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Excellent Review for TA&G

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“It far exceeded any expectations I had in general and it’s easily one of my favorite recent reads. Hats off to the author, Paul Phipps-Williams, for such a strong debut novel and for writing a story that is both imaginative and relatable.

Another major strength of The Axe & Grindstone is Phipps-Williams’ ability to juggle contrasting tones. I’d call the novel a fairly even split between humor and horrific dark fantasy, and I felt that either of those halves were more than competent on their own.

The novel never loses sight of being entertaining. It’s fast and punchy from beginning to end, and at just under 300 pages it still somehow manages to fit enough exposition alongside the action to make the world feel whole and satisfying to explore. Phipps-Williams isn’t afraid to tackle very dark subject matter but also never takes himself too seriously, and the result is a truly fun novel. The Axe & Grindstone may not be typical fare for horror readers, but I recommend it without reservation.”

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