Corvus by Paul Kearney
Never let it be said that Paul Kearney takes his time telling a story. In fact, let’s get down to brass tax, and make it very clear from the outset that if you start a book written by Paul Kearney, you better be willing to read straight through till 6am the next morning, because it’s going to be bloody hard to put it down again once you’ve started.
Don’t get me wrong; this is not a problem. If you’re looking for an intricately told story of life, the universe and everything, that takes place over years, if not decades, then look somewhere else, because Kearney is not the guy to give it to you.
Paul Kearney deals in realistic, stark and utterly brutal reality, told to the pace of a fast congo beat; and I absolutely love it.
Corvus tells a story set some 20 years or so after Kearney’s first Macht book, The Ten Thousand. The catch isn’t much of a surprise, but it is a nice one, and you get to see the lives of some of the characters you left behind when you put The Ten Thousand up on the shelf.
I flicked to the back of the book early on to see the last page and whether a certain character makes it through, mainly because I’m a wimp, but also because I didn’t want to get attached to a character who was going to cark it halfway through the book.
You see, I know Paul Kearney’s type of writer, and they’re the sort who have “Murder Your Darlings” in red letters painted on the wall of their writing studio that leaves you hoping to all heavens that it’s written in red paint, and not some other substance. They take a sort of perverse pleasure – or that’s the way it sometimes comes across – with ensuring the characters you start out with aren’t the same ones you finish with.
And it makes for a wonderful gritty realism that leaves you relishing the book you’ve just finished. Kearney doesn’t write in contrivance – except for one glaring exception that pulled me right out of the story and left me very jaded for a few pages. People die, are injured, fall sick, are raped, mercilessly, and you get to see into the lives of what war was probably like during the darker periods of human history.
The story itself is compelling to the point of crazed, and the lack of structure to which character gets a perspective leaves you as jittery as the characters on the page. Everything happens so quickly, with very little time left to sit and ponder ones actions, and before you know it you’re at the walls of yet another city with your blades out.
I can’t recommend a book like Corvus highly enough. Kearney writes with knowledge, not only of the craft of writing, but of the craft of war, and history, and military might. He brings a realism to the story that doesn’t bore, but rather grips you and reminds you of the bloody mess of war. There are characters who are the pinnacle of honour and those who are the scum of the earth. You’ll love and hate, cheer and cry, and be shocked by what happens.
And you’ll love it.
This Corvus book review was written by Joshua S Hill
All reviews for: The Macht
The Ten Thousand
The Macht: Book 1
10,000 elite mercenaries of a legendary race known as the Macht are hired by an Empire exile to take the throne by force. But when their employer is killed, and they are su...
The Macht: Book 2
It is twenty-three years since a Macht army fought its way home from the heart of the Asurian Empire. The man who came to lead that army, Rictus, is now a hard-bitten merce...
Kings of Morning
The Macht: Book 3
For the first time in recorded history, the ferocious city-states of the Macht now acknowledge a single man as their overlord. Corvus, the strange, brilliant boy-general, i...
Have you read Corvus?
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.
Corvus reader reviews
9.7/10 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
A Tale of the Malazan Book of the Fallen
Bled dry by interminable warfare, infighting and bloody confrontations with Lord Anomander Rake and his Tiste Andii, the vast, sprawling Malazan empire simmers with discont...
A Brightness Long Ago
Guy Gavriel Kay
International bestselling author Guy Gavriel Kay's latest work is set in a world evoking early Renaissance Italy and offers an extraordinary cast of characters whose li...
Chronicles of the Black Company
Darkness wars with darkness as the hard-bitten men of the Black Company take their pay and do what they must. They bury their doubts with their dead. Then comes the prophec...
Shadow Ops series
Army Officer. Fugitive. Sorcerer. Across the country and in every nation, people are waking up with magical talents. Untrained and panicked, they summon storms, raise the d...
The Divine Cities Trilogy
Robert Jackson Bennett
A special omnibus edition, collecting all three books of Robert Jackson Bennett’s acclaimed Divine Cities trilogy in a single volume. &nbs...
The Rigante Novels
Born in the storm that doomed his father, Connavar grows to manhood among the mist-covered mountains of Caer Druagh, where the Rigante tribe dwell in harmony with the land ...
The First Law
Inquisitor Glokta, a crippled and increasingly bitter relic of the last war, former fencing champion turned torturer extraordinaire, is trapped in a twisted and broken body...
The Ascendants of Estorea
The Estorean Conquord has stood for 850 years. Its Advocate, Herine Del Aglios, knows that she presides over the greatest civilisation in history. But she wants more. And i...
The Drenai Novels
The Legend Druss, Captain of the Axe: the stories of his life were told everywhere. Instead of the wealth and fame he could have claimed, he had chosen a mountain lair, hig...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages: