Review: The Wise Man’s Fear By Patrick Rothfuss


There are three things all wise readers should fear: unwarranted hype, meandering narrative and directionless plot.


Book CoverThe Wise Man’s Fear
(The Kingkiller Chronicle, Book 2)

Patrick Rothfuss

Genre: High Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz
Format: Paperback, 994 Pages
Date: 6th March 2012 (First Published 2011)

ISBN-10: 0575081430
ISBN-13: 978-0575081437

Purchase From: Amazon | Book Depository

For bookworms who have previously read Patrick Rothfuss’ epic fantasy novel, The Name Of The Wind, this review could tell you everything you need to know about the second instalment of The Kingkiller Chronicle by simply stating: this sequel offers more of the same, only hundreds of extra pages more of it; and the review could end there. Whether or not that is a good thing will depend entirely on how much any given reader enjoyed the first book. If The Name Of The Wind’s six hundred plus pages was a chore to read, then you can be sure that the nine hundred plus pages of The Wise Man’s Fear will require greater patience, still.

Assuming that the precocious protagonist’s meandering narration of his life story had you engrossed while reading the first book, you’ll be pleased to know this follow up pretty much resumes where its predecessor left off, and continues in the same vein. Rothfuss keeps Kvothe within the confines of his Inn, with his fae student Bast, and Devan the Chronicler for company, where he continues to recount his life story. As with the previous novel, Kvothe’s first person narration is intermittently broken up by the interludes of a third person narrator whom Rothfuss uses to keep readers abreast of events in and around the Inn.

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Review: Living Dead In Dallas By Charlaine Harris


Thwarting hate groups and solving murders is all in a couple of days work for accidental sleuth, Sookie Stackhouse.


Book CoverLiving Dead In Dallas
(The Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 2)

Charlaine Harris

Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz
Format: Paperback, 288 Pages
Date: 20th October 2011 (First Published 2001)

ISBN-10: 0575117036
ISBN-13: 978-0575117037

Purchase From: Amazon | Book Depository

While a part of me would ideally love for every book I read to be an unforgettable, life defining masterpiece, I realise that this is not a realistic expectation. There are times when I simply have to let myself enjoy a book for what it is. Reading a Sookie Stackhouse novel by Charlaine Harris is always one of those occasions. Living Dead In Dallas, the second instalment of the Southern Vampire Mysteries, much like its predecessor, Dead Until Dark, is at best a disposable guilty pleasure. Much, if not all, of the enjoyment to be derived from it is the result of how eye-rollingly cringe-worthy, and hilariously funny the story is. Whether or not that is by design is hard to tell. But I’ll give the author the benefit of the doubt.

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Review: The Good, The Bad And The Undead By Kim Harrison


Kim Harrison ups the ante for the Bounty hunting witch, Rachel Morgan, as she goes undercover and in over her head.


Book CoverThe Good, The Bad And The Undead
(The Hollows, Book 2)

Kim Harrison

Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Format: Paperback, 453 Pages
Date: 5th January 2012 (First Published 2005)

ISBN-10: 0007459769
ISBN-13: 978-0007459766

Purchase From: Amazon | Book Depository

With Dead Witch Walking, the first book of The Hollows series, Kim Harrison established a very solid foundation upon which to build the rest of her urban fantasy series. With this second instalment, Harrison, raises the stakes for her plucky but incompetent, bounty hunting heroine, Rachel Morgan; revealing more about the history and character of both Rachel and the people in her life (friend and foe alike). All the while further expanding and expounding on the alternate history, supernatural world that is the playground of these characters.

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Review: The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe By C.S. Lewis


C.S. Lewis’ timeless tale of good overcoming evil in a magical land, is a must read book for readers, young and old.


Book CoverThe Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe
(The Chronicles Of Narnia, Book 2)

C.S. Lewis

Genre: Children’s, High Fantasy
Publisher: HarperCollins
Format: Kindle Edition, 220 Pages
Date: 6th October 2009 (First Published 1950)


Purchase From: Amazon UK | Amazon US

To say that C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe has a very special place in my heart would be a major understatement. It was the first novel that I ever read, when I was just seven years old, igniting a lifelong interest in fantasy literature. It is perhaps the most influential children’s fantasy book ever written, and its enduring popularity has ensured that it has never been out of print since it was first published, six decades ago.

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Review: Last Of The Wilds By Trudi Canavan


Two new characters help to alleviate some of the disappointment of the first book of the trilogy.


Book CoverLast Of The Wilds
(The Age Of The Five Trilogy, Book 2)

Trudi Canavan

Genre: High Fantasy
Publisher: Orbit
Format: Paperback, 624 Pages
Date: 4th March 2010 (First Published 2006)

ISBN-10: 1841499641
ISBN-13: 978-1841499642

Purchase From: Amazon | Book Depository

The first book of Trudi Canavan’s Age Of The Five trilogy was a decidedly underwhelming affair; this is especially true for those readers who loved The Black Magician Trilogy. With that being the case, one could be forgiven for approaching book two, Last Of The Wilds, with a sense of trepidation. In fact, I would recommend that readers keep their expectations in check, for while this sequel is an improvement on Priestess Of The White, it is not a significant one.

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Review: Quicksilver Zenith By Stan Nicholls


Stan Nicholls keeps the weak second instalment syndrome at bay with this engaging follow up to Quicksilver Rising.


Book CoverQuicksilver Zenith
(Quicksilver Trilogy, Book 2)

Stan Nicholls

Genre: High Fantasy
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Format: Paperback, 336 Pages
Date: 7th March 2005 (First Published 2004)

ISBN-10: 0007141521
ISBN-13: 978-0007141524

Purchase From: Amazon | Book Depository

Quicksilver Zenith is the second part of Stan Nicholls’ underrated Quicksilver Trilogy, and readers who enjoyed the first book should be pleased to discover that book two delivers more of the same, in terms of great characterisation and action-packed narrative. It even sheds just a little more light on some of the mysteries first touched upon in Quicksilver Rising.

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News: Cover Reveal For Tower Lord By Anthony Ryan


Let the hype begin, it’s cover reveal time courtesy of Orbit Books.

The follow up to last summer’s smash hit novel, Blood Song, by Anthony Ryan has some artwork to show off.


The marketing campaign for Tower Lord by Anthony Ryan got under way yesterday, when publisher Orbit revealed the book’s cover art via their blog.

Scheduled for release in the summer of 2014, Tower Lord is book two of the Raven’s Shadow Trilogy, following up the highly acclaimed first book, Blood Song. The cover which you can see below, is the work of designers Nick Castle and Nik Keevil.

Cover Reveal

If you have not yet finished reading Blood Song, you may want to avoid reading the blurb for Tower Lord below, as it contains spoilers.

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Review: Grass For His Pillow By Lian Hearn


Lian Hearn returns to the Three Countries in this engaging sequel to Across The Nightingale Floor.


Book CoverGrass For His Pillow
(Tales Of The Otori, Book 2)

Lian Hearn

Genre: Historical Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: Picador
Format: Paperback, 320 Pages
Date: 5th April 2004 (First Published 2003)

ISBN-10: 0330415263
ISBN-13: 978-0330415262

Purchase From: Amazon | Book Depository

Grass For His Pillow, the second book of the Tales Of The Otori series, sees author Lian Hearn take readers back to the Three Countries, the year after the events of book one, Across The Nightingale Floor, to continue the tale of revenge, love, betrayal, duty, treachery, honour and destiny.

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Review: The Novice By Trudi Canavan


A gripping sequel that defies the conventional wisdom of the second book always being the weakest instalment of a trilogy.


Book CoverThe Novice
(The Black Magician Trilogy, Book 2)

Trudi Canavan

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: Orbit
Format: Paperback, 592 Pages
Date: 4th March 2010 (First Published 2002)

ISBN-10: 1841499617
ISBN-13: 978-1841499611

Purchase From: Amazon | Book Depository

Conventional wisdom suggests that the second book of a trilogy is invariably the weakest instalment. I’ve never subscribed to this “conventional wisdom”, and it’s certainly not true of book two of Trudi Canavan’s Black Magician Trilogy. The Novice is unquestionably an improvement upon the previous novel, The Magicians’ Guild. The story is bigger in scope, and expands the world it is set in by moving some of the narrative beyond the city of Imardin and the borders of Kyralia.

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