Greetings all. I hope your Autumn is going well. There’s something I want to show you.
A very good friend of mine has recently published the first two installments in his new series, The Seven Virtues. When I say ‘a good friend,’ I don’t mean some random author from the dark corners of the interwebs, either–I mean that I actually grew up with him. We still talk a good bit.
In fact, I drank him under the table from a thousand miles away the other night. Mention it to him sometime.
We share a lot of the same tastes when it comes to books, and I guess it only makes sense that we both aspired to be fantasy authors. His name is Jacob Peppers, and he’s no joke. He has an English degree, and has been writing for at least as long as I have, if not longer. He published the first installment in his new series, a novella called The Silent Blade, and the first full novel in the series, A Sellsword’s Compassion, just two days ago, and they’re already getting some good reviews.
If you’re looking for something new to read, maybe to hold you over until The City Under the Mountain drops (cough cough…because it’s so late) then hop over and give his books a read. Like mine, they’re free to read for Kindle Unlimited members. While I won’t say that you’ll find a story likemine in The Seven Virtues–even though the series names are similar–what you will find is an author that was forged in the same environment that I was. Jacob, me, and our brothers all played Dungeons and Dragons together growing up, and shared a love for all things fantasy.
We also did Jiu-Jitsu together. Told ya he was no joke.
The next installment of The Ballad of the Outrideris coming in the next two weeks, and more updates to follow on The City Under the Mountain. As for Jacob’s work, I’ll let one of the recent reviews posted on his novella speak to what you’ll find if you decide to take a dive into his world. Much love and respect to you all, and I’ll talk to you soon.
On The Silent Blade…
“Apparently a chronological prequel to the first actual book in the “Seven Virtues” series, this novella tells a short-but-dense tale that leads to plenty of characterization of this one fellow in particular (no surprise, given his feature on the cover). Peppers really nailed the length, here — this is no appetizer or prologue and instead describes a complete story arc on its own, without any cliffhangers or other nonsense. A brief word from the author promises more of this guy in the first novel proper, and it’s nice to both get a feel for a character in a shorter read and still get resolution to the events of the story.
I haven’t read “Sellsword’s Compassion” yet, so the setting here was new to me. It’s a kind of darker fantasy, urban grit kind of setup, with plenty of seedy underbelly and stalwart holdouts. It works well for the kind of tale going on here — plenty of conflict, loss, action, and self-interest — and compliments the main character nicely. It doesn’t really have that shiny plastic feel I associate with a lot of more whimsical fantasy — it feels a lot more visceral, which again works with the character. It gives the feeling that Peppers really thought through what kind of world he’s talking about, and this was an effective peek into it. I’ll be reading the next one for sure.“