Violence and Vigilance (Turesia Untamed #1), by David T. List

The Book

Violence and Vigilance
Series: Turesia Untamed
Pages: 643
Age Group: Adult
Published on 8/6/2023
Publisher: Self-Published
Available on:


Violence & Vigilance is book one of Turesia Untamed, an epic fantasy series featuring an eternal vendetta, scars of grief and loss, untethered rage, and hope against all odds.

Irdessa the Undying, a renowned arena fighter in Fohrvylda, has escaped imprisonment but at great cost. Broken and alone, she must outwit and outfight her pursuers.

Basalt Kale, a failed Consonant monk of the lowest order, embarks on a quest to improve Ausgan but discovers vile secrets of his order that he cannot abide.

The heathens of Fohrvylda amass ships and beasts of war to sail the Faithless Sea and assault the monks of Ausgan, who will greet the steel-bearing invaders with elemental destruction.

Violence & Vigilance is a story of survival with dark humor, exotic settings, savage beasts, and damaged characters. If you enjoy the grittiness of Joe Abercrombie's First Law or the urgency of Pierce Brown's Red Rising, you'll love Violence & Vigilance.

My Review

She’s standing tall on a stone, rallying her troops, yelling at the orcanes as if death has kept her waiting. Nearby outlaws are electrified by her voice, by her fearlessness. They seem challenged by it, expending the last of their energy toiling against impossible odds to ensure her cry never ends.

Violence and Vigilance is the first book in the Turesia Untamed series, written by David T. List, and his debut novel. A really ambitious novel which I simply loved, as it felt perfect for me, because it's the perfect example of how to write epic grimdark while creating characters you cheer for; if you liked the First Law, let me present your new obsession.

A story that can be divided between the two islands that are featured in V&V, two storylines that will probably end crossing paths in the next book, and two flawed main characters who will confront the powers that are ruling over their places.

Kalderys sings of the moments to come. He sings of a white fire birthed to sweep the jungle like a comb, removing tangle from the forest with teeth made of lightning, so fast they make time irrelevant, so bright all else is dark.

Irdessa the Undying, a renowned arena fighter since her capture in Fohrvylda, has escaped imprisonment, paying a high cost, losing in the process a person that was her most loyal companion; his last words were a curse related to her death. But with the companion of Kraus, a former bandit, she will seek revenge against those that betrayed her and her men, and hopefully seek a way to get rid of the conquerors that are oppressing Fohrvylda.
Irdessa's character arc is quite epic, starting with arena fights, but ending as a leader of her men; not without struggling, with self-doubt all over her, but giving us many memorable moments in the meanwhile.

Basalt Kale has been training as an Ausgan monk all his life, but it is considered a failure in his order; he lacks a purpose in his life, and only seems to be good at negating the Consonance of other monks. Spurred by one of his masters, he decides to escape the Citadel and embark on a quest to discover more about Ausgan; however, he soon discovers that the purpose of the order is not as pure as he was told, taking advantage over the villagers and punishing them with their magic. With his eyes open by this, Kale finds a new purpose, something to fight against, helping the villagers about the tyranny exerted by the Ausgan monks, even if that means confronting those that taught him since he was abducted from his family.
Kale's arc is not as exciting as Irdessa's one, but it is true that once he starts his quest, you start empathising with him; and he basically grows into you with the pass of pages.

The boy reluctantly stands and walks to Rowan’s outstretched arm. “This is Makan. He, like many his age, is second-generation Tower-born. He’s never known the Fohrvylda we’re from, where the only greater danger than hooded villains with hidden knives are the soldiers tasked to stop them."

And these two stories in a brutal, savage world; two islands separated by the Faithless sea. The Ausgan monks are preparing for the Heathen Tide, the day the Fohrvyldan sail the sea with their army to take control of the island. It is worth to mention the amount of original beasts that form part of the fauna in this world, some of them used as weapons in war and in the arena (I wouldn't like to find an orcane).

The prose is perfect for the genre, with List creating many quotable paragraphs that only enhance the epicness of the experience. The book is relatively fast-paced, but with some moments where it slows to introduce us to more character or give us background of the history of the place.

Violence and Vigilance is an absolutely underrated masterpiece of epic grimdark; if you like the genre, you should run and pick a copy, because you will discover your new favourite book. Can't wait to read how the story continues, and what more David T List has under the sleeve for Turesia Untamed.

The Author/s

David T. List

David T. List

David hails from the humid subtropics of the southeastern US, where he writes fantasy fiction, plays bass, explores the wilderness, rents kayaks, builds worlds, and kicks it with his family.

He's adept at trouble-shooting, thanks largely to his proficiency at trouble-making, and puts both to use creatively to bring to life unlikely creatures, unique settings and situations, and villainous heroes, all in the fantasy world of Silexare.