reviews
Heart of a Dragon (Dechance Chronicles #1) by David Niall Wilson Book Review
15, Aug

4.5/5

Disclaimer: I know the author personally and have done projects with him. I'll try and keep the review as unbiased as possible, though. Still, take my review with a grain of salt and judge for yourself.

THE DECHANCE CHRONICLES follow the adventures of Donovan Dechance, a gentleman wizard who is the most powerful wizard in the West Coast city of San Valencez. He's more or less the opposite of Harry Dresden, being a cultured gentleman scholar that is more like Doctor Strange or Titus Crow than a rough and tumble street mage. Which is ironic because the first plot is about the man attempting to stop a gang war from destroying two feuding gangs.

Lasombra (Clan Novel #6) by Richard E. Dansky Book Review
04, Aug

4/5

LASOMBRA is the sixth novel in the Clan Novel series that began with TOREADOR and will continue until it reaches thirteen volumes with a bonus anthology. It is the trademark series of Vampire: The Masquerade and was written roughly between the end of 2nd Edition and the beginning of its Revised. Gehenna, the apocalypse of vampires, is nigh with a war being fought between both the Camarilla (evil vampires) and the Sabbat (eviller vampires).

Chicago by Night (Vampire: The Masquerade 5th Edition) by Onyx Path Publishing Book Review
31, Jul

5/5

CHICAGO BY NIGHT 5TH EDITION is technically the third edition of the seminal Chicago by Night city book supplement for Vampire: The Masquerade. Way back in 1991, the book was released for the then-new series about playing tragic misunderstood creatures of the night a decade before Twilight made it uncool. The book was a shocking change the kind of books present from Dungeons and Dragons or even Call of Cthulhu. It was adult, edgy, racially diverse, sexually diverse, and full of complicated politics your player characters were meant to involve themselves in without shooting up the place. Well, yeah, they'd probably shoot up the place anyway but it wasn't advised.

Redemptor (Valducan #4) by Seth Skorkowsky Book Review
22, Jul

REDEMPTOR by Seth Skorkowsky is the latest of the Valducan series. I'm very fond of this urban fantasy series and its premise: that there is an organization of monster hunters armed with magical weapons that allow them to kill the hundreds of demons afflicting the Earth. Each book has a different protagonist but often has guest stars of the original cast. This book, Redemptor, is unique in that it is named after a villain's weapon rather than one of the heroes' weapons.

Villain's Deception (The Shadow Master #3) by Michael Gibson Book Review
18, Jul

4.5/5

VILLAIN'S DECEPTION is the third novel in the Shadow Master series. The Shadow Master, Jackson Blackwell, is a consulting villain who runs an agency that essentially educates supervillains and Dark Lords in the finer art of being bad guys. Jackson is a paid Evil Overlord's List and gets to indulge in his sadistic desire to put down the cliche of his clients. Free admission here, I met Michael Gibson in a writing group and loved one of his novels so much that I wrote a Foreword for it. I also am terminally biased towards novels about supervillains or antiheroes. It comes with being the author of the Supervillainy Saga.

Ventrue (Clan Novel #5) by Gherbod Fleming Book Review
12, Jul

4.5/5

CLAN NOVEL: VENTRUE by Gherbod Fleming is the fifth novel of the Vampire: The Masquerade Clan Novel series. It is a series published in 1999 and told a thirteen novel story about the conflict between Sabbat (bad vampires) invading the cities belonging to the Camarilla (less bad vampires). A magical artifact called the Eye of Hazmiel was serving as a wild card during it and each new book's protagonist was a glimpse into one of the individual undead's journey. Each book also served as an illustration about what a specific clan was all about.

In Numina (Stories of Togas Daggers and Magic, #2) by Assaph Mehr Book Review
09, Jul

Urban Fantasy tends to come in two varieties. The first is a female heroine who is a dhampir, witch, or shifter who is investigating some horrible series of crimes while not quite fitting into either the human or supernatural world. The second is a male protagonist who is usually a wizard, loosely based on John Constantine (or Harry Dresden) and snarky as hell. Before you think I'm criticizing this, I should mention that I wrote I WAS A TEENAGE WEREDEER about a snarky investigator caught between two worlds and THE SUPERVILLAINY SAGA about a male wizard based in part on Harry Dresden.

A Murder in Absentia: Urban Fantasy in Ancient Rome (Stories of Togas, Daggers, and Magic Book #1) by Assaph Mehr Book Review
01, Jul

4.5/5

A MURDER IN ABSENTIA tackles what is a common problem in fantasy and tackles it in an amusing way. One of the bigger issues in the genre is that almost all of it takes place in a faux-Europe during the Middle Ages. This series takes place in a fantasy version of Ancient Rome and fully immerses itself in the unique customs as well as culture to make an entertaining 30 A.D. murder mystery. The series also incorporates sorcery, Mystery Cults, and other wackiness that enhances the tale.

Setite (Clan Novel #4) by Kathleen Ryan Book Review
28, Jun

5/5

The Followers of Set hold a special place in my heart. They are the Set-worshiping, Caine-rejecting vampires who went from being one of the most ridiculous Clans in Vampire: The Masquerade to one of my all-time favorites. Presently, they hold a number #2 position for me in the setting with only Clan Malkavian ranking higher in people I'd want to be Embraced by. The Followers of Set are a group that is easy to get wrong but amazing if you get them right and a large part of why I love them is due to this book.

Gangrel (Clan Novel #3) by Gherbod Fleming Book Review
25, Jun

4.5/5

It's interesting how re-reading a book can change your opinion of it as well as reveal elements you were blind to on your first read-through. I read Clan Novel Gangrel in June 1999 at the age of 19. I had recently dispersed myself of fundamentalism for liberal Christianity (yes, a fundamentalist Vampire: The Masquerade player) and was only beginning to become aware of the diversity in the world around me.