Grimdark is a subgenre of fantasy fiction. It is often described as gritty, violent and realistic. Yes, it sometimes has familiar fantasy tropes such as swords, magic and dragons, but the Grimdark book has more of what this particular reader is looking for.
The Grimdark genre has some top class authors. Names such as Joe Abercrombie, Mark Lawrence, Steven Erikson and Anthony Ryan have all made their mark within the genre by releasing epic, bloody, gripping, realistic fantasy novels. I came across Michael R. Fletcher when I joined the Grimdark Facebook group. He was recommended to me by a friend (who is also a writer), so I decided to check him out.
I used to read a lot of fantasy novels. A few years back I had a break and started reading a lot more horror and noir. Beyond Redemption has re-quenched my thirst for the genre!
This is Fletcher’s first full Grimdark novel, and let me tell you it is a brilliant read. It’s a character driven story about the becoming of a new god from a boy groomed by a high priest called Konig. Konig is able to manifest his delusions into a twisted reality and this is where the unique magic system the flows through the book comes to life. Konig and the boy-Morgen are two of the main characters, as are a repulsive slaver called Ebrechen, Gehirn-a Hassebrand (someone able to manipulate fire) and three murdering thieves who are trying to make some big money from one final job together. The plot is quite simplistic. Everybody wants the boy-the slaver and the three thieves and Konig for their own purposes. It’s the depth of the characters that really make this book shine along with some imaginative magical powers. It isn’t an action-packed book in the sense that there aren’t huge battles that go on for page after page. There is action, but it’s quick, exciting and doesn’t detract from the story. The pacing is excellent and although there are some tongue-twisting words and names to get your mouth around it’s very easy to get into and I didn’t find it at all confusing.
At over 500 pages long, Beyond Redemption is a big book, but it is well worth your time. Fletcher’s writing will get even better as I am sure this series will. A grimdark delight awaits those willing to give this excellent novel a go. If you are a fan of any of the above authors then I urge you to give this one a try………and don’t forget to leave a little review at Goodreads and/or Amazon when you are done 🙂