THE FINAL BATTLE – THE ULTIMATE PRICE The once beautiful land of Hightspall is being carved up by warring armies led by figures from out of legend. One army is headed by the charismatic brute, Axil Grandys, and the other by Lyf, resurrected sorcerer-king and Axil’s ancient nemesis. Only the escaped slave Tali and her unreliable magic stand in their way – but Tali’s gift grows more painful every time she uses it. As the armies converge on the fateful peak of Touchstone, Tali and her ally Rix must find a way to overcome Lyf and prevent Axil from using the Three Spells that will destroy Hightspall for ever.
‘For sheer excitement, there’s just no one else like Irvine’ SFX
‘Great action set pieces . . . This is the sort of book you’d pick up if you were prepared to be late for your next appointment’ BOOKBAG on VENGEANCE
The Tainted Realm (comprising VENGEANCE, REBELLION and JUSTICE) is an epic fantasy trilogy perfect for fans of Ian Irvine’s Three Worlds series, as well as fans of authors such as Terry Brooks, Robin Hobb and Terry Goodkind.
Find out more about Ian at his website, or join the thousands of fans following his Facebook page, here.
We’re proud to reveal the cover to JUSTICE, the shattering final volume in Ian Irvine’s fantasy epic – the Tainted Realm trilogy.
THE FINAL BATTLE – THE ULTIMATE PRICE
The once beautiful land of Hightspall is being carved up by warring armies led by figures from out of legend. One army is headed by the charismatic brute, Axil Grandys, and the other by Lyf, resurrected sorcerer-king and Axil’s ancient nemesis.
Only the escaped slave Tali and her unreliable magic stand in their way – but Tali’s gift grows more painful every time she uses it. As the armies converge on the fateful peak of Touchstone, Tali and her ally Rix must find a way to overcome Lyf and prevent Axil from using the Three Spells that will destroy Hightspall forever.
JUSTICE concludes the story which began in VENGEANCE (UK|US|ANZ) and REBELLION (UK|US|ANZ), that of Tali and Rix, and their quest to save their homeland from its dark history.
Ian Irvine’s REBELLION (UK|US|ANZ) is released this week, an epic fantasy novel in which characters Tali and Rix lead the revolution against an evil sorcerer’s corrupt regime. In this second volume in Ian’s Tainted Realm trilogy, former slave Tali must return to her underground homeland to free her people, while Rix battles besieging armies above.
We thought we’d celebrate REBELLION with a post on the long tradition of rebellions in fiction – here are some of the most iconic rebels we’ve found . . . but who are your favourites?
Lucifer – Better to reign in Hell than to serve in Heaven.
Milton’s charismatic depiction of Lucifer battling his creator in PARADISE LOST caused strong feelings in all who read it –William Blake said he was ‘of the Devil’s party without knowing it’. Milton definitely gave Lucifer all the best lines! One of literature’s first anti-heroes, Milton’s Lucifer influenced writers from the Romantic Poets to modern fantasy authors such as Philip Pullman, Anne Rice and Neil Gaiman.
Robin Hood and the Merry Men – He was a good outlawe, and dyde pore men moch god.
Was this Nottingham-based outlaw actually fictional? Was he a peasant or disowned aristocrat? Did he prefer a sword or a bow? We can’t be sure – so much has been lost to history! Our first written record of ‘Robyn Hode’ is found in a ballad dated around 1450, and the tale has grown since then – it’s no wonder – an outlaw who steals from the rich to give to the poor is an attractive fantasy even now.
Friends of the ABC – Do you hear the people sing?
The resistance group in Victor Hugo’s LES MISÉRABLES has become something of a symbol for doomed and idealistic youth. These ill-fated young students ultimately die on the barricades, the June Rebellion in which they took part defeated by the soldiers of King Louis Philippe I. The group’s name is a pun on ‘abaissés’ – a word in French meaning lowly or abased, which when pronounced sounds much like the first three letters of the alphabet.
The Rebel Alliance – It’s a trap!
How could we leave out the ultimate sci-fi dissidents, The Rebel Alliance, a.k.a. ‘Rebel scum’? The Alliance to Restore the Republic numbers characters such as Luke, Leia and Han Solo among its members, and was formed by senators who disagreed with Emperor Palpatine’s power grabbing ways – although some versions of STAR WARS canon actually imply that the Emperor himself had a hand in making it, never imagining that it would become a serious threat…
V – Remember, remember the Fifth of November…
Alan Moore’s graphic novel V FOR VENDETTA featured this alphabet-obsessed anarchist, the valiant, violent and vengeful V. Corrupt politicians beware! Moore drew on influence such as George Orwell’s 1984 and the contemporary politics of Thatcher and Reagan in creating his dystopian Britain. The Guy Fawkes mask worn by this character has been adopted as a symbol by the activist group Anonymous, and the masks have been worn at political protests all around the world.
This week, the follow-up to VENGEANCE (US | UK | AUS) releases everywhere. Magic is failing and there are dark days ahead for the land of Hightspall . . .
If you haven’t picked up the first book of The Tainted Realm series, you can check our the first chapter here or find out what fans are already saying about it on Ian’s Facebook page.
The action does not let up in the latest novel, REBELLION (US | UK | AUS). From the first pages you’ll be caught up in the epic struggle as Rix and Tali fight against a villain hellbent on destroying the world in order to rebuild it according to his desires. Read an excerpt below.
“Lord Rixium?” Her voice was desperate. “You gotta get up now. The enemy are coming. Coming fast.”
Rix’s right wrist throbbed abominably, and so did the back of his head. He groaned, rolled over and cracked his ear on a stone edge. His cheek and chest were numb, as if he’d been lying on ice.
“What . . . ?” he mumbled. “Where . . . ?” His eyes were gummed shut and he didn’t want to open them. Didn’t want to see.
“Chancellor’s stolen Tali and Rannilt away, to milk their healing blood.”
Why am I writing a brand new epic fantasy series when my long-suffering readers are constantly asking for the next episode in the Three Worlds saga?
I’ve spent two-thirds of my writing life on that 11-book sequence, and by the time I finished the last book, The Destiny of the Dead, in 2008, I was creatively exhausted. I didn’t want to grind out another series, full of reluctance and angst, and let my readers down with a story that wasn’t good enough. When I do write the next episode – the one that finally tells what fate befell Karan and Llian after The Way Between the Worlds – I want to be white-hot with enthusiasm.
Also, at the end of each big fantasy series I like to write something completely different, so as to freshen and rejuvenate my writing.
Three years ago I began The Tainted Realm, a new epic fantasy series set in an entirely new fantasy world. Or at least, a small part of a new world. Most of the world is covered in ice and it’s steadily closing around the last place where people still survive, the island of Hightspall, which is still ice free because it’s so incredibly volcanic. Though the eruptions have been catastrophic in the distant past, and they’re getting worse …
Hightspall, once home to the peace-loving Cythians, was brutally colonised two thousand years ago. The colonists were led by a band of Herovians, a supremacist race whose ancient sourcebook, the Immortal Text, told them that the land was theirs by right. The Herovians did their best to exterminate the Cythians and their culture, and thought they had … (more…)
I wish I knew everything I know now, because when I began writing fantasy, I didn’t have a clue about the art of storytelling.
How I began
I devoured books from the age of four, I was good at English, and I wrote all the time in my work (I’m a marine scientist). Yet when I started writing my first book 25 years ago (A Shadow on the Glass), I discovered that I didn’t truly understand how fiction worked, and the books I read on writing, worthy though they were, weren’t much help. I understood their messages but couldn’t see how to apply them to my story.
My first novel had a long gestation, because I’d been world-building for ten years before I started writing. I’d created maps the size of doors (small versions can be seen here) designed a whole world of nations and ecosystems, and worked out 10,000 years of history, as one does. I’d also spent a lot of time planning the book. At least, trying to.
But the story plan didn’t seem real. I had no idea where it was going and every idea seemed dumb and derivative. In despair, and sure the book wasn’t going to work, I started to write ‘organically’ – that’s the technical term for ‘making it up as you go along’.
April’s such a great month for epic fantasy fans, with the release of both Ian Irvine’s VENGEANCE and Helen Lowe’s THE GATHERING OF THE LOST! We wanted to celebrate by doing something a bit different on the blog – and we thought: ‘Who better to interview a fantasy author than another fantasy author?’
This is the first part of that interview, in which Helen interviews Ian about his new series The Tainted Realm. Look out for the second part, when Ian interviews Helen, this time next week!
Click through to hear all about Ian’s pet hates in fantasy, how his background as a marine scientist affects his writing, and also just what’s wrong with magic in Harry Potter…
Internationally bestselling author Ian Irvine kicked off a new series this April with VENGEANCE (US | UK | AUS), a gritty adventure for the discerning epic fantasy reader. Tali is a slave in a subterranean world governed by fear and violence. She has never seen the light of day. Rix is a young Lord of Hightspall who lives in the light but is tormented by dark, apocalyptic visions. A shocking act of violence from the past connects this unlikely pair, who must unite to stand against a powerful foe.
This is epic fantasy at its best: Irvine’s world is lovingly built, and full of action, intrigue, and depth. And deadly shapeshifting beasts! We hope you’ll share our enthusiasm for a writer “comfortably ranked next to … Robert Jordan and David Eddings and, more appropriately, the mighty Anne McCaffrey” (SFX).
Ten years ago, two children witnessed a murder that still haunts them as adults. Now a chance meeting brings these two strangers together to uncover the secrets of a kingdom and evil that will throw the land into chaos.
VENGEANCE (US | UK | AUS) is an epic tale of revenge and redemption from Ian Irvine, one of fantasy’s finest storytellers. Read an excerpt from the first book of The Tainted Realms series.
“Matriarch Ady, can I check the Solaces for you?” said Wil, staring at the locked basalt door behind her. “Can I, please?”
Ady frowned at the quivering, cross-eyed youth, then laid her scribing tool beside the partly engraved sheet of spelter and flexed her aching fingers. “The Solaces are for the matriarchs’ eyes only. Go and polish the clangours.”
Wil, who was neither handsome nor clever, knew that Ady only kept him around because he worked hard. And because, years ago, he had revealed a gift for shillilar, morrow-sight. Having been robbed of their past, the matriarchs used even their weakest tools to protect Cython’s future.
Though Wil was so lowly that he might never earn a tattoo, he desperately wanted to be special, to matter. But he had another reason for wanting to look at the Solaces, one he dared not mention to anyone. A later shillilar had told him that there was something wrong, something the matriarchs weren’t telling them. Perhaps—heretical thought—something they didn’t know.