Welcome to another installment of Dirt Cheap Ebooks: a regular feature in which we highlight a great novel available at a ridiculously low price. Today’s selection is The Thousand Names by Django Wexler. It is currently on sale in most popular ebook formats for $1.99. Purchase it from your favorite e-retailer, or directly from us.
Wexler, among other writers like Brian McClellan, Naomi Novik, Chris Evans, and Adrian Tchaikovsky, is one of the leading lights in the genre commonly known as “flintlock” or “gunpowder” fantasy.
Whereas epic fantasy more often than not draws inspiration from the likes of J. R. R. Tolkien and Western Europe’s high medieval period, flintlock fantasy looks to the literature, history, and military technology of the 17th through 19th centuries. Rather than the setting, which may or may not be Earthly, the presence of firearms — specifically those used before the invention cartridge-firing weapons — alongside magic of some sort is what defines flintlock fantasy.
The era that inspired flintlock fantasy, along with the genre’s fantasy roots, allow authors to experiment with a wide spectrum of narratives: gothic horror, pirate adventure, military fiction, courtly intrigue, and more. Dragons and their riders jousting above the battlefields of Napoleonic Europe, musket-toting elves marching on a fantasy kingdom, and wizards wielding magic-infused gunpowder, are just a few of the wonders the flintlock fantasy writer may encounter in their exploration of the genre.
Wexler’s The Thousand Names is one of flintlock fantasy’s most popular titles, and the first of his series The Shadow Campaigns. While the setting of the novel is entirely fiction, it is inspired by Napoleon Bonaparte’s campaign against the Ottoman Empire and Britain.
It is the story of Captain Marcus d’Ivoire, an officer of the Vordanai empire, assigned to a remote outpost located deep in a hostile desert, and one of his soldiers: Winter Ihernglass, a woman disguised as a man. Ihernglass originally joined the Vordanai Colonials to escape a troubled past, but her leadership abilities have earned her a place in command — an undesired promotion for a woman who only hoped to escape notice.
Faced with a rebellion, Marcus, Winter and their troops are grateful when the king sends famed strategist Colonel Janus bet Vhalnich to join the fight As the victories pile up, morale soars — at least until the rumors start. Some believe Janus is a master of forbidden supernatural powers, and may have dark ambitions for the world at large. Marcus and Winter are loyal soldiers, but that loyalty will be tested under the colonel’s command.
The Thousand Names has a lot of fans, and if you like it too, there’s a lot more where it came from: four more novels, and a fifth on the way, plus a novella. At $1.99, you’re not risking a whole lot for a book that might be your pass to an entire new world of adventure. Give it a shot!