Friday Face Off – A cover that is positively medieval
Friday Face Off / April 27, 2018

Welcome to The Friday Face-Off, a new weekly meme hosted at Books by Proxy. Every Friday two books will be lined up to be judged solely on their covers (that thing we are never supposed to do, but you know we all do it!) You can find a list of upcoming themes at Lynn’s Book Blog This weeks theme: a cover that is positively mediaeval  So, with epic fantasy, there a re a ton to choose from, but I immediately thought of Irenicon by Aidan Harte. Since there is only one cover available, I decided to compare the covers from the series.                                   My choice: Sticking with my original pick, though I debated a bit with the omnibus cover which is essentially the same just purple instead if teal. But it has the castle and the cavalry and the banner. Even the horse is all decked out. Which one is your favorite? What cover/book immediately comes to mind for this weeks topic?

Tough Traveling – Orphans

Nathan over at Fantasy Review Barn is the mastermind of Tough Traveling. What’s Tough Traveling? Pretty much, it’s a weekly feature on Thursdays where we dig around to come up with examples of common tropes in fantasy, using Diana Wynne Jones’ The Tough Guide to Fantasyland as our inspiration and guide. Nathan has invited one and all to join in the fun, so feel free to come up with your own lists and add the link on Nathan’s weekly post, which will also contain (unleash) the next weeks theme. So let the fun begin … This weeks theme? ORPHANS No one in Fantasyland amounts to anything if they still have both parents. Rule number one. Thanks to Stephanie for the suggestion (and let us all be surprised together that it isn’t in the Tough Guide). OK, since this is such an easy week I decided to give myself another criteria. I am shunning the boys such as Fitz, Kvothe, Locke and Harry Potter in favor for all the girl orphans out there! They are just as important and just as parentless, so here it goes:   Karen from Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear  Karen may have grown up as an orphan, but she didn’t let that hold…

Tough Traveling – Monsters

Nathan over at Fantasy Review Barn is the mastermind of Tough Traveling. What’s Tough Traveling? Pretty much, it’s a weekly feature on Thursdays where we dig around to come up with examples of common tropes in fantasy, using Diana Wynne Jones’ The Tough Guide to Fantasyland as our inspiration and guide. Nathan has invited one and all to join in the fun, so feel free to come up with your own lists and add the link on Nathan’s weekly post, which will also contain (unleash) the next weeks theme. So let the fun begin … This weeks theme? MONSTERS MONSTERS are likely to lie in waste areas, caves, and old ruined cities. You can usually detect their presence by smell.   Water Based Monsters in Irenicon by Aidan Harte Beneath the surface of a river that was forced through the city by its foes, lies unnatural creatures that will carry anyone who ventures too close to their death. And just to keep the residents on their toes, keep them from feeling too safe away from the water, occasionally, one breaks free and will walk the streets. They are kind like a water based zombie, drowning anyone who happens to cross its path.       Corelings/Demons…

Tough Traveling – Practice/Combat Rings

Nathan over at Fantasy Review Barn is the mastermind of Tough Traveling. What’s Tough Traveling? Pretty much, it’s a weekly feature on Thursdays where we dig around to come up with examples of common tropes in fantasy, using Diana Wynne Jones’ The Tough Guide to Fantasyland as our inspiration and guide. Nathan has invited one and all to join in the fun, so feel free to come up with your own lists and add the link on Nathan’s weekly post, which will also contain (unleash) the next weeks theme. So let the fun begin … This weeks theme? PRACTICE/COMBAT RINGS PRACTICE RING OR COMBAT RING is a sanded circle used for sparring and WEAPONS practice… It can be found attached to any school of weaponry, outside mercenaries’ winter quarters, and quite often on the outskirts of aggressive towns.   Hmm… I’m running a little late with this this week. But I have something. Hopefully it’s not nonsense. I have a few I feel like I can picture from reading, but I can’t for the life of me match them with books. I’m hoping when I look at the other lists I will have a couple of A-HA moments 🙂   Green Rider Series by Kristen Britain –…

Irenicon by Aidan Harte
4.5 Stars , Reviews / May 27, 2014

I love when a book that wasn’t on my radar comes my way and takes me by surprise. This is exactly what happened with Irenicon by Aidan Harte. I had heard of the book, recognized the cover, but honestly didn’t know much about it. When I took a closer look and realized that the main protagonist was actually female and the storyline sounded exactly like something I would normally enjoy, I had to give it a chance. This book reminds me a bit of K. J. Parker in the level of politics and strategizing that is going on behind the scenes. It has a younger feel to it than I got when reading The Folding Knife, and much more in the way of fantastical elements, but I appreciate the world building, the inter-feuding and strategizing that Harte set up. The city of Rassena is central to the story and has a history, personality of its own. To understand the characters, you have to understand the city and the politics, the factions of Rasenna. The setting is definitely intriguing. It is based on Italy and Europe and there is also an alternant history take on Christianity where the son of God…