Blog Archive

View My Stats
Monday, November 6, 2017

The Fifth SPFBO Semifinalist Update (By Mihir Wanchoo)


So far we have had four semifinalists and each book has been of a different kind. It seems that this time around, we at Fantasy Book Critic have an abundance of richness in the variety of titles, genres and quality. As we are getting through our lot, we are down to the last fifteen titles and it’s becoming tougher & tougher to sort through the titles.

As with our previous lots I’ve tried to read at least five chapters or 20% of the book (whichever was longer). However with this lot, all of the books were so much fun that I read through all of them. So here are my concise thoughts on each of them:

Where The Waters Turn Black by Benedict Patrick – This is the second standalone volume in the Yarnsworld series and it is a wonderfully heartwarming story. The plot has a very folksy charm to it and the main character was one of the most engaging ones I’ve read about recently. All in all, this volume made me a big fan of Benedict Patrick and the unique world he has weaved.

The Arbiter by M.M. PerryThe Arbiter was an interestingly dark story and the way the author streamlined that darkness was fun to read. I got a strong Terry Brooks vibe in the way the author set up the story and the characters as well. This story touches upon racism & slavery in a very quick way and while this seems to be a standalone story, I wish the author writes more in this milieu.

The Half-Killed by Quenby OlsonThe Half-Killed is and interesting historical story with strong supernatural undertones. This story was an excellent surprise and I have to point out how much I enjoyed Quenby Olson's  characterization and plot. This book was one of those books that I didn't want to complete because of how much I was enjoying the story.

The Waterfall Traveler by S.J. LemThe Waterfall Traveler is an interesting title that combined YA fantasy and engaging characters. I liked this title because of it's main character Ri and in spite of its YA nature (as I'm not a big YA fan). However the plot pace was a bit slow in places and the ending thankfully made up for it (while it was predictable, it was still a lot of fun to read).

Windsworn by Derek A. SiddowayWindsworn was an intriguing book that focuses on Gryphons and I liked that aspect. This book reminded me a lot of Eragon  (but better written) with regards to the training & bonding aspects between the main character & her gryphon. The gryphons in the story aren't at the same level as those featured in The Black Gryphon by Mercedes Lackey but since this is the first volume of the trilogy, I could overlook that. This book was so enjoyable that I wanted to read more in this trilogy because of how the author utilized the tropes and how enjoyable the story was. 


In this lot, four books really struck my eye and it was a tough call between The Arbiter, The Half-Killed, Windsworn & WTWTB and ultimately I had to go with the book which was the most unique in this lot because of its unusual world setting and charming characters. So without any further adieu our fifth semifinalist is Where The Waters Turn Black by Benedict Patrick.

My commiserations to all the other four authors. This was a tough call and I want to give a special shoutout to Quenby Olson & Derek Siddoway. Their books deserve a wider readership and I would love to review their future books on our blog.

0 comments:

Follow by Email

NOTEWORTHY RELEASES

Click Here To Order “Taerak's Void” by M. R. Mathias!!!
Order HERE

NOTEWORTHY RELEASES

Click Here To Order “Infernal Machines” by John H. Jacobs!!!
Order HERE

NOTEWORTHY RELEASES

Click Here To Order “Skullsworn” by Brian Staveley!!!
Order HERE

NOTEWORTHY RELEASES

Click Here To Order “A Game Of Ghosts” by John Connolly!!!
Order HERE

NOTEWORTHY RELEASES

Click Here To Order “Queen Of Swords” by R. S. Belcher!!!
Order HERE

NOTEWORTHY RELEASES

Click Here To Order “A Dragon Of A Different Color” by Rachel Aaron!!!
Order HERE