The Precise Moment At Which I Gave Up On Cecilia Dart-Thornton’s “The Iron Tree” and Why You Should Read Deborah J. Miller’s “Swarmthief’s Dance” Instead

This article was originally published on Ferretbrain. I’ve backdated it to its original Ferretbrain publication date but it may have been edited and amended since its original appearance.

OK, so I was OK with The Iron Tree – volume one of The Crowthistle Chronicles – to be somewhat unoriginal. It’s a fantasy novel, in the epic mould, with a swordsman riding a horse on the cover, and a map at the front, and a glossary of synonyms for “magic” and “grandmother” to boot. I think I knew what I was getting into here.

I was even OK with the plot being about a young man with a mysterious past and a magical talisman setting out for adventure with a bunch of his friends. So what if every hack author and Final Fantasy imitator does the same? At least I knew what I was getting into.

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