This entry falls under the category of 'where the heck have I been?' I just now found out that one of my favorite authors died almost two months ago. David Gemmell died due to complications after heart surgery back in July. That's tragic.
He wrote exactly the type of fiction I love. Strong heroic fantasy with good bad guys and bad good guys. It was high stakes, fight for your lives, type stuff. I'm reading one of his books right now by the way, Ironhand's Daughter. It has a great protagonist; Sigarni, the last in a line of Kings and destined to become a great leader for her people. The event that ignites her drive to eradicate the occupying forces from her homeland is a brutal rape by five soldiers in a dungeon cell. Back in her home village a shaman/seer character knows all this. When another character asks where she is and what's happening, he looks up through teary eyes and says, "She's a sword... going through fire." Great stuff! (Holy cow does she get immediate revenge on the five perpetrators.)
Anyhow, the world will miss David Gemmell. My prayers are with his family.