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The Way of the Black Beast - A Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy (The Malja Chronicles Book 1) Kindle Edition

45 customer reviews

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Length: 314 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Other books you're sure to enjoy:
The Malja Chronicles
The Way of the Black Beast (Book 1)
The Way of the Sword and Gun (Book 2) 
The Way of the Brother Gods (Book 3)
The Way of the Blade (Book 4)
The Way of the Power (Book 5)
The Way of the Soul (Book 6, coming in 2015)

Product Details

  • File Size: 1081 KB
  • Print Length: 314 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Stuart Jaffe; 2 edition (September 16, 2011)
  • Publication Date: September 16, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005NRXT6W
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,942 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Stuart Jaffe is the author of The Max Porter Paranormal-Mysteries, The Malja Chronicles, a post-apocalyptic fantasy series, The Bluesman pulp series, the Gillian Boone series, and much more. His short stories have been collected in 10 Bits of My Brain and 10 More Bits of My Brain. Numerous other short stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies.

He is the co-host of The Eclectic Review -- a podcast about science, art, and well, everything.

Stuart lives in rural North Carolina, and for those who keep count, the latest animal listing is as follows: one dog, four cats, one albino corn snake, one Brazilian black tarantula, three aquatic turtles, assorted fish, seven chickens, and a horse. Thankfully, the chickens and the horse do not live inside the house.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Pauline M Ross on June 6, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I'm not at all sure what to make of this book. On the one hand, it has a lot of elements that I normally find appealing: a post-apocalyptic setting, a kickass female protagonist, characters with a lot of history, an unpredictable world. But somehow, it didn't grab me, and I've been puzzling over why. There's nothing terrible about it, nothing that jumps out at me - it's well plotted, the characters have depth, the world is full of surprises (and I love to be surprised!), but for some odd reason it didn't resonate with me. Just a mood thing, I suppose.

One problem is that I often found it difficult to visualise the settings. Sometimes I would have to reread a section because I'd misunderstood where things were or what was going on. I'm still not very clear whether the setting is meant to be some real-world place, or if it's a created world. I kept seeing it in my mind as the southwestern US, but I could be completely wrong about that. Either way, the book failed to provide me with as much detail about the backdrop as I wanted, but another reader likely wouldn't find it a problem.

However, the world is filled with a whole heap of weirdness. The author has a stunning imagination to create so many odd beasties and devices and situations. There was almost too much creativity (and that's not a criticism that's often levelled at a fantasy work, let's be honest). But perhaps less of the bizarre and a bit more of the familiar would have helped me get into it. In some ways, the deluge of originality reminded me of my one attempt at a China Mièville book. It's not that I dislike weirdness, but I'm not too keen on the absolutely anything goes end of the spectrum.

The plot - well, what plot?
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By BookEater99 on November 23, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Raised by two evil, heartless magicians who think themselves gods, then cast out to fend for herself or succumb to the elements, Malja is a girl just trying to survive in a dangerous world that has been decimated by magic, and where violence is a necessary evil. Throughout her journey she keeps two things close to her: Viper, a straight edge, deadly extension of herself used to destroy anything that might bring harm, and Tommy, the adolescent youth/ magician who attached himself to her side after she saved him from his abusers.

Following the death of the man who saved her, took her in, and acted as a caring and devoted father, Malja is driven by the Black Beast within, seeking revenge. While facing off with a guitar case toting Bluesman, a trained and hired assassin who has managed to stay one step ahead of her, taking out her contacts before she can gain any information from them, Malja finds out that the very men she has been searching for, her "fathers" Jerik and Callib, may just be looking for her too. Following a lead gleaned from the assassin, she finds herself at the home of Nolan, a simple woman with a lot of knowledge. This is where her true journey begins. From there Malja is taken across the desolate and ravaged lands encountering people, creatures, and beings of all shapes, sizes, and colors (yes, I said colors). She is forced to take on others along the way, each contributing in their own way.

Being the warrior that she is, Malja spends a lot of her time denying her need for others, even her enjoyment of their company. She'd much rather go it alone, lessen the complications that come with watching out for the safety of others. Her denial even extends to Tommy who shows his desire to be loved by her, but also recognizes her limitations.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By yllektra on June 29, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I just finished it like a couple of hours ago and I loved it.
I'm just watching the match of Greece vs Germany, so review to follow ;)
Hmmm...the game was a bummer, so let's talk about the book, which certainly wasn't. :P

I always love female heroines. Which girl/woman doesn't like to shout: Yay Girl!Power"?
Not me. I always love it and maybe that makes me kind of a sexist (lol - although I do enjoy male heroes as well), but it is much easier to sympathize and identify with persons of your own gender.

Anyways, in this respect, "The Way of the Black Beast", did not disappoint.
Malja is a wonderfully complex and likeable character despite her nature - she is after all an assassin - or rather a pretty determined woman good at killing stuff.

Malja knows that till her tenth birthday she was cared for by the magician brothers, Callib and Jarik who were and are extremely powerful and intelligent. They taught her how to fight with a plethora of weapons, how to survive on her own and generally be tougher than any other child her age was or should ever be. Still,despite her best efforts, she could never satisfy them. She was always a source of disappointment for them, especially Callib and the knowledge of this was a real burden and source of heartache for her.
So, when Jarik left her for dead in the woods at ten years of age, to fend for herself, she was devastated, but also angry. Her heart filled with hatred and rage and the need for revenge, till Gregor, the only person she recognized as her father found her and taught her how to read, how to exorcise her demons or try to, and how to be not the person her fathers wanted her to be, but what she wants to be.
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