Ahoy there me mateys! I received this fantasy eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. So here be me honest musings. If ye haven’t read the first book in this series, age of myth, then ye might want to skip this post and go read the first book. Worth the read. If ye keep reading this log then ye have been forewarned and continue at yer own peril . . .
age of swords (Michael J. Sullivan)
Title: age of swords
Author: Michael J. Sullivan
Publisher: Del Ray
Publication Date: TODAY! (hardcover/e-book)
So I be lucky again! Arrrr! Ye see a ways back in time, I won me first ever book from Goodreads Giveways, which happened to be the first book in this series: age of myth. It was also me first experience reading the works of Mr. Sullivan. The novel was one of the best books I read in 2016 and I adored it. So then when I saw book two on NetGalley I requested it and the publisher said yes! Arrrr!
The only problem was finding an uninterrupted day where I could lock meself in me cabin with the understanding that anyone who bothered me was going to be run through by me cutlass! But of course being Captain, I recently had me heart’s desire and read this gem in one sitting. It be first-rate.
The highlight fer me was how this story continued to portray strong female characters. While there are side stories in this novel, the main action involved me favorite women from the first novel including, but not limited to, Suri, Persephone, Moya, Brin, Roan, and Arion. In fact this group is a powerhouse of different strengths and talents who work together and trust each other. Empowering and awesome. Many of the men sit back on the sidelines arguing and accomplishing nothing. Made me laugh. Of course not all of the male characters are pointless. We get to see me other male favorites like Raithe and Gifford as well. There are a quite a few new characters introduced that I know I will enjoy discovering in later books.
The storytelling overall was full of action and the time spent reading whirled right by. I was completely enthralled for 99.99% of the novel. I perhaps even shed more than a few salty tears. There were only a few quirks that made this novel slightly less fun than the first.
One was the point of view chapters of Mawyndule. He is a hateful, spoiled, annoying brat. While I understand his existence, his naivete and attitude made me sigh when I had to hear what was inside his head again. I would love to make him walk the plank and then be eaten by treacherous sharks with the remainder of him sunk to the bottom of Davy Jones’ Locker never to be heard from again.
The other minor problem was that a large portion of the book took place in what felt like the mines of Moria with the Balrog. As I read that famous trilogy every year for 16 years, it took me a little bit to shake the sensation of deja vu. I decided in me head that it was deliberate homage and got over it. Besides even though it is an epic fantasy, the characters are me true joy and I loved watching the consequences of their choices whether it be heartbreak or growth.
This is not to say that the plot, politics, world building, magic, and other elements of the story don’t float me boat. They did. Plus the ending was delightfully foreshadowy. I loved this novel and already know I want the other four. The author suspects we might be able to get our hands on the rest of the series on an accelerated schedule. Arrrr!
Side note: for an excellent breakdown of the different series by Michael Sullivan and his advice for reading same, check out this page on his website.
So lastly . . .
Thank you Del Ray!
The author’s website had this to say about the novel:
Raithe, the God Killer, may have started the rebellion by killing a Fhrey, but long-standing enmities dividing the Rhune make it all but impossible to unite against a common foe. And even if the clans can join forces, how will they defeat an enemy whose magical prowess makes the Fhrey indistinguishable from gods? The answer lies across the sea in a faraway land populated by a reclusive and dour race With time running out, Persephone leads a small band of misfits in a desperate search for aid—a quest that will take them into the darkest depths of Elan. There, an ancient adversary waits—an enemy as surprising as it is deadly.
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