Science fiction and fantasy                                            


A Short List of Under-Appreciated Books
Not all great reads are hyped to within an inch of their papery lives. Check out these obscure gems.

Not For The Squeamish
If you like your genre literature to be gory, horrific and graphic, check this list.


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Earlier book reviews

Book Reviews

These reviews cover some of the latest fantasy and science fiction book releases, including works by both popular and lesser-known writers.
They are as spoiler-free as possible so you can still enjoy the book.

Defender cover    

Defender by G. X. Todd

4 star rating
People everywhere have started hearing voices which urge them towards violence. Pilgrim and Lacey are struggling to survive in a world where even their own thoughts may betray them.

5th March 2017

Monstress Volume One: Awakening cover    

Monstress Volume One: Awakening by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda

5 star rating
A teenager searches for answers about herself and her war-torn past, whilst a monster stirs inside her. A graphic novel.

26th August 2016

Abducted cover    

Abducted by Evangeline Anderson

4 star rating
An ordinary paralegal is transported around the universe by a hunky alien who believes she is very special. Book one of the Alien Mate Index.

9th November 2016

Binti cover    

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

5 star rating
A young woman leaves her tribe to go to university across the galaxy, far from her home culture.

18th January 2017

Radiance cover    

Radiance by Grace Draven

5 star rating
Two minor royals marry to secure an alliance between their countries, although they find each other hideous and others will scheme to tear them apart. The first novel in the Wraith Kings series.

2nd January 2017

Rat Queens: Volume Two: The Far Reaching Tentacles Of N'Rygoth cover    

Rat Queens: Volume Two: The Far Reaching Tentacles Of N'Rygoth by Kurtis J. Wiebe, Roc Upchurch and Stjepan Sejic

5 star rating
The second instalment of the Rat Queens series the Queens take on demons from another dimension who are destroying their town. A graphic novel.

17th August 2016

Rat Queens Volume One: Sass And Sorcery cover    

Rat Queens Volume One: Sass And Sorcery by Kurtis J. Wiebe and Roc Upchurch

5 star rating
A group of young women would rather get drunk and slay trolls than call their parents. A graphic novel.

9th August 2016

Magisterium: The Copper Gauntlet cover    

Magisterium: The Copper Gauntlet by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare

4 star rating
Some people seem to believe Callum Hunt is the personification of evil, and the young mage is afraid they might be right. The second novel in the Magisterium series.

27th December 2015

Sleepless cover    

Sleepless by Lou Morgan

4 star rating
A group of students take a mysterious study drug to help them cheat at their exams. But none of them are prepared for the side effects.

19th June 2015

The Incredible Unlikeliness Of Being cover    

The Incredible Unlikeliness Of Being by Alice Roberts

5 star rating
Alice Roberts looks at the amazing journey of human development and why our bodies have evolved in the way they have.

2nd July 2017

Sleeping Late On Judgement Day cover    

Sleeping Late On Judgement Day by Tad Williams

5 star rating
Bobby Dollar has already been to Hell, but his toughest test will come when he takes on a rogue angel who outranks him many times over. The third Bobby Dollar novel.

8th June 2017

The Organised Mind cover    

The Organised Mind by Daniel Levitin

5 star rating
The modern world can bombard us with information, making it exhausting to try to keep organised. Daniel Levitin examines the neuroscience behind keeping order and remembering what we need to.

28th September 2016

Farmageddon: The True Cost of Cheap Meat cover    

Farmageddon: The True Cost of Cheap Meat by Philip Lymbery

5 star rating
An exploration of how the move to industrialised farming has affected animal welfare, human health, and the environment. Taking a global perspective, this book pulls no punches in its critique of intensive factory farming.

5th April 2016

Solatium cover    

Solatium by Becca Mills

5 star rating
Beth Ryder has hidden powers that mark her out for a different life, but she is about to find out how different when she embarks on a fantastic and dangerous journey. The second novel in the Emanations series.

11th October 2015

Saga: Volume Three cover    

Saga: Volume Three by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples

5 star rating
New parents from opposing sides of a conflict hide out in a lighthouse, but their pursuers are on their trail. A graphic novel.

2nd June 2014

The Sixth Extinction cover    

The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert

5 star rating
We are in the middle of a mass extinction event, caused by the actions of mankind. This book tells the story so far, and examines how we are changing the biosphere.

12th May 2014

Breach Zone cover    

Breach Zone by Myke Cole

4 star rating
A witch invades New York with a plan to take over, and she wants illegal magic users to join her against humanity. The third novel in the Shadow Ops series.

19th February 2017

Mine To Spell cover    

Mine To Spell by Janeal Falor

4 star rating
A young woman living in a repressive society struggles to conceal her forbidden magic. The second novel in the Mine series.

19th October 2015

Magisterium: The Iron Trial cover    

Magisterium: The Iron Trial by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black

4 star rating
A boy gets the chance to go to magic school, but he would rather do anything else. The first in the Magisterium series.

26th August 2015

Written In The Blood cover    

Written In The Blood by Stephen Lloyd Jones

4 star rating
A young woman with the power to change her appearance is tasked with saving her kind from extinction. Unfortunately, people like her are more hunted than she knows.

23rd March 2015