James Nicoll Reviews

Home > Reviews > By Project

Reviews in Project: Doing the WFC's Homework (151)

Everybody Wants to Rule the World

Sons of Darkness  (The Raag of Rta, volume 1)

By Gourav Mohanty  

8 Sep, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework


Sons of Darkness is the first volume in Gourav Mohanty’s The Raag of Rta epic historical fantasy series.

Muchuk Und is a hero, which as he would say is an honour bestowed upon you when you had killed all those who would have called you a mass murderer.” Employed by the Daevas1 to smite their enemies, Muchuk performed, if not admirably, then effectively. Having served, he expects to be paid before returning to the human realm a nigh-demigod.

The Daevas withheld one or two details of their arrangement. The first is that while Muchuk has spent ten years serving his masters, a hundred years passed in the mortal world. The second is that the Daevas have no intention of letting their bloodthirsty servant run amok on Earth. An irate Muchuk is cast into sleep everlasting. Or almost everlasting.

Twenty thousand years later.…

Read more ➤

Fire Bird Fly

The Firebird’s Tale

By Anya Ow  

1 Sep, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework


Anya Ow’s 2016 The Firebird’s Tale is a stand-alone Russian-themed fantasy novel.

Having decreed that grim-faced Tsarevich Aleksei would marry the first person to make him smile, the Tsar proves a man of his word. Aleksei’s poorly timed smirk earns him betrothal … to Nazar, the man Aleksei saw picking the Tsar’s pocket.

There is more to Nazar than Aleksei perceives. Indeed, there is more to almost everything than Aleksei perceives.

Read more ➤

Never Grow Old

The Everlasting Road  (Floraverse, volume 2)

By Wab Kinew  

18 Aug, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework

1 comment

The Everlasting Road is the second volume in Wab Kinew’s Floraverse young adult fantasy. The first volume is reviewed here.

Anishinaabe teen Bagonegiizhigok Bugz” Holiday has vanquished her Clan:LESS rivals, but has not been able to restore her position (and income from said position) in the online Floraverse. Personal tragedy has distracted her: her brother has recently died of cancer.

Bugz has come up with a bold coping mechanism for grief. It is one a certain Doctor Frankenstein would recognize.

Read more ➤

Can’t You Hear Me?

Octavia E. Butler: The Last Interview: and Other Conversations

By Octavia E. Butler  

11 Aug, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework


2023’s Octavia E. Butler: The Last Interview: and Other Conversations is a collection of interviews by various interviewers with the late author Octavia E. Butler (June 22, 1947 – February 24, 2006). Octavia E. Butler: The Last Interview is part of Melville House’s Last Interview series. The collection includes an introduction by Samuel R. Delany.

Read more ➤

Wish You Happiness

Shubeik Lubeik

By Deena Mohamed  

4 Aug, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework


Deena Mohamed’s 2022 Shubeik Lubeik is a stand-alone modern-fantasy graphic novel.

Cairo kiosk-owner Shokry sells papers and cigarettes to passers-by. Recently, Shokry has added some new offerings: three first-class wishes.

First-class wishes are expensive, not something one would expect to purchase from a news agent. Surely, this is some sort of confidence game. However, Shokry is as honest as he is pious. The wishes are very much real. Of course, there is a catch. Several catches.

Read more ➤

Rise Up Unafraid

The Water Outlaws

By S L Huang  

28 Jul, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework


S. L. Huang’s 2023 The Water Outlaws is a fantasy reimagining of the classic Chinese novel, The Water Margin.

Lin Chong is a Master Arms Instructor for the Guard. One of very few women to be deemed sufficiently talented that she could teach despite her lamentable choice of gender, she has served the (Northern) Song Dynasty loyally.

She will be repaid very badly for her service.

Read more ➤

Girl in the Forest

Abeni’s Song  (Abeni’s Song, volume 1)

By P. Djèlí Clark  

24 Jul, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework


2023’s Abeni’s Song is the first volume in P. Djèlí Clark’s Abeni’s Song fantasy series.

Young Abeni’s village lies deep in the forest. News about the outside world is intermittent and as far as the villagers are concerned, irrelevant. Disturbing dreams and warnings from the local wise woman can therefore be ignored.

They are wrong. Their next Harvest Festival will be the last.

Read more ➤

With Pen or Sword

To Shape a Dragon’s Breath  (Nampeshiweisit, book 1)

By Moniquill Blackgoose  

14 Jul, 2023

Doing the WFC's Homework


Moniquill Blackgoose’s 2023 To Shape a Dragon’s Breath is The First Book of Nampeshiweisit.

The author has imagined a world in which dragon-riding Norse thrived at the expense of other cultures. Every land had its dragons, but so far as the Masquapaug islanders know, their dragons, the Nampeshiwe, died out centuries ago. Anequs’ encounter with a broody Nampeshiwe and her decision to collect the egg it leaves behind transforms the girl’s life and quite possibly dooms her people.

Read more ➤