Songs of the Earth by Elspeth Cooper
Sadly, there isn’t always a constant stream of books by big name authors to keep you reading day in day out. I used to consider this the downside of reviewing books, but I recently found that I was wrong. My pile of “books that I’ll get to one day” became must reads.
‘Songs of the Earth’ by Elspeth Cooper was the second book that I picked off that pile, and the second book that I found myself unexpectedly enjoying.
Gair is under a death sentence.
He can hear music - music with power - and in the Holy City that means only one thing: he's a witch, and he's going to be burnt at the stake. Even if he could escape, the Church Knights and their witchfinder would be hot on his heels, whilst his burgeoning power threatens to tear him apart from within.
There is no hope . . .
. . . none but a secretive order, themselves persecuted almost to destruction. If Gair can escape, if he can master his own growing, dangerous abilities, if he can find the Guardians of the Veil, then maybe he will be safe.
Or maybe he'll discover that his fight has only just begun.
Set in a church-state world where magic is abhorred and considered a sin punishable by burning, take a guess who our main character is going to be. Sure, it may not be the most original tale, but a tale told well can sweep away any stereotypicalities.
What I was impressed with was the way in which Cooper wove in perspectives that weren’t our main hero’s. The Church is not the pure centre of light it wants to be, and the head of the Church well knows it. The hidden princess is selfless and sacrificial, while still being emotional and lost.
And what starts out as a book with magic as its fantastical element slowly starts introducing elements that add more to this world; hidden worlds, new dimensions, demons, and a disregard for the humans we’re surrounded with.
I was a little disappointed with the way in which Cooper all but pulled from the Bible and Greek/Roman history to give her world credibility. I found no evidence that this book was situated on a parallel Earth, but there were some things – words, phrases, historical references – that drew me out of the story. It’s a minor complaint in the whole, but a complaint nonetheless. I wanted to be left in the world and to have everything fit and belong there, instead of reminding me of my world.
Also, the last fifty pages or so seemed rushed – as if the author had a word count or deadline that she had to meet – which left me feeling a little let down with the way the story was filled out, or, as the case may be, wasn’t.
Nevertheless, Cooper has written a book that kept me glued to the page hour after hour. I am very much looking forward to the second book in this series, and I would recommend this to most readers.
This Songs of the Earth book review was written by Joshua S Hill
All reviews for: The Wild Hunt
Songs of the Earth
The Wild Hunt: Book 1
Gair is under a death sentence. He can hear music - music with power - and in the Holy City that means only one thing: he's a witch, and he's going to be burnt at t...
The Wild Hunt: Book 2
As Gair struggles with grief over the loss of the only home he had known, and his beloved, he is walking into a conflict that's greater and more deadly than he or his m...
The Raven's Shadow
The Wild Hunt: Book 3
Three moons are rising. They are rising over the snowy Archen Mountains, where Teia struggles through the high passes to carry her warning to the Empire: the Nimrothi war b...
Have you read Songs of the Earth?
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.
Songs of the Earth reader reviews
7.5/10 from 1 reviews
There are currently no reader reviews for this book. Why not be the first?
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
Ursula Le Guin
As a young dragonlord, Ged, whose use-name is Sparrowhawk, is sent to the island of Roke to learn the true way of magic. A natural magician, Ged becomes an Archmage and hel...
The Kingkiller Chronicle
"I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my l...
Harry Potter is an ordinary boy who lives in a cupboard under the stairs at his Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon's house, which he thinks is normal for someone like him wh...
Year of the Unicorn
Far from the besieged home of Simon and Jaelithe, in peaceful Norsdale, we meet Gillan, who longs to leave her dull life in a secluded country abbey. But when her wish come...
Sixteen-year-old Neryn is alone in the land of Alban, where the oppressive king has ordered anyone with magical strengths captured and brought before him. Eager to hide her...
The Empire has declared war on the small, were-ruled kingdom of Aydori, capturing five women of the Mage-Pack, including the wife of the were Pack-leader. With the Pack off...
The Secrets of Drearcliff Grange School
When her mother finds her sleeping on the ceiling, Amy Thomsett is sent to Drearcliff Grange School in Somerset. Although it looks like a regular 1920s boarding school, Amy...
The Lightbringer Trilogy
Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. His strength, wit and charm are all that preserve a tenuous peace. But Prisms never last, and Guile knows exac...
The Saga of Recluce
LE Modesitt Jr
Young Lerris is dissatisfied with his life and trade, and yearns to find a place in the world better suited to his skills and temperament. But in Recluce a change in circum...
Raymond E Feist
Crydee, a frontier outpost in the Kingdom of the Isles. An orphaned young boy named Pug becomes a master magician’s apprentice and two world’s destinies are for...
Memory Sorrow and Thorn
A war fueled by the dark powers of sorcery is about to engulf the peaceful land of Osten Ard--for Prester John, the High King, slayer of the dread dragon Shurakai, lies dyi...
Enter the kingdom of Lur, where to use magic unlawfully means death. The Doranen have ruled Lur with magic since arriving as refugees centuries ago. Theirs was a desperate ...
The Night Circus
The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterl...
The Chaoswar Saga
Raymond E Feist
The Darkness is coming… The Kingdom is plagued by rumour and instability. Kingdom spies in Kesh have been disappearing - either murdered, or turned to the enemy side...
The Toy Sorcerer
Trapped as a mortal in a dimension where human dreams become reality, Alice Towers endures a journey of unmerciful persecution and excruciating self-discovery. Guided by an...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
- Recommended high fantasy books/series
- Recommended books/series featuring wizards and magicians
- Recommended epic fantasy books/series
Best of 2016
Stranger of Tempest
Lynx is a mercenary with a sense of honour; a dying breed in the Riven Kingdom. Failed by the nation he served and weary of the skirmishes that plague the continent's prin...
A warrior prince, a talented spy. A quest to free an enslaved people begins.Crown Prince Aven Lanuken wants something more than a trophy for a future wife. He wants a woman wh...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
Paris was supposed to save Hallie. Now... well, let’s just say Paris has other ideas. There’s a strange woman called The Chronometrist who will not leave her alone. Garbled warnings from bizarre creatures keep her up at night. And there’s a time portal in the keg room of the bar where she works. Soon, Hallie is tumbling through...
A corrupted city. A dark dream of power. Luke is a prisoner, condemned for a murder he didn’t commit. Abi is a fugitive, desperate to free him before magic breaks his...
The Fifth Empire of Man
Rob J Hayes
The Pirate Isles are united under Drake Morrass’ flag, but the war has only just begun. There’s still a long way to go before he’s able to call himself Ki...
Ian C Esslemont
After the disappointments of Li Heng, Dancer and Kellanved wash up on a small insignificant island named Malaz. Immediately, of course, Kellanved plans to take it over. To ...
Age of Swords
Michael J Sullivan
Raithe, the God Killer, may have started the rebellion by killing a Fhrey, but long-standing enmities dividing the Rhunes make it all but impossible to unite against the co...
A Time of Dread
The Ben-Elim, a race of warrior angels, once vanquished a mighty demon horde. Now they rule the Banished lands. But their dominion is brutally enforced and their ancient en...
The Last Dog on Earth
Adrian J Walker
Every dog has its day... And for Lineker, a happy go lucky mongrel from Peckham, the day the world ends is his: finally a chance to prove to his owner just how loyal he can...