“Orcs” by Stan Nicholls

For all fantasy fiction fans, this book is a wonderful new perspective.  Throughout my days of playing Dungeons & Dragons, Everquest, and all the fantasy books I’ve read, the word ‘Orc’ has been a nearly empty shell.  They’ve been an easy opponent, a ready adversary, but so often there is no depth to them as characters.  Stan Nicholls has not just given them depth, but a mission.  The Orcs he writes about not only are doing the right thing, but are stumbling through their world the way we often find ourselves doing- from one moment to the next, just doing what it looks like is the right thing to do.  In Nicholls’ world, the Orcs are doing whatever they can to save their homeland from the race that is ravaging the land, siphoning its natural magic, and destroying the homes of all the other intelligent races… the Humans.

Yeah, I know.  I saw it coming too.  But since Nicholls didn’t let that one amusing turnabout dominate his story, it isn’t tiring.  It is exciting throughout, not easily second-guessed.  It took me four days to finish this one- couldn’t put it down.   I give it 8 out of 10- an excellent book.  Go get a copy.  As the cover review says, “Buy now or beg for mercy later.”

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