Throwback Thursday: The Riven Shield by Michelle West

The Riven Shield by Michelle West. ★★★ Trigger warning: rape I have returned to Michelle West’s Sun Sword series! This epic fantasy series starts with The Broken Crown and contains plenty of well written female characters. It’s also got what I think of as an older fantasy book style, with fairly dense prose, tons of characters, and battles between…

Review of The Stone in the Skull by Elizabeth Bear

The Stone in the Skull by Elizabeth Bear. ★★★1/2 The Stone in the Skull is the start of a sequel trilogy to Bear’s epic fantasy series that began with Range of Ghosts. However, you do not need to be at all familiar with the previous series. The Stone in the Skull takes place over fifty years later and has an almost…

Review of The Bloodprint by Ausma Zehanat Khan

The Bloodprint by Ausma Zehanat Khan. ★★★ The Bloodprint is the start to a new epic fantasy series with Middle Eastern cultural influences. Arian’s homeland has been overtaken by the Talisman, a new organization that promotes an ideology of fear, ignorance, hatred of difference, and misogyny. As Companions of Hira, Arian and her friend Sinna are some of…

Review of The Reluctant Queen by Sarah Beth Durst

The Reluctant Queen by Sarah Beth Durst. ★★★★ While you can theoretically read The Reluctant Queen as a stand alone, I suggest reading Queen of Blood first. Six months ago, Daleina became queen after all the other viable heirs were killed by the spirits. Now, she’s dying. A diagnosis of a fatal disease gives her three months to find an heir…

Review of The Harbors of the Sun by Martha Wells

The Harbors of the Sun by Martha Wells. ★★★★ The fourth Raksura book, The Edge of Worlds, left off on a cliffhanger. The Harbors of the Sun, the fifth and final Raksura book, picked up where it left off. To read The Harbors of the Sun, you need to have at least read The Edge of Worlds, if not have started…

Review of Black Wolves by Kate Elliot

Black Wolves by Kate Elliott. ★★★★ Trigger Warning: Rape This may be my favorite read yet from Kate Elliott, and I have the feeling that this trilogy will become one of my all time epic fantasy series. If non-Western epic fantasy with loads of ladies who do things sounds like something you’d like, then you need to…

Review of King’s Dragon by Kate Elliott

King’s Dragon by Kate Elliott. ★★★★ Trigger warning: abuse, sexual assault King’s Dragon is the first book in a completed epic fantasy series by noted fantasist Kate Elliott. King’s Dragon focuses on two young people in the Kingdom of Wendar, a fantasy nation that seems to be based on medieval Germany. On the large scale, Wendar is facing a…

Review of Hidden Warrior by Lynn Flewelling

Hidden Warrior by Lynn Flewelling. ★★★1/2 I’ve finally gotten around to reading Hidden Warrior, the sequel to the coming of age fantasy novel, The Bone Doll’s Twin. In my review of the first book, I noted that I was reserving judgement on how well gender is handled until I’d read the second book. And wow am I judgmental about…

Review of A Tyranny of Queens by Foz Meadows

A Tyranny of Queens by Foz Meadows. ★★★★ A Tyranny of Queens is the sequel to the portal fantasy novel, An Accident of Stars, and I’m happy to report that I liked it even more than the first book! If queer feminist fantasy sounds at all your thing, I suggest you start reading this series. This is a series…

Review of Sunset Mantle by Alter S. Reiss

Sunset Mantle by Alter S. Reiss. ★★★1/2 Sunset Mantle is a solid work of high fantasy. What’s most fascinating about it is that for all it’s battles and political intrigue, it’s less than 200 pages long. That’s right ya’ll. This is a high fantasy novella. Cete is a wandering solider for hire. He knows that Reach Antach is about to…

Review of Grudgebearer by J.F. Lewis

Grudgebearer by J.F. Lewis. ★★ Grudgebearer is the start to an epic fantasy trilogy. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to my tastes. If I weren’t reading it for review, I wouldn’t have finished. Grudgebearer is set in a world with a wide array of species, some of whom are immortal. Kholster is the first of the immortal Aern, a wolf-like, carnivorous…

Review of The Initiate Brother by Sean Russell

The Initiate Brother by Sean Russell. ★★★1/2 After a plague ravaged the Empire of Wa, there’s a new dynasty on the throne. And many who were once powerful are out of favor with the Emperor. Among these are the Botahist Monks, who have a unique control over their perception of time and their internal energy. They’ve been spiritual…