Maxey‘s GREATSHADOW. (more…)

How do you end a series? We’re sure this is a question every author asks at some point during a career. We’ve read quite a few series from start to finish, and have decided that writing that satisfying ending and conclusion must be the hardest thing to do. Why? We chalk it up to expectations. This can be crippling to the final book in a series, especially when the series has been SO good. (more…)

And alas, we come to the end of the tale. We’ve run the gamut, the bell has tolled, and the last of Hawkmoon’s adventures have passed by our eyes. The pages have flown so fast.

THE RUNESTAFF is the fourth and final book of the Hawkmoon series by Michael Moorcock that Tor has been giving an upgrade and reprint to over the last year or so. These books hearken us back to the old days of classic fantasy fiction when the heroes were gallant gentlemen and their foes nefarious men of wickedness. Honor and virtue always triumphed over evil, and it was seeing how it would all play out this time around that always drew the readers in droves. (more…)


Posted: December 16, 2010 by Alan in Books We Love
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We get asked all the time who our favorite authors are. Two years ago the answers would have been absurdly simple, but we read a lot more novels these days. A WHOLE lot more. As a result, who we consider our favorites tends to shift and slide. Barely more than a year ago we hadn’t yet read anything by James Barclay. Now with each novel of his that we read, he solidifies himself as one of our favorite authors. (more…)