The Dark Lord’s Handbook by Paul Dale @PaulADDale | @kurtsprings1 #review #fantasy

Author: Paul Dale

Book: The Dark Lord’s Handbook (The Dark Lord’s Handbook #1)

Published: January 2018

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing

Genre: Fantasy

Source: Paperback



From being a half-breed son of a dragon named Lord Darkwing and a tavern wench, Morden’s fortunes change when an orc presents him with a book: Evil’s own Dark Lord’s Handbook. Now Morden is on the path to world domination. He’s raising his army and heading for the last dark lord’s fortress. The handbook will provide him with simple, easy-to-follow instructions on how to do it right.

However, other forces have noticed his rise and are moving to counter him. They’ve found a hero named Edwin, to whom they give a magic sword. Incidentally, the sword drives Edwin insane. Lord Darkwing has also taken an interest in what’s happening. The merchant and banking class meet to figure out who they want the winning side to be. Morden is left to wonder if he is the real bad guy.


The Dark Lord’s Handbook is another book of subverted fantasy tropes. Being a dark lord is not easy. Dominating and bending the world to your will is not as straightforward as it sounds. Many would-be dark lords have failed rather spectacularly, so Evil decides to step in and provide guidance for the next would-be dark lord in simple, easy-to-follow instructions: The Dark Lords Handbook. Morden, the latest owner of the handbook, is prepared to give it the old college try.

Paul Dale pokes fun at the epic fantasy genre, with some social commentary snuck in for good measure. The result is dry-witted entertainment fun. You may find yourself expecting one of the orcs to ask, “Are we really the baddies?” 

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