Search Results for: castles

Black Gate Online Fiction: “Falling Castles” by Jamie McEwan

By Jamie McEwan This is a complete work of fiction presented by Black Gate magazine. It appears with the permission of Jamie McEwan and New Epoch Press, and may not be reproduced in whole or in part. All rights reserved. Copyright 2013 by New Epoch Press. -1- The night before battle, King Bertham of Luria waited up late, in his tent by the field of Falsea, expecting his son Tanek to join him at any moment. Prince Tanek never came….

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New Treasures: Dream Castles: The Early Jack Vance, Volume Two

I spent this past weekend at Capricon 33, a local Chicago science fiction convention. The panels and readings were excellent, and perhaps the highlight was a Saturday night panel titled “Judging a Book by Page 119.” Steven Silver, Rich Horton, Kelly Strait, and Helen Montgomery read page 119 of some of their favorite novels, and the audience was left to guess the book. Someone in the back row correctly identified Poul Anderson’s The High Crusade, and I was pretty close…

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Vintage Treasures: The Augmented Agent by Jack Vance

The Augmented Agent (Ace Books, September 1988). Cover by Terry Oakes I need to read more Jack Vance. It’s not hard to do. Virtually all of his short fiction has been collected over the years, in places like the five-volume The Early Jack Vance, edited by Terry Dowling and Jonathan Strahan, and the massive The Jack Vance Treasury. Of course, those are small press collections, and if you’re looking for a more affordable way to dip your toe into the…

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Feminine Horror Works Better: A Darker Shade of Noir edited by Joyce Carol Oates

A Darker Shade of Noir (Akashic Books, August 22, 2023) Among the plethora of new anthologies of horror stories continuously produced by little-known editors, minor authors and obscure publishers, where very few tales are worth reading, here’s finally an above average anthology. Devoted to so called “body horror” and including only women authors, the volume is edited by Joyce Carol Oates, a well respected, famous writer herself, who certainly demonstrates her good taste in her selection of the stories. Her…

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New Treasures: Silver Under Nightfall by Rin Chupeco

Silver Under Nightfall (Saga Press trade paperback reprint, July 25, 2023). Cover by Avery Kua It’s Friday before a long weekend, and there’s a host of books in my to-be-read pile vying for my attention. But it’s the end of summer and I’m in the mood for something different, so the title I plucked from the pile is Silver Under Nightfall, the adult fiction debut from the author of the popular Bone Witch trilogy, Rin Chupeco. What’s so intriguing about…

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Ellsworth’s Cinema of Swords: Deuces Wild

The Swordsman II (Hong Kong, 1992) In our last Cinema of Swords article, we talked about sequels gone wrong, follow-up films to surprise hits that just went off the rails. But sometimes, at the other end of the spectrum, you get sequels done right, movies that take the strengths of the first film in a series and then build and improve on them. As an example of this, I don’t think we can do better than three wuxia films from…

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Gary Con Report: A Virtual Tour of Black Blade Publishing

Allan T. Grohe Jr. in the Black Blade Publishing booth, a mobile pilgrimage site for old school gamers Gary Con! The tiny annual gathering that grew out the impromptu gaming event at Lake Geneva’s American Legion Hall after Gary Gygax’s funeral in March 2008 has now been going strong for fifteen years, and has grown into my favorite gaming convention. I attended Gary Con II in 2010 (my photo essay coverage of that ancient event is here), and was frankly…

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Monsters in a Mist-locked Kingdom: The Shepherd King by Rachel Gillig

One Dark Window and Two Twisted Crows (Orbit Books, September 27, 2022, and October 17, 2023). Cover design by Lisa Marie Pompilio I enjoy a good fairy tale. Also a well told-gothic romance. My true love, of course, is monster movies. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a novel that took a stab at mixing all three. At least, not until I read this tasty copy on the back of One Dark Window: Elspeth Spindle needs more than luck to…

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An Adventure to be Had: A Journey Through the Art of Darrell K. Sweet

The Arrival of Gandalf, Darrell K. Sweet (2010) “A Sweet cover promised an adventure to be had.” — Irene Gallo, Tor.com Growing up a child of the late 60s, I stumbled my way into fantasy novels in the dying years of the 70s and through into the 80s. Across this time, there was one man who influenced the books I chose to read more than any other, and by quite a significant margin. No, it was not a particularly skilled…

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