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Review: A Darkness Forged in Fire – Book 1 of The Iron Elves Trilogy by Chris Evans

Before I get to the review I should mention that I was interviewed for a Book Blogger Interview by the lovely Jo Stapley who runs Ink and Paper, a blog loaded with great fantasy book reviews! 🙂 Thanks Jo, it was a really cool interview! 🙂

Onto Chris Evans…

Sir, I am impressed! 🙂

When I began reading the book, I was a bit worried that the book might turn out to be a case study in stereotypical fantasy – a wizard, transformed into an animal, sneaking into a very dangerous place – but as I read on, and sank deeper into the storyline, I got the feeling that a Steven Erikson was being pulled – the use of normal fantasy tropes in new, unique and interesting ways! Once I realized that, I really got down to enjoying the book. 🙂

There are a few things that Chris does very well, and one of them is characters – not only does he not spend an inordinate amount of time describing the character (he fixes them in your mind in a few sentences), but each character is vibrant and unique and interesting. The main character, for example, is a pretty damn strange one! 🙂 An elf that hates the forest definitely makes for an interesting character!

Konowa’s.. erm, lady friend did get a bit irritating, though, but maybe I’m just biased, because Konowa practically drives her to it, being a man’s elf and all. 🙂 The way they dance around each other is very entertaining, though, and hopefully we’ll see them get a bit closer in The Light of Burning Shadows. 🙂

Another character that was absolutely awesome was the rock-munching section leader! 🙂 That dwarf is one of the best fantasy characters I’ve ever come across! He does steel the show, and I can’t wait to see where he goes and what he does in Book 2. 🙂 (He better be in Book 2, Chris!)

Chris also builds a convincing, beautiful world with more than it’s fair share of dangers and intrigues, and he also handles the release of information about this world well – there are no info dumps, with info being made available as the characters themselves discover what they need to know, and this is always great to have, especially in fantasy. Fantasy worlds should speak for themselves and not be explained, something that Chris understands very well. 🙂

In terms of action, the addition of muskets works very well! 🙂 I got this whole Colonial England Vs Magic vibe, standing firm in the face of fearless natives! 🙂 Chris takes us close in, very it’s furious and brutal, and also gives us those tactical viewpoints that are always cool (but not overdone here) in battle scenes! I hope we get to see what Chris can do with huge numbers in battle one day!

All in all, I was very impressed with A Darkness Forged in Fire – not only is it a great addition to Epic Fantasy, but it’s also a fun, entertaining book – something that will intrigue you with it’s cool characters, interesting plot, and it’s unique take on required fantasy elements! 🙂

A definite 8/10!

A Darkness Forged in Fire

For those of you in SA, order your copies here, and order Book 2 here, and for those in the US, Book 1 and Book 2, and those in the UK, Book 1 and Book 2. 🙂 Check out more info in Chris and his work at the Iron Elves website, and click here for Chris’ LiveJournal. 🙂

A Darkness Forged in Fire is published in South Africa by Jonathan Ball.

Be EPIC!

 
5 Comments

Posted by on August 12, 2009 in Reviews

 

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The Light of Burning Shadows by Chris Evans – Giveaway Winners!!

That’s right, the winners have been chosen by the great Random.org and I’m ready to reveal the names of the lucky winners of what is sure to be another excellent novel from Chris Evans! 🙂

Each winner, and there are ten of them, will be receiving a copy of Book 2 in The Iron Elves Trilogy, so if you haven’t yet checked your mail, do so – there may just be an email from me! 🙂

the-light-of-burning-shadows-by-chris-evans

Here are the winners:

Anwar Sheik, Lood Du Plessis from South Africa, Neville Thompson from South Africa, Joshua Lee, Joel Simard fromCanada, Lon Braidwood, Anders Lindh from Sweden, Mark Chitty from the UK, Lorraine Weldon from Ireland, Shaheer Gillani from Pakistan!

Congrats to all of you! 🙂

Be EPIC!

 
4 Comments

Posted by on August 9, 2009 in Giveaways

 

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News and Updates!

So, I thought I’d not take up much of your time and let you know about some cool stuff I’ve found. 🙂 I’m sure many bloggers have this news, too, but there’s no harm in spreading it!

First off, here’s something that sounds a bit strange, but on reflection may not be a bad idea -it’s news regarding who has been chosen to script the games (PC, Console, Other, etc) that Red Eagle Entertainment will be doing for the Wheel of Time:

“the studio (Red Eagle) announced it has signed Hollywood scribe Chris Morgan as story director on the project.
Morgan is perhaps best known for his (arguably ignominious) reputation as the writer behind a number of Hollywood blockbusters, including such heavily panned box-office successes as The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, Fast & Furious, and Wanted.”

Okay, I’m just a bit scared, but I will say this: I’ll be optimistic until the game(s) for me to change my opinion. What do you all think? Good idea, bad idea?

Also, here’s some concept art:

WoTConceptArt

Have no idea what it depicts, but it looks cool. 🙂 Check out the full post here! And also, check out this link to wet your appetites a bit more!

Next up, Michael Cobley has released two excerpts (so far) from the sequel (and book 2 in his trilogy, Humanity’s Fire) to Seeds of Earth, The Orphaned Worlds! 🙂 Check out the first excerpt here, and the second excerpt here. Mike has also graciously let slip that there’ll be a third excerpt coming! 🙂 Btw, these are excerpts from the first draft, so they may not be the same when in the finished book!

And third, but definitely not least, this is my last reminder for the giveaway running at the moment for Chris Evans’ The Light of Burning Shadows – get your entries in!! I’ll be closing the giveaway in a couple of hours, so if you haven’t yet entered, get to it! 🙂 I’ll be announcing the winners tomorrow, so check your inbox – I’ll be needing your addresses! 🙂

Wednesday or Thursday next week I’ll be posting my review of Chris’ debut, A Darkness Forged in Fire, so keep an eye out for that. 🙂

Until tomorrow,

Be EPIC!

 
3 Comments

Posted by on August 8, 2009 in Announcements

 

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Twisted Metal SA & UK Giveaway Winners & Light of Burning Shadows Mega-Giveaway!

So, I’ve been away for a while. 😦 I know, I know, but work has been hectic, money has been tight (thus throwing the option of internet cafe’s out the window), and the flu (no, thankfully not that flu) was shitty (to say the barest minimum about my utter hatred of that evil virus), but I am back! Eventually! 🙂

First off, let’s get into announcing the winners of the Twisted Metal giveaway! 🙂 I’m posting the books off on Monday (this coming Monday), so the winner’s will be receiving the books soon! 🙂

Without any further a-do, the SA winner of the Hard Cover copy of Twisted Metal is Noelene Botha, and the UK winner of the ARC-softcover of Twisted Metal is M.E. Staton! 🙂 Congratulations, you two! 🙂 I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did! 🙂

And now, time to announce the beginning of my next giveaway! 🙂

LightofBurningShadows

There have been a host of giveaways running for this book, and with good reason! I’m reading Book 1 of the Iron Elves Trilogy at the moment, A Darkness Forged in Fire, and I’m pretty much hooked! Chris Evans is definitely going to be a force in Epic Fantasy – his style is easy and flowing, the action scenes are great, the characters memorable and the humor sharp! Look out for a review of that soon!

But back to the giveaway! Thanks to Sheryl at Sneak Attack I have TEN, that’s right, TEN copies of the book to give away! And folks, this giveaway is open WORLDWIDE!! 🙂 How do you enter?

Just send an email to my Gmail account: davebrendon (at) gmail (dot) com ! That’s it!

The giveaway will be running for a week, so next week Saturday the 8th I’ll be drawing the winners, and I’ll announce them on Sunday the 9th. That gives you all a week to get your entries in, more than enough time! And with TEN copies, there’s definitely going to be some very happy readers out there. 🙂

Let’s recap: I’ve got TEN copies of The Light of Burning Shadows to give away; the giveaway will close on the 8th of August, I’ll announce the winners on the 9th, the giveaway is open to entrants WORLDWIDE, and you can enter by sending me an email at davebrendon (at) gmail (dot) com 🙂

Star getting those entries in! 🙂

To order your copy of A Darkness Forged in Fire, click here for South Africa, here for the US, and here for the UK,

and

To order your copy of Light of Burning Shadows, click here for South Africa, here for the US, and here for the UK!

And be EPIC!

 
1 Comment

Posted by on August 1, 2009 in Giveaways

 

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