The Hand of the Sun King (Pact and Pattern #1) Review (Gollancz Blog Tour) by J.T Greathouse


The Hand of the Sun King by J.T. Greathouse – Review

Powder & Page

Published: August 5, 2021

Publisher: JAB Books

Series: Pact and Pattern #1

Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 370 (Paperback)

My Rating: 4.5/5.0

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


My name is Wen Alder. My name is Foolish Cur.

All my life, I have been torn between two legacies: that of my father, whose roots trace back to the right hand of the Emperor. That of my mother’s family, who reject the oppressive Empire and embrace the resistance.

I can choose between them – between protecting my family, or protecting my people – or I can search out a better path . . . a magical path, filled with secrets, unbound by Empire or resistance, which could shake my world to its very foundation.

But my search for freedom will entangle me in a war between the gods themselves . . .

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THE HAND OF THE SUN KING – Releasing in two weeks!

It's pretty surreal to think that my debut novel, something I've been working toward since I was an actual child, will be releasing in just a few short weeks. I've been stunned by some of the early reviews (particularly Petrik Leo's review and Nils Shukla's review, both of which are extremely flattering). There are a …

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An Open Letter to Representative McMorris Rogers, Mayor Nadine Woodward, the Spokane City Council, and any who would care to read.

I am an educator in Spokane, Washington who teaches a diverse student body. In the classroom, one of the things I try to impart to my students is the absolute sanctity and power of their freedom of speech. The first and most important amendment in the bill of rights, for no nation can reasonably claim …

Continue reading An Open Letter to Representative McMorris Rogers, Mayor Nadine Woodward, the Spokane City Council, and any who would care to read.

Book Review: The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro My rating: 4 of 5 stars In The Buried Giant, Kazuo Ishiguro tackles the ethics of memory. The central question of the novel concerns whether it is better to forget old hurts or to remember them. Is a shallow, immediate life lacking the depths of a recollected past--and with …

Continue reading Book Review: The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

Why I switched from League of Legends to Heroes of the Storm

Recently my wife and I returned to the United States from Taiwan, which for me in part meant reconnecting with my gaming friends from high school and college. Back in the day we spent endless hours playing MOBAs (Multiplayer Online Battle Arenas), beginning with the original DotA, then Heroes of Newerth, then League of Legends …

Continue reading Why I switched from League of Legends to Heroes of the Storm

Knight Falls

Excellent post from my writing group mate Patrick Woods over on the Taipei Writer’s Group blog.

Taipei Writers Group

391885631_1ad5886be4_bWhen I was around 14 years old, part of my English class involved quiet reading. We all had a book from the school library, and read it for maybe 10 or 15 minutes. The book I was reading made me laugh so hard I couldn’t contain it. The mirth just forced its way out as stifled giggles, snorts, and teary silent shaking. The people near by kept looking at me like I was having some kind of fit.

That book was Witches Abroad, by Terry (later, and most deservedly, Sir Terry) Pratchett, who died this week aged 66.

It wasn’t the first Discworld book I’d read. I was introduced to Discworld via Audiobooks, which back then were books on cassette. Tony Robinson read abridged versions that were about 3 hours long. I laughed my way through these, then later bought the books and realised there was so much more –…

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What’s wrong with Present Tense?

Taipei Writers Group

Recently I’ve been working on a short story to submit to this quarter’s Writers of the Future contest. The story is a gothic fantasy, set in an alternate world which is dominated by flintlock weapons as well as faerie, divine, and demonic magic. I’ve actually written two stories set in this world, and I’ve been working on an outline for a novel with the same setting.

Overall, I like it a lot. But there is a wrinkle: For whatever reason, when I write in this world, I want to write in Present Tense.

I don’t even understand why. Honestly, for whatever reason, I just like the “sound” of the Present Tense within this world. For example: “In the Clandestine Market, one can buy all manner of hidden things” sounds better to me in the context of this story and world than “In the Clandestine Market, one could buy all manner of…

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