Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Most Anticipated Books of 2013

2012 was a decent read. There was King of Thorns and Red Country. However, I think 2013 is a much better year. Lots of conclusions to trilogies and perhaps the biggest closer of them all, A Memory of Light. With the help of Ben from www.bestfantasybooks.com, we've compiled this list. Enjoy 

Memory of Light by Robert Jordan/Brandon Sanderson will most likely be the most anticipated book (by the masses anyways) of 2013 and it comes out in January! This is the last and final book of the Wheel of Time series. It has been a long time coming. At first there was only going to be one book after Jordan's death but Sanderson is a genius writer and knew it couldn't be finished in one. Those that groaned about this needed not to worry as Sanderson worked on it furiously and was able to get them out speedily and now the final tome will be out soon.
The Prologue is now out if you want a sample taste of what's to come. WHEEL of Time took a bit of a hit in recent years due to Jordan losing control of the plot threads, but Sanderson has done a great job at bringing it back to heel.

The Daylight War by Peter V. Brett. When I read the Painted Man, I was really skeptical because it is portrayed as one of those boys gains super power and is all powerful. I was quickly thrown off my perch of presumption and landed solidly on my backside. I loved The Painted Man (also known as the Warded Man in US) and quickly finished off The Desert Spear. The Desert Spear was quite a disappointment because the story just seemed to go off in a tangent. Things did not add up to me, however, it is a series and sometimes things don't seem right because you don't have full information. I'm looking forward to The Daylight War and will pre-order it right after Christmas!
Ben: I'm looking forward to this one. I hope Brett learned from the mistakes he made with The Desert Spear. My hopes are up though and I will be looking forward to this one. I'd even go as far as to say it may be my most anticipated book of 2013 (assuming the big hitters like Martin and Rothfuss don't release their books).

Emperor of Thorns is the conclusion to a very good debut trilogy by Mark Lawerence. King of Thorns was perhaps one of the best reads of 2012 from owner Ben. So if you haven't given this new author a go yet, perhaps now is the time just before the trilogy ends!
Ben: Prince of Thorns was a great debut with a lot of promise to the future books. King of Thorns was outstanding. This man knows how to write sharp prose. My favorite read of 2012 by far. Dark, brooking, intelligent, with a likeable unlikeable hero. Lots of sharp insights by Lawrence on the nature of man through the soliloquies of Jorg Ancraft, the hero or villain, depicting on your view.

The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson
Ben: Well, when Sanderson is not finishing off the Wheel of Time or cooking up about a zillion other writing projects, he finds time to release yet another book. And here’s my bet he’s going to have another novel and interesting magic system. Just a guess.
Enchante: Don't shoot me but I kind of wished The Rithmatist wasn't coming out this year. Hey, don't get me wrong, I'll pre-order this baby and read it in a few days but...I really wish it was a Mistborn book or even better yet a Stormlight Archive book.

The Tyrant's Law by Daniel Abraham
The Tyrant's Law is the third book in the Dagger and Coin series by Daniel Abraham. Best known for his Long Price Quartet and collaborating with none other than George R.R. Martin for some things. The Dagger and Coin series is fast shaping up to be one of the better fantasy trilogies out there – take some of Martin and add some of Abercrombie then filter it through Abraham’s perspective and wit and you have something grand. The series is a more intelligent take on the the Wheel of Time with more realistic characters who flaws and an interesting world with a deep back-story to it.
Keep an eye or two on this one folks. Abraham is quickly becoming one of my favorite writers in the genre and he has yet to publish anything that's not A quality. And if you haven't read The Dragon's Path (first in the series), your crazy!

The Dark Defiles by Richard K. Morgan
Ben: Book three in Morgan’s outstanding fantasy series. Dark, gritty, genre bending and breaking. This is fantasy gone wrong but so right. It's not a series for "everyone" and Morgan shatters the typical heroic stereotypes by featuring a gay protagonist. But it all works. If you like vicious action, flawed characters, a dark world, this series delivers. Morgan took a look at standard epic fantasy and then wrote his version of it in a way to subvert some of the norms. I'd say fans of Abercrombie and Martin would love this series.
Enchante: The Dark Defiles is the third book in The Land Fit for Heroes series by Richard Morgan. The first of this series The Steel Remains was read by a good friend of mine and she thoroughly enjoyed it. Sigh...wish I had more time to read.
(this isn't up for pre-order yet)

River of Stars by Guy Gavriel Kay
Set in the same alternate historical china as his outstanding Under Heaven, but several centuries later. If this is anything like his Under Heaven, this is a must read for any fantasy fan that likes superbly written prose, well-crafted characters, and an exotic Asian landscape.

Blood of Dragons by Robin Hobb
Hobb’s new entry in the Dragon Keeper series, a series so far that has more in common with her Liveship Traders series in tone and feel than with her Fritz Chivalry series. Typical Hobb with complex characters with plenty of conflict between them. Fans of dragons will love this series as Hobb adds the Dragons as living breathing characters with motivations (and speech!) of their own. If you liked the simplistic dragon-human relations in say a book like Eragon, you'll be stunned by Hobb's ability to create dragon characters that are real personalities.

The Unholy Consult by R. Scott Bakker
Ben: I’m looking forward to this one, the concluding novel in The Aspect-Emperor trilogy. This trilogy didn’t have the same bite as the original one, but it’s still very good.
(Not available for pre-order, no pictures!)

The Crown Tower (The Riyria Chronicles #1) by Michael J. Sullivan
Ben: Truth be told, I'm not a big fan of the Riyria series as of yet. I've read the first in the series (The Crown Conspiracy) and didn't find it very well written and the characters were clunky; I can definitely see the self-publishing history behind this series as it seemed more like a fan fic production than a real book. However, having said that I haven’t read the sequel novels and word on the street is the author finds his stride later on in the series.
Despite my ambivalence,  the series seems to have hit a chord with fantasy readers who want a more light-hearted, less witty version of Lies of Locke Lamora. Just don't expect anything too complex plot wise or deftly, witty prose.

I haven't read anything by Gaiman that I've disliked. American Gods, Anansi Boys and Neverwhere are all brilliant books. Coraline is a favourite of mine to read to the kids in class. You also know you've made it when you've made a cameo on The Simpsons.

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