Dark Rise by C.S. Pacat

Title: Dark Rise

Series: Dark Rise #1

Author: C.S. Pacat

Genre: YA Fantasy

Year: 2021

Will Kempen has been running for as long as he can remember, even before his mother was killed. Now, trying to blend with the masses in the dirty docks of London, he is shocked when an old servant tells him that he will never be truly safe unless he finds the ancient order of the Stewards, men and women of exceptional martial prowess sworn to protect humanity from the Dark King if he ever rises again.

But even as Will he trains with them in what looks like a safe haven, the battle between Light and Dark looms closer than ever, and if they can’t stop it before it starts, the Dark King will destroy the world as they know it – just as he almost did once already.

Continue reading Dark Rise by C.S. Pacat

The Burning World by J.G. Ballard

Title: The Burning World (The Drought)

Author: J.G. Ballard

Genre: Science Fiction

Year: 1964

There are no clouds in the sky, no rain, rivers and lakes are slowly but inexorably drying up. Earth’s population has been forced to move towards the ocean in search of water.

In this arid world, Dr Charles Ransom needs to find a way – and a place – to survive.

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The Warrior Prophet by R. Scott Bakker

Disclaimer: this review may contain spoilers for the first book in the series, The Darkness That Comes Before.

Title: The Warrior Prophet

Series: The Prince of Nothing #2

Author: R. Scott Bakker

Genre: Fantasy

Year: 2004

The Holy War is finally on its way to Shimeh, and now they have to cross the unforgiving desert. Khellus knows that in order to reach his father in ideal fighting conditions, his best shot is to take control of the Holy War itself; but with the army split into so many different factions and enemies from the Consult hiding in their midst, it might prove harder than he ever imagined.

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The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

Title: The Poppy War

Series: The Poppy War #1

Author: R.F. Kuang

Genre: Fantasy

Year: 2018

You humans always think you’re destined for things, for tragedy or for greatness. Destiny is a myth. Destiny is the only myth. The gods choose nothing. You chose. […]
At every critical juncture you were given an option; you were given a way out. Yet you picked precisely the roads that led you here.

Rin is a war orphan. When she aces the Keju, the prestigious exams that the Empire uses to find talented youth to foster at the academies, she thinks her life is changing for the better.
She has no idea of what’s awaiting her at Sinegard, the most elite of the academies. Shunned by her fellow students, years behind on some of her studies, and with a war just waiting to explode, she is forced over and over again to make choices that will shape the kind of person she becomes – and the person she will never be – to save herself and her country.

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Reading the Booker Prize winners (6): The Siege of Krishnapur by J.G. Farrell

Title: The Siege of Krishnapur

Author: J.G. Farrell

Genre: Historical Fiction

Year: 1973

India 1857 – George Fleury is in Krishnapur to find a suitable match and hopefully be cured of his Romantic inclinations, in a period when the British empire is slowly losing its grip on the colonies.
What begins as just news of general unrest in areas far away becomes a troubling reality when the rebellion reaches Krishnapur and Fleury finds himself trapped in a besieged compound together with his fellow English citizens, hoping to hold out long enough for reinforcements to come to the rescue.

Continue reading Reading the Booker Prize winners (6): The Siege of Krishnapur by J.G. Farrell

The Bone Maker by Sarah Beth Durst

Title: The Bone Maker

Author: Sarah Beth Durst

Genre: Fantasy

Year: 2021

Twenty-five years ago, the bone maker Eklor built an inhuman army out of animal bones, and five young heroes were sent to stop him. But only four came back alive, and they went they separate ways, each of them trying to move forward in their own way.

But evil does not stop only because someone once thought the story was over.

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The Wheel of Osheim by Mark Lawrence

Disclaimer: possible spoilers for the previous books in the series – I’ll try to keep them to a minimum!

Title: The Wheel of Osheim

Series: The Red Queen’s War #3

Author: Mark Lawrence

Genre: Fantasy

Year: 2016

Snorri is finally getting closer to finding his family again, but Jalan is not with him.
Somehow, prince Jalan has already escaped hell and is bent on going back home and forgetting all about Red Queens, Blue Ladies, Dead Kings and the like. He only wants his life of pleasure and idleness back. But more responsibilities await him when he’s finally home, and despite his cowardice, Jalan is forced to man up and prove that he is a Prince of Red March after all.

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The Darkness that Comes Before by R. Scott Bakker

Title: The Darkness that Comes Before

Series: The Prince of Nothing #1

Author: R. Scott Bakker

Genre: Fantasy

Year: 2003

The thoughts of all men arise from the darkness. If you are the movement of your soul, and the cause of that movement precedes you, then how could you ever call your thoughts your own? How could you be anything other than a slave to the darkness that comes before?

Kellhus Anasurimbor is looking for his long lost father.
A sorcerer and spy seeks news of an ancient enemy; an Emperor seeks to expand his territories, while his general dreams of the throne; the leader of the Thousand Temples seeks a Holy War against the infidels; a barbarian chieftain seeks vengeance against the man who disgraced him.
All of them are headed to the same place: Shimeh, the holy city of the Latter Prophet.

But something else is stirring behind the politics and the war: an ancient evil, almost forgotten, that could bring about the Second Apocalypse.

Continue reading The Darkness that Comes Before by R. Scott Bakker

A History of What Comes Next by Sylvain Neuvel

Title: A History of What Comes Next

Series: Take Them to the Stars #1

Author: Sylvain Neuvel

Genre: Science Fiction

Year: 2021

Sarah and Mia are the ninety-nine, tasked to help human progress along and take them to the stars before it’s too late. That’s the reason why Mia is infiltrating Nazi Germany in order to lure scientist and engineers to leave the country and continue their research in a safer place.

But someone has been after Mia and her family since the beginning of time, trying to hinder their mission and forcing them to move countless times – or be stopped for good.

Continue reading A History of What Comes Next by Sylvain Neuvel

The Stars My Destination by Alfred Bester

Title: The Stars My Destination

Author: Alfred Bester

Genre: Science Fiction

Year: 1955

Gulliver Foyle is lost in space and sleeping the days away in the hope of being rescued – or waiting for his supplies to finally run out.
When a spaceship comes closer to the relic he’s clinging to and ignores his cry for help, he swears he will find a way to go back to Earth and get revenge on all the people aboard.

But his investigations lead to the discovery that something else was drifting with him in space, and it could be worth an interplanetary war.

Continue reading The Stars My Destination by Alfred Bester