April 30, 2016

My Favorite Fantasy Quotes - Part 1

Words have a certain power to them. A power to create life, to take it, to teach the laws of reason and madness alike. In fantasy, we try to create other worlds to reflect the best and worst of our lot in life. We create stories that are powerful and characters we care about. Many times you can find words of wisdom in fantasy as well as words that give you goosebumps. Over the course of a few separate posts I would like to share with you the best quotes I've read so far in fantasy. I hope you enjoy them and please feel free to share your thoughts and some of your own favorites in the comments below. Enjoy!

Queen of Fire by Anthony Ryan

“Anyone who claims they have a genius for war should be regarded as the greatest of fools. For the successful conduct of war is an exercise in the management of folly.” -Anthony RyanQueen of Fire

Blurb: After fighting back from the brink of death, Queen Lyrna is determined to repel the invading Volarian army and regain the independence of the Unified Realm. Except, to accomplish her goals, she must do more than rally her loyal supporters. She must align herself with forces she once found repugnant—those who possess the strange and varied gifts of the Dark—and take the war to her enemy’s doorstep.

Victory rests on the shoulders of Vaelin Al Sorna, now named Battle Lord of the Realm. However, his path is riddled with difficulties. For the Volarian enemy has a new weapon on their side, one that Vaelin must destroy if the Realm is to prevail—a mysterious Ally with the ability to grant unnaturally long life to her servants. And defeating one who cannot be killed is a nearly impossible feat, especially when Vaelin’s blood-song, the mystical power which has made him the epic fighter he is, has gone ominously silent…

April 28, 2016

The Friday 5: Books I Want Made into Movies/TV Series

Welcome to The Friday 5, a weekly top 5 about fantasy and science fiction here on Deviant Worlds. This week I'd like to present you with my Top 5 Books I Want Made into Movies/TV series. Check it out and let me know your top 5 in the comments below!

April 26, 2016

Patrick Rothfuss' Tak Kickstarter Project

"Tak is the best sort of game: simple in its rules, complex in its strategy. Bredon beat me handily in all five games we played, but I am proud to say that he never beat me the same way twice." -Kvothe

Fans of Patrick Rothfuss' Kingkiller chronicles may be interested to know that the strategy board game Tak is being brought into the world. The game was originally introduced in The Wise Man's Fear and is described on the project page as 'in the same family as chess, go, and mancala'.

If you'd like to find out more about the project or Tak itself, check out the Kickstarter project page and feel free to contribute to help bring this game into being. 

Speaking of fantasy based board games, what are some of your favorite fantasy inspired board games?

April 25, 2016

This Week's TBR

Here's what I hope to read this week! There are two ARCs in the mix and I'm hoping I can get through at least my current reads to get on to those by the end of the week. Check back here to hear my thoughts on Sword of the North and/or the Swordbearer sometime this week. As always, my currently reading/TBR can change if I feel like reading something else instead. What's your TBR? Let me know in the comments below!

April 24, 2016

The Liar's Key by Mark Lawrence

“Throw away too much of your past and you abandon the person who walked those days. When you pare away at yourself you can reinvent, that’s true enough, but such whittling always seems to reveal a lesser man, and promises to leave you with nothing at the end.” -Mark Lawrence, The Liar's Key

Blurb: Winter is keeping Prince Jalan Kendeth far from the longed-for luxuries of his southern palace. And although the North may be home to his companion, the warrior Snorri ver Snagason, he is just as eager to leave. For the Viking is ready to challenge all of Hell to bring his wife and children back into the living world. He has Loki’s key – now all he needs is to find the door.

As all wait for the ice to unlock its jaws, the Dead King plots to claim what was so nearly his – the key to the underworld -- so that his dead subjects can rise and rule.

April 22, 2016

The Friday 5: Favorite Fantasy Authors

Welcome to The Friday 5. Each week here on Deviant Worlds I bring you a friday top 5 list from the Fantasy or Science fiction genre. This week's top 5 are my Top 5 Favorite Fantasy Authors (With a bonus) Feel free to comment with your favorite fantasy authors in the comments below!

Bonus: Michael J. Sullivan

So before I start this week's top 5, I really have to mention Michael J. Sullivan. Although I didn't put him in my top 5, I really had hard choices to make. The Riyria Revelations has become one of my favorite fantasy reads over the last year. I've really connected with Hadrian and Royce, the mercenary main characters of the novels and I quickly devoured the novels after reading the first in the series Theft of Swords. Michael writes all his novels in the series first before publishing the first one. This way of writing meant that all the books were interconnected with nods forwards and backwards to the others in the series. The tales are epic quests with crazy odds and they really have been a joy for me to read

April 19, 2016

The Force Unleashed by Sean Williams

"The Sith always betray one another. . . . I'm sure you'll learn that soon enough." - Sean Williams, The Force Unleashed

Blurb: The overthrow of the Republic is complete. The Separatist forces have been smashed, the Jedi Council nearly decimated, and the rest of the Order all but destroyed. Now absolute power rests in the iron fist of Darth Sidious - the cunning Sith lord better known as the former Senator, now Emperor, Palpatine. But more remains to be done. Pockets of resistance in the galaxy must still be defeated and missing Jedi accounted for . . . and dealt with. These crucial tasks fall to the Emperor's ruthless enforcer, Darth Vader. In turn, the Dark Lord has groomed a lethal apprentice entrusted with a top-secret mission: to comb the galaxy and dispatch the last of his masters' enemies, thereby punctuating the dark side's victory with the Jedi's doom.

April 16, 2016

Interview: Loren Rhoads

Welcome Loren Rhoads to Deviant Worlds!
LR:  Thanks for having me, Eric.

First off, tell us a little bit about yourself. When did you decide to be a writer?
LR:  I don’t exactly remember.  I was a storyteller from a very early age.  My mom was a librarian, so I grew up surrounded by books.  I decided I was a writer – for real – in 2008, when I
flew to LA to do a book signing for the Sins of the Sirens anthology at Dark Delicacies.  It was a four-woman anthology that I shared with Maria Alexander, Mehitobel Wilson, and Christa Faust.  That trip made me feel legit at last.

April 15, 2016

The Friday 5: Fantasy Settings I'd Love More Books In

These are the top 5 fantasy settings I wish had more books set in. Feel free to leave me your top 5 settings you'd love more books in below in the comments! 

5. The Continent
Series: The Witcher Saga
Author: Andrzej Sapkowski
Prominent Character: Geralt of Rivia (The Witcher)
First Book: The Last Wish

Blurb: Geralt de Rivia is a witcher. A cunning sorcerer. A merciless assassin. And a cold-blooded killer. His sole purpose: to destroy the monsters that plague the world. But not everything monstrous-looking is evil and not everything fair is good...and in every fairy tale there is a grain of truth.

April 13, 2016

Dynasty of Evil by Drew Karpyshyn

“Materialism—an attachment to physical goods beyond their practical value—was a trap; a chain to ensnare the foolish with their own greed.” -Drew Karpyshyn, Dynasty of Evil

Blurb: Twenty years have passed since Darth Bane, reigning Dark Lord of the Sith, demolished the ancient order devoted to the dark side and reinvented it as a circle of two: one Master to wield the power and pass on the wisdom, and one apprentice to learn, challenge, and ultimately usurp the Dark Lord in a duel to the death. But Bane’s acolyte, Zannah, has yet to engage her Master in mortal combat and prove herself a worthy successor. Determined that the Sith dream of galactic domination will not die with him, Bane vows to learn the secret of a forgotten Dark Lord that will assure the Sith’s immortality--and his own.

April 12, 2016

Read, Reading, Will Read

This is what I've read so far this week:
I read A Song for No Man's Land by Andy Remic over the weekend. It was a solid novella with a sort of Grimdark WWI fantasy appeal. You can read my full thoughts on it here.

I also just today was able to finally sit down and read Road Brothers:Tales of the Broken Empire. I'd been pretty eager to read this one for a while as Mark Lawrence's Broken Empire trilogy quickly became a new favorite of mine back in 2014. You can read my full thoughts on his Broken Empire anthology here.

April 11, 2016

Road Brothers: Tales from the Broken Empire by Mark Lawrence

“Darkness is patient, always waiting for its chance, and swift to take it.”  -Mark Lawrence, Road Brothers: Tales from the Broken Empire

Blurb: 10 short stories from the lives of Jorg and his Road Brothers. Contains spoilers for the Broken Empire trilogy. 5 of the stories have previously been published in anthologies, Contains the short story 'Sleeping Beauty' that is also sold separately. A total of 43.000 words or just over half the length of Prince of Thorns.

April 10, 2016

A Song for No Man's Land by Andy Remic

“I was going to write down my experiences during the assault, but what’s the point now? It’s all been written before, so many glorified accounts, soldiers, warriors, heroes. No matter how grim a picture I paint, there will always be those who have bright excited eyes, who think War is romantic, exciting, a beast to be tamed.”  -Andy Remic, A Song for No Man's Land

Blurb: He signed up to fight with visions of honour and glory, of fighting for king and country, of making his family proud at long last.
But on a battlefield during the Great War, Robert Jones is shot, and wonders how it all went so very wrong, and how things could possibly get any worse.
He'll soon find out. When the attacking enemy starts to shapeshift into a nightmarish demonic force, Jones finds himself fighting an impossible war against an enemy that shouldn't exist.

April 9, 2016

The Lord Collector by Anthony Ryan

Blurb: Author's note:The following story takes place in the same world as my novel Blood Song, the first volume in the Raven's Shadow trilogy. I wrote it because I wanted to more fully explore characters who appear in Blood Song and the sequels Tower Lord and Queen of Fire. Readers familiar with my work are sure to recognize a certain pale-eyed, raspy-voiced Sword Master of the Sixth Order, and those curious as to the origins of the Tower Lord of the Southern Shore will find answers here. The tale takes place at the midpoint of the timeline described in Blood Song, a time when King Janus, with typical ruthlessness, is in the process of further consolidating his grip on the Unified Realm.

Format: The Lord Collector is a novella set between Blood Song and Tower Lord in the Raven's Shadow series. I am reviewing the audio format of the novella as narrated by Steven Brand. The audio book is 1 hour and 37 minutes in length. The novella was published in June of 2015. The tale is told in limited 3rd POV with the primary character being Jehrid, the Lord Collector. 

April 8, 2016

The Friday 5: Series Debuts of 2016 I'm Most Excited For

5. Sharp Ends by Joe Abercrombie
Publication Date: April 26, 2016
Blurb: Sharp Ends combines previously published, award-winning tales with exclusive new short stories. Violence explodes, treachery abounds, and the words are as deadly as the weapons in this rogue's gallery of side-shows, back-stories, and sharp endings from the world of the First Law.

I've really enjoyed my time with the First Law trilogy. As I near the end of the series I am eager to get into some of the back stories and characters in the same world. I've never really been one for short stories, by hopefully this one will be a pleasant exception.

April 6, 2016

Rule of Two by Drew Karpyshyn

“There must only be two, No more and no less.” ― Drew KarpyshynRule of Two

Blurb: In the New York Times bestseller Darth Bane: Path of Destruction, Drew Karpyshyn painted a gripping portrait of a young man’s journey from innocence to evil. That man was Darth Bane, a twisted genius whose iron will, fierce ambition, and strength in the dark side of the Force made him a natural leader among the Sith–until his radical embrace of an all-but-forgotten wisdom drove him to destroy his own order . . . and create it anew from the ashes. As the last surviving Sith, Darth Bane promulgated a harsh new directive: the Rule of Two.

April 5, 2016

A Chance to Win Some Free Books!

There are quite a few great opportunities to win some big name future and recently released fantasy novels out there right now. The following giveaways are free to enter (albeit they require a free Goodreads account, a service you should consider joining anyway if you're a reader!). I've won a few Goodreads giveaways over the years and nothing is more satisfying than getting a great book from one of your favorite authors for free! Feel free to check them out. And, of course, good Luck!

April 4, 2016

Author Mark Lawrence is calling all self-published fantasy authors!

In case you didn't hear about Mark Lawrence's Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off this last year, you might be interested to know that it is an event that allows self-published fantasy authors to submit their work to be reviewed by top genre blogs in the hopes of being chosen as the best self published work. The submissions are distributed among the blogs and each blogger then reviews the books and recommends a finalist. Of course throughout the process self-published authors will get a chance to get their work out there with the ultimate prize of some serious free promotion if your work is selected as a finalist. 

April 3, 2016

The Emperor's Blades by Brian Staveley

“Resist faith. Resist trust. Believe only in what you touch with your hands. The rest is error and air.” -Brian Staveley, The Emperor's Blades

Blurb: The Emperor has been murdered, leaving the Annurian Empire in turmoil. Now his progeny must bury their grief and prepare to unmask a conspiracy.

His son Valyn, training for the empire’s deadliest fighting force, hears the news an ocean away. He expected a challenge, but after several ‘accidents’ and a dying soldier’s warning, he realizes his life is also in danger. Yet before Valyn can take action, he must survive the mercenaries’ brutal final initiation.

The Wheel of Osheim Art Contest

thatthornguy, the unofficial website of fantasy author Mark Lawrence, is hosting an art contest with the potential to win signed (or dedicated) copies of The Wheel of Osheim! To enter, you simply have to create a two dimensional (painting, drawing, photography, digital art, ect.) featuring scenes, characters, or objects from any Mark Lawrence novel.

The best entries will be judged and determined by Mark Lawrence, Kimberly Kincaid, and Pen Astridge. Three selected winners will recieve a copy of The Wheel of Osheim (The third novel in the Red Queen's War trilogy) provided by Ace Books and HarperVoyager. Additionally, one random winner selected will receive a signed (or dedicated) Mark Lawrence novel of choice!

April 2, 2016

Path of Destruction by Drew Karpyshyn

“Honor is for the living. Dead is dead.” - Drew Karpyshyn, Path of Destruction
On the run from vengeful Republic forces, Dessel, a cortosis miner, vanishes into the ranks of the Sith army and ships out to join the bloody war against the Republic and its Jedi champions. There, Dessel’s brutality, cunning, and exceptional command of the Force swiftly win him renown as a warrior. But in the eyes of his watchful masters, a far greater destiny awaits him. 
As an acolyte in the Sith academy, studying the secrets and skills of the dark side, Dessel embraces his new identity: Bane. But the true test is yet to come. In order to gain acceptance into the Brotherhood of Darkness, he must defy the most sacred traditions and reject all he has been taught. It is a trial by fire in which he must surrender fully to the dark side–and forge from the ashes a new era of absolute power.