Blood Song by Anthony Ryan
In the same vein as Miles Cameron’s ‘The Red Knight’, ‘Blood Song’ by Anthony Ryan was a book that had sat on my shelf for a while, forlornly hoping I would pick it up and give it a shot. In this end of year doldrums, I’ve been forced back to my shelves of ‘books I should read one day’ and, as with The Red Knight, I’m absolutely stoked that I picked up Blood Song.
The book is written in much the same way that Patrick Rothfuss is writing his ‘Kingkiller Chronicles’, setting the story within a framing sequence in which the main character relates his story to another. The framing sequence is destroyed by the end of the book, leaving me wondering how Ryan is going to continue the series, but nevertheless it makes for a fascinating read in this book.
While a healthy portion of the book follows a young teenage character, the story does not fall prey to any of the teenage tropes we’ve encountered from lesser writers. Again this follows much in the same vein as Rothfuss, allowing the characters – young though they may be – to exhibit maturity and growth, without the whininess we’ve come to expect from teenage fantasy heroes.
The world, particularly the religions and worship of the world, make for a captivating backdrop against which the main story is told. Fleshing out friendships, hatreds, manipulation, and love, Ryan paints a picture of an intricate and complex world on the brink of catastrophe, amidst seeming victories and conquests.
The characters are brilliant, at once interesting and – despite their age – appealing to readers of any age. Their feats of strength are realistic, their stamina and abilities raw and limited, and their growth over the first half of the book comes slowly. Their mentors and teachers are fleeting, though important, and are obviously more than they seem to the young eyes of our protagonist.
Beautifully written, wonderfully cast and populated, Anthony Ryan does indeed seem to be placing himself as one of the next master storytellers. Book two in his series, ‘Tower Lord’ comes out in the first half of 2014, and given how much I’ve enjoyed Blood Song, immediately steps into the category of ‘Most Anticipated’.
This Blood Song book review was written by Joshua S Hill
All reviews for: Raven's Shadow
Many Are The Dead
For decades the brothers of the Sixth Order have fought a savage war against the Lonak clans amidst the frozen peaks of their Dominion. When word reaches t...
Raven's Shadow #1
Vaelin Al Sorna's life changes for ever the day his father abandons him at the gates of the Sixth Order, a secretive military arm of the Faith. Together with his fellow...
Raven's Shadow #2
Vaelin Al Sorna is tired of war. He's fought countless battles in service to the Realm and Faith. His reward was the loss of his love, the death of his friends and a be...
Queen of Fire
Raven's Shadow #3
Queen Lyrna has survived the bloody siege of Alltor. Now she must rally her troops and take back the capital from the Volarian invaders. But driving her hated enemy out of ...
Have you read Blood Song?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Blood Song reader reviews
Matthew from Australia
Fabulous. Brilliant. One of the best fantasy suits in recent years, and I've read them all.
Vivek from India
Why I liked Blood Song? Reasons: Re-readability ( I read the book 3 times already) Very mature story line Smooth story telling. When I read the book, it's like I'm in a trance and by the end of a reading session, nearly 150 pages are done. That's really something. Vaelin AlSorna is one of the best protagonists in the heroic fantasy genre.
Greg from USA
I purchased Anthony Ryan’s Blood Song because it showed up in my Goodreads “recommended” list with a ton of 5-star reviews. I’m usually suspicious, however, when the reviews so overwhelmingly endorse the greatness of a book. Based on my experience with Blood Song, I was right to be suspicious. While Blood Song is not horrible — I probably would’ve slid it 3 stars had I finished — I’m totally clueless as to how it earned so many 5-star reviews. Granted, I’m long past the age where I enjoy coming-of-age stories, if I ever did like them much. So maybe that’s the reason I don’t understand why Blood Song is getting so much love. I read about 60% of the book, and it still seemed like it was in the prologue. I get that the harsh military training the characters endure is a big part of the story, but does it have to be so much of it? Call me cynical, but I got tired real quick of all the sob stories. Enough of the poor little boys abandoned by their parents already; this ain’t Little Orphan Annie. And OK, it’s pretty clear these 6th Order fellas are supposed to be all badass. I just don’t need to know every detail of what it takes to earn their Eagle Scout badges. There is a good story in here somewhere; I did enjoy the parts that take place in the present. It’s just buried under all the writing. The dialogue isn’t very realistic and the story comes across as overly planned-out instead of flowing. All due respect to Mr. Ryan; I apologize for being a hater, but there is just nothing special enough about Blood Song to hold its own against all the other good fantasy books that are currently out there. Anthony Ryan definitely has potential, but Blood Song isn’t there yet.
7.6/10 from 4 reviews
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
The Stormlight Archive
According to mythology mankind used to live in The Tranquiline Halls. Heaven. But then the Voidbringers assaulted and captured heaven, casting out God and men. Men took roo...
After a long spell of exile, Sparhawk, Pandion Knight and the Queen's champion, returns to his native land to find it overrun with evil and intrigue - and his young Que...
Robert Jackson Bennett
In a city that runs on industrialized magic, a secret war will be fought to overwrite reality itself--the first in a dazzling new fantasy series from City of Stairs&nb...
In the Tamul Empire far to the east, unrest is brewing which threatens the nation's stability. Investigations show that the trouble is clearly of paranormal origin, and...
Temptress of the Flame
Halius is a Plainsward, a simple man tasked with a grave responsibility. Leaving his home behind in search of a cure to a disease that threatens to destroy his village, he ...
The Age of Ra
The Ancient Egyptian gods have defeated all the other pantheons and claimed dominion over the earth, dividing it into warring factions. Lt. David Westwynter, a British sold...
The Voyage South
Astreya isn’t like the other boys in his remote fishing village. When Astreya leaves home, his widowed mother gives him his father’s knife, a riddling notebook,...
Raj Ahten, the Wolf Lord of Indhopal, uses magic to transform himself into the ultimate warrior: The Sum of All Men. He seeks to bring all of humanity under his rule - dest...
Eleven years have passed since the time of the Belgariad. Garion is Overlord of the West, coping with being a king and husband. When it is revealed the Dark Prophesy still ...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages: