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Overall Review: 4/5-Very Good

H. Wolfgang Porter’s Tales From The Long Road series returns, after the whodunit mystery of The Gray Man, going into full-blown fantasy adventure mode with Book Of Dragon’s Teeth. While this book is technically a sequel to The Gray Man, it can be easily picked up and read by any newcomer to the series.

When a cadre of elemental sorceresses loses a magical artifact of utmost importance to a cutpurse, when South City officials and other people in positions of power begin to drop like flies and even the Gray Man finds himself in a situation that goes way over his head, then South City begins to slowly but certainly descend into utter political (and later on sorcerous) chaos, which threatens to envelop the world.

I was glad to see the return of some of the series’ staple characters (Cloud Dancer chief among them) and I particularly enjoyed Porter’s fast-paced style. His presentation of a fantasy world that is thankfully not plagued with the usual sequelizing power-creeps that have become a staple of the genre was indeed a breath of fresh air, as well as his choice to move deftly away from the grim noir tone of The Gray Man and sashay into the colorful world of high-fantasy adventure. Also, telepathic evil water-godesses, flying ships, hot elf maidens and the good kind of magicpunk, the one that doesn’t go on forever with pseudoscientific theorems.

Once again, the cover work falls a bit short, a sore point that I hope will be remedied in future publications of Tales From The Long Road. The minimalistic effect unfortunately hurts a book that is otherwise chock-full of wholesome fantasy goodness. If you want something other than grimdark fantasy novels and have gotten tired of overpowered individuals spouting cryptic foreshadowing, then this book is for you.

The Book of Dragon’s Teeth is published by DEU Publishing Blytheville
Review by Konstantine Paradias

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