First, a bit of housekeeping: Been a while since my last post. I ended up moving over the summer and news about paleofiction is sparse. But I’ve settled down now, and the release of Jurassic World next summer means we’ll see more dinosaur-related news items in coming months as publishers try to profit from the accompanying dino-craze that will likely follow. (More on that in a later post.)
And that leads us to The Dinosaur Lords, which will be released in July, or about a month after Jurassic World comes out. This first novel by Victor Milan is set in a fantasy world where knights ride and joust on dinosaurs. The cover even boasts a blurb by Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin: “It’s like a cross between Games of Thrones and Jurassic Park.” Okay, that’s not so much an endorsement as a description, but I doubt most people will see past Martin’s name.
Here’s the blurb from the publisher, Tor:
A world made by the Eight Creators on which to play out their games of passion and power, Paradise is a sprawling, diverse, often brutal place. Men and women live on Paradise as do dogs, cats, ferrets, goats, and horses. But dinosaurs predominate: wildlife, monsters, beasts of burden – and of war. Colossal planteaters like Brachiosaurus; terrifying meateaters like Allosaurus and the most feared of all, Tyrannosaurus rex. Giant lizards swim warm seas. Birds (some with teeth) share the sky with flying reptiles that range in size from batsized insectivores to majestic and deadly Dragons.Thus we are plunged into Victor Milán's splendidly weird world of The Dinosaur Lords, a place that for all purposes mirrors 14th century Europe with its dynastic rivalries, religious wars, and byzantine politics…and the weapons of choice are dinosaurs. Where we have vast armies of dinosaur-mounted knights engaged in battle. And during the course of one of these epic battles, the enigmatic mercenary Dinosaur Lord Karyl Bogomirsky is defeated through betrayal and left for dead. He wakes, naked, wounded, partially amnesiac – and hunted. And embarks upon a journey that will shake his world.
The Dinosaur Lords is being pitched as the opening chapter in a new epic fantasy series. It is not the first fantasy novel to feature dinosaurs. In the Dungeons & Dragons campaign setting of Eberon, dinosaurs are used as beasts of burden by Hobbits (in this case called “Halfings” to avoid getting sued by the Tolkien estate). They also can be found in D&D’s Forgotten Realms, paying an important role in at least one Dungeons & Dragons novel—The Ring of Winter.
I’m looking forward to The Dinosaur Lords, even if I find the premise a little gimmicky. Hopefully it won’t be the only work of paleofiction put out by a major publisher in conjunction with Jurassic World.