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C.E. Murphy

c.e. murphy review(1973- )
C.E. Murphy
writes urban fantasy. She also writes romances under the name Cate Dermody. Read excerpts at C.E. Murphy‘s website.

Heart of Stone: Worthwhile fix

Heart of Stone of C.E. Murphy

C.E. Murphybegins Heart of Stone, the first of the Negotiator books, with our main character “Grit” being shadowed by a Gargoyle as she runs through Central Park. The Gargoyle, Alban, is a member of the few Old Races that are hidden in plain sight from the rest of humanity. His tragic history and how it compels him and leads him to eventually interact with Grit is the meat of the tale.

Murphy creates a plausible background and history for this story, but her main character is cookie-cutter urban fantasy: She’s smart, she’s athletic, and she’s a maverick who fights against injustice… If you read urban fantasy, then you know where this is going.

Murphy's supporting characters are better, though. From Alban the Gargoyle to the quirky bookstore clerk who happens to know a whole bunch a... Read More

The Queen’s Bastard: Prose is lovely; can’t get a grip on the heroine

The Queen's Bastard by C.E. Murphy

On paper, The Queen's Bastard is right up my alley. Court intrigue plus magic plus sex? Where do I sign up? I've seen comparisons to the Kushiel series and it's not hard to see why; it's partly the intrigue/magic/sex combination and partly the prose, which is lush and has moments of exquisite beauty. It was the prose that hooked me from the first page.

Unfortunately, other factors "unhooked" me later in the book, and now I'm three-quarters of the way through The Queen's Bastard and not really feeling the urge to go on.

First of all, having the Queen's secret illegitimate daughter become a spy is requiring a lot of suspension of disbelief on my part. One would think Queen Lorraine would want t... Read More

A Fantasy Medley: Wish it was longer

A Fantasy Medley edited by Yanni Kuznia

FORMAT/INFO: A Fantasy Medley is 136 pages long divided over four short stories and is published by Subterranean Press in two editions: A fully clothbound hardcover limited to 3000 copies and a numbered hardcover limited to 200 copies and signed by the authors and editor. Dust jacket by Kristy Doherty.


1) “Zen and the Art of Vampirism” by Kelley Armstrong. “Zen and the Art of Vampirism” is an urban fantasy tale with all of the usual trimmings including a female protagonist, a contemporary setting, supernatural elements, humor, etc. The story is actually pretty interesting and follows a lesbian Japanese vampire who uses wits instead of violence to p... Read More

Urban Allies: Will please many fans of urban and paranormal fantasy

Urban Allies edited by Joseph Nassise

I’m always impressed when authors work together, and in Urban Allies, editor Joseph Nassise has managed to pair up twenty authors who not only collaborate, but merge their own characters into ten brand-new and original adventures. Each story shares a similar theme: popular characters from existing series or novels meet up and must join forces in order to defeat a common threat. Since these are urban fantasy authors, every story has a supernatural or paranormal aspect, though the situations and resolutions are completely unique to each tale, ranging the gamut from a haunted house, ghosts, magic of all stripes, plenty of demons, and much more.

As a genre, urban fantasy tends to feature protagonists who embody a certain type of wish-fulfillment, depending on the author and intend... Read More

More by C.E. Murphy

The WorldWalker — (2010-2011) Publisher: ACROSS TWO EXTRAORDINARY WORLDS, TRUTH IS THE DEADLIEST MAGIC. Though gifted with an uncanny intuition that allows her to discern when someone is lying, Lara Jansen is sure there’s nothing particularly special about her. All that changes when a handsome but mysterious man enters her quiet Boston tailor shop and reveals himself to be a prince of Faerie. What’s more, Dafydd ap Caerwynn claims that Lara is a truthseeker, a person with the rare talent of being able to tell truth from falsehood. Dafydd begs Lara to help clear his name by solving his brother’s murder, of which Dafydd himself is the only suspect. Acting against her practical nature, Lara agrees to step through a window into another world. Now caught between bitterly opposed Seelie forces and Dafydd’s secrets, which are as perilous as he is irresistible, Lara finds that her abilities are increasing in unexpected and uncontrollable ways. With the fate of two worlds at stake and a malevolent entity wielding the darkest of magic, Lara and Dafydd will risk everything on a love that may be their salvation — or the most treacherous illusion of all.

fantasy book reviews C.E. Murphy The Worldwalker 1. Truth Seeker 2. Wayfinderfantasy book reviews C.E. Murphy The Worldwalker 1. Truth Seeker 2. Wayfinder

Story Collection:

fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsBaba Yaga’s Daughter: And Other Stories of the Old Races — (2012) Publisher: Ancient rivals, worst of friends, best of enemies: dragonlord Janx and master vampire Eliseo Daisani are the threads upon which a tapestry of lives and loves are woven across the centuries. From the coldest Russian nights to the heat of Chicago’s greatest fire, nothing brings the immortal adversaries together — or tears them apart — like a woman. And there is always a woman. Vanessa Grey has been at Daisani’s side for decades, but the secrets borne by a witch may be her undoing. Baba Yaga’s daughter has plots that are decades in the hatching, but they may only succeed if Margrit Knight, named ‘the Negotiator’ by Daisani and Janx themselves, will work with her. And there are others: the deadliest vampire hunter mankind has ever known, and a woman for whom the Old Races are a wonder to walk away from. Revisit C.E. Murphy’s world of the Old Races with ten stories that delve into the past and future of the two most beloved characters from her urban fantasy trilogy The Negotiator!