There are about five reviewers I follow (and who, in turn, follow me) on Goodreads, whose choice in books and ratings are very similar to my own. I have been sitting on the ARC of this particular book for a couple of years, somewhat hesitant to get in to it, in part because one of my favorite reviewers did not rank this particularly well. But because the third book in the series was just released, and I’m tired of reading series’ books without reading them in order, I decided to go back and give this a read.
And I enjoyed it.
Prince Kyth has a rare magic ability that is outlawed by the church and is being hunted by a sect of mysterious magicians. Kyth and his Majat bodyguard – including a mercenary by the name of Kara – look to build alliances with other kingdoms. This is a pretty typical ‘epic’ fantasy with swords and sorcery and a quest taken on by a group of adventurers.
As I write this review (a couple of weeks after finishing the book) I’ve recently read three epic quest fantasy books (including this one). I’m typically not a fan of this genre because I find them all to be much too similar. And while I liked two of the three I recently read, it is extremely difficult to remember the differences in the three worlds.
What I liked here was that the reader is dropped into the middle of a story and has to learn what’s going on while the story is moving forward. When this is done well, it’s an exciting way to tell a story. And this is done well.
I also liked that while the story had a great adventure to set upon, the story moved along quickly. We did not spend pages and pages of travel and talking. There was plenty of action.
The book did feel as though it is intended for a YA audience, even though I don’t see it being marketed that way. The characters are a bit on the immature side, with Kyth falling for Kara pretty quickly. But she’s a professional and has no time for such things. Right? Right.
I enjoyed my time here in this world and actually forward to jumping in to the next two books.
Looking for a good book? Blades of the Old Empire, by Anna Kashina is a better-than-average epic fantasy, but likely more for the YA readers.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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Blades of the Old Empire
author: Anna Kashina
series: Majat Code #1
publisher: Angry Robot
paperback, 476 pages