The Rook (The Chequy Files #1) by Daniel O’Malley

Once again, I was perusing the fantasy section when, out the corner of my eye, I spotted a weird little book. On the cover I saw no swarthy ax wielding barbarians or calligraphic titles but a simple red, black, and white color scheme. The Rook, by Daniel O’Malley, written in bold, white Arial font, was the title of this oddly ... Read More »

The Golem and The Jinni by Helene Wecker

From the mind of Helene Wecker comes her debut novel, The Golem and the Jinni. Set in 1899 New York City, the story follows the lives of Chava, a female golem, and Ahmad, a male Jinni, as they try to co-exist with the local immigrant communities. The story is one of self-discovery and soul-searching as these two non-humans strive to ... Read More »

The Golden City (Golden City #1) by J. Kathleen Cheney

Historical fiction has slowly been on the rise—well, within the demographics of my reading material, anyway. There’s just something about a story that integrates fantasy with the history of our world that appeals to me—when it’s done well. And J. Kathleen Cheney’s debut novel, The Golden City, does it exceptionally well. Set in Portugal at the turn of the twentieth ... Read More »

The Grim Company (The Grim Company #1) by Luke Scull

Released earlier this year in the United Kingdom and then released in the United States in September, The Grim Company is Luke Scull’s debut novel. Welcome to the Trine, a world where wizards have murdered the gods. Nigh-immortal, these Magelords have taken control of a divided world, many of them ruling large cities. After hundreds of years of a despotic ... Read More »

John Dies at the End (John Dies at the End #1) by David Wong

John Dies at the End is a comedic horror novel by David Wong—pseudonym of Jason Pargin, one of the senior editors for humor website It was originally written as an ongoing web serial before being collected and revised into a single book. A film adaptation was released in early 2013. Seriously, this is the weirdest book I’ve ever read Even ... Read More »

Breathers: A Zombie’s Lament by S.G. Browne

Breathers: A Zombie’s Lament is the debut novel from author S.G. Browne, and it follows the first person narrative of Andy—whose major defining characteristic is that he’s, well… a zombie. Killed in a car accident and reanimated shortly after, Andy now lives in his parents’ basement and attends a zombie support group hoping to find some way to integrate back into ... Read More »

The Darwin Elevator (Dire Earth Cycle #1) by Jason M. Hough

I’d be lying if I said that Jason M. Hough hit the ground running with his debut novel. Because he didn’t. First, he jumped out of the freaking plane, then he hit the ground running. Darwin, Australia. Humanity’s last beacon of hope and the last remaining human city on Earth. An alien plague has conquered the world, turning the majority ... Read More »

Romulus Buckle & the City of the Founders (The Chronicles of the Pneumatic Zeppelin #1) by Richard Ellis Preston Jr.

Romulus Buckle & the City of the Founders is the debut novel by Richard Ellis Preston Jr., and it is a thoroughgoing steampunk tale of high adventure and action in a future dystopian United States. Don’t let your settings grow up to be cowboys A common problem I’ve found with a lot of steampunk is the way that the setting ... Read More »

The Hammer and the Blade (Egil and Nix #1) by Paul S. Kemp

The Hammer and the Blade is a series-debuting novel by New York Times bestseller Paul S. Kemp. It introduces us to the adventuring duo of Egil, a warrior-priest, and his erstwhile companion Nix, a sneak, rogue, thief, and general ne’er-do-well, as they loot tombs, quaff ale, and generally get in over their heads. Hilarity ensues. A Tale of Egil and ... Read More »

The Dead of Winter (Cora Oglesby #1) by Lee Collins

The Dead of Winter is the début novel by American author Lee Collins, and billed as “True Grit meets True Blood,” it’s a paranormal western action mystery (I know right!?). It pits the investigating gunfighters Cora and her husband Ben Oglesby against vampires and other supernatural enemies in the silver mining town of Leadville, Colorado. Certainly a novel concept It ... Read More »