City of the Dead, Book 2 in the second trilogy of The Darbas Cycle, is available in both ebook and paperback format.
Keenit, a noted archaeological excavator nicknamed “The Lucky One,” has a good thing going in her favorite remote lowland town: A career she loves, good friends who love her, and great prospects. But when a prominent archaeology professor from the isolated highland nation of Gwynyr recruits her to an unusual dig outside Al Ath — the infamous “City of the Dead” on the small continent of Darbas — Keenit must face not only the ghosts of her past, but an ancient darkness personified in fairytales as “The Shimmer Man.”
The Darbas Cycle
Before multi-genre author Dan Conover published his first multi-volume fantasy epic, he decided to keep things organized online with a pen name. D.C. McElroy sounded about right.
His series The Darbas Cycle explores the limits of magic, power and principle from the perspectives of diverse characters across multiple other-worldly cultures. Its first trilogy, a prequel called The Goddess Daughter (including Chene, Llyr and Gwynyr), came out in 2021. Book No. 4, Ta Nupa, launched both the second trilogy (Season of Spies) and the series’ main storyline in April 2022.
The idea to write a shamelessly entertaining fantasy series that simultaneously embraces and expands the traditional genre came from his wife — writer, artist and series cover designer Janet Edens. They call this new mixture slipstream epic fantasy. You can think of it as epic fantasy for people who don’t think they’d like epic fantasy. Fantasy is a limitless setting for great stories, but it won’t evolve so long as a risk-averse publishing industry defines its limits. Join us in breaking the rules.
“The thoroughness with which D.C. built the world of this story rivals fantasy greats like George R.R. Martin and Robin Hobb, two of my (other) faves.”
“A beautifully written epic of a trilogy. Each book builds and expands on its ancestor. … The storyline is expansive and magnificent.”
“… an intricately crafted universe with multidimensional characters, political intrigue, legal drama and a unique society that turns the genre patriarchal trope on its head.”
“A fast-paced action story with a strong and internally consistent plot and enough conflict, fighting, and interesting relationships to keep my attention from beginning to end.