Two excellent fantasy novels

1) My all time favorite is The Year of the Warrior by author Lars Walker
2) Coming in second is the wonderful story Blaggards Moon from author George Bryan Polivka.

To start things off, I'd like to begin with George Bryan Polivka's Blaggards Moon. This is what I like to describe as a pirate fantasy. It is a stand alone book, and at the same time, a prequel to Polivka's Firefish series (which were enjoyable reads.)

Blaggard's Moon, is in a class of it's own. Polivka's characters are what drives this often funny, sometimes tragic story. Several story lines from a score of characters weave together, be it ruthless pirate captains, the bumbling pirate crewmen, pirate hunters, greedy shipping managers, or the main story--which is a love story revolving around Jenta, a poor girl whose beauty makes her a prize in the eyes of the wrong people. If you haven't read this book, it is excellent.

Click HERE for my full review of Blaggards Moon! And here's Part 1 and Part 2 of an author interview.

Now to The Year of the Warrior, a mix of heroic fantasy and historic fantasy set in Viking Norway around 1000 A.D. during the spread of Christianity. This is not only my favorite spiritual speculative fiction book, it is one of my top five books ever read in any genre (think The Road by Cormac McCarthy, or Of Mice and Men by Steinbeck). This beautifully written novel is an unknown treasure. Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia are considered by many to be literary classics. I would emphatically add The Year of the Warrior right beside them. In comparison to the aforementioned classics, TYOTW is bloodier, more humorous, more tragic, more raw and real. It is honest. And it is also a gripping battle between good and evil, pagan dieties and God.

If you want my full review of TYOTW Click HERE! Or check out some of the Amazon reviews on it HERE. And I also interviewed Mr. Walker on my blog a while back, click HERE for that!

Also, The year of the Warrior is out of print, but it is available electronically at Baen books HERE! (Get it! Or fore-go reading an incredible story!!)

Pictured to the left is Walkers newest book, West Oversea. It is a follow up novel to The Year of the Warrior and it is also excellent. For my review of West Oversea click HERE.


Budd said...

thanks for the reviews.

Angie said...

Thanks for the recommendations. I love pirates. And Vikings. I will definitely have to read these two.

Brandon said...

Hi Budd and Angie,
Definitely check these books out!

Rachel Starr Thomson said...

I am very almost convinced to buy The Year of the Warrior (I don't often buy on a whim. And I have WAY too many books to read. But I'm almost there ...). I thought Blaggard's Moon was incredible--of all the books we've reviewed since I joined the tour (a year ago? Or so?) it was the most literary, the most challenging, the most LINGERING of any of them. I voted for it for the Clive Staples Award. Thanks for helping bring more attention to it :).

Sarah Sawyer said...

I've seen Lars Walker mentioned several different places and always in a positive light. I wasn't sure if his books would appeal to me, but the scales are tipping in favor of trying them out. So thanks for the recommendation!

Mike Lynch said...

Brandon, as always, very good reviews of the stories. Maybe you should do this for a living. ;)


Brandon said...

Hi Rachael,
Glad I was able to (possibly/almost) convince you to buy on a whim! :)

Yeah, the only reason you might not like it is if you'd rather not deal with the topic of pain and suffering. It's a very brutal story with more heartache than victory, but it is certainly redemptive.

Well, I try :)

Fred Warren said...

I think everybody's reading list is going to be a lot longer after this week.

I loved Blaggard's Moon too, and pirate stories aren't usually my cup of tea. The names(and nicknames)were genius.

Brandon said...

Fred, I agree! :)

Phyllis Wheeler said...

I agree that the author of Blaggard's Moon, George Bryan Polivka, is some author. After reading Blaggard's Moon, I read his Trophy Chase trilogy. Blaggard's Moon involves one of the same characters. Polivka has an amazing way with words. I loved that trilogy. I wish it were better known.

Keanan Brand said...

HUGE fan of Blaggard's Moon, and now I'm gonna have to go get The Year of the Warrior -- sounds like my kind of book! Thanks for putting the word out on a book I've never encountered, but will now definitely add to the library.

Brandon said...

I really enjoyed the trophy chase series too. Polivka's a great author. I wish he'd keep writing.

When you read The Year of the Warrior, you'll have to let me know what you think!

Reid Kemper said...

Good suggestions. I like C.S. Lewis' Space Trilogy (Out of the Silent Planet, Perelandra, and That Hideous Strength).

KM Wilsher said...

I read Year of the Warrior after you posted about it a while back. An intense ride with many passages highlighted :) A keeper! (guess I'll pick up the others now)

Brandon said...

Reid, Yeah, I love Lewis' sci-fi series too :)

KM, Yes! Pick up Blaggard's Moon and the sequel to The Year of the Warrior, WEST OVERSEAS. There both great stories :)

Sheila Deeth said...

Okay, much to read. Will come back to read. Meanwhile, much to catch up on (and maybe write if brain will get in gear).

Tyrean Martinson said...

I love your review. I'll have to check out that Year of the Warrior - sounds great!