In the days of the first kings in the north, there were seven devils ... The devil Moth was once the wizard Ulfhild, king's sword to her brother, but a fateful choice set her feet on another road. Now she wanders the world as the executioner of the Old Great Gods, bound to hunt down her former comrades, devils who escaped the cold hells after a war in the distant heavens and shared their souls with seven wizards in order to seize a place in the human world. Epic fantasy spanning several centuries of history, set in a world of diverse lands and peoples, linked by the caravan road. Gods, assassins, devils, demons, shapeshifters, immortal wanderers, and ordinary men and women caught up into their history.

"Think Patricia McKillip meets Glen Cook." ~ @FirstClassHack

"Fans of C.J. Cherryh, Elizabeth Bear, and George R.R. Martin will find the same intelligence, wit, and mastery of language. " ~ ForeWord Reviews

"...some of the best swordfights I've ever read." ~ Anthony Ryan

"Johansen has found a winning combination: the modern epic fantasy penchant for a cast of thousands and the golden age feeling of a tale of Conan or Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser dueling with gods gone mad." ~ Publishers Weekly

"... all the elements of epic fantasy but something deeper too -- a sense of age, of history and landscape that most don't come close to. ... if Robert MacFarlane ever wrote an epic fantasy I'd be hoping it would be like this. It's poetic and cut through with veins of great sadness, gentle humour, humanity and stillness, but fire and fury too... simply on a higher level to the vast majority of fantasy books." ~ Tom Lloyd

"... a fantastic series which deserves to be read far and wide, as it’s simply one of the finest epic fantasies I’ve ever read – rich and lyrical, timeless and unique, powerful and poignant, wondrous yet real, full of characters that will stay with me forever, and a world I feel privileged to have visited ..." ~ James Latimer, The Fantasy Hive

"...a master of the heroic fantasy genre." ~ MidWest Book Review

Cover of Blackdog


A caravan-guard is possessed by the guardian dog-spirit of an exiled goddess and finds himself forced into a conflict with one of the seven devils of the legends of the north. Shortlisted for the 2012 Sunburst Award. (Pyr, 2011.)

Cover of The Leopard

The Leopard: Marakand Volume One

An assassin who cannot die is sent by the goddess who cursed him to kill the Voice of the Lady of Marakand. Set in the same world as Blackdog about a year later, Holla-Sayan, the wizard Ivah, and the devil Moth all have a role to play as well. The Leopard is part one of a two-volume story, continued in The Lady. (Trust the author: I have neither misplaced anyone nor killed off my favourite anyway-he-keeps-insisting-he-is-already-dead assassin ... )(Pyr 2014.)

Cover of The Lady

The Lady: Marakand Volume Two

Continues the story of the cursed assassin Ahjvar and his friend and would-be lover Ghu, as the city of Marakand rises in revolt against its goddess. Marakand is really one book in two volumes, The Leopard and The Lady. Don't read one without the other! (Pyr 2014.)

Cover of Gods of Nabban.

Gods of Nabban

Ghu travels home to Nabban and the doom of his godhead, taking Ahjvar, broken by his experiences in Marakand and desperate to die, with him, into a land torn by civil war and threatened by a hidden devil. (Pyr 2016.)

Cover of The Last Road

The Last Road

The final novel of Gods of the Caravan Road. When even the gods are dying, the hope of the world may lie in its most feared enemies. (Pyr 2019.)

Cover of The Storyteller and Other Tales

The Storyteller and Other Tales

Not part of the official series, but the short story "The Storyteller", included in this collection, tells the tale of Moth and the wer-bear Mikki joining forces to hunt for the devil Heuslar Ogada. (Sybertooth 2008.)


The lovely final maps for Blackdog, The Leopard, The Lady, and Gods of Nabban were drawn by Rhys Davies based on my original working maps, but for The Last Road I was asked to produce the final artwork myself. These three maps of the world of Gods of the Caravan Road at the time of The Last Road can be viewed here: the lands of the caravan road and part of the continent to the south; a more detailed map of the lands from the Taren Confederacy to Tiypur; and (not included in the book), the Western Grass.