Book Review – Death Rider: A Dark Fantasy Epic (Gunmetal Gods Saga)

Death Rider by Zamil Akhtar


A disgraced warrior seeks an honorable death on the battlefield, but an eldritch god has other plans for her.


Rating: 5 out of 5.

You may be wondering why the summary for this book is so short. Just to put this in context, this is a free novella that is a sort of prequel for the Gunmetal Gods series and having a much longer summary would likely give away spoilers of not only Death Rider but also other books in the series. Like the rest of Gunmetal Gods, this is fantasy combined with cosmic horror. If you like that style of story, the whole series is a must read. It’s inventive and interesting and full of epic battles, heartbreaking emotion, and unimaginably horrible gods.

Zamil Akhtar proves with this novella that he can make an impact with a shorter form of story just as well as he can with full length novels. I’ll not go too much into the plot here because I do not want to spoil the story for any new readers. This novella is a good place to start if you have not read any of the Gunmetal Gods series and for those of us who are already fans of the books, this is a wonderful supplement to the main story.

Darya is what is known as a Death Rider. She has made a mistake and is at death’s door because of her actions. She has one last chance to survive. One last hope at living, for even one more day. With the horrors she will encounter, she may well wish she had chosen death instead.

The novella has a relatable main character, an enjoyable amount of action, and one hell of an ending that needs to be read to be believed. If you are a fan at all of cosmic horror or epic fantasy and you have not read Gunmetal Gods, I can’t recommend it enough. You can purchase Death Rider in paperback at the link above, or you can get a free digital copy by joining Zamil Akhtar’s mailing list at He’s also working on a new progression fantasy series and I’m excited to see where that leads.

(Note: this post contains affiliate links. If you purchase something through this post I will get a small commission at no extra cost to you)