A land under occupation. A legendary sword. A young man’s journey to find his destiny.
Aren has lived by the rules all his life. He’s never questioned it; that’s just the way things are. But then his father is executed for treason, and he and his best friend Cade are thrown into a prison mine, doomed to work until they drop. Unless they can somehow break free...
But what lies beyond the prison walls is more terrifying still. Rescued by a man who hates him yet is oath-bound to protect him, pursued by inhuman forces, Aren slowly accepts that everything he knew about his world was a lie. The rules are not there to protect him, or his people, but to enslave them. A revolution is brewing, and Aren is being drawn into it, whether he likes it or not.
The key to the revolution is the Ember Blade. The sword of kings, the Excalibur of his people. Only with the Ember Blade in hand can their people be inspired to rise up... but it’s locked in an impenetrable vault in the most heavily guarded fortress in the land. All they have to do now is steal it...
Designed to return to classic fantasy adventures and values, from a modern perspective, this is a fast-moving coming-of-age trilogy featuring a strong cast of diverse characters, brilliant set-pieces and a powerful character and plot driven story.
Rowena Cory Daniells (aka Cory Daniells) is an Australian fantasy author, who has been involved in speculative fiction since 1976. Her latest fantasy trilogy, The Chronicles of King Rolen's Kin, was published by Solaris. The King's Bastard is the first book of this trilogy (the other books are The Uncrowned King and The Usurper).
Click here to visit Rowena Cory Daniells' website.
Here's a description of The King's Bastard from the publisher's website:
By royal decree, all those afflicted with Affinity must serve the Abbey or face death. Sent to the Abbey because of his innate Affinity, the King's youngest son, Fyn, trains to become a warrior monk. Unfortunately, he’s a gentle dreamer and the other acolytes bully him. The only way he can escape them is to serve the Abbey Mystic, but his Affinity is weak.
Fiercely loyal, thirteen year-old Piro is horrified to discover she is also cursed with unwanted Affinity. It broke their mother’s heart to send Fyn away, so she hides her affliction. But, when Fyn confesses his troubles, Piro risks exposure to help him.
Even though Byren Kingson is only seven minutes younger than his twin, Lence, who is the king's heir, Byren has never hungered for the Rolencian throne. When a Seer predicts that he will kill Lence, he laughs. But Lence Kingsheir sees Byren’s growing popularity and resents it. Enduring loyalty could be Byren’s greatest failing.
Cloaked in silent winter snow the Kingdom of Rolencia sleeps as rumours spread of new Affinity Seeps, places where untamed power wells up. Meanwhile, King Rolen plans his jubilee unaware of the growing threat to those he loves. And here's the review:
Cloaked in silent winter snow the Kingdom of Rolencia sleeps as rumours spread of new Affinity Seeps, places where untamed power wells up. Meanwhile, King Rolen plans his jubilee unaware of the growing threat to those he loves.
And here's the review:
A REVIEW OF ROWENA CORY DANIELLS' THE KING'S BASTARD
Gary Fry's The House of Canted Steps was published in September 2010 by PS Publishing.
Gary Fry is the author of four short story collections and a novella. The House of Canted Steps is Gary Fry's debut novel.
Gary Fry's official website can be found here.
A REVIEW OF GARY FRY'S THE HOUSE OF CANTED STEPS
Blind Swimmer is an anthology, which was published by Eibonvale Press in August 2010.
Here's the description of Blind Swimmer from the publisher's website:
Eibonvale Press came into being in the winter of 2005 in a tiny Slovenian mountain town at the hands of David Rix, who sat down one day and decided “Today I am going to make a book.” The fact that he knew a lot about books but nothing at all about the book world somehow failed to make that dream flicker away like most dreams and the slow crescendo of Eibonvale Press continued from there and is still continuing. That quiet and lonely winter in the Slovenian mountains still doesn’t seem so far away as the press continues its search for the bizarre, the unclassifiable and the strange in new writing, in the process working with some of the best writers in the UK and elsewhere.
Now, this new book provides a chance to look back a bit and define Eibonvale Press as an entity. Blind Swimmer collects together 11 stories, most never before published, by all the writers who have made up or will soon make up the Eibonvale Press family. The result is a book that is as varied as the press itself. Creativity in Isolation was the theme we set, and the results are as varied as the writers themselves. Different takes on what creativity is, what isolation is and whom we are talking to as we tell our tales in the wilderness. The stories stretch from classically tinged horror to urban strangeness to experimental fiction and surrealism. From short stories to full length novellas. From the wilderness of Britain and Sweden to the equal wilderness of the American urban landscape. Blind Swimmer is a unique and spectacular journey through the flip-side of contemporary writing.
With a foreword by Joel Lane and an introductory essay by David Rix.
Contributors: Nina Allan, Gerard Houarner, Rhys Hughes, Brendan Connell, David Rix, Allen Ashley, Jet McDonald, Douglas Thompson, Terry Grimwood, Alexander Zelenyj, Andrew Coulthard.
Here's the review:
A REVIEW OF BLIND SWIMMER
Angie Sage is a British author and illustrator. She is the author of two fantasy series (Septimus Heap and Araminta Spookie). Her first novel, Magyk (book 1 of the Septimus Heap series), was published in 2005.
The official Septimus Heap website can be found here.
Risingshadow.net has had the honour of interviewing Angie Sage. You can read the interview here:
AN INTERVIEW WITH ANGIE SAGE
Douglas Thompson's Sylvow was published by Eibonvale Press in August 2010.
Here's some information about Douglas Thompson:
Douglas Thompson graduated from the Mackintosh School of Architecture in 1989, went to busk on the London Underground and won the Grolsch/Herald Question of Style Award for new writing, all in one strange summer. Since then he has published short stories in a wide range of magazines and anthologies, most recently New Writing Scotland, Chapman, Ambit, and reviewed architecture for The Herald. He won second prize in the Neil Gunn Writing Competition in 2007, and currently works as an architectural designer and computer 3d-visualiser. His first novel, “Ultrameta”, was published by Eibonvale Press in August 2009, and hailed as “a new form or literature for a new century” and “a modern classic” by Sci-Fi Online.
Douglas Thompson's official website can be found here.
Here's the description of Sylvow from the publisher's website:
In the city of Sylvow, brother and sister Claudia and Leo Vestra made a childhood promise to each other: he would look after the plants and she would look after the animals.
Unlike most promises, both of these were kept – each in their own way. Claudia is now a vet – looking after pampered pets or putting down strays and leading a mundane life in the city. Leo, on the other hand, disenchanted with modern urban life, has abruptly abandoned his wife and disappeared into the surrounding forest, his only contact with the outside world being a sequence of dramatic and prophetic letters – increasingly convinced that a semi-sentient natural world is preparing to rebel against its human irritants.
Nature is a strange thing – although we have done an amazing job of cataloguing and observing it, we still know very little about it. Nature always surprises – and always changes, especially under an external influence such as humanity's devastating effect on the environment. This book follows its cast of characters through a spectacular clash between everyday life and life on the evolutionary scale – as society dissolves and is stripped away under the onslaught of surreal environmental disaster. Douglas Thompson has dug deep into the inevitable guilt that we all feel, as a culture/species, for the disastrous state of civilization and its effect on both ourselves and the world around us – in the process touching on elements as diverse as literary surrealism, philosophical tract, horror, disaster novel and visionary science fiction.
A REVIEW OF DOUGLAS THOMPSON'S SYLVOW