https://parahumans.wordpress.com/2011/06/11/1-1/ Looks like Worm starts here? Will check it out.
Just finished this one. Good writing and action and it reads like a movie or a cartoon. Just good entertainment. It’s more of an installment. ……
The chaos god Asag has been quiet since the destruction of the City of Monsters, but Monster Hunter International know that he is still out there, somewhere—plotting, waiting for his chance to unravel reality.
When Owen and the MHI team discover that one of Isaac Newton’s Ward Stones is being auctioned off by Reptoids who live deep beneath Atlanta, they decide to steal the magical superweapon and use it to destroy Asag once and for all. But before the stone can be handed off, it is stolen by a mysterious thief with ties to MHI and the Vatican’s Secret Guard.
It’s a race against time, the Secret Guard, a spectral bounty hunter, and a whole bunch of monsters to acquire the Ward Stone and use it against Asag. For as dangerous as the chaos god is, there is something much older—and infinitely more evil—awakening deep in the jungles of South America.
I have a few more non-fantasy recommendations after perusing my bookshelf.
For Sci-Fi I recommend Peter F Hamilton’s Night’s Dawn trilogy. Excellent world-building and deep mythos. It’s been awhile since I read it but I remember the series starts out by sending the protagonist to a developing world to help it flourish. I love the trope of an advanced race going to an underdeveloped world and helping modernize the agriculture, etc. First book is the reality dysfunction and the main plot is how the dead are returning to life and inhabiting the living’s bodies in an effort to band together and take over the universe. Extremely epic series.
For historical fiction I recommend Shogun by James Clavell. The series is about an Englishman who is lost at sea and eventually becomes shipwrecked on the coast of Ancient Japan. Love the culture clash of this book and is a must read. Also the tv series is worth checking out.
Another modern classic historical fiction recommendation I have is I, Claudius by Robert Graves about the life of Claudius who is a cripple whom eventually becomes the Emperor of Rome. This book and it’s sequel Claudius, The God are absolute classics and a must read. The television series is also amazing and possibly the greatest episode of television I’ve ever watched is episode 5 of this series entitled “Poison is Queen”.
Lastly, for Classical Literature I recommend The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. The greatest revenge story ever told and quite possibly my favorite book of all time.
We’re sifting through a great deal of this sort of material at our channel the Canadian CultureCorner, notably with our Epic Fantasy Reviews and Epic Fantasy Gaming shows, if you guys want to find out more.
I am trying to find a science fiction short story I once read. IIRC, it was about near-future military aviators on a bomber that is partially controlled by citizens of their host country who crash the plane and kill the aviators after misunderstanding a live-stream. What is it?
I think you are referring to ANTFARM by August Cole.
That’s where ANTFARM comes in. It’s my first new fiction since Ghost Fleet. The short story grew out of my curiosity about what would happen when swarming weapons combine with crowd-sourced intelligence analysis and man-machine symbiosis.
Check out ANTFARM and the rest of the collection here: https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/War_Stories_from_the_Future.pdf
Jurassic Park meets The Hunger Games in this stunning new high-energy, high-concept tale from first-time novelist Ted Kosmatka, a Nebula Award and Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award finalist.
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
Set in an amoral future where genetically engineered monstrosities fight each other to the death in an Olympic event, The Games envisions a harrowing world that may arrive sooner than you think.
Silas Williams is the brilliant geneticist in charge of preparing the U.S. entry into the Olympic Gladiator competition, an internationally sanctioned bloodsport with only one rule: no human DNA is permitted in the design of the entrants. Silas lives and breathes genetics; his designs have led the United States to the gold in every previous event. But the other countries are catching up. Now, desperate for an edge in the upcoming Games, Silas’s boss engages an experimental supercomputer to design the genetic code for a gladiator that cannot be beaten.
The result is a highly specialized killing machine, its genome never before seen on earth. Not even Silas, with all his genius and experience, can understand the horror he had a hand in making. And no one, he fears, can anticipate the consequences of entrusting the act of creation to a computer’s cold logic.
Now Silas races to understand what the computer has wrought, aided by a beautiful xenobiologist, Vidonia João. Yet as the fast-growing gladiator demonstrates preternatural strength, speed, and—most disquietingly—intelligence, Silas and Vidonia find their scientific curiosity giving way to a most unexpected emotion: sheer terror.
fter the War of the Gods, the demons were cast out and fell to the world. Mankind was nearly eradicated by the seemingly unstoppable beasts, until the gods sent the great hero, Ramrowan, to save them. He united the tribes, gave them magic, and drove the demons into the sea. Ever since the land has belonged to man and the oceans have remained an uncrossable hell, leaving the continent of Lok isolated. It was prophesized that someday the demons would return, and only the descendants of Ramrowan would be able to defeat them. They became the first kings, and all men served those who were their only hope for survival.
As centuries passed, the descendants of the great hero grew in number and power. They became tyrannical and cruel, and their religion nothing but an excuse for greed. Gods and demons became myth and legend, and the people no longer believed. The castes created to serve the Sons of Ramrowan rose up and destroyed their rulers. All religion was banned and replaced by a code of unflinching law. The surviving royalty and their priests were made casteless, condemned to live as untouchables, and the Age of Law began.
Ashok Vadal has been chosen by a powerful ancient weapon to be its bearer. He is a Protector, member of an elite militant order of roving law enforcers. No one is more merciless in rooting out those who secretly practice the old ways. Everything is black or white, good or evil, until he discovers his entire life is a fraud. Ashok isn’t who he thinks he is, and when he finds himself on the wrong side of the law, the consequences lead to rebellion, war—and destruction.
Ashok Vadal was once a member of the highest caste in all of Lok. As a Protector, he devoted his life to upholding the Law, rooting out those who still practiced the old ways and delivering swift justice with his ancestor blade Angruvadal. None was more merciless than he in stamping out the lingering belief in gods and demons among the casteless. His brutality was legendary and celebrated.
But soon Ashok learned that his life to that point had been a lie. He himself, senior member of the Protector Order, was casteless. He had been nothing more than an unwitting pawn in a political game. His world turned upside down and finding himself on the wrong side of the Law, he began a campaign of rebellion, war, and destruction unlike any Lok had ever seen.
Thera had been first daughter of Vane. A member of the Warrior Order, she had spent her life training for combat. Until a strange sight in the heavens appeared one day. Thera was struck by lighting and from that day forward she heard the Voice. A reluctant prophet with the power to see into the future, she fought alongside Ashok Vadal and his company of men known as the Sons of the Black Sword until a shapeshifting wizard with designs on her powers of precognition spirited her away. He holds her prisoner in the House of Assassins.
Ashok Vadal and the Sons of the Black Sword march to rescue Thera. With his sword Angruvadal, Ashok was unstoppable. But Angruvadal is gone, shattered to pieces on the demon possessed husk of a warrior. Now, Ashok must fight without the aid of the magic blade for the first time. Thera’s life depends on it.
But there is much more at risk in the continent of Lok. Strange forces are working behind the scenes. Ashok Vadal and the Sons of the Black Sword are caught up in a game they do not fully understand, with powerful forces allied against them.
Ashok no longer knows what to believe. He is beginning to think perhaps the gods really do exist.
If so, he’s warned them to stay out of his way.
They would do well to listen.
That anime made me think of this book which was very spooky and eerie. Really reminded me of “Day of the Dead” or Dia de Los Muertos from Mexican lore. Really odd book.
After science conquers mortality, the dead are segregated in Necroville, where they work to pay off their resurrection debts. The walled ghetto is off-limits to living humans, except for tonight, when a wild party and mysterious events will leave the fate of humanity hanging in the balance.
It is a few decades after a revolutionary technology has given humans the ability to resurrect the dead. The ever-increasing population of the risen dead is segregated into areas called necrovilles. Here they have created a wild culture, untouched by the restrictions of the law – except that the dead cannot stray into the realm of the living, nor the living into the teeming necrovilles, after nightfall. It is November 1, the Day of the Dead. Virtual artist Santiago Columbar, creator of drugs and ‘ware that melt and reconfigure reality for his many disciples, has grown bored with the realities at his command. There is one reality he has yet to try, the culmination of his life as an artist: He will venture into the forbidden streets of the Saint John dead town, and there walk willingly into the open arms of death. At Santiago’s invitation, four of his friends will meet in Saint John to record his death and resurrection. On their way to witness Santiago’s transformation, as the necroville erupts into the first volley of a revolution against the living, each will face danger and adventure in the wild streets of the dead…and find that life has changed forever.
” ‘Meat can’t dance, that’s what they say,’ said a voice. Behind it, a face: young, male, dreadlocked. Living. ‘Too bound up by the inhibitions of living to be able to truly lose themselves. The dead have no inhibitions, no restraints, no limits, and so they can dance.’ ” (From Terminal Cafe)
What would happen if, when people died, they didn’t really die? This 1994 book, set in a futuristic LA that is both hilariously campy and spookily prescient in its predictions of where the city is going is about the effects (including mental, emotional and legal) of nanotech processes that resurrect a recently died individual to life in another type of body, very similar to that of biological humans, or “meat” except in the sense that it doesn’t have needs for sustenance to meet and very few things can kill it. Almost everyone is resurrected, but their new lives are so radically different from their biological ones that they quickly lose touch with the concerns and issues of the still-living (even their former human companions become hazy and unreal), and live their own lives, as best they can, under an oppressive legal system which consigns all but the richest of the resurrected dead to many decades of indentured servitude.
Imagine waking up, and realizing that you are dead? In the world created here by McDonald, nanotechnolgy has led to a method for reanimating dead people. Unfortunately, those reincarnated get to spend eternity as a vast slave/labor class, supporting the world of the living.
Needless to say, this sets up a predictable scenario of rebellion. However, where that scenario goes is unpredictable and, in my opinion, quite interesting. Author McDonald has created a lush “dead” culture, and most of the story takes place in the Necroville of Tijuana on the night before and day of “Day of the Dead.” The main characters are a group of artists who meet in the titular cafe annually on this holiday to catch up with each other.
The details and substory lines grow and expand for the first half of the book, making it a bit hard to keep everyone and all their actions sorted out. For the second half, it begins an ever-tightening spiral, pulling all the details and characters back together until their final reunion.
Cyberpunk flavor without being too self-referential of the genre. The language has a lot of Spanish influences due to the setting and it provides a nice mix of feelings and expressions.
If you changed the rules which govern life and death, which govern the very evolution of the human race, what will come of those urges and fears? That to me is the central question of Terminal Cafe. Once you’ve been dead, of what are you afraid? Nothing. If you can manipulate flesh and machine with equal ease, what could you be? Anything.
“The first thing we get with nanotechnology is the resurrection of the dead.” (The second thing is dinosaurs.) Resurrection is not free: the price for most is an eternal second life of indentured servitude to the corporation responsible for resurrection, and the dead, as you might guess, are not happy about it. This forms the core premise of the story, which spins out in all sorts of ways that lend themselves to fascinating ruminations on mortality. This might be said to be the best zombie novel ever written, although the nanotech undead here are not mindless insensate cannibals but rather people with the weight of having died behind them and the future of an infinite life before them.
Never read this one. Mentioned today
After the death of his father, Elric reigns as the 428th sorcerer-king of the island kingdom of Melniboné, known as the Dragon Isle. Elric believes that, after millennia of dominating their world, the Melnibonéans have become decadent, and sees that their empire is crumbling and is now a shadow of its former glory. Only the capital city, Immryr, has not reverted to wilderness. Melnibonéans are a haughty, arrogant race who live only for pleasure and novelty. Slavery and torture are common practices.
Elric, a sickly albino, requires potions and magic to sustain his health. He has spent much of his youth on Dreaming Couches, which allowed him to learn from virtual years worth of experiences in a short time. Elric is in love with his cousin, Cymoril. Elric confides to Cymoril that he would like to bring morality and fairness to Melniboné and that he is not interested in cruelty or power, as were his ancestors.
Yyrkoon, Cymoril’s brother, also desires Cymoril and plots to take the throne of Melniboné for himself. When a fleet of invaders from the Young Kingdoms attacks Immyr, Elric leads the Melnibonéan war barges to destroy them. During the battle, Yyrkoon takes advantage of Elric’s weakened physical state and pushes him overboard into the sea.
Elric is saved from drowning by the sea god Straasha, who transports Elric back to Melniboné. Elric plans his punishment for Yyrkoon, but Yyrkoon escapes, kidnapping Cymoril. Elric makes a pact with Arioch, one of the Lords of Chaos and patron of Melniboné, for Arioch’s help in finding Cymoril. Straasha grants use of The Ship That Travels Over Land And Sea to Elric, and Elric overcomes Yyrkoon’s magic defenses. Yyrkoon places Cymoril in a spell-induced sleep and escapes to an alternate plane. Elric pursues him through the Shade Gate.
Elric finds Yyrkoon in a magical chamber containing the mythical Runeblades: Stormbringer and Mournblade. Wielding Stormbringer, a sentient sword that devours souls, Elric defeats Yyrkoon. Rather than putting Yyrkoon to death, Elric relinquishes the throne to him and decides to wander the Young Kingdoms alone and learn of the world outside of Melniboné.
The Consequences of Going Woke (Reupload)
The Dave Cullen Show
When Theo agrees to print a traveling showman’s pamphlet, he only thinks of the money it will bring in. Instead, it sets off a chain reaction that results in the smashing of the press and the murder of his master. Caught on the wrong side of the law, Theo must flee the city. Soon, he has teamed up with the traveling showman Count Las Bombas (who is actually a con artist) and his servant. The trio is soon joined by Mickle, a clever, strong-willed girl with a mysterious past. Performing feats that astound and amaze, the motley crew falls into a trap set by Chief Minister Cabbarus, who is determined to wrest power from the grief-stricken king. Now they must not only save themselves-they must save the kingdom…
The second book of Lloyd Alexander’s Westmark Trilogy explores the darker side of humanity and will leave you questioning everything.
Theo is traveling Westmark, learning about the country of which he will soon be Prince Consort. He is not surprised to find great poverty-Mickle (now known as Princess Augusta) could have told him that from her years on the street. His friend Florian could have told him about the aristocracy’s graft and corruption. But neither could have foreseen a loaded pistol in the practiced hand of the assassin Skeit. The echoes of that shot ring from the muskets and cannons of a Westmark suddenly at war—a war that turns simple, honest men into cold-blooded killers, Mickle into a military commander, and Theo himself into a stranger . . .
We analyse non-woke fantasy stories over on our channel, at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_-Se37U_nC-4FOt8jgluNw/featured
I really enjoyed virtually all the books written by David Gemmell RIP. The only one I dont recall enjoying that much was Ironhand’s Daughter. The Rigante series, Drenai series, Jon Shannow etc etc were all excellent, I plan to re-read these again as well as the individual fantasy titles like Dark Moon and Echoes of the Great Song. I have yet to come across titles by another author that I have enjoyed as much. Though I did enjoy the painted man by Peter V Brett. Have to agree, the woke fantasy novels are nothing but trash and that’s why I won’t read anything written after 2010.
I just wanted to thank everyone in this topic.
I am in the same boat, trying to find content that is not woke or, preferably, anti-woke, but it’s proven an Herculean task in 2021/2022.
Thanks for all the recommendations and please keep them coming. Like the OP said, I’d very much like to support authors that are still alive, to show them that there’s lots of people out there who reject the woke culture BS and help fund non-woke efforts.
I’ve signed up just for this topic. Glad to see that there’s ONE place on the internet where this kind of conversation is still allowed…
A recommendation or two for something recently published…
“This Broken World” by Charles E. Gannon
Amazon Link: https://smile.amazon.com/This-Broken-World-Vortex-Worlds-ebook/dp/B09KMF8HQW/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=this+broken+world+charles+e.+gannon&qid=1641389845&sprefix=this+broken%2Caps%2C77&sr=8-1
This is book one in a new series, came out only recently and has a slightly different take on the fantasy genre tropes and sets up a good world to further examine.
David Drake… This man has published both fantasy and science fiction and is a very good writer (been around for years/decades). A recent series of his, “The Time of Heroes” has three books in the series which can be found at the following…
I also found this website looking for non-woke fantasy. :) Not a lot of noise about this yet, but I’m hoping the parallel economy comes here too!
I tried the Worm web serial, and while I might have been ok with it ten years ago, I feel like its racist tropes are burned out strawmen. White supremacist urban gangs in the US? Really? Where? If that were a continuing thing, the news would be all over it: there’s clearly more demand for white supremacist crimes than supply (otherwise there’d be no need for all the hoaxes).
Anyhow, my favorite fantasy genre these days is LitRPG, and it’s hard to find good ones! Russian, Chinese, and Eastern European authors tend to be less woke.
For example, I really like the crunchy LitRPG of Arthur Stone. I also really enjoyed the Enemy of the World series.