This is book 4 of The Fall of Eldvar by Jim Galford. I reviewed book 1, In Wilder Lands, here in March 2012; book 2, Into the Desert Wilds, in November 2012, and book 3, Sunset of Lantonne, in February 2014.
The first two are a two-part subseries, “the wilding story arc”, within the larger saga of The Fall of Eldvar. Sunset of Lantonne is a standalone adventure. The Northern Approach, which debuts at Rocky Mountain Fur Con 2014 this month, continues roughly where both Sunset of Lantonne and Into the Desert Wilds end. The planned book 5, Bones of the Empire, will wrap up and complete the series.
What this means is that it is assumed the reader is familiar with the events in at least Sunset of Lantonne. The Northern Approach begins almost a year after the fall of Lantonne at its climax; but in terms of the action it follows immediately, without any synopsis.
Eldvar is a world of humans, elves, dwarfs, talking dragons and more, including wildings which are anthropomorphic animals. The story’s focus on the wildings is why the novels of The Fall of Eldvar qualify for review on Flayrah.
Seattle, WA, CreateSpace, August 2014, trade paperback $13.99 (432 pages), Kindle $2.99.
This is Book 3 of The Fall of Eldvar. I reviewed Book 1, In Wilder Lands, here in March 2012, and Book 2, Into the Desert Wilds, in November 2012. Those were a two-part subseries, “the wildling story arc”, within the larger saga of The Fall of Eldvar. Galford said on his website that Book 3 would feature new characters, an elf and a human; and no wildlings (furries). Yet Darryl Taylor’s cover for Sunset of Lantonne clearly features Raeln, a seven-foot tall wolf wildling, with Ilarra, his elf “sister” by his side. Did Galford lie?
Not exactly. The main characters in Sunset of Lantonne are Ilarra, the young elf wizard-in-training, and Therec, the older human Turessian necromancer. Raeln is only a supporting character – but you woudn’t guess it from this cover. Or from the first chapter, which plays up Ilarra and Raeln. Galford debuted Sunset of Lantonne at Rocky Mountain Fur Con 2013. Featuring a furry on the cover was a good marketing move.
And a justified one, if it will get furry fans to read Sunset of Lantonne. It is an excellent novel; Raeln is a memorable character even if he is not the star; and there are plenty of wildling incidental characters. Read it; you will not be disappointed. Also read Jim Galford’s website, especially if you have not read In Wilder Lands and Into the Desert Wilds yet. It contains a tremendous amount of background information on this series.
Werewolf fiction is borderline-anthropomorphic, and Corpus Lupus is especially so. At least these werewolves are sentient, not feral dumb beasts. But the narrator, homicide detective Lieut. Larry Highridge, and his Pack spend most of their time in this novel in human form. It is a good murder mystery/horror novel, if a rather repulsive one; just not a very anthropomorphic one.
Corpus Lupus, first written between 1998 and 2000, has the reputation of being Phil Geusz’s “darkest and most disturbing work” (WikiFur), and it is easy to see why. The setting is a world where magic is real, but necromantic magic – involving death – is the only controllable kind.
Highridge is a narcotics detective who was bitten by a werewolf, becoming one himself. He refuses to let his condition affect him any more than possible, and is transferred to the homicide department as a specialist in investigating murders committed for necromantic purposes, to give the killer magical powers. Since the most powerful killings involve the torture and mutilation of victims, he becomes hardened to being given the police’s “sloppiest” murders, often those of young children.
Ridgecrest, CA, The Raccoon’s Bookshelf, March 2006, trade paperback * (i + 236 pages).
Birmingham, AL, Legion Printing, October 2010, hardcover $18.99, trade paperback $9.99 * (both i + 236 pages), Kindle $8.99.