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.