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J.A. Pitts

J.A. PittsJ.A. Pitts is a graduate of the Oregon Coast Writers Workshops and holds degrees in English and Library Science. When he’s not writing, he enjoys practicing martial arts with his children. Learn more at J.A. Pitts’ website. Twitter: JAPittsWriter

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Black Blade Blues: Not your Standard Urban Fantasy Heroine

Black Blade Blues by J.A. Pitts

Sarah Beauhall, heroine of Black Blade Blues, was a woman after my own heart from the very beginning. Not only is she a lesbian and a blacksmith — traits that set her apart from the Standard Urban Fantasy Heroine — she also attends sci-fi conventions and hangs out with Ren Faire and SCA enthusiasts. This isn’t just a character I’d like to have a beer with. This is a character I feel like I’ve already had a beer with! Like lots of her compatriots in urban fantasy, she does have anger-management issues, but there are reasons for this.

I have to admit, though, that I didn’t quite understand Sarah’s decision, at the beginning of the book, to let her prized antique sword be used in a friend’s B-movie shoot. Other characters said she was crazy to do it, and I actually kind of agreed with them. She’s a blacksmith, after all; why not make a convincing fak... Read More

Honeyed Words: Doesn’t quite live up to Black Blade Blues

Honeyed Words by J.A. Pitts

A few months ago, blacksmith Sarah Beauhall reforged the legendary Norse sword Gram, attracting the attention of a number of supernatural beings that wanted the sword for themselves. This culminated in an epic battle, in which Sarah and her valiant SCAdian friends defeated a dragon but suffered tragic losses. Honeyed Words, the second in J.A. Pitts’ Black Blade series, continues Sarah’s story.

From the perspective of character development, Honeyed Words is terrific. Sarah has always had avoidant tendencies, and here she begins to take responsibility for that trait and works on overcoming it and facing its consequences. This occurs on several fronts: her relationship with Katie, her friendship with the Black Briar SCA group, and her dealings with supernatural beings — and it’s hinted that her family of origin may soon join that ... Read More