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Calvin Park profile

Place of birth: Maryland, US
Now living: Pennsylvania, US

3 favourite authors

3 favourite books

3 favourite films

Calvin Park's 81 reviews

Daughter of Flood and Fury by Levi Jacobs (Tidecaller Chronicles)

I thoroughly enjoyed Levi Jacobs’ Resonant Saga, which begins with SPFBO finalist Beggar’s Rebellion, so I jumped at the opportunity to read Daughter of Flood and Fury before it was released. This novel begins a new series from Jacobs which is sure to showcase his signature magic and fast-paced plotting. There is a lot to love with t...

8.4/10

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Voice of War by Zack Argyle (Threadlight)

Zack Argyle’s Voice of War is a finalist in the 2020 edition of SPFBO, and it’s easy to see why. Tight writing and tense action combine to make for an epic fantasy that reads very quick. Be ready for a cliffhanger of an ending, though. There’s a lot more to come in this series.I’m not sure what I expected when I op...

8.6/10

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The First Step by Tao Wong (A Thousand Li: Book 1)

The First Step by Tao Wong has been on my radar for quite a while. I can’t remember exactly how I found it. It was probably during one of my periodic searches for progression fantasy. I do remember when I sat down to read it, however. It was right after I finished Wintersteel by Will Wight and I needed more progression fantasy but had noth...

8.0/10

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Flesh Eater by Travis Riddle (Houndstooth)

I’ve followed Travis Riddle’s career as an author since I discovered his second book, Balam, Spring. In that one, his skill at character stories was clearly on display, and that has continued through each of his other novels. In his latest, Flesh Eater, Riddle expands from standalone works to a series, and the added length gives him ...

8.5/10

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The Exercise of Vital Powers by Ian Gregoire (Legends Of The Order Book)

I came across Ian Gregoire’s The Exercise of Vital Powers when it was an entry in the Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off. It took me entirely too long to actually read it. There’s no particular reason for this, outside of a towering TBR that I haven’t been able to tame for years. This book has interesting magic, an unlikeable - bu...

6.5/10

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Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater (Regency Faerie Tales)

Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater is a delightful fantasy of manners. After a chance meeting with a faerie leaves her with only half a soul, Dora Ettings must learn to cope in a life devoid of strong, sharp, immediate emotions. Any hope of living a normal life seems dim indeed, until her cousin Vanessa contrives to introduce Dora to society in Londo...

8.8/10

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The Obsidian Tower by Melissa Caruso (The Gate of Secrets)

With this novel, Melissa Caruso solidifies herself as one of my favorite authors. The Obsidian Tower is a masterpiece of character driven fantasy. Set in the same world - but in a different time period than her Swords and Fire series, this story contains all the things we’ve come to love about Caruso’s writing. There are tense politi...

9.5/10

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We Ride the Storm by Devin Madson (The Reborn Empire)

Devin Madson has given us a magnificent story with fascinating characters in We Ride the Storm. The world feels alive and thriving, and yet still mysterious. I found myself reading late into the night and hesitating to put the book down. It has the sort of story that grips you and doesn’t let go until it has finished with you. In a word, i...

9.5/10

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The Ranger of Marzanna by Jon Skovron (The Goddess War)

The Ranger of Marzanna was a highly anticipated read for me. The back-of-the-book blurb, referencing ancient sects of warriors, siblings on opposite sides of a conflict, and powerful sorcerers, is basically everything that could get me excited. Couple this with a Russia-inspired setting, and it has all the ingredients for a book that I’m h...

4.5/10

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Of Honey and Wildfires by Sarah Chorn

Do you want the rugged majesty of the Old West, the sense of exploration - and exploitation - but wrapped in a world filled with fascinating magic? Of Honey and Wildfires by Sarah Chorn is exactly what you’re looking for. This isn’t some Old West inspired action flick, however. There is a quality and depth to the characters that carr...

8.5/10

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Bonds of Brass by Emily Skrutskie

Emily Skrutskie’s Bonds of Brass is a fast-paced YA space opera with plenty to love. We’re introduced to two fighter-pilots-in-training one of whom turns out to be the heir to the throne of an evil space empire. It’s one part coming of age story, one part military sci-fi, and one part YA romance. It’s easy to love the two...

9.0/10

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Stone Soul by eden Hudson (Path of the Thunderbird)

Stone Soul is the second book in eden Hudson’s Path of the Thunderbird series. This novel, perfect for fans of xianxia and cultivation stories, continues the story begun in Darkening Skies. In fact, it picks up almost immediately after the first book left off. We get to reunite with some of the more interesting characters from the first no...

6.8/10

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The Headlock of Destiny by Samuel Gately (Titan Wars)

The Headlock of Destiny is unique, and clever, and fun, and enjoyable, with a lovable cast of characters that draw you in to a zany concept that ends up being more epic than you expect. That admittedly long and winding sentence is the best way I could come up with to express my enjoyment of Samuel Gately latest. Created as a sort of mashup of pr...

8.3/10

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The Seventh Sun by Lani Forbes (The Age of the Seventh Sun Series)

Inspired by Aztec and other Mesoamerican myths and legends, The Seventh Sun is a fantastic debut by author Lani Forbes. The story of a young emperor who has lost his parents and must now choose a wife and a princess who questions the dictates of her faith, this is a novel that I could hardly put down. This story of pain and love plays out agains...

8.5/10

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Blight Marked by Josh Erikson (Ethereal Earth)

Gabe and company are back for more banter-filled adventures in this third installment in the Ethereal Earth series. Picking up shortly after Fate Lashed left off, Blight Marked wastes no time hooking the reader and speeding to a satisfying - and epic! - conclusion. Along the way there is plenty of humorous banter, lots of adventure, more puns th...

9.4/10

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A Tale of Stars and Shadow by Lisa Cassidy

A Tale of Stars and Shadow is the story of Talyn Dynan, a sort-of princess and definitely badass warrior spy. Lisa Cassidy gives us a story with plenty of intriguing characters, poignant moments, and fascinating world building. The story turns on Talyn being sent as a sort of liaison from her own kingdom to a neighboring one. But there are layer...

7.0/10

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Thornbound by Stephanie Burgis (The Harwood Spellbook)

Stephanie Burgis' Harwood Spellbook series gives plenty of enjoyment. There are moments when you're intrigued by a well-crafted world. There are moments where your blood boils at the injustice thrust upon characters. There are also moments of fun and levity, bits that elicit a smile or a laugh. Thornbound, the second book in the series, ...

8.2/10

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Daughter from the Dark by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko

The Dyachenkos, Marina and Sergey, are perhaps best known in the English-speaking world as the authors of Vita Nostra, a dark and compelling tale that mixes metaphysics and philosophy with urban fantasy in unique ways. Joined again by translator Julia Meitov Hersey, this new English translation of Daughter from the Dark returns readers to their ...

8.2/10

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Blade's Edge by Virginia McClain (Chronicles of Gensokai)

Blade's Edge by Virginia McClain is a deeply immersive secondary world fantasy that tells the story of two young girls growing up with magic in a world where magic is forbidden to them. The pathos of these characters is communicated so well by McClain, and you feel for them deeply as the story unfolds. The world is inspired by feudal Japan w...

7.5/10

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Embers of War by Gareth L Powell

Embers of War is intimate, character-drive space opera done right. Gareth L. Powell gives us the story of Trouble Dog, a Carnivore-class heavy cruiser who has sworn off war and joined the House of Reclamation. The House of Reclamation is a sort of search and rescue operation, something like a galactic Red Cross, that serves all humanity, ignorin...

8.5/10

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Warrior of the Altaii by Robert Jordan

Published posthumously in 2019, Warrior of the Altaii is an entirely new story from acclaimed author Robert Jordan. Originally written in the late 1970s, it tells the story of a barbarian people living on the plains between nearly impassable mountains and the cities closer to the lusher lands near the coasts. It's full of tropes, and plenty ...

6.5/10

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The Light of All that Falls by James Islington (The Licanius Trilogy)

The Light of All that Falls is the beautiful, action packed conclusion to James Islington's Licanius Trilogy. The narrative picks up roughly a year after the conclusion of An Echo of Things to Come and, while it pauses at a few points, doesn't really let up until the final pages. This is fresh epic fantasy in the vein of the Wheel of Tim...

9.2/10

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Limbo by Thiago DEvecque

Thiago D’Evecque gives us a strange, twisting tale in Limbo. A spirit is awakened in limbo and given a mission to select twelve heroic souls to be reincarnated on earth to prevent the apocalypse. A weird merging of catholic theology, folklore, and legend, Limbo is a quick, satisfying, and altogether fascinating read.What truly shine...

7.5/10

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Of Shadow and Sea by Will Wight (The Elder Empire)

Will Wight gives us a fantastic start to his Elder Empire series in Of Shadow and Sea. This first book represents one of the more unique ways to write a fantasy series. Of Shadow and Sea covers the same events as Wight’s Of Sea and Shadow. But the protagonists in this book are the antagonists in that one, and vice-versa. Even knowing that ...

8.8/10

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The Shadow King by Alec Hutson (The Raveling)

Alec Hutson concludes his sprawling, epic fantasy trilogy with The Shadow King. This is epic fantasy in a classic vein written for modern audiences. It’s excellent. The characters come alive, and we cheer for their successes and mourn for their failures. The world building continues to be phenomenal, and the plot rushes to a superb conclus...

9.0/10

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Pauper's Empire by Levi Jacobs (Resonant Saga)

Pauper’s Empire continues the story begun in Beggar’s Rebellion, and that story is epic and sweeping while feeling quite personal because of the focus on a comparatively small cast of characters. Levi Jacobs excels at giving us an action-packed plot that rarely lets off the gas. The Resonant Saga is a lot of fun and will appeal espec...

8.0/10

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Starsight by Brandon Sanderson (Skyward)

Is there any period in life more difficult to navigate than adolescence? Worrying about school, figuring out which hottie you want to smooch, and finding new ways to act rebellious can be exhausting. Then there’s the aliens. The screaming stars. The mysterious AI, and your cytonic powers of understanding faster-than-light radio signals. It...

9.4/10

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The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi

The Gilded Wolves came highly recommended to me, and so when I noticed it at my local library, I couldn’t help but pick it up. What I found was a fun, if at times angst, tale set in a 19th century France where magic is common. It didn’t check every box, but what it got right it got right nearly perfectly.We’ll start with...

6.0/10

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Darkening Skies by eden Hudson (Path of the Thunderbird)

Darkening Skies by Eden Hudson is the first in the Path of the Thunderbird series, and it’s a wonderful start to a series that promises to become a go-to for fans of the cultivation subgenre. Set in an Asian-inspired secondary world, Darkening Skies tells the story of a young boy growing up at a monastery, while simultaneously telling the ...

7.5/10

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The Hanged Man by KD Edwards (The Tarot Sequence)

The Hanged Man by K.D. Edwards is an engaging, epic tale that doesn’t let you put it down. It’s the sequel to 2018’s The Last Sun. Both books follow the story of Rune Saint John, the last scion of the fallen Sun Throne, one of the 22 Arcana of Atlantis. The story is masterfully told, set in an alternate version of modern-day ea...

9.2/10

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Uncanny Collateral by Brian McClellan (Valkyrie Collections)

Brian McClellan, known for his Powder Mage epic fantasy series, gives us something very different in Uncanny Collateral an urban fantasy featuring a bounty hunter/private investigator as the main character. This is a quick read. It’s also an enjoyable urban fantasy adventure with some building blocks that promise interesting turns in subse...

7.0/10

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The Burning White by Brent Weeks (Lightbringer)

The Burning White by Brent Weeks has been on my list of anticipated books for years, basically since the previous volume in the Lightbringer series, The Blood Mirror, released. It is easily my most anticipated novel of 2019. When any novel has this level of expectation associated with it, one of the big questions is whether it lives up to those ...

6.8/10

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A Shattering of Glass by Deck Matthews (The Riven Realm)

Deck Matthews’ epic fantasy series, The Riven Realm, continues in this third installment, A Shattering of Glass. This book picks up exactly where the second book in the series stopped, and from the first pages Matthews refuses to take his foot off the gas. The reveals come fast with each reveal leaving room for more questions and more dept...

8.5/10

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Dispel Illusion by Mark Lawrence (Impossible Times)

I told (her) that this had been the time I was going to allocate to catching up on all those great fantasy books I never managed to get round to reading. She told me that they were still publishing great fantasy books, with more coming out each week than I could read in a year. I told her to shut up.---“Every magic t...

9.1/10

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The Half Killed by Quenby Olson (Sundered Veil)

One part Victorian romance and one part paranormal thriller, Quenby Olson’s The Half Killed is a wonderful - and at times disturbing - read. London is sweltering under an unprecedented heat wave and bodies with distinct wounds have begun turning up. Dorothea Hawes may be the only one who can untangle the mystery, but at what cost? Thus the...

8.8/10

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Legacy of Ghosts by Alicia Wanstall Burke (The Coraidic Sagas)

Alicia Wanstall-Burke’s Legacy of Ghosts, the second entry in The Coraidic Sagas trilogy, is a thrilling addition to Lidan and Ran’s stories and elevates all the material that came before it. While Blood of Heirs set the table for what was to come, its sequel devours the meal and kicks the table over in style. In ...

8.7/10

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Spit and Song by Travis Riddle

Travis M. Riddle has once again given us a unique and imaginative tale. As one might expect, given Riddle’s earlier works, Spit and Song is an intensely personal story. It follows Kali, an aspiring merchant, and Puk, a down and out musician addicted to the titular spit. Set in the same world as Balam, Spring it recaptures much of that nove...

8.2/10

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Black Powder War by Naomi Novik (Temeraire series)

Black Powder War picks up almost exactly where Naomi Novik’s Throne of Jade left off. In this third entry in the Temeraire series, Laurence and Temeraire find themselves called to Istanbul for an important mission. This mission requires them to forego travel by sea and instead take the old silk road overland to their destination. Various a...

6.8/10

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Steel Crow Saga by Paul Krueger

Steel Crow Saga by Paul Krueger is a tour de force of character development. This novel will make you fall in love with the characters Krueger has crafted and make you ache for them as they learn how their world is changing and how that necessitates that they themselves become different. All of this is set against a beautifully imagined Asian-in...

9.0/10

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The Guns Above by Robyn Bennis (A Signal Airship Novel)

If you enjoy black powder fantasy, you are sure to love The Guns Above by Robyn Bennis. Combining elements of naval tradition with airships and pulse pounding action, there is a great deal to love in the first Signal Airships novel.The Guns Above is a unique combination of fun tropes. The protagonist and much of the action remind me of th...

7.8/10

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Kalanon's Rising by Darian Smith (Agents of Kalanon)

Kalanon’s Rising by Darian Smith is a fantasy novel with one of the more unique premises I’ve read in recent years. Smith crafts what is essentially a murder mystery procedural with very high stakes and puts it in a fantasy setting which makes magic an integral element of the plot. I loved it!Smith does a wonderful job of sett...

8.5/10

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Beggar's Rebellion by Levi Jacobs (Resonant Saga)

Beggar’s Rebellion by Levi Jacobs is an incredible epic fantasy with ideas that are unique. They might even be considered off the wall in ways, but they hang together amazingly well. Whether it’s the magic, the concepts and topics Jacobs is touching on, or the authentic and relatable characters, this novel shines in so many ways....

8.0/10

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The Resurrectionist of Caligo by Wendy Trimboli and Alicia Zaloga

The Resurrectionist of Caligo by Wendy Trimboli and Alicia Zaloga is a macabre fantasy set in a Victorian-esque secondary world. It’s a fun read. Trimboli and Zaloga give us quirky characters that keep you engaged. They also drop us into a fascinating Victorian tinged world and set a murder mystery within it. There are typical mystery elem...

6.5/10

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Dust of the Darkness by Deck Matthews (The Riven Realm)

Readers who enjoy fast-paced, action-packed, magic-fueled adventures will find a great deal to love in Deck Matthews’ Dust of the Darkness, the sequel to his The First of Shadows. The action picks up right where the first book left off and doesn’t let up until the final pages. There is a large ensemble cast, plenty of mystery, and pi...

8.0/10

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The Gossamer Mage by Julie E Czerneda

Standalone fantasy is a bit of a rarity. So often, whether because of Tolkien or other influences, we end up with trilogies or epic sagas spanning four or more books. I’m a huge fan of big epic series, but it’s also nice to enjoy a self-contained story from time to time. The Gossamer Mage by Julie E. Czerneda scratches that itch perf...

8.5/10

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Guild of Tokens by Jon Auerbach

Jon Auerbach treats us to a rousing litRPG-like adventure through Manhattan. Guild of Tokens is a unique blend of genres, one-part urban fantasy, one-part litRPG, and one-part mystery. There’s a lot to like in Auerbach’s first novel.Guild of Tokens has one of the most unique and interesting concepts I’ve ever encountered...

7.0/10

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The Bone Ships by RJ Barker (The Tide Child)

Beautiful cover illustration by Hanna Wood.Audacious storytelling, with an original, captivating world. After a slow start, I found it increasingly difficult to put this book down and I am on board for more.RJ Barker wrote one of my favourite fantasy series of all time, The Wounded Kingdom trilogy. So, when I heard that he was...

7.8/10

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Jade War by Fonda Lee (The Green Bone Saga)

Sixteen months have passed since the violent and tragic events of Jade City and the No Peak Clan are far from safe. But it’s not just the Clans at war. The outside world wants in. Jade is a commodity right at the top of everybody’s list and they’re willing to pay for it, in bundles of cash or oceans of blood. Trying to prevent ...

8.5/10

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The Girl with Ghost Eyes by M H Boroson (The Daoishi Chronicles)

M.H. Bronson has given us a fantastic novel in The Girl with Ghost Eyes. Set in San Francisco’s Chinatown during the late 1800s this is one part historical fantasy, one part coming-of-age story, and one part gangster movie. I was hooked from the beginning and could hardly put the book down. I think Bronson achieved this result, for me anyw...

8.8/10

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Bursts of Fire by Susan Forest (Addicted to Heaven)

Bursts of Fire is an intriguing YA Fantasy read. In her debut novel Susan Forest tackles a number of important issues: addiction, self-harm, fear of change, abandonment, religious oppression. Each of these is dealt with in the larger context of war and who to trust. It’s a coming-of-age story that doesn’t pull any punches.One ...

5.0/10

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Remember the Dawn by AM Macdonald (Starsingers)

A.M. Macdonald gives us an entertaining read in Remember the Dawn. If you like fun and interesting magic systems, you’re in for quite the treat with this one! Astrals, the magic users of Macdonald’s world, use the power of the stars - and particularly of their family’s constellation - to power their spells. But something sinist...

6.5/10

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The First of Shadows by Deck Matthews (The Riven Realm)

The First of Shadows is an exhilarating read. It’s the first in Deck Matthews’ The Riven Realm series, and his debut to boot - and what a debut! Matthews gives us pulse pounding action on nearly every page. It’s fast paced to the extreme, with no down time at all. If you’re looking for a quick, exciting read then you need...

8.5/10

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The Last Sun by KD Edwards (The Tarot Sequence)

I enjoyed The Last Sun by K.D. Edwards immensely. It’s the sort of novel that draws you in right away with interesting concepts, an engaging world, and mysterious elements to the plot then keeps you engaged with excellent pacing and great character development. The story centres on Rune Saint John, last scion of the Sun Court, which was de...

8.8/10

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Before the Broken Star by Emily R King (The Evermore Chronicles)

Before the Broken Star by Emily R. King was a bit of a mixed bag for me. There are some incredibly engaging and complex concepts in this one. I particularly enjoyed the clockwork heart that the main character has and the way in which that has repercussions on the way she lives her life and moves through the plotline of the story. Unfortunately, ...

5.0/10

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The Iron Circlet by Phil Tucker (Chronicles of the Black Gate)

The Iron Circlet is the fourth book in Phil Tucker’s Chronicles of the Black Gate series. It picks up exactly where the third book, The Siege of Abythos, leaves off. It’s another great entry in a series that is proving to be a mix of classic fantasy and modern elements. If you’re a fan of epic fantasy with engaging characters t...

8.5/10

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The Girl with No Face by M H Boroson (The Daoishi Chronicles)

Note: ARC provided by Edelweiss. This ARC is also available in the Read Now section of NetGalley within the U.S. This book will be released on October 1, 2019.“How could we hope to heal from the traumas of the past, when those traumas shape who we are and how we act in the present?”A few months...

9.1/10

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Snowspelled by Stephanie Burgis (The Harwood Spellbook)

Technically a long novella, Snowspelled by Stephanie Burgis is a delightful read. With a strong focus on characters and a fun plot, Burgis treats her readers to an enchanting fantasy romance that is hard to put down. If you’re looking for a cozy read for a lazy Saturday afternoon, look no further! Cassandra finds herself forced to deal wit...

8.0/10

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Ioth, City of Lights by DP Woolliscroft (Wildfire Cycle)

Ioth, City of Lights is the sequel to Kingshold. It picks up not long after the ending of Kingshold and follows the same characters as the action and conflict expands to the world stage. It is in every way a worthy sequel that improves in many areas while keeping much of what folks loved about that first book. If you enjoyed Kingshold you’...

7.8/10

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Inkspice by Kaitlin Bellamy (The Mapweaver Chronicles)

Inkspice is the second book in Kaitlin Bellamy’s The Mapweaver Chronicles and the sequel to Windswept. If you enjoyed Windswept you’re likely to enjoy this one. It includes the same likeable characters, but ups the tension in the plot significantly. It keeps that coming-of-age feel while noticeably increasing the stakes.One of...

6.5/10

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Fortune's Fool by Angela Boord (Eterean Empire)

Angela Boord has given us a beautifully written and captivating novel in Fortune’s Fool. This is the story of Kyrra d’Aliente, fallen scion of a powerful house. It’s the story of her fall and the story of her vengeance. More than this, however, it’s a story about family and love and discovering that how we see and underst...

9.5/10

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The Steel Discord by Ryan Howse

Ryan Howse debuts with a story set in a French inspired secondary world. The setting truly shines. From the political realities to the magic system, the setting stands out for its creativity and thoroughness. The Steel Discord, first in A Concerto for the End of Days, is likely to appeal to those who love magic in their fantasy and who likewise ...

6.5/10

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Sin Eater by Mike Shel (Iconoclasts)

Have you ever sat down to watch “The Wizard of Oz,” but wished that Dorothy was a Holy BladesWoman and instead of visiting a wizard, they’re off to murder an evil trickster god? If so, have I got a book for you! Mike Shel’s, um, iconic Iconoclasts trilogy continues with his second entry, Sin Eater, an impressive ...

8.9/10

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House of Blades by Will Wight (The Traveler's Gate Trilogy)

House of Blades is the first book in Will Wight’s Traveler's Gate series. It’s one part coming-of-age tale, one part twisted magic school story, and one part prophecy novel - but with a twist. Much of it works very well, though there are a couple weaknesses in the midst of that.First off, and this will come as no surprise ...

7.5/10

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Belief's Horizon by IW Ferguson (The Lightfeeder Menace)

I.W. Ferguson gives us a fun and interesting coming-of-age tale in Belief’s Horizon. There is some intricate and unique world building here, and some of the story has almost a slice of life feel to it. This all combines for an enjoyable, self-contained read that leaves some possible openings for further stories.One common trope with...

7.0/10

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The Blood of Whisperers by Devin Madson (The Vengeance Trilogy)

I count myself a fan of Devin Madson. 2018’s We Ride the Storm was an amazing read. I knew immediately that I needed to grab some of her other works, so I finally picked up The Blood of Whisperers. Set a generation before the events of We Ride the Storm, this first book in Madson’s Vengeance Trilogy does not disappoint.We are ...

8.8/10

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The Siege of Abythos by Phil Tucker (Chronicles of the Black Gate)

Phil Tucker’s third novel in his Chronicles of the Black Gate, The Siege of Abythos, was quite a wild ride. Each book in this series improves. To a large extent, this improvement is down to Tucker’s ability to craft convincing character arcs. This is epic fantasy the way it’s meant to be written, and I can’t wait to get t...

8.5/10

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Master & Apprentice by Claudia Gray (Star Wars)

My adolescence was spent devouring Star Wars book after Star Wars book in the old Expanded Universe - all those books now published under the Legends line. I read about my heroes making peace with the remnants of the Empire, flying around in X-wings, courting one another, taking down Grand Admiral Thrawn, founding a Jedi Academy, raising a new g...

9.0/10

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Fate of the Fallen by Kel Kade (The Shroud of Prophecy)

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: a small-town boy from a remote village learns that he is the Chosen One, destined to fulfill The Prophecy and save the world from encroaching evil. Sound familiar? Fans of classic epic fantasy from authors Robert Jordan, David Eddings, Anne McCaffrey, and even J.K. Rowling have spun their own versions o...

8.3/10

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Six Sacred Swords by Andrew Rowe (Weapons and Wielders)

Six Sacred Swords by Andrew Rowe is the first book in a new series set in the same world as his War of Broken Mirrors series and his Arcane Ascension series. It is set as a sort of interlude that takes place directly following the ending of On the Shoulders of Titans the second book in the Arcane Ascension series. Having said that, you could rea...

7.5/10

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Limited Wish by Mark Lawrence (Impossible Times)

Limited Wish, book two of the Impossible Times trilogy, is a highly-enjoyable and heady sci-fi adventure with heavy emotional beats. Although this book takes a bit longer than One Word Kill to have its full scope be revealed, the mind-bending paths that we’re being led through becomes a twisty and challenging pu...

8.3/10

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A Memory Called Empire by Arkady Martine (Teixcalaan)

Arkady Martine dazzles in her debut novel, A Memory Called Empire. This is space opera the way it’s meant to be done - and that is really saying something for me. I tend to love space opera with starships and battles and tactical plans. None of that exists in A Memory Called Empire. Or, perhaps it would be better to say that such exists, b...

9.0/10

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Windswept by Kaitlin Bellamy (The Mapweaver Chronicles)

I’m not sure how I stumbled upon Windswept by Kaitlin Bellamy. Maybe someone mentioned it on a forum or Twitter. Maybe I happened to see it on Amazon somehow. Regardless, I’m very glad I happened upon it. This is a wonderful coming of age story with unique magic and engaging, believable characters. In other words, it’s very muc...

8.0/10

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Throne of Jade by Naomi Novik (Temeraire series)

Naomi Novik’s Throne of Jade is a wonderful addition to her alternate history fantasy series. This novel, the second entry in the series, sees Laurence and Temeraire traveling to China on a sensitive mission. The Chinese want Temeraire back, and - of course - the dragon will have none of being separated from Laurence. But where this really...

8.5/10

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Here Be Dragons by David Macpherson

I am not a huge fan of comic fantasy. I tend to find it a little over the top, have trouble connecting with the characters, and otherwise just find that it isn’t for me. Nevertheless, every so often I’ll come across a funny fantasy novel that I enjoy quite a bit. Finding Here be Dragons by David Macpherson was one of those times. Mac...

8.0/10

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Empress of All Seasons by Emiko Jean

I love fantasy in non-standard settings. Whether we’re talking about folk tales, Baltic-inspired cities, Middle Eastern caliphates, Asian-inspired worlds, or something that draws from all or none of those, I love discovering unique worlds. Emiko Jean’s Empress of All Seasons has an Asian analogue setting that really shines in places....

4.5/10

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A Brightness Long Ago by Guy Gavriel Kay

“We like to believe, or pretend, we know what we are doing in our lives. It can be a lie. Winds blow, waves carry us, rain drenches a man caught in the open at night, lightning shatters the sky and sometimes his heart, thunder crashes into him bringing the awareness he will die. We stand up, as best we can under that. We move forwa...

10.0/10

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From the Shadows of the Owl Queen's Court by Benedict Patrick (Yarnsworld)

It's no secret, that Benedict Patrick had become one of my favorite authors with his Yarnsworld series. I was beyond excited when I got my hands on an early copy of From the Shadows Of The Owl Queen's Court and had pretty high expectations. Not that I needed to worry. Benedict Patrick is an exceptional story-teller and has created one of...

8.2/10

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One Word Kill by Mark Lawrence (Impossible Times)

"Ugliness multiplies, and hurt spills over into hurt, and sometimes good things are just the fuel for evil's fire"I received an uncorrected proof copy of One Word Kill in exchange for an honest review. I would like to thank Mark Lawrence and 47North for approaching me to read this early. On the 8...

9.2/10

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The Defiant Heir by Melissa Caruso (Swords and Fire)

I received an advanced copy of The Defiant Heir in exchange for an honest review. I would like to thank Melissa Caruso and Orbit Books. *Minor Spoilers May Follow*In the second entry to the Swords and Fire trilogy, we pick up events approximately a month after the finale of The Tethered Mage. Everybody seems pretty content in the world of...

8.8/10

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The Tethered Mage by Melissa Caruso (Swords and Fire)

Melissa Caruso’s The Tethered Mage is one worth picking up. If you love complex political plots, deep world building, and fun magic then this one's for you. The world that Caruso has crafted is complex and interesting. Magic users are incredibly powerful. As a result, they are either killed as soon as their mage mark manifests or they ...

8.3/10

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Sailing to Sarantium by Guy Gavriel Kay (The Sarantine Mosaic)

Forming the first part of Guy Gavriel Kay’s duology The Sarantine Mosaic and inspired by ancient Byzantium, Sailing to Sarantium tells a magnificent, sweeping story of empire, conspiracies and journeys, both physical and spiritual. First published in 1998 it was followed by Lord of Emperors in 2000.Rumoured to be responsible for the...

8.8/10

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