Young treasure hunters, imperial legions, xian’xia cultivators, heroic superhumans, and steampunk squires fill the pages of this week’s roundup of the newest releases in fantasy and adventure.
Clansman: Invoking the Darkness (Mapper #1) – Royce Scott Buckingham
Guided by a massive clan book containing tales of their ancestors, the Hilltoppers arrive in Abrogan, pledging allegiance to their King. They have crossed a forbidding ocean to another land where birds speak messages, poisonous sleep-animals lurk, warriors struggle for power and Lords bend the truth on a whim.
Ian Krystal, leader of the Hilltoppers, becomes an unlikely leader, charged with building roads, clearing a menacing bog full of savages, chasing down bands of thieves and in the process emerges a champion of the people.
Petrich is the clan’s scribe, meant to chronicle their journeys while learning the fine art of mapping from a renegade Lord. As a child, darkness sheltered him from marauding tribesmen and he carries it with him.
The emerging City of Skye is being built in the new land. King Blackpool’s nephew struggles with his power and the King arrives determined to double his empire.
Can an honest man of integrity prevail in a land of intrigue?
Coiling Dragon (Coiling Dragon Saga #1) – Wo Chi Xi Hong Shi
Empires rise and fall on the Yulan Continent. Saints, immortal beings of unimaginable power, battle using spells and swords, leaving swathes of destruction in their wake. Magical beasts rule the mountains, where the brave – or the foolish – go to test their strength. This is the world which Linley is born into, a world of mages and warriors.
Raised in the small town of Wushan, Linley is a scion of the Baruch clan, the clan of the once-legendary Dragonblood Warriors. Their fame once shook the world, but the clan is now so decrepit that even the heirlooms of the clan have been sold off. Their prospects seem dire… and yet, perhaps some power still remains within the veins of the Baruch clan. Dragons do not easily die, and neither do the dragonblooded.
Come witness a new legend in the making. The legend of Linley Baruch.
The Cross of the Last Crusade (Young Chase Baker #1) – Vincent Zandri
An ancient solid gold cross has been buried seemingly forever. Only Young Chase Baker is brave enough to dig it back up.
You know Chase Baker as an adventurer and Renaissance man who loves the ladies but who also loves finding trouble in the form of buried treasure all around the globe. But what was Chase like back when he was a teenager? Turns out, he was a younger version of his adult self.
In this, the first short novel in the new Young Chase Baker action & adventure series, Chase teams up with his two best amigos–the skinny, fun loving, Twigs, and the combative but courageous, Baily. At Chase’s urging, the three embark on a late night quest to uncover the Cross of the Last Crusade which is said to have been buried along with the body of an old Frenchman, Pierre Menands. When Chase’s “sort of” girlfriend, the beautiful Monique, joins the hunt, the band of teens face down haunted ghosts, angry cops, a speeding locomotive, rabid dogs, a murderous resurrected crusader, and finally, the zombie reincarnation of Menands himself.
The Frostfire Sage (The Landkist Saga #4) – Steven Kelliher
The Sages are dying. The gods are waking up.
Kole, Linn and their companions have survived the wilds of Center, slain another Sage and put their world on a path toward salvation.
Or so they think.
But the Eastern Dark has returned and laid claim to the power of T’Alon Rane, making the King of Ember his dark servant once more. Now, their ancient enemy marches across the frozen wastes of the north, seeking to end the life of his former ally and the last true power that can stand against him.
With the last two Sages on a collision course that could decide the fate of the world, the Landkist of the Valley have a choice to make. One between darkness and light, redemption and corruption.
For the Frostfire Sage is alive and unwell. And she has secrets to keep. And scores to settle.
Knight Country (An Adventures of Baron Von Monocle novella) – Jon Del Arroz
The Special Forces of Steampunk!
Airships, Guns, and Gadgets! The Knights of the Crystal Spire are more than ordinary fantasy knights.
Life as an apprentice knight hasn’t been easy on James Gentry. As a commoner and an outsider, he’s been ridiculed, picked on, and shunned by the other boys. But he’s determined to become one of the finest knights Rislandia has ever seen.
During his training, James stumbles upon a master knight selling information on Rislandian troop movements to a Wyranth spy. To keep Rislandia safe, he must root out the traitor and put a stop to the enemy’s schemes. Does he have what it takes?
“Knight Training” is a stand-alone sequel novella to the award-winning steampunk novel, For Steam And Country!
The Mask of Storms (Blood and Honor #1) – William Stacey
Warrior. Outcast. Hero.
Framed for theft. Hunted by the underworld. Marked for death by a dark power.
If they fail to recover the Mask of Storms, they may lose more than their lives. They may lose their souls.
When dockhand Bors is blamed for the theft of a magical artifact—the Mask of Storms—he is hunted by those who will kill anyone to recover it. But Bors is a man with a violent past and when pushed he pushes back. Now, on the run in a foreign city, his only ally is the beautiful but treacherous thief Long Tam.
But a dark power watches from the shadows.
Omega Deep (Sam Reilly #12) – Christopher Cartwright
Name: USS Omega Deep
Cost: 30 billion dollars
Noise Emissions: Undetectable by current sound monitoring capabilities
Current Status: Unknown. Last contact 96 days ago. Presumed sunk. 192 souls lost.
The US Navy’s most advanced nuclear attack submarine, the USS Omega Deep was the first to disappear. It was followed swiftly by the loss of the Russian spy vessel Vostok, and then the Feng Jian, a Chinese Aircraft Carrier.
Sam Reilly and his unique team of troubleshooters are requested at the express order of the President of the United States of America to locate the Omega Deep and determine the cause of these unexplained tragedies, before they lead to World War III.
The Price of a Drink (Right Ho, Jeeves #4) – P. G. Wodehouse, adapted by Chuck Dixon and Gary Kwapisz
THE PRICE OF A DRINK is the fourth issue in the RIGHT HO, JEEVES series, which tells of the travails of the inimitable Bertie Wooster, summoned from the comforts of #3A Berkley Mansions, London to Brinkley Manor by his imperious Aunt Dahlia. In this issue, Gussie Fink-Nottle has summoned up the courage required to address the collected youth of Market Snodsbury, but it is a liquid courage. Not only that, but he has summoned up entirely too much of it, with hilarious and humiliating consequences for everyone involved.
Adapted from the classic Wodehouse novel by comics legend Chuck Dixon and drawn by SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN illustrator Gary Kwapisz, THE PRICE OF A DRINK is issue #4 of 6 in the RIGHT HO, JEEVES series.
Regicide (The Completionist Chronicles #2) – Dakota Krout
After the encounter at the Mage’s College, Joe’s name has become well-known in Eternia. While the majority of his guild is ecstatic over the bonuses that he brings them, not everyone is pleased with his rising influence. In fact, someone has been spreading rumors that Joe is unbalanced, sacrificing comrades for personal power.
As a result, Joe is forced to recruit a team of misfits and discovers that their unique abilities complement his own. With their assistance, Joe moves forward with his plans to specialize into a more powerful version of his Ritualist class. But when the dust settles, he will be forced to ask himself a simple question: was it his actions that lit the fires of war?
Rogue Dungeon (The Rogue Dungeon #1) – James Hunter and Eden Hudson
Roark von Graf—hedge mage and lesser noble of Traisbin—is one of only a handful of Freedom fighters left, and he knows the Resistance’s days are numbered. Unless they do something drastic…
But when a daring plan to unseat the Tyrant King goes awry, Roark finds himself on the run through an interdimensional portal, which strands him in a very unexpected location: an ultra-immersive fantasy video game called Hearthworld. He can’t log out, his magic is on the fritz, and worst of all, he’s not even human. He’s a low-class, run-of-the-mill Dungeon monster. Some disgusting, blue-skinned creature called a Troll. At least there’s one small silver lining—Roark managed to grab a powerful magic artifact on his way through the portal, and with it he might just be able to save his world after all.
Unless, of course, the Tyrant King gets to him first …
A Sellsword’s Resolve (The Seven Virtues#3) – Jacob Peppers
Aaron and his companions prevented the assassination of a queen but in doing so they angered an ancient evil. Angered it, wounded it, but did not kill it, for such evil never truly dies.
An army greater than any the world has ever known marches bringing steel and death with it and somewhere a thousand-year-old evil lurks in the darkness, plotting and bending its will toward revenge.
Aaron and his companions have gathered allies to help them in the coming battle and each day his bond with the Virtue of Compassion grows stronger, gifting him greater and greater power.
But if life on the street taught Aaron anything, it’s that no one is better able to stab you in the back as those standing behind you. And as his power with the legendary creature grows, so too does an uncontrollable rage that threatens to consume him.
His enemies are many, his friends few, but no matter what happens, they will all learn the truth of a sellsword’s resolve.
Spawn of an Assassin (The Dark Assassin #3) – Steve Collier
Born of war, heir to the throne of the Blue Territory, Makeo has never lived a normal life. His brutal training at the hands of the kingdom’s greatest assassins combines with his natural talent to make him an unstoppable warrior. And an arrogant one.
When word reaches the king that their enemies are planning a massive invasion, donning armor and wielding weapons beyond their power to defeat, Makeo is determined to fight to save his kingdom.
The Wisp, an ancient and evil parasite with the power to fully control its host, has laid dormant for all these years… until now.
The Wisp beckons to Makeo, filling his head with promises of glory, of victory, of peace for all Five Territories. What Makeo doesn’t know, is that all this comes with a heavy price… his soul.
Can Makeo hold himself back from the manipulations of the Wisp? Or will he succumb to its call and release it from its imprisonment, dooming the whole world?
The Street Rules (Chuck Dixon’s Avalon #1) – Chuck Dixon and Frank Fosco
From the mean streets of Moseley to the luxurious beach houses of Diamond Beach, crime affects everyone in Avalon. And the presence of the superhumans known around the city as “specials” hasn’t necessarily made life for the average citizen any better, since the local vigilantes are as apt to demand payment for their protection as they are to provide their services for free.
The crime-fighting duo of King Ace and Fazer are true heroes, not vigilantes, as Fazer explains the difference to a reporter interviewing him for the city paper. A hero doesn’t expect thanks or payment, he helps people because it is the right thing to do. And a hero doesn’t kill anyone, ever. All he and the big guy are trying to do is make everyday life better for everyone walking through their streets, living in their city.
But even heroes face temptation.
The Tiger’s Time (Chronicles of an Imperial Legionary Officer #4) – Marc Alan Edelheit
A nobleman from an infamous family, imperial legionary officer, and born fighter, Ben Stiger is trapped in the past and cut off from everything he has known. The World Gate is sealed behind him and Delvaris the man he traveled through time to save, is dead. With this great man’s death, the future has been altered by the evil god Castor.
Stiger has lost his purpose. For the first time in a great long while, no one needs saving and no one needs killing. Stiger is a man out of his time and worse a prisoner of the dwarves.
Cast adrift in a time not his own, Stiger believes his time as a leader of men is at an end. But the gods are not done with him yet. A terrible evil looms over the Vrell Valley like a grim shadow. Castor’s dark servants are hard at work. Despite being a man out of his time, Stiger is viewed as a threat to be eliminated, for a dread destiny has been stamped onto his line from the time of Karus.
The Horde is on the march, and the Thirteenth Legion is in Vrell without a legate. There is only one man who can lead the Lost–Stiger. This is the Tiger’s Time! The question is… can the damage done by Castor’s servants be repaired and will it be enough to change his destiny?
United Cherokee States of N’America: The Knower – Bob Finley
Conner Gray gradually realized as a child that he had a unique and unsolicited gift/curse/skill: he knew things. If he’s asked a question, any question, he knows the answer. And he’s always right. And he doesn’t know how he knows.
One day Conner, now a 26 year old professional proofreader, receives an article from the Center For Disease Control in which nine experts ask what they think is an academic question: “Is it possible that a virus could sweep the world so quickly that it would annihilate up to 90% of the human population, and if so, how soon could that happen?” The wording of the question triggered an involuntary response and he ‘knew’ the answer: yes! And he knew when: just 181 days after he reads the article. BUT the experts’ answer is “no”. He ‘knew’ they were wrong. But who would believe him instead of nine experts?
He called the only friend he could trust to believe him. Together they set out on a quest to survive the coming apocalypse. 177 days. And counting.
When the Gods Fell – Richard Paolinelli
Oracle Veritas of the House of Delphi has waited for over 65 million years to tell her story to the children of Olympus. Now, in the year 2041, the first humans from Earth have stepped onto the surface of Mars. But instead of a barren world littered with long-dead probes and rovers, the crew of the Seeker will encounter Oracle and hear of a world that was once covered in seas and lakes, icecaps and deserts, plains and forests. When it was a world called Olympus, inhabited by the race of advanced immortals that called the planet home.
How Lord Zeus, head of the ruling family of Caste Olympus, was ruler of the world. But other Castes chaff under the Olympian rule. Lord Odin, of Caste Norse, and Lord Anu, of Caste Paga, have set their eyes upon the throne of Olympus. Even as the jubilee celebration of Zeus’ rule draws near, Odin and Anu recruit the leaders of the other Castes – Dine, Asiac, Afrikans and Hindi – to their cause against the mighty Zeus.
Only Caste Zion, led by Lord Yahweh, remains loyal to the throne. A loyalty proven two centuries before when Yahweh exiled his own son, Lucifer, after a failed coup attempt. But Lucifer’s treachery will not die. He waits for the rebellious Castes to strike against his father and set him free from his prison on Gaia, the third planet in Olympus’ solar system.
As the plotters move against the throne, Zeus sees the extinction of all life on Olympus as the only possible result of the looming civil war. He is left with only one terrible solution. Zeus turns to the only person he can trust to carry out his last order as ruler of Olympus.