The Untold Tale, by J.M. Frey
JM Frey is masterful in this story. She starts off with the usual trope of a woman from our world flung into a fantasy world where magic works. There are subtle notes of brilliance but overall, it’s a story we’ve seen before, it bits and pieces of most fantasy novels. Just as you reach the point of thinking “Oh boy, is there nothing new in the universe?” she turns everything on its head. It’s brilliant, and laugh out loud.
Seriously, I startled my cat.
As I gleefully read the next few chapters, now in love with this new story, she did it again. And again. And once more just to be sure I was lost and enthralled in this, her anything-but-trope story.
It has everything I’ve missed in fantasy; humour, surprises, twists, monsters, magic, villains… And somehow, they’re never what you expect.