It’s never been understood why the fantasy genre and heavy metal make such an excellent pairing. Rock music isn’t the soundtrack to cinema adaptations of epics such as Lord of the Rings or video game titles such as World of Warcraft. Yet for some reason, there is a union. When typing this, I thought long and hard about it. I shortly realised, why on earth am I thinking when I should be googling?! Here’s what come up:

By the early 1970s, Led Zeppelin was writing songs about Gollum, Black Sabbath was singing about “The Wizard,” and Marc Bolan suggested that listeners, “Wear a tall hat like a druid in the old days.”

Why they decided to make this connection remains a mystery and not to my knowledge has a writer taken the heavy metal elements and put those into a fantasy epic, that is until now.

Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames is a story centred around a band of adventurers led by Clay Cooper. Their days of glory long past, the team disbanded, some fat, others drunks one’s even a king. Then one fatefully night an ex-bandmate rocks up at Clay’s door with a quest too daring for the brave to ignore.

For a debut novel, Eames has done well to tackle the themes. Clearly, a player of D&D his love for high adventure and banter among players is evident in his characters. It’s fast paced with the humour you’d expect from such titles. The world Eames has created is typical, but not without the levels of violent clashes the reader signed up for. It won’t offer you anything you’ve not read before, but it will keep you entertained. The emotional elements of the story rest upon the relationship between the daughter under siege and her father desperate to rescue her. I would have liked to have seen move development between the main characters. I don’t feel they learn anything new in their journey about themselves apart from the clique personal growth, stop being selfish yarn we’ve all read a thousand times before.

The prose is good with some excellent beats that you’d expect with a rocking theme, and yes I’d say it’s best read with Iron Maiden in the background, especially during the fight scenes.

Kings of the Wyld is published on 23rd February and is available for pre-order via Amazon.