Dominion by Peter McLean (Burned Man # 2)

Peter McLean, I think is a rockstar in this genre. The darker seedier side of urban fantasy - with a protagonist like Don Drake and his snarky archdemon The Burned Man -  who are right up there, with say Miriam Black (Chuck Wendig) or the Sandman Slim series (Richard Kadrey). This series starts off in the best possible manner - introducing us to Drake and his pet archdemon in a gritty version of London – dark and violent like no man’s land. And Drake while not exactly a wall-flower, doesn’t really come across as a man you would consider making friends with soon. But for all his flaws, there is something redeemable about this crook who can summon demons from Hell to do his bidding as a ‘diabologist’ and has more to him than meets the eye, at first glance.

I have to warn you that if you haven’t read book-one, Dominion is a sequel and middle-book in a series, following up closely on the events that transpired from the first book. But if you want a swimmingly good dark urban fantasy that w…

Spellslinger by Sebastian De Castell

I would read anything written by Sebastian de Castell. The Greatcoats series, coming to a "shocking conclusion" with the Tyrant's Throne soon to be out, is one of my favorite running series. (Oh next on my reading list!) It's pulpy fun, old fashioned fantasy about heroic protagonists, revenge duels, political conspiracies and truckloads of bromance and a whole lotta love.  So when I came across Spellslinger, his alleged YA-Fantasy debut, I was equal parts excited - and a bit dismayed. YA? Sticking to the defined cordons of this genre, would Sebastian really be able to bring out the delights of the comic camaraderie of the knights' brotherhood, that dark brooding atmosphere of conspiracies and dangers, the intensity? Or will it be a watered-down version with possibly a candyfloss romance thrown in between teens swooning for each other?

I need not have worried much. Spellslinger is a completely fresh tale, a YA-fantasy with a western frontier feel to the world, fe…

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword

So this weekend I was spoilt for choice when it came to the movies. Seriously, weekends like this haven’t happened in a long while. First up – was of course the legendary star-lord and his ragtag bunch of misfits out to save the galaxy from itself, the sequel to the wildly popular and absolutely brilliant first part, Guardians of the Galaxy from Marvel. Next on the plate, was the Alien prequel which is going to be a mindfuck, I can guarantee. With Ridley Scott spinning the wheels crazy in the first prequel to the original Alien series in Prometheus that gave us a twisted convoluted legend of the Aliens ‘origin’ story, the trailer looked mind-boggling. But the movie that I finally settled on, of course was the return of my all-time movie director: Guy Ritchie stamping his unique signature on the much loved legend of the “The Man who would be King”.

In King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, one of the oldest legends is re-imagined in signature Guy Ritchie fashion – complete with a non-linear …

Waiting on Wednesday

Continuing with our featured meme ( started by Jill of the Breaking The Spine) this Wednesday, we feature another gem, that looks Oh-so-good in terms of the premise. I cannot wait for this one!

Even gods can be slain

The Hokkaran empire has conquered every land within their bold reach—but failed to notice a lurking darkness festering within the people. Now, their border walls begin to crumble, and villages fall to demons swarming out of the forests.

Away on the silver steppes, the remaining tribes of nomadic Qorin retreat and protect their own, having bartered a treaty with the empire, exchanging inheritance through the dynasties. It is up to two young warriors, raised together across borders since their prophesied birth, to save the world from the encroaching demons.

This is the story of an infamous Qorin warrior, Barsalayaa Shefali, a spoiled divine warrior empress, O Shizuka, and a power that can reach through time and space to save a land from a truly insidious evil.

A crack in th…

Red Sister by Mark Lawrence

Mark Lawrence's name springs to mind, two of the bloodiest and the most enthralling protagonists sketched in modern fantasy. Jorg, the prince of thorns, a cunning and deadly player of politics and Jalan, the laid-back self-centered young man forced to the ways of magic and politics to save an empire.

Both these series are very dear to me. For numerous reasons but the special manner in which Mark writes about the grim truths of life laced with dry acerbic wit and fantastically violent action is just amazingly compelling. And it's his dramatic departure from using the tropes of this genre, spinning his own original stamp on the twists and turns of the events in these remarkable stories that makes him stand tall above others writing today.

With Red Sister, the first in the Book of Ancestors, Mark's chosen protagonist is a young girl, growing up in a convent, learning the ways of faith and war simultaneously and also discovering truths about herself amidst all the brutal cold …

Waiting on Wednesday

Continuing with our (ir)regular feature of bringing you books that we're super excited about in the coming months (A meme as started by Jill of Breaking the Spine) - I am looking forward to the start of a brand new series by the talent powerhouse and Hugo-Nebula & Arthur C Clarke award winner, Ann Leckie, called Provenance.

Following her record-breaking debut trilogy, Ann Leckie, winner of the Hugo, Nebula, Arthur C. Clarke and Locus Awards, returns with an enthralling new novel of power, theft, privilege and birthright.

A power-driven young woman has just one chance to secure the status she craves and regain priceless lost artifacts prized by her people. She must free their thief from a prison planet from which no one has ever returned.

Ingray and her charge will return to her home world to find their planet in political turmoil, at the heart of an escalating intergalactic conflict. Together, they must make a new plan to salvage Ingray’s future, her family, and her world, bef…