Okay folks, listen up. For all the readers who had complaints about the last two books in The Raven's Shadow Trilogy—this book has none of those problems. Put that out of your mind and dive into this. I loved it. Vaelin is older, more grizzled, and he's lost his song. He can still wield a blade though, and boy does he. I love this Vaelin, and the group he travels with on a crazy rescue mission that leads to a pending war even more frightening than those from Raven's Shadow are fantastic. This is fun, fast-moving epic fantasy at its best!
Truly astounding battles. Warlord puts 'epic' and 'fantastic' back in epic fantasy.
Though it's all damn good, there are a few things that really stood out for me. I found the deep forest, grassland, and highland locations unique and incredibly well described. And the cavalry battles were amazing. I don't think I've ever read them quite like McArdle does it. And if you like castle sieges, oh boy. Really great stuff. The characters are also a great strength of the book, and their actions, interactions, and inner thoughts great fun to witness. Oh, and nature spirits!
All in all, I'd say this is a must read for fans of epic fantasy with brilliant characters and amazing battles.
First, I want to thank Tor for giving me a super-early sneak peek at this. I'm totally honored (and baffled) to be thought of as cool enough to be afforded such a privilege.
And even better, The Unspoken Name is a truly wonderful book. It grabbed my attention on the first page and wouldn’t let go. To me, it’s got the classic feel of the best of Le Guin, while also being progressively fresh, exciting and new, with story and sensibilities akin to something like R.J. Barker's Age of Assassins-meets-Robert J. Bennett's City of Stairs—in a multiverse. There were even sequences that reminded me of some of my favorite chapters in Josiah Bancroft's The Books of Babel and everyone knows how much I love those. It’s genre-bending, like classic fantasy set in a sci-fi world, with fascinating characters, shifting alliances, impossible odds, breathtaking settings, and shocking twists.
Keep an eye out for this one, I don't think you'll be disappointed :)
Come see us! MASSIVE book signing this weekend at the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) conference in Woodland Hills, CA, Saturday the 18th, 1:30-3:30PM. Open to the public.
I'll be there, and happy to ruin as many books as possible with my chicken-scratch :D