I will assume that most of you who frequent this site have been readers for quite sometime. More than likely for most of your life. I began reading a little later than most. I learned to read in the 1st grade, but never really fully grasped “books” till the 3rd grade. I was lucky in that I was diagnosed dyslexic fairly early and had a string of amazing teachers who went the extra mile for me. I’m glad they did, because in the 3rd grade something happened. I read my first real “book”. I had finished Stuart Little on my own time with no lessons or guidance from teachers. It was an amazing experience for me and changed my life forever. I demolished E.B. White in just a short while. Then on to Judy Blume and those Choose Your Own Adventure books.

I quickly outgrew my own demographic and by the 4th and 5th grade I was consuming more and more mature stuff. I was still reading Choose Your Own Adventures (What can I say? They were awesome). I had an older brother who I was quite sure was the king of all things awesome. He was way into fantasy. He loved Conan, Gor and, of course, Lord of the Rings. After I finished his Conan Magazine collection, he told me I should read The Hobbit. I finished The Hobbit in the 4th grade, and my reading life once again took a major turn.

Seeking more like The Hobbit, I finished the rest of LOTR and attempted The Silmarillion and it was there that I had finally met my match. A little humbled by my attempt on The Silmarillion, I decided to go back to reading things in my own age group while I slowly devoured my local library’s Fantasy catalog. I dabbled in SciFi and Horror a bit, too. I read some Non-Fiction and Mystery, but Fantasy was home and has remained that way ever since.

That’s the story of how I grew into Fantasy. I would like to know how you discovered Fantasy. Was it a family influence? Was it by accident? Maybe, like me, a little bit of both? With my brother being a Fantasy fan and my voracious reading habits, I was destined to cross paths with Fantasy at some point, but maybe your path wasn’t quite so direct as mine. I’d like to hear about it. My favorite will get a copy of Devon Monk‘s newest Steampunk novel Dead Iron, the start of a new series. Compliments of Roc Books. (US only.)

From Roc Books:fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews

“Dead Iron is Devon Monk’s foray into the mesmerizing, up-and-coming steampunk genre. Known for her popular Allie Beckstrom series that takes place in an alternate Portland where magic, ghosts, and other supernatural beings rule, Devon is a master of weaving romance and adventure into one exciting story!”