BOOK OF IRON
Bear’s latest is a prequel to her 2010 novella, “Bone and Jewel Creatures.” Set many years before events in the previous tale, this stand-alone story features evocative, lush prose and fantastic worldbuilding, yet the strange world explored by the heroic team is never fully explained to readers.
When a trio of visitors approach Prince Salih for help in finding the ancient city of Erem, Salih not only grants them access but goes along with his trusted companions Bijou the Artificer and Kaulas the Necromancer. Amid the dangerous badlands and ruins of Messaline, where the living may not enter on foot, the truth of what the foreigners seek is revealed. If they are to survive on this quest and keep ancient powers protected, both teams must learn to trust and combine their magical talents. (SUBTERRANEAN, Sep., 160 pp., $20.00)