Showing posts from February, 2014

Divergent: Engrossing dystopian YA

I am wary of YA books. Especially those that have hit the bestseller charts and stayed there for quite long. AND have been commissioned for a movie. Hunger Games wasn’t bad but I didn’t really go gung-ho over Catnisss Everdeen and her antics and a grey world ruled by tyrannical government that pits sixteen year olds against each other for fun? Unbelievable premise but it seemed to work. And so with Divergent. A sixteen year old protagonist, underdog with the odds stacked up against her set in a world that is ludicrous (Well, most YA dystopian books seem to have a world that boggles the mind and has no logic as to why the world is so!). I haven’t read reviews about this book as I wanted to keep my mind clear of prejudices before I plunged in.  It was a book that kept me reading non-stop for a while. An intriguing world that is split into factions to avoid friction that would lead to chaos as it did in the older times. It’s interesting as each of the faction believe different

Soulwoven: An alluring tale of magic and dragons

SoulWoven by Jeff Seymour has been a big hit on the indie scene – having garnered more than half a million readerviews on the popular social site, Wattpad and is the product of a kickstarter project. So when Jeff approached me to read/review this book – as this was hitting the bookstands on Feb 20 th – plus the mention of a vengeful god in the form of a dragon (oh wait, did you say a dragon? Hell yeah! And look at the menacing cover!!) , I was nodding my head and scrambling to read the same. SoulWoven brings alive a beautifully created world – empires in conflict, enchanting myths, ancient races, shape-shifting wildlings and a wonderfully intricate system of magic – while touching upon a myriad of topics like religion, brotherhood and societal pariah. It’s an ancient tale steeped in magic and tells of the awakening of a great evil that can subsume the world and how a rag tag band of misfits try and avert this disaster. It is definitely an opener to an ambitious saga of

Glimpses of Radiance

As we move closer to the publication date of one of the most eagerly anticipated epic fantasy books from Brandon Sanderson, everywhere pictures are popping up comparing the size of this mammoth humungous doorstopper epic to its previous book, The Way of Kings. For lack of a better analogy- this one makes TWOK look like a underdeveloped geeky runt standing next to the hunky star quarterback in High School. Yeah well maybe I exaggerate but hells fire and brimstone, that is one huge book there. So Brandon's been kind enough to give us mortals peekaboo into the next book - excerpts posted on here ! As the war between humans and Parshendi explodes into more dangerous territories and Shallan and Jasnah to uncover the mysteries of this world and Kaladin discovers more about himself and powers, we eagerly wait for glimpses of radiance.

Game of Thrones Season 4Trailer #2 - Vengeance

I realize that I've forgotten most parts of what  must be the greatest fantasy tale ever written. I ordered Dance of Dragons the very first day it released and yet haven't touched it since. There are those who would stone me and yet there are those minority who would see the reason and light beyond the crags. As we wait with bated breath for a bearded old genius to finish his tales. The HBO Series that has now become almost a household name, even here in India (especially in India you say?!!!?) bravely rolls on into it's fourth season. the red wedding is over and now people thirst for revenge as the crows prepare to feast on the dead bodies. Valar morghulis. All Men Must Die.

Peacemaker by Marianne De Pierres: A solid but predictable start to a new series

Peacemaker is a brand new series by acclaimed Australian author Marianne De Pierres, her first partnership with the Angry Robots publishing house. I was super revved up with the initial press release and excitement that surrounded this announcement as this promised to be the beginning of a new wonderful series giving us iconic epic characters, a no-nonsense tough as nails sharp-shooting heroine Virgin Jackson and an American cowboy “Marshall”, Nate Sixkiller. The book is set in a futuristic Australia – where Virgin is a senior park ranger at the last natural reserve in this world, Birrimun Park – a tourist attraction and the center of ecological preservation inside a huge coastal city overrun by urbanization and exploitation of nature.  When Virgin is paired with a new “marshall” – fresh from the rodeo drives of texas, a handsome hulk who looks like he’s stepped out of male underwear billboard advertisement – but with his clothes on and a pair of shiny six-guns holstered by his

Traitor's Blade by Sebastien De Castell: A delightfully fun debut.

So Traitor’s Blade from Jo Fletcher (An imprint of Quercus Books , who in the recent past have come up with some very interesting debuts that push the ever-fluctuating boundaries of genre fiction, having given us abundance of talent like Aidan Harte, Tom Pollock, David Hair etc) came to me, courtesy the #GreatCoats competition and a NetGalley request that followed the same.   Coming in from such a brilliant stable, I knew Traitor’s Blade wasn’t going to disappoint. And man, was I right!  So Traitor’s Blade marks Sebastien De Castell ’s fantasy debut and is fast scorching up the blogosphere. Here read an interview of the author with Civilian Reader to get to know what makes him tick. I count myself lucky to be one among the early birds to get this work and am incredibly proud of myself(smirk!) Ah – now to the book itself. Termed to be “ The Three Musketers meets Game of Thrones ”, Traitor’s Blade is definitely the most delightful fun I’ve had in epic fantasy r

BlackBirds by Chuck Wendig (Miriam Black # 1)

I hadn’t met Miriam Black before. And I’m kicking myself that I haven’t made the acquaintance of this absolutely wonderful human being before. It’s such a visceral balls-to-wall experience being inside this psychotic chick’s head that once I got onto the drive on the wild side with Mr. Chuck Wendig , I never wanted out. Nonstop thrill ride without brakes. Reading Miriam Black and her exploits is like bungee-jumping off the volcano bungee at Pucano, Chile without the safety harness. You know it’s dangerous. But you are addicted to the thrill and the purest form of terror and that uncontrolled adrenaline rush. Wham! What a book. I haven’t been consumed by a need to finish a book like this one before. It’s a psychological need, a deep craving delirious desire to see if Miriam and Louise survive. A want that surpasses your need for sleep, food and coffee. Am getting ahead of myself here. Visceral is the closest word that comes to the reading experience of Wendig’s writing.

Red Knight: A sprawling mix of historical fiction, enticing magical system and epic relentless action.

Red Knight was another impulse buy on Kindle – I hadn’t read too many reviews about the book though I knew this was one of the blockbusters of 2013 when it released. Now I understand why. Red Knight, Book one of the Traitor Son cycle marks the fantasy debut of Miles Cameron (widely believed to be the pseudonym for historical fiction author, Christian Cameron). The book’s got the richly satisfying feel of reading an actual account of historical fiction – swarming with strikingly authentic details about the Knights order, the religious unrest, the war-machinery and the planning and execution of sieges on forts/palaces of medieval times. But mixed up with the narrative is one of the most enticing magical systems that plays a crucial part in the narrative. Which unmistakably elevates this book into one of the stars of epic fantasy today – complete with intense gripping action scenes that rolls the sprawling plot forwards.  The eponymous hero, Red Knigh