cover image Erekos


A. M. Tuomala. Candlemark & Gleam (, $19.95 trade paper (311p) ISBN 978-1-936460-03-8

Debut author Tuomala poetically crafts a complex tale of war and love. Swamp witch Achane loves her dying sister so much that she traps the young woman's soul in her corpse as a zombi. Inspired by this tragic act, King Milaus of Erekos, who has been too long at war while his land is ravaged by a terrible flood, kidnaps Achane and asks her to raise him an army of the dead. The motives and actions of the gods are wrapped into the stories of peasants and kings, intertwined so that it's hard to see where the divine ends and the mortal begins. Tuomala's deft creation of a complex world, filled with diverse cultures, ethnicities, and styles of magical practice, is couched in beautiful language that sweeps the reader along on an adventure full of unexpected endings and consequences. (Sept.)