Until the Ink Dries by Jordan Elizabeth

Elizabeth combines a gritty encapsulation of mundane life with a potentially unreliable narrator to create a chosen-one narrative that focuses more on the escaping a current situation than struggling with a new one. Poor and bullied, fourteen-year-old Zuby Bloom’s only escapes from life of poverty are her diary and sketchbooks. However, after years of being … Continue reading Until the Ink Dries by Jordan Elizabeth

Cirsova Magazine of Thrilling Adventure and Daring Suspense, Volume 2 #12, ed. P. Alexander

Alexander gathers tales that, while they are set in very different worlds and might not always agree on all the nuances of morality, are united by their focus on people of strong character taking action rather than succumbing to circumstance. This magazine contains six short stories, two novelettes, and three extracts from longer works, each … Continue reading Cirsova Magazine of Thrilling Adventure and Daring Suspense, Volume 2 #12, ed. P. Alexander

Emma and the Box of Wonder by Matthew S. Cox

Cox skilfully balances the simpler perspective of the young with the underlying complexity of realistic worlds, creating a fast-paced fantasy adventure that is accessible without sacrificing depth. This is the sixth volume in Cox’s Tales of Widowswood series. Potential spoilers for prior volumes ahead. Emma and her sister Kimber expect spending the day with their … Continue reading Emma and the Box of Wonder by Matthew S. Cox

Ink For Blood by Kevin Weir

Weir blends a strong gothic aesthetic with fast-paced visceral fights and creepy mysteries, creating a baroque nightmare of addict-assassins fighting existential horrors with distilled angel blood and arcane machinery. A century ago, the Great Machine appeared on the English coast, offering a way to fight back against the mindless parasitic sludge called the Mire. Now … Continue reading Ink For Blood by Kevin Weir

Cirsova Magazine of Thrilling Adventure and Daring Suspense, Volume 2 #11, ed. P. Alexander

Alexander offers another collection of modern speculative fiction, united it its echoing of the pulp sensibilities of moral clarity and action over introspection. This magazine contains five short stories, a novelette, and three reasonably sized extracts from longer works, spread across a variety of genres but each firmly echoing the style and substance of classic … Continue reading Cirsova Magazine of Thrilling Adventure and Daring Suspense, Volume 2 #11, ed. P. Alexander

The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley

Bradley coats the myth of Arthur in the mud of early British history, creating a story that gives a voice to those who are not the shining knights of legend without in turn making them in turn more hero than human. Set a generation after the withdrawal of the Romans, this novel retells Arthurian legend … Continue reading The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley

Not Far from Eden by J. Manfred Weichsel

Weichsel combines fast-paced action and devious plots with humour that paints both humanity and the divine as decidedly imperfect. While God has cast humanity from the Garden of Eden, he still loves his creation, and so he sends the angelic order of Watchers to teach humans the skills and knowledge they will need to live … Continue reading Not Far from Eden by J. Manfred Weichsel

Cirsova Magazine of Thrilling Adventure and Daring Suspense, Volume 2 #9, ed. P. Alexander

Alexander gathers science fiction and fantasy that evokes one of the first pulp magazines without feeling stale or derivative. This magazine contains three novelettes, seven short stories, an extract from an epic poem, each in the vein of classic science-fiction or fantasy, along with a short essay on the birth of popular science fiction. ‘For … Continue reading Cirsova Magazine of Thrilling Adventure and Daring Suspense, Volume 2 #9, ed. P. Alexander

They Mostly Come Out at Night by Benedict Patrick

Showing the world part through direct character experience and part through dreams and tales within tales, Patrick powerfully evokes the fearful uncertainty that presses against the edges of pre-industrial civilisation. For generations, villagers have hidden from the monsters that come in the night. Each believes the Magpie King roams the night protecting them, but noone … Continue reading They Mostly Come Out at Night by Benedict Patrick