When I last talked about the Books of the Raksura series, The Siren Depths had wrapped up an informal trilogy of novels by establishing why the court protagonist Moon was from was attacked by the Fell in the first place, and what the reason for the Fell to create hybrid Raksura was in the first place. (more…)

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Most fantasy novels that I’ve read work, generally, in the context of an existing society of our world. Tolkien took his cues from Nordic mythology and the Eddas. C.S. Lewis took a mixture of elements from various Mediterranean cultures and his own Christian views. Japanese period fantasy (as seen in anime, manga, live-action cinema, and books like the Kouga Ninja Scrolls) take cues from stories about youkai and oni, along with legends about the history of the Japanese Imperial family and the deities from which they draw lineage.

So, when reading The Cloud Roads, I was rather surprised to see very few connections to any real existing human cultures. However, the book also managed to execute on this without leaving me completely lost. (more…)