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Book Review: Jade Legacy (The Green Bone Saga, #3) by Fonda Lee

Book Review: Jade Legacy (The Green Bone Saga, #3) by Fonda Lee

ARC provided by the publisher—Orbit—in exchange for an honest review.

Cover designed by: Lisa Marie Pompilio

Jade Legacy by Fonda Lee

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Green Bone Saga (Book #3 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Urban Fantasy

Pages: 736 pages (US Kindle edition)

Published: 30th November 2021 by Orbit (US) & 2nd December 2021 by Orbit (UK)


Without a shadow of a doubt, one of the best books I’ve ever read. Jade Legacy is an all-around masterpiece that certified The Green Bone Saga as my top favorite completed trilogy of all time.

“Good men are remembered with love by their friends… Great warriors are remembered with awe by their enemies.”

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Book Review: The Wisdom of Crowds (The Age of Madness, #3) by Joe Abercrombie

Book Review: The Wisdom of Crowds (The Age of Madness, #3) by Joe Abercrombie

ARC provided by the publisher—Gollancz—in exchange for an honest review.

Cover illustration by: Tomas Almeida

The Wisdom of Crowds by Joe Abercrombie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Age of Madness (Book #3 of 3), First Law World (Book, #10 of 10)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Grimdark fantasy

Pages: 529 pages (UK Hardback)

Published: 14th September 2021 by Gollancz (UK) & Orbit (US)


Joe Abercrombie is a genius storyteller. The Wisdom of Crowds is one of the best books of the year, a masterfully crafted conclusion to The Age of Madness trilogy.

“What is the point of gathering knowledge if one does not pass it on? What is the point of growing old if one does not try to shape the future?”

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Book Review: The Empire’s Ruin (Ashes of the Unhewn Throne, #1) by Brian Staveley

Book Review: The Empire’s Ruin (Ashes of the Unhewn Throne, #1) by Brian Staveley

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ARC provided by the publishers—Tor Books & Tor UK—in exchange for an honest review.

Cover art illustrated by: Richard Anderson

The Empire’s Ruin by Brian Staveley

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: Ashes of the Unhewn Throne (Book #1 of 3), Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne (Book #5 of 7)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy, Epic Fantasy

Pages: 752 pages (Kindle edition)

Published: 8th July 2021 by Tor (UK) and 6th July 2021 by Tor Books (US)


The Empire’s Ruin is a scintillating explosive epic fantasy with multiple legendary scenes that rivaled The Way of Kings.

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Book Review: Dreams of the Dying (Enderal, #1) by Nicolas Lietzau

Book Review: Dreams of the Dying (Enderal, #1) by Nicolas Lietzau

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Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Cover art illustrated by: Dominik Derow

Dreams of the Dying by Nicolas Lietzau

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: Enderal (Book #1 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Grimdark Fantasy, Dark Fantasy, Mystery

Pages: 826 pages (Hardcover edition)

Published: 28th October 2020 by Nicolas Lietzau (Self-published)


A new masterpiece is here. It is a cliché to say this, but Dreams of the Dying is seriously one of the best books I’ve ever read.

“The mind is a malleable thing. Soil, if you’re feeling poetic. Depending on the seed, anything will grow in it, from graceful gardens to idyllic meadows, from weedy forests to foggy swamps. Harmonious or chaotic, peaceful or perilous, healthy or ill—it’s all a matter of seeds.

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Book Review: Rhythm of War (The Stormlight Archive, #4) by Brandon Sanderson

Book Review: Rhythm of War (The Stormlight Archive, #4) by Brandon Sanderson

This review is also available on my Booktube channel

Cover art illustrated by: Michael Whelan

Rhythm of War by Brandon Sanderson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Stormlight Archive (Book #4 of 10)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, High Fantasy

Pages: 1232 pages (Hardcover)

Published: 17th November 2020 by Tor Books (US) and Gollancz (UK)


Brandon Sanderson is a storming genius. Rhythm of War is another scintillating masterpiece in The Stormlight Archive series—one of my top favorite series of all time, and easily the best ongoing series right now.

“Words on the page define men to future generations.”

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Book Review: The Labyrinth of the Spirits (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books, #4) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Book Review: The Labyrinth of the Spirits (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books, #4) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Cover illustration by: Matt Duffin

The Labyrinth of the Spirits by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Cemetery of Forgotten Books (Book #4 of 4)

Genre: Historical fiction, Mystery

Pages: 833 pages (US Kindle edition)

Translated Edition Published: 2018 by Weidenfield & Nicholson, Orion Books (UK) & Harper (US)


An absorbing literary masterpiece embedded with every range of emotions.

“Tell our stories to the world, and never forget that we exist so long as someone remembers us.”

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Book Review: The Light of All That Falls (The Licanius Trilogy, #3) by James Islington

Book Review: The Light of All That Falls (The Licanius Trilogy, #3) by James Islington

ARC provided by the publisher—Orbit—in exchange for an honest review.

The Light of All That Falls by James Islington

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series:  The Licanius Trilogy (Book #3 of 3)

Genre:  Fantasy, Epic fantasy

Pages: 864 pages

Published: 12th December 2019 by Orbit (UK) & 10th December 2019 by Orbit (US)


The Light of All That Falls is an absolute marvel, a prodigious finishing touch to an ingeniously plotted series.

Here’s a little statistic to give you an idea of how much I loved this book and series. If you look at my Goodreads profile, you can take a look at my list of favorite authors. Inside this list are authors who have written three or more books—that I’ve read, of course—to be included in my “favorites” shelf. Before today—out of approximately four hundred books I’ve read—there were eight authors on this list. With one trilogy, and without a shadow of a doubt, I’m going to include James Islington as the ninth author to join my list of favorite authors. Binge reading this trilogy for the first time blew me away, and I’m already looking forward to rereading it in the future. If you stumbled upon this review without having read the previous books in the trilogy, rest assured that this review will be spoiler-free; no details regarding the plot will be mentioned. There is, however, a better option for you, pick up The Shadow of What Was Lost and begin binge-reading this astounding series. Now.

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Book Review: A Time of Courage (Of Blood and Bone, #3) by John Gwynne

Book Review: A Time of Courage (Of Blood and Bone, #3) by John Gwynne

ARC provided by the publisher—Pan Macmillan—in exchange for an honest review.

A Time of Courage by John Gwynne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: Of Blood and Bone (Book #3 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy

Pages: 672 pages (UK hardback edition)

Published: 2nd April 2020 by Pan Macmillan (UK) & 7th April 2020 by Orbit (US)


A Time of Courage is one of the best final books to a series I’ve ever read in my life. It was truly a bittersweet, satisfying, and masterfully crafted finale to conclude Of Blood and Bone and the entirety of The Banished Lands saga.

Permit me to start this review with words from Gwynne himself:

“So, finally we come to the end of this series, and with it, the end of the Banished Land’s tales. Although Of Blood and Bone is a trilogy that can be read as a standalone series, it is also the final chapter of a longer history that involves the four books from The Faithful and the Fallen series. When read together they form around a one-hundred-and-fifty-year history of the Banished Lands, and a sizeable chunk of my life. Roughly seventeen years have flown by, I think, since lifting my pen and writing down my first ideas. I hope that you’ve enjoyed your time spent here, and that this book feels like a fitting and satisfying conclusion to all that has gone before.”

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Book Review: Last Argument of Kings (The First Law, #3) by Joe Abercrombie

Book Review: Last Argument of Kings (The First Law, #3) by Joe Abercrombie

Last Argument of Kings by Joe Abercrombie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The First Law (Book #3 of 3), First Law World (Book, #3 of 10)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Grimdark fantasy

Pages: 704 pages (UK paperback edition)

Published: 20th March 2008 by Gollancz (UK) & 8th September 2015 by Orbit (US)


Abercrombie has been titled as Lord Grimdark for years now; I truly believe that Last Argument of Kings is majorly responsible for this.

“Round and round in circles we go, clutching at successes we never grasp, endlessly tripping over the same old failures. Truly, life is the misery we endure between disappointments.”

Last Argument of Kings is the third—and final book—in The First Law trilogy by Joe Abercrombie. Every plot lines from the first two books lead to the revelations and ruthless conclusion in this installment. The story picks up immediately from where Before They Are Hanged left off, and it has come full circle. Depending on your perspective, the Last Argument of Kings is either bittersweet, depressingly bleak, or in between; I personally think it’s the latter. Abercrombie writes as if he’s a maestro of death and hopelessness. If you’re hanging on the edge of a cliff, Abercrombie will give you a dangling rope to save you but when you use that rope to save yourself from falling, he annihilates your hopes by using that rope to strangle you when you’re at the top. Yet, I must say that it is precisely for this unforgiving realism that I end up considering Last Argument of Kings as my favorite book in the series.

Picture: Last Argument of Kings by Alexander Preuss

By this point of the series, I think it’s safe to assume that you—like me—have grown very attached to the utterly memorable characters. Although some of the side character’s story continues in the next standalone trilogy of the series, this is where the main story arcs for the six main POV characters ended. Abercrombie has expertly weaved a tale that exhibited a harsh truth; despite insanely hard works and virtuous intentions, things may not go in our favor just because of one cruel reason: life isn’t fair. If you’re reading this review, and you haven’t started The Blade Itself, I’ll suggest you to not expect that a happy conclusion will be reached; you’re not getting one. In my opinion, none of the main characters attained what readers usually consider as a satisfying/happy ending; what they do get, however, is an ending that fits the narrative of the series. Expect an unflinchingly vicious finale, and it’s highly probable that this trilogy will go down as one of your favorite series; it’s certainly one of my favorites. What Abercrombie does well, he does extremely well.

“I have learned all kinds of things from my many mistakes. The one thing I never learn is to stop making them.”

Speaking of the things that Abercrombie does well, the action scenes in this book were top-class. Out of all the grimdark fantasy series I’ve read, when it comes to close-quarter combat, Abercrombie’s First Law and Jeff Salyards’s Bloodsounder’s Arc are always the first to come to mind. Abercrombie has conjured tempestuous war and battle scenes within this finale. We’ve seen glimpses of the deadly magic of the series in the previous two books, but in Last Argument of Kings, Abercrombie displayed the cataclysmic potential of the magic and why they became forbidden to use. The action sequences were bloody, violent, and downright merciless. This is by far the most action-packed and explosive installment in the trilogy; even if I were to include all the books published in the series so far within my assessment—this includes The Heroes—I’d still put Last Argument of Kings above them all, both in quality and quantity.

“Travel brings wisdom only to the wise. It renders the ignorant more ignorant than ever.”

The war scenes were incredible, but if I were to choose one main highlight of the book, it would have to be the duel scene. If you’ve read this book, you’ll know which confrontation I’m talking about. Back when I first read this duel three years ago, I immediately thought that it was phenomenal; on my reread, I still feel the same way about it. It’s terrifying to me how vivid it was; it honestly felt like I was there. I could hear the sound of swords singing, and I was able to see blood and gore poured from the heart-hammering trade of skills and deathblows unleashed that made the decisive duel unforgettable. Abercrombie has seriously outdone himself in this particular scene. Abercrombie painted a devastating scene that’s incredibly easy to visualize within this circle of death where chaos and the Great Leveller reigns. I’ve read many fantasy novel that features amazing duel scenes, and I can easily vouch that the mighty clash of death here, together with the one in The Sword of Kaigen by M.L. Wang, are indeed the best duel scenes I’ve ever read in a novel; it was THAT good!

“You can never have too many knives, his father had told him. Unless they’re pointed at you, and by people who don’t like you much. ”

It suffices to say that Last Argument of Kings is grimdark fantasy at its best, and it is one of my favorite books of all time, simple as that. I loved this book on my first read, and I’m gratified to say that I still absolutely love it on my reread; maybe even more now. Abercrombie is a fantastic writer and storyteller; his characterizations are masterful, his prose is compelling, and his capability in creating vivid cinematic scenes that are brutal, intense, philosophical, and at times hilarious established him as one of the finest authors in the genre. For years now, The First Law have often be recommended as a must-read series for A Song of Ice and Fire fans and grimdark fantasy enthusiasts. The longevity and the assurance of high quality in this recommendation can exist only if a specific series has received a world-wide qualification and praises from readers around the world. And this is a crowning achievement that Joe Abercrombie, the Lord of Grimdark, has indisputably claimed from this trilogy. If you—somehow—haven’t read this series yet, consider fixing that mistake by reading The First Law trilogy. Now. You have to be realistic about these things.

“If you want to be a new man you have to stay in new places, and do new things, with people who never knew you before. If you go back to the same old ways, what else can you be but the same old person?”

Series Review:

The Blade Itself: 4.5/5 stars

Before They Are Hanged: 5/5 stars

Last Argument of Kings: 5/5 stars

The First Law trilogy: 14.5/15 stars


You can order the book from: Book Depository (Free shipping)

View all my reviews

Wrath (The Faithful and the Fallen, #4)

Wrath (The Faithful and the Fallen, #4)

Wrath by John Gwynne
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Masterpiece.

Mark my words, if this series ever gets adapted into a television series with the same production value given to Game of Thrones, it will create a myriad of fan bases all over the world. Watch out George R. R. Martin, while you’re waiting for the breeze from the Winds of Winter to come, John Gwynne has appeared out of nowhere and he has conquered the genre; the apprentice has become the master.

Wrath is, in my opinion, the best out of the four books in the series, which means the series always got better with each installment and with its completion I’ve decided to include John in my list of favorite authors of all time. That makes him one of my very few auto-buy authors; along with Brandon Sanderson and Joe Abercrombie, I’ll be content with buying every book they write.

“It will be a dark day, a bloody day, a proud day, for this is the day of our wrath.”

I’ll start off my review with two simple questions.

1. Does this series provide something new to the genre?

No, almost every single plot device here has been done before.

2. Is it good?

No, good is a really huge understatement. It’s damn near perfection for its genre.

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