Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Under Ordshaw” as Want to Read:
Under Ordshaw
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Under Ordshaw

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  87 ratings  ·  50 reviews
Welcome to Ordshaw. Don’t look down.

Pax is one rent cheque away from the unforgiving streets of Ordshaw. After her stash is stolen, her hunt for the thief unearths a book of nightmares and a string of killers, and she stands to lose much more than her home.

There’s something lurking under her city.

Knowing it’s there could get you killed.
Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published May 29th 2018 by Rumian Publishing (first published May 24th 2018)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Under Ordshaw, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Under Ordshaw

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.29  · 
Rating details
 ·  87 ratings  ·  50 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Under Ordshaw
Nick Borrelli
Apr 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
The two major strengths of UNDER ORDSHAW are definitely the characters and world-building in my opinion. In terms of the characters, my two favorites were the main character Pax and the kickass fae Letty. It's interesting because the two characters really couldn't be more different, yet I loved them each in their own way. Letty is bombasic, foul-mouthed, and often rough around the edges. Think Tinkerbell with a machine gun and tattoos. And there are many more where Letty came from. These definit ...more
Mar 18, 2020 rated it liked it

With Under Ordshaw, Phil Williams draws us into the horrors that lurk below ground level of a city of Ordshaw. He offers an interesting and unique take on the fae mythos. Fae are real and minuscule but also violent, foul-mouthed, and technologically advanced. The book tells the story of Pax Kuranes, a young woman thrust into a fast-paced adventure heavy with supernatural and mystery.

I tend to root for street-smart characters, so I liked Pax right from the start. She notices patterns in life
Apr 19, 2020 rated it really liked it

Under Ordshaw is the gritty and thrilling first installment in Phil Williams’ Ordshaw series, an Urban Fantasy jaunt perfectly balanced with a little bit of horror and a little bit of humor. At its heart it’s a cautionary tale of the dangers of secrets, highlighting that no matter how determined one may be to leave the past behind, it will always be lurking around the darkest of corners. Set in a familiar world where the line between good and bad is blurred beyond recognition, readers are barrag
Travis Riddle
May 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A gripping thriller with a compelling cast of characters and unique, horrific monsters that feel like they're ripped straight out of Silent Hill.

Williams is great at doling out information about this secret underground world at a pace that keeps you intrigued and turning the pages while never feeling like you're totally left in the dark or that things are being intentionally left out to confuse you or set up mysteries. Instead it feels like the knowledge of what's under Ordshaw is explained org
Mogsy (MMOGC)
Jun 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

As a popular entry in the 2019 Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off competition, Under Ordshaw has actually been on my radar for a while, but a busy schedule prevented me from getting to it earlier. As it turned out though, that became a happy opportunity for me to check out the audiobook edition which came out this spring. Urban Fantasy tends to be a genre I prefer in the audio format, and this one ended up being a very entert
Ollie Bowdoin
Apr 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I’m not the biggest Urban Fantasy reader, but I have a read a few, most recently was The Last Smile In Sunder City by Luke Arnold. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I ended up enjoying this genre, as well as how much flexibility there is for a writer. Although I loved Sunder City, Under Ordahaw was a complete blast. I had a lot of fun reading it, and glimpsing the monsters, and the unstable, and angry fairies that live under the city of Ordshaw in The Sunken City.

We get the story from multi
Richard Buxton
Jul 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Well conceived, well executed and well nigh impossible to put down.

The story-line is centred around Pax, a professional poker player who, through no fault of her own, is dragged into the Ordshaw’s secret underworld in more senses than one. Shady governmental agencies, criminal operators and the fantastical and factionalised world of the Fae, all have secret axes to grind while Ordshaw’s unknowing citizenry go about life above ground. But what they don’t know might still hurt them. Pax is a loner
Alana Bloom
Apr 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
*Thank you to Storytellers on Tour and Phil Williams for the review copy. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Employing several POVs, whatever is deemed necessary to move the plot along, we are introduced quickly to an interesting cast of flawed and morally grey characters that operate outside the norm. Pax is a card player that generally only ventures out after sundown. Her background is shady at best and I am still thoroughly confused as to her choices in life. We also follow Barton, a family
Damien Larkin
Apr 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Under Ordshaw is an explosive and fast paced urban fantasy that fans of the genre and newcomers will enjoy.

Spread over a three day period, we follow poker hustler Pax as a chance encounter causes her life to spiral out of control. Coerced by a shady government ministry and threatened by a gang of psychopathic, murderous fae, she risks everything to protect a young orphan while uncovering the secrets of what really lurks under Ordshaw...

With fantastic characters, an intriguing world and gripping
May 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy of this book from the author. I had the opportunity to review or not.

There is something underneath the city of Ordshaw. Something weird, dangerous, and totally unexpected by the citizens. When Pax Kuranes sets out to win a stake for herself, she enters into a poker game. With skill and determination, Pax wins a very comfortable fortune and pictures herself getting all she dreams of. Stepping into a bar to celebrate, her luck runs out and a young man steals her fortune.

Stormi (BMReviewsohmy)
Nov 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
When I started this I wasn't sure what I would think of it but I was pretty surprised as once I got into it it was very enjoyable. Pax is pretty broke and then her money is stolen she must get it back. When she goes after the person who stole it she gets more than she bargains for when she finds out there is a whole lot more out there than she thought. Like fairies with attitude and scare creatures! I really enjoyed the characters in this story! Pax was a pretty cool character but I really liked ...more
Leelynn (Sometimes Leelynn Reads) ❤
Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to Storytellers on Tour and Rumian Publishing for this free copy. All quotes in this review are taken from the Advanced Reader Copy and may change in final publication.

I haven’t read much urban fantasy before but whenever I get a chance to, I find that they can be pretty enjoyable.

Under Ordshaw is about a woman named Pax that is living a hard life in the city of Ordshaw. She
S.J. Higbee
Apr 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
I’m not going to claim that the premise is anything particularly original – it isn’t. Ordshaw is a city with a dark underbelly where lethal creatures inhabit the network of tunnels hidden beneath the streets. Most people, particularly those who are out and about during the day, don’t have any inkling about the battle going on between the creatures and humanity – but those who are largely out at night have more of an idea that something isn’t quite right. Pax falls into this category, given she i ...more
Apr 19, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This is the second urban fantasy book I’ve read in a row – the other one being the first Dresden Files book – and now I know that urban fantasy actually doesn’t mean the same thing as paranormal romance I think this is a genre I could really get into. Cos there ain’t no romance in UNDER ORDSHAW folks. This is a gritty, grimy tale of subterranean monsters, foul-mouthed rifle-strapped fairies and the people tasked to hunt them down in the name of national security. This review iss part of the Stor ...more
Sean Cunningham
Feb 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Under Ordshaw's in-world field guide/monster manual is the urban fantasy thing I didn't realise I needed. Apothel's Miscellany is a guide for the horrors living in the tunnels beneath Ordshaw. And horrors they are.

Under Ordshaw is the tale of Pax Kuranes, a card player drawn into the darker side of the city's night, and Citizen Barton, a fighter drawn back in after many years trying to live a daylight life. It's a story of the monsters in the tunnels, of the people who guard them and are fascina
Melissa Anderson
Apr 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I recieved this book as part of a book tour from Storytellers On Tour. I had no previous knowledge of this series. I just thought it sounded interesting. I absolutely loved it. I wasn't really expecting to, but I can't wait to read the rest of the series now.
This book made me think of a detective film noir style meets Men in Black and Neverwhere. A secret government agency who police and protect the citizens of Orshaw from Fae and monsters in tunnels of the Sunken City. Not all characters were
Jake Swartz
Nov 29, 2018 rated it liked it
I was given this book in exchange for an honest review.

My favorite part of this book was the characters. There was such a colorful variety of perfectly flawed characters. This is one of the few books that has multiple perspectives where I was never bothered when the perspective switched to another character. That doesn't mean I liked every character, but I definitely enjoyed their perspective. I think not liking each character made it more enjoyable though.

Fun twists and turns.

**SPOILER** Slight
Jason P
Apr 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
A Solid, Original Urban Fantasy and a Strong Female Lead

Shades of Neverwhere accompany Under Ordshaw into it's own unique world below. But this is it's own unique tale, with interesting, engaging characters, unique world building and a plethora of well designed fantastical critters, both good and otherwise.

Blending the familiar with the rarely explored and the functionally fantastic, Under Ordshaw offers up a clever, suspenseful adventure through a fantastical underworld that is surprisingly aut
Marco Tosolini
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
I found this book through the TBRindR-service. Which means I got it for free, which means nothing because I write what I want;)
So today I talk about something from the “Urban Fantasy”-genre. Which for the most meant (at least for me) usually a magician/detective in a situation close to a noire film and mostly in the first person. I got the noire-vibe from this one in parts but the rest greatly differs.
Under Ordshaw takes place in a city that to me feels like London transported to the USA (I look

Under Ordshaw only came on my radar recently. I’ve been on a bit of an urban/contemporary fantasy kick, and this one seemed to fit the bill. Plus, I was intrigued by the idea of a city under the city that no one really knows about. I’ve never encountered that in fantasy before, and it seemed like it could either be extremely messy, or extremely well done.

Call me curious.

Under Ordshaw starts out with a bang. Our protagonist, Pax, ends up winning big in a c
Steph Warren
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
*I received a free ARC of this book with thanks to the author. The decision to review and my opinions are my own.*

I found Under Ordshaw are bit difficult to get into at the beginning, as all of the characters are prickly arseholes. Luckily they grew on me once I got to know them a bit better.

Just a few pages in and I was utterly hooked on this urban fantasy, with its fresh take on old favourites like fairies and monsters. The worldbuilding of Layer Fae, the Blue Angel and the MEE is superb and r
Apr 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Reeling from her winnings, Pax Kuranes doesn’t take much notice of the seemingly innocent boy rambling about minotaurs and asking her some bizarre questions. That is until he gets aggressively arrested by a agent from the MEE, and Pax realises she’s been robbed. Using her contacts to find the boys address she stumbles upon a device, and a book with sketches of creatures that look like they’ve been drawn from the dark
Phil Parker
Feb 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Under Ordshaw is a fun, thrill-a-minute urban fantasy full of unique characters, exciting action and wonderfully comic moments that made me laugh out loud.
The premise is a simple one; the supernatural threat exists beneath the urban sprawl of a city, accessed via abandoned factories and rarely used underground stations. The combatants are many and varied – from the conflicted and mysterious Ministry for Environmental Energy, to the Fae (more of them shortly) and the individuals who get caught up
Alan Medhurst
Jul 24, 2021 rated it it was amazing
*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the author via Voracious Readers Only*

What if fairies were real? Suppose they were more technologically advanced than humans? How about if they are psychos with guns and bombs?

Pax is a citizen of the night, making her living by playing poker and trying to make enough to enter the Poker World Championship. One evening, after a decent win, she is approached in a bar and ends up robbed of her money. After reaching out to her shady contacts in an eff
Alan Medhurst
Jul 25, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the author via Voracious Readers Only*

What if fairies were real? Suppose they were more technologically advanced than humans? How about if they are psychos with guns and bombs?

Pax is a citizen of the night, making her living by playing poker and trying to make enough to enter the Poker World Championship. One evening, after a decent win, she is approached in a bar and ends up robbed of her money. After reaching out to her shady contacts in an eff
Peter Bradley
Jan 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Please give my review a helpful vote -

I came to this book via the author, Phil Williams' book on English tenses. I thought I would give this a try and I am glad to say that I do not regret that decision.

The story is set in the English city of Ordshaw, a city with several million inhabitants, a healthy downtown area, a developed highway system and a series of underground tunnels which are filled with unusual fauna. The underground tunnel system is essentia
Feb 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: paranormal
I think that this novel is spectacularly written. It's subject matter and mood are dark and gritty, so it's not for those who want to feel joyous and uplifted. In fact, it's a pretty harrowing read, but not gratuitous.

The pacing is excellent - drawing the reader in from the beginning, and building to a crescendo. There is ample vivid description skillfully woven through the action and never slowing the pace.

The world-building is phenomenal, with Ordshaw itself reading as a critical character ra
Rachel Barnard
Aug 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“I avoided an ordinary life long enough for the extraordinary to corner me. Now I’m trying to do something about it.”

Pax Kuranes is a card player. She only works during the night, when a certain type of person is out and about. She doesn’t mind it. She enjoys her nights and her wins. With her current night’s winnings she hopes to get into a poker tournament and win big. But after a crazy spouting nonsense about a minotaur bumps into her and suddenly her winnings disappear, a mysterious man who w
May 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Find this review at Forever Lost in Literature!

I hadn't read an urban fantasy in a while, so I was excited to dip my toes back into the subgenre and see how it went. Under Ordshaw was brought to my attention courtesy of the wonderful TBRindr service started on r/fantasy that helps to connect indie authors with reviewers! When I was asked about reviewing Under Ordshaw, I was really drawn to it for a variety of reasons, the largest of which being how interesting the concept sounded. I love the ide
Aug 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Disclaimer: I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

Well-written urban fantasy is totally my jam, and if you add in the UK, bonus points! Under Ordshaw takes place in the (fictional?) city of Ordshaw, and our main character is slightly out-of-shape Pax Kuranes (when she's running away from the creepy crap she's going to learn about, she regrets her lack of cardio - I loved that), a gal just looking to use her latest poker take in a higher-stakes game that will be televised. I do
« previous 1 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Please link book to my author profile 3 203 May 17, 2018 09:30AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Midlife Curses (Witching Hour, #1)
  • The City We Became (Great Cities #1)
  • The Quantum Curators and the Fabergé Egg
  • Shadow of a Dead God (Mennik Thorn, #1)
  • Intentional Abduction (Alien Abduction, #2)
  • Adrienne's Awakening: Book One of The Mind Duology
  • Spit and Song (Ustlian Tales #2)
  • The Wicked Woods (Monstrous Tales, #1)
  • The Wicked Wolf (Monstrous Tales, #2)
  • Gettin' Lucky (Holidays of Love, #1)
  • Testimony: The Soul Monger: Book Three
  • Hands Off (Love in the Suburbs, #3)
  • Alien Prisoner (Alien Invasion, #2)
  • The DI Bliss Series (DI Bliss, #1-5)
  • Revelations: The Soul Monger: Book Two
  • In Bed with the Earl (Lost Lords of London, #1)
  • Midlife Ghost Hunter (Forty Proof, #4)
  • The Queen's Crown (Court of Midnight and Deception #3)
See similar books…
Phil Williams writes contemporary fantasy and dystopian fiction and non-fiction grammar guides. His novels include the interconnected Ordshaw urban fantasy thrillers, the post-apocalyptic Estalia saga and the action-packed Faergrowe series. He also runs the website English Lessons Brighton, and writes reference books to help foreign learners master the nuances of English.

Phil lives with his wife

News & Interviews

At Goodreads, we love reading (shocker, I know). There's just nothing like curling up on the couch with a cup of coffee or tea and burying...
43 likes · 15 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »