Next Author: Robin Bridges
Previous Author: Thomas Brennan

Peter V. Brett

Peter V Brett(1973- )
Raised on a steady diet of fantasy novels, comic books, and Dungeons & Dragons, Peter V. Brett (“Peat” to his friends) has been writing fantasy stories for as long as he can remember. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and Art History from the University at Buffalo in 1995, and then squandered over a decade in pharmaceutical publishing before returning to his bliss. He also enjoys comics and role playing. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife Danielle and two cats, Jinx and Max Powers. Learn more about him and his novels at Peter V. Brett’s website.

Barren: Strong second half balances out novella issues

Barren by Peter Brett

Barren (2018) is a novella-length (just over 130 pages in my ARC version) story that answers some questions left after the conclusion of Peter V. Brett’s DEMON CYCLE series. Specifically, what happened back at Tibbet’s Brook, the small village that was home to Arlen Bales and Renna Tanner, two of the protagonists of the Cycle.

The first point I want to make has more to do with marketing and target audience than the book itself. My accompanying publicity says Barren is a good “entry point” for the series, but I’d respectfully disagree with that assessment and hope the book doesn’t get sold as such, say, on inner covers or blurbs or online descriptions. While Barren certainly succeeds in creating its own small world an... Read More

The Warded Man: Eagerly awaiting the sequel

The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett

I’ve often said that employing the usual fantasy tropes in a novel isn’t an automatic sign of poor writing; it’s what you do with them that matters. Witness the three main characters in Peter Brett’s The Warded Man: a young boy leaving his small hamlet for the larger world, a young girl trying to maintain her independent nature, a young orphan who must make his own way in the world. Anyone seen these before? Anyone? Buehler?

Luckily for us readers, however, Peter Brett does in fact know what to do with them, sharpening the standard character types with a depth of characterization that makes us care about what happens to them, and setting them in an original, often tense, plot.

The world Peter Brett creates is one that once saw an age of magic, followed by an age of science, and, following the fall of science, an age of demons or “c... Read More

The Desert Spear: Excellent sequel to an excellent debut

The Desert Spear by Peter V. Brett

The Desert Spear is Peter Brett’s very worthy follow-up to his excellent first novel, The Warded Man. The Desert Spear may not be quite as consistently good as The Warded Man, but it remains a strong book in its own right, more than avoiding the pitfalls of that dreaded second novel curse.

One way Brett avoids the second problem is by focusing at first on a character (Jardir) and setting (Krasia) that we were only briefly introduced to in book one. Similar to what he does with Arlen in The Warded Man, Brett takes us through Jardir’s youth as he rises up the tribal ranks of the desert people to eventually become their leader. Brett makes a good structural decision here by showing us Jardir’s rise via long flashbacks between present day where Jardi... Read More

The Daylight War: Breeeeeeeeeetttt!

The Daylight War by Peter V. Brett

OK, here’s the thing about The Daylight War, Peter Brett’s third book of the DEMON CYCLE, following The Warded Man and The Desert Spear. I really, really want to say, Don’t Read This Book. Honestly. No sarcasm. No humor. That’s my first instinct. Because it’s bad? No. Because it disappoints in comparison to the first two, each of which I’ve given 4.5 stars to? No. No, the reason my first instinct is to say don’t read it is simple — because you’re going to want to read Book Four immediately. And at this point, there is no Book Four. The bastard. Now, if you happen to be reading this review a year or so after The Daylight War came out, and there is an existent Book Four, then ignore what I just said. But until that point, don’t read this book. At least, don’t read this book if you don’t want to read a really good book that continues... Read More

The Skull Throne: Things are heating up

The Skull Throne by Peter Brett

I’ve been thoroughly enjoying Peter Brett’s DEMON CYCLE series from the beginning, and the most recent addition, The Skull Throne, continues to impress, even as it sidelines two of its major characters for the vast majority of the book. Fair warning, the review can’t help but offer up some spoilers for prior novels, especially the last one, which ended literally on a cliffhanger.

The prior books have shifted from emphasizing various points of view, but especially focusing on Arlen (the eponymous “Warded Man”), Jardir, and Inevera. Here, Jardir and Arlen make only very brief appearances, enough to resolve that cliffhanger closing of book three and to point us the way to major events (I assume) in book five, as the two plan an assault on the Core itself, home to... Read More

The Great Bazaar: More stories by Peter V. Brett

The Great Bazaar by Peter V. Brett

Shame on me for not having read Peter V. Brett’s The Warded Man and The Desert Spear yet. I have them on audio and I look forward to reading them — I just keep thinking that I’ll let Mr. Brett get further along in the series before I jump in (the series has been progressing slowly, but book 3, The Daylight War, comes out next February). Yet I’m attracted to Brett’s world and after reading his novella Brayan’s Gold, I wanted more, so I picked up the audio version of The Great Bazaar, another novella set in this land that’s overrun by various types of demons every time it gets dark.

Peter V. Brett explains in his introduction to the print version of The Great Bazaar and Other Stories that The Great Bazaar ... Read More

The Core: A satisfying wrap to a consistently strong series

The Core by Peter V. Brett

With The Core (2017), Peter V. Brett brings his well-received DEMON CYCLE series to a climactic close, rounding up the slew of characters he’s introduced along the way and given most of them (at least of those who have survived to this point) at least some moments of stage time for a fond farewell. I’ve enjoyed the series ever since its opening with The Warded Man, and while I had some issues with this final book, overall The Core makes for a satisfying conclusion and makes it easy to recommend the series in its entirety. I’m going to assume you’ve read the prior books, so I won’t bother recapping them, and as usual, you can assume there will be spoilers for tho... Read More

Brayan’s Gold: A perfect appetizer

Brayan’s Gold by Peter V. Brett

I’m really enjoying these little novellas that Sub Press puts out. Because they’re meant as stand-alone side-stories, they’re a great way for me to get a feel for an author’s world and writing style before jumping into a big series.

Peter V. Brett’s Brayan’s Gold is the story of how Arlen, one of the main characters in Brett’s Demon Cycle, goes on his first solo job and meets a snow demon. The episode is referred to in the story collection The Great Bazaar, but hadn’t been written until Brett’s friend asked him about the story. So, here it is.

Even though I haven’t read Brett’s The Warded Man or its sequel The Desert Spear Read More

Messenger’s Legacy: Another DEMON CYCLE novella

Messenger’s Legacy by Peter V. Brett

There are a few reasons why I haven’t yet read the novels in Peter V. Brett’s DEMON CYCLE. First is that Bill’s been reviewing them, so there’s no urgent need for me to do so for this site. (I know that sounds ridiculous, but that’s kind of what happens sometimes with a group blog.) Second is that they’re a huge time commitment — the last two were each 700 pages long! Third is that the series isn’t finished yet and I have so many unfinished series floating around in my head that I want to wrap up more of them before starting something new. However, I’ve been collecting the novels in audio format at Audible and I’ve been reading the spin-off novellas that Subterranean Press sends me. I really can’t wait to indulge myself in Brett’s world when the time is right. I know I’m going ... Read More

The Desert Prince: The next generation of THE DEMON CYCLE

The Desert Prince by Peter V. Brett

The Desert Prince is the newest installment in Peter V. Brett’s fantasy universe where humans have been battling demons for ages. The prior series (THE DEMON CYCLE) ended mostly in seeming victory for the good guys (the humans), but as is often the case in these sorts of stories, victory only lasts until the next trilogy. This new series picks up about fifteen years later, and while some characters return from the prior series, the focus here is on their children as they battle with an old demonic evil risen anew, humans who can be just as monstrous, the strictures of a too-rigid society, and their own inner conflicts.

The two first-person POV protagonists are Olive Jardir and Darin Bales, children respectively of Ahman Jardir and Arlen Bales (“The Deliverer”), the two larger-... Read More