Thought about reading The City of Shadow & Dust, but worried about starting a gargantuan 12-novel series now? Well, don't let me get in the way. Below is the gist of the story you'll be getting yourself into. I'm partial, but damn, do I love it. I'll let you decide. Read on -- -- --
These novels - this series in particular - did not just come from anywhere.
It has been an ongoing process.
I first imagined the series during my first year of teaching nearly six years ago, as I was writing Walls. It hit me like a freight train and immediately I wanted to get writing, but like most authors do, I shelved the idea until I had time for a new project. The idea sat stagnant in the back of my brain for years - two, to be exact.
After I completed The Reaper Trials, I knew I had to unleash the beast. It was time. I simply could not fathom keeping it hidden any longer, so I wrote the scene that will start Book 12 of the series (the final novel) and time-capsuled it for 12 years into the future.
I began outlining. I outlined every story, every novel. It ran to be about 85 pages. Perhaps later, if the series takes off, I will make that into some sort of companion text - a behind-the-scenes, if you will.
So here's the general gist. If you've read Book 1, you know a little, but there is so much more to be unearthed:
The Big Narrative:
The Great Range has been in a state of war for millennia. The Shadows have always wanted to make the land their own, but the People of the Light have won these wars time and time again, despite the Shadows' constant attempts. Brax the Finisher - given that name by his people - is the most powerful of all beings the universe has ever seen, except for the mysterious monster called the Ruganon, waiting dormant somewhere only the Prophet knows.
In fact, no living person has ever seen it. No living person wants to.
Over two thousand years before, the Ruganon defeated Brax in a battle that decimated the Great Range, killing millions of people. The Ruganon imprisoned Brax in a place called the Chasm - 800 miles deep into the ground, locked in a Shadow-Cursed cage, and forced to endure the pain of molten rock flowing just under him - never ending, never ceasing.
But now, as the story takes hold in Book 1, Brax has somehow escaped his prison and is climbing the Chasm to seek vengeance for his imprisonment. The cycle of the Ruganon has begun for a second time and all of the people in the Range fear that this means the end of their world forever.
If you're looking for some visuals, The Edge of a New Beginning (Book 1) starts in a place called the Ix'a Compound on the Western side of the world. It looks something like this:
Darkness Beneath the Dying Light (Book 2), which will be out around Christmas of this year, takes place in the jungles of the Portizu Territories in the Western-Central part of the Range. That will look something like this:
As authors like Tolkien, Rothfuss, Le Guin, and countless others have inspired me in their fantasy writings, I want to inspire others with that same joy. I hope you can see how much passion I have for this series and, as always, I promise I will put my heart and soul into it, so that you may get lost in the worlds and characters that I have built.
Check back in a couple days for more.