Blood Song by Anthony Ryan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Every now and then, you stumble across an author through blind luck (or Amazon's recommendation algorithms) and discover a real gem. This book is one of those.
Blood Song is a great mix of politics, action, mystery, magic - all the elements of an epic fantasy novel. It tracks the life of a warrior from childhood through training into battle. Its ending is semi-conclusive, certainly paving the road for book 2, which I look forward to. Ryan's writing is really great, considering that the book is self published via amazon. Apparently it had a bunch of grammatical and other errors, but they have since been fixed.
At a $2.99 price point, I cannot recommend this book enough. I enjoyed it far more than Wizard's First Rule or A Game of Thrones - the story is very compelling and it has fewer downright nasty or gory bits. The only downside of the book is the lack of history about the world that he builds - the politicking is explained somewhat but nowhere close to the detail that Martin or Tolkien would go into.
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