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Book review: The Shadow of the Gods (The Bloodsworn Saga #1) by John Gwynne

Book review: The Shadow of the Gods (The Bloodsworn Saga #1) by John Gwynne

ARC provided by the publisher—Orbit—in exchange for an honest review.

Cover art illustrated by: Marcus Whinney

The Shadow of the Gods by John Gwynne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Bloodsworn Saga (Book #1 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, High Fantasy

Pages: 496 pages (Hardcover edition)

Published: 6th May 2021 by Orbit (UK) and 4th May 2021 by Orbit (US)


The Shadow of the Gods is the new benchmark in Norse mythology-inspired stories. This is the fantasy I’ve been waiting for.

In all honesty, this book had as good a chance as possible of becoming a favourite of mine, for I am without a doubt an ardent reader and supporter of John Gwynne and his books, having read and loved all of his previous works. Both The Faithful and the Fallen and Of Blood and Bone are masterpieces in my estimation and occupy treasured spaces on my shelf and within my heart. Nevertheless, no book is a certain thing as writers are only human beings, but I could not contain my excitement when I read that this latest venture of Mr Gwynne was another epic fantasy story, this time with Norse ink in its veins. I believe that mythologies always appeal to a wide fan base, with Norse and Greek, in particular, being personal favourites. And while I am nowhere near well-read on the subjects, I squeed like any fan worthy of the title at the idea of a favourite author shaping a story from the fertile ground that is the Norse culture. On such a foundation The Shadow of the Gods had much to live up to and I tried to curtail my hopes a little. There was no need though. At the end of this story, I was once again in awe at witnessing a master completely comfortable in executing an epically captivating and exciting tale.

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Book Review: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie

Book Review: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie

Cover of book for The Murder of Roger Ackroyd

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars.

Genre: Mystery, Murder Mystery, Fiction

Published: June 1926 by William Collins, Sons


The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is singularly spectacular.

After recently enjoying some mystery fiction, I decided to explore the genre a bit more and my research concluded that there was hardly a better option than an Agatha Christie novel. I did not plan on reading any specific one until I perused an article on some of the best murder mysteries and saw an Agatha Christie book listed. First published back in 1926, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd was voted the best crime novel ever in 2013 by the British Crime Writers’ Association. I had found my next read.

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Book Review: The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

Book Review: The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars.

Genre: Mystery, historical fiction

Published: 1st October 2020 by Raven Books (Bloomsbury Publishing, UK), 6th October 2020 by Sourcebooks Landmark (US)


Cunningly crafted and delightfully devilish, the Devil and the Dark Water is not only a masterpiece of a mystery novel but also the most fun I had between the pages in 2020.

And that right there might be all I need to say. While it was a horrible year in most aspects, books were a shining light in the dark, providing the very escapism I needed time and time again with a stellar line-up of stories read. Eeyore-mode averted. (It’s not a pretty sight, I confess.) And if it isn’t already transparently obvious, The Devil and the Dark Water more than did its part in keeping that gloom away. It was one of the stars of the show, making Mr Turton a shoo-in for not only the best new-to-me author I read that year but also my auto-buy author list. This might be your triumph dear author, but it feels like the pleasure was all mine, and I thank you for it.

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Book Review: Rhythm of War (The Stormlight Archive, #4) by Brandon Sanderson

Book Review: Rhythm of War (The Stormlight Archive, #4) by Brandon Sanderson

Rhythm of War by Brandon Sanderson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Stormlight Archive (Book 4 of 10)

Genre: Epic fantasy, high fantasy

Published: 17th November 2020 by Tor Books (US) and Gollancz (UK)


Dealing out as many exhilarating moments and heartfelt ones as questions to think upon, Rhythm of War is a simply stunning composition from a masterful storyteller!

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Book Review: A Time of Courage (Of Blood and Bone, #3) by John Gwynne

Book Review: A Time of Courage (Of Blood and Bone, #3) by John Gwynne

I received an ARC of A Time of Courage from the publisher (Pan Macmillan) in exchange for an honest review.

A Time Of Courage book cover

A Time of Courage by John Gwynne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: Of Blood and Bone (Book #3 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy

Published: 2nd April 2020 by Pan Macmillan (UK) & 7th April 2020 by Orbit (US)


Flawless!

No word better describes the result of the time and effort John Gwynne has put into A Time of Courage, the finale of the Of Blood and Bone series. It is a monumental achievement to have wrapped up this series so perfectly and speaks to the care and dedication that the author has put into this work, the love for it permeating every page.

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