Once again, my Kindle screen can't do them justice, so here are some higher quality images of the covers in this series. Photos from Amazon's listings for the books.
The Demons of Muralia books by Mikko Azul so far include The Staff of Fire and Bone and The Rod of Wind and Iron.
This series is an indie YA/NA secondary-world fantasy with rich worldbuilding. It focuses on the main character, Cédron, a prince of a city-state who has cultural heritage from four different peoples and this is described to be everyone. However, he inherited some magical abilities from one of his disliked ancestral groups, which make him an outcast at home and a target for a power-hungry mage. An ancient god-like being is attempting to break free of his cage, and Cédron will either prevent it or cause it.
One thing I like about this series is the Avatar: The Last Airbender vibe centered on Cédron. He needs to collect magical stones for each of the four elements to defeat his enemy. He also ends up collecting a band of friends who help him fight... well everybody, since no one seems to be on his side. The worldbuilding is deep and rich, but very clear. People from different cultures have names that made it very clear who they are in general, even if I forgot some specifics.
On the downside, so many women died in book 1. And each time the death motivated the male MC to do more toward his quest: aka there were multiple fridgings. I also felt like the editor was overpaid for their quality of copyediting.
Overall, this is your jam is you like really hardcore worldbuilding (funky names, different words for the sun and moon, multiple cultures, etc.), soft magic (aka rules not laid out to the reader), and quest stories. Not for you if you need books to satisfy the Bechdel test, if a large cast or multi POV is not your style, or if you're not a fan of fantasy violence.
Have you read either of these two books? What did you think? Let's discuss in the comments!
Transparency note: I read The Rod of Wind and Iron as a beta reader (aka free for me and supplied feedback for free to the author). I purchased The Staff of Fire and Bone and did not ask for or receive compensation for my honest review.
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