My book IRON AXE got a lot of favorable reviews. Awesome! It also got a few less-favorable reviews. Ah well. Not everyone can like everything. One displeased reader, however, wrote:
“I really enjoyed this story up until the introduction of the gay character I don’t [read] books especially fantasy for some great societal commentary”
Hm. I don’t respond to reviews on forums where they appear. But this is my forum. And I’m gonna say:
What kind of shit sandwich did you eat for lunch, dude? Talfi, the gay character you’re talking about, doesn’t reveal he’s gay until chapter eleven, exactly halfway through the book. Until then, you had no idea. Meanwhile, we have a protagonist who deals with the fact that his half-blood status makes him an outcast and a slave who is made an outcast because she dared to stand up to her (male) owner, both of which are thinly-veiled social commentary that carry us through a good two hundred pages. But a character who off-handedly mentions that he’s gay–THAT becomes social commentary which makes the book unreadable to you?
Shit sandwich reader, you need to examine your life priorities. Reading about the injustice of prejudice, sexism, and slavery doesn’t bother you in the slightest, but a form of love bothers you. Dude, grow up. Look around you. Walk a few miles in the real world. Or, if you can’t, look at a fantasy novel as a fantasy and enjoy the craft that went into the story.
BLOOD STORM, the second book in the series, went on sale yesterday, and Talfi is in it. His relationship with his partner Ranadar is one of the things that forces him to accompany Danr on the dangerous quest to find the power of the shape. And we find out more about Talfi’s background along the way. How, exactly, did Talfi survive the Sundering? What happened on the day he died the first time? Who was his family and what happened to them?
And Talfi talks directly to Grandfather Wyrm, one of the most fascinating characters I’ve ever created. I can’t wait to see what readers think of him.
–Steven Harper Piziks