Tales Untold: Mythos From Around The World now available from Ravens & Roses Publishing

Tales Untold: Mythos From Around The World based on folklore and mythology from around the world is now available from Ravens and Roses Publishing.

This is a collection of fifteen stories based on mythology and folklore worldwide. If you love stories from Greek Mythology, ancient Indian folklore, English Legends, or Scandinavian mythology, this anthology is for you. It includes authors Janie Kang, D.B. Carter, Amorina Carlton, Sathya Achia, Jessica Hopson, Brenda Radchik, Rashmi P. Menon, Sean Doyle, M.N. Kee, Max Turner, Kimberlee Caruso, D.M. Monkson, Chaz Beebe, Joel C. Flanagan-Granemann, and (yours truly) Mark Piggott.

I was honored to be selected along with a great group of authors for this anthology, allowing me to write a unique short story, The Emissary. Imagine a war raging for centuries between angels, demons, and gods, with humanity caught in the middle. While the pandemic reigns worldwide, it brings out the worst nightmare from the depths of Hell . . . Legion. After tricking the Pantheon Council to free it from the ninth ring of Hell, the demon secretly wreaks havoc on New York City. Heaven doesn’t believe the conspiracy. It’s up to the only man left on Earth since the flood carried Noah to safety to stop the monster and convince the heavenly host to aid humanity. He has gone by many names over the millennia, but he is simply known as Gray—The Emissary.

The ebook is now available across multiple platforms, and the paper will follow shortly. CLICK HERE to get your copy today!

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Mark Piggott is an award-winning independent author of several fantasy/steampunk novels and short stories. A 23-year U.S. Navy veteran, his stories will take you from the shores of eternal Avalon to a dystopian steampunk future and other worlds.

The Forever Avalon fantasy book series—including Forever Avalon, The Dark Tides, and The Outlander War—is available online at Amazon and other booksellers. His fantasy steampunk novel, The Last Magus: A Clockwork Heart, is available through Lulu and other booksellers.

Get ready for The River of Souls fantasy novella from Curious Corvid Publishing. Coming in 2023 from Curious Corvid—the steampunk historical fiction, Corsair and the Sky Pirates, and The Last Magus: Dragonfire and Steel. Stay tuned for more new fantastic stories from the imagination of Mark Piggott.

Is it Wrong to Pick up Girls in a Dungeon? No, it isn’t!

I can’t help but chuckle (under my breath) every time I read the title of one of my favorite anime… Is it Wrong to Pick up Girls in a Dungeon. It’s a problem that’s plagued D&D players since its inception, and now, it’s an anime.

When I first saw this anime, I thought it was to good to be true. Here is a story based on my years of playing Dungeons and Dragons. I mean, a “Little Rookie” dungeon crawler falls for the beautiful “Sword Princess” while trying to prove he’s worthy of her; all the while, he’s pursued by a variety of women who he considers just friends. Yup, every D&D players dream.

Is it Wrong to Pick up Girls in a Dungeon, or Danmachi, takes place in the fictional city of Orario to when gods all came down seeking excitement, limiting their divine powers to perceive and experience the lower world, offering mortals to fight monsters assorted in an underground labyrinth known as Dungeon as part of the god’s family, or Familia. The story follows the exploits of Bell Cranel, a solo adventurer under the goddess Hestia. As the only member of the Hestia Familia, he works hard every day in the dungeon to make ends meet while seeking to improve himself. He looks up to Ais Wallenstein, a famous and powerful swordswoman who once saved his life, and with whom he fell in love. He is unaware that several other girls, deities and mortals alike, also develop affections towards him; most notably Hestia herself, as he also gains allies and improves himself with each new challenge he faces.

As I watch this anime, I come to one basic conclusion… We’re all Bell Cranel. He is the plucky, wannabe hero who wants nothing more than to prove himself to the woman he loves. This is something that every man, or woman, has done in some form or another. We all want to be worthy of love, and Bell tries his best to work past his own inadequacies to become the hero he wants to be, through hard work, determination, and heart.

The world created by this anime is fun and exciting. You have your basic fantasy elements–Elves, Dwarfs, demi-humans, etc.–but also a real twist on the gods themselves. You have all pantheons included, from Greek to Norse and Far East deities, and even some gender-bending. Loki and Hephaestus as women actually works for me. With the exception of some of the female deities (Freya and Ishtar as an example) most of the gods don’t exude the divine power they embody. They’re just there to gather together a Familia, improve their status, and bestow their divine blessing on them.

The status thing is what brings out the D&D vibe in this anime. Their status is maintained on a magical tattoo on their back. The gods use a drop of their own blood to update and track their status as they fight the magical monsters in the dungeon. It keeps stats like a basic D&D character sheet–level, skills, abilities–and changes as they grow in power. It’s really reminds me of my long weekends spent in late-night D&D sessions!

Image result for danmachi anime fanart bell and ais

This anime has all the characteristics of a traditional “harem” anime as so many beautiful women are throwing themselves at Bell, and he is oblivious to all of it. His innocence and embarrassment at the affection shown to him is quite charming. His awkward nature reminds me of how I was around girls at a young tender age. It brings me back to my youth and, for someone my age, it keeps me “young at heart!” Add to that the adventure, dungeon crawling, monster fighting, and magical combat, and you’ve got a great story. The characters are engaging, enticing, and fun to watch.

Is it Wrong to Pick up Girls in a Dungeon is a great anime to watch and follow. I hope this storyline continues for quite a long time. There are many more stories of Bell and his Familia to be told and I look forward to watching them.

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Mark Piggott is the author of the Forever Avalon book series. Forever Avalon is available for purchase as a paperback/ebook at Amazon. The Dark Tides is available for purchase as a paperback/ebook at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iUniversepublishing. The Outlander War, Book Three of the Forever Avalon series is coming soon from Austin Macauley Publishing.