Steven Erikson’s New Book Is Out! has a non-spoilery review of Forge of Darkness, the first book in Erikson’s new Kharkanas trilogy, here. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a huge fan of his Malazan Book of the Fallen novels, so I’m pretty excited to read this.

Here’s a snip from the review which testifies to Erikson’s mastery of eon-spanning, anthropological stroytelling:

So how does Steven Erikson deal with these potential pitfalls in Forge of Darkness, the first novel of a trilogy set before his massive Malazan Book of the Fallen (MBoF) series? He sets the prequel so far in the past—thousands of years—that any lines connecting the dots have either long since faded out of sight over the horizon (because events and people have been forgotten) or have curved out of joint (because events and people were distorted into myth), thus freeing himself from the plot/character constraints that dog so many prequels.

The truly brilliant twist in Erikson’s method, however, is that many of his characters are so long-lived that they actually span that time period. You loved Anomander Rake in Malazan? No problem, he’s still here. But because time has lost and/or distorted so much, a lot of what you thought you knew about him was wrong or wasn’t the full story.

With this singular stroke Erikson frees his creativity, giving himself a nearly blank canvas to work on while retaining the characters that so captivated his audience the first time around. It’s the best of both worlds. As a side luxury, it also highlights two of his major themes—the ways in which story (“made up”) and history (“really happened”) often blur together and the way the present is continuously and eternally reshaping itself in response to the past. It’s sheer evil genius. And it absolutely works.”

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