Last one! Finally made it through all the samplers I picked up at YALC. Which means I have my desk back. Yay!
Stranger of Tempest by Tom Lloyd (Out now from Gollancz)
While this had a lot of the elements that I like about the modern style of epic fantasy – grizzled soldier type lead character, war torn world, morally grey areas – there was nothing particularly in it that made me want to lift it from obscurity onto my TBR pile. That’s not to say it’s bad, it just wasn’t enough. I’m not a big reader of epic fantasy. It’s too long, generally. It’s too much of an investment if it’s not going to be amazing. And nothing in this told me that, for me, it would be amazing. 2.5/5
Heart of Granite by James Barclay (Out now from Gollancz)
This was another DNF. I tried, I really did, but the constant military dialogue just confused me. It was about a flying unit who fly Drakes (think dragons) by sitting in their pouches and communicating with them sort of psychically. Which is a great premise, but all the formations and manoeuvres just bored me and disoriented me a little too quickly. So I moved on to the next sampler rather than drag myself through it. This is definitely a personal taste thing – there was nothing wrong with the writing. A lot of the Goodreads reviews describe it as Top Gun with dragons. If that sounds like your kind of thing, you’ll probably enjoy this. 0/5
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor (Out March 2017 from Hodder and Stoughton)
I love Laini Taylor’s writing so much. It’s effortlessly lyrical and beautiful (which must mean so much hard work went in to making it that way – my writerly admiration knows no limits) and sweeps you up in its magic. I actually made the conscious decision not to read the extract of part two, because I knew the more I read, the more I’d want the rest of the book now, dammit, and with it not being published til March next year, well, I’d rather not know what I’m missing! So excited for this. 5/5