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Before the Fall

New or Used: $4.94
New or Used: $4.94

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* Review copies mailed to the genre, national and blogging press * Featured on * Author website at

About the Author

Francis Knight was born and lives in Sussex, UK. She has held a variety of jobs from being a groom in the Balearics, where she punched a policeman and got away with it, to an IT administrator. When not living in her own head, she enjoys SFF geekery, WWE geekery, teaching her children Monty Python quotes and boldly going and seeking out new civilisations.


Full of fierce energy, fast-paced an inventive * Adrian Tchaikovsky on FADE TO BLACK *
A savage stab at organised religion and social control . . . emotionally powerful * SUN on FADE TO BLACK *
Brilliantly explored * DAILY MAIL on FADE TO BLACK *
Powerful . . . a distinctive debut * SFX on FADE TO BLACK *
A great fantasy debut . . . The beginning of something really quite brilliant . . . very highly recommended * CIVILIAN READER on FADE TO BLACK *
An excellent follow up to a stunning first novel, with engaging characters, an inventive and incredibly realised world and a fast paced roller-coaster of a plot that keeps the pages turning. Brilliant stuff * on BEFORE THE FALL *
Solid prose, a kickass plotline . . . gives the fantasy reader something to really get their teeth into. A real joy to behold. I can't wait to see what happens next * Falcata Times on BEFORE THE FALL *

Knight's second Rojan Dizon novel wisely veers away from the fantasy cliches that peppered Fade to Black. While traces of the wisecracking, womanizing pain mage Rojan remain, these characteristics no longer compose his entire character. The story has more complexity and depth, exploring Rojan's feelings of guilt over bringing down the torture factory that provided power to the vertical city of Mahala; that emotional angst mirrors the physical pain he inflicts upon himself to access his magic. As the impoverished society crumbles, Rojan's brother, Perak, the newly appointed Archdeacon of the ruling Ministry, asks atheist Rojan to discover who is behind a string of child murders that have added an explosive fury to the frustration and hunger experienced by the underclass. The investigation gives Rojan conflicting loyalties to a brother he doesn't entirely trust and friends he doesn't completely understand. Most rewardingly, quirky sidekick Pasha emerges here as a complex, conscientious counterpoint to Rojan's cynicism. These marked improvements and an intriguingly inconclusive ending bode well for the future of the series. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

The destruction of Glow, the supposedly safe power source for the towering city of Mahala, has left most of the city with little to no power, particularly in the lower, poorer levels known as Downside. Rojan Dizon, one of Mahala's few and newly legalized "pain" mages, is helping to restore power without the use of Glow, which used the pain of captive or "missing" people to provide energy. With his brother newly installed as the ruling Archdeacon, Dizon hopes Mahala will begin to address the discrepancies between the rich few and the destitute multitudes. Someone, however, is murdering new mages, and Dizon must somehow keep the city from collapsing into anarchy. He also fights to save his soul. VERDICT This sequel to Fade to Black explores the aftermath of drastic change seen through the eyes of a man whose magical proclivities-self-inflicted pain-have sometimes hardened his perceptions of the world. Knight has developed an unusual "punk" urban fantasy dystopia and filled it with fascinating characters, producing a series well worth following. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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