I do like a nice intricately woven tome now and again. I had heard a lot about this series from Steph (Aka Mogsy) who is one of the reviewers from the wonderful Bibliosanctum .
So when I finished it, my wife asks me if I had enjoyed it? My reply was full of mumbles until i finally said, “I didnt hate it.”
It was only when I let the contents of the story swim around my mind, thinking more on its finer points, did i decide that actually I had just read something that was pretty bloody special. And I stand by this.
So the basis of the story is the lands of Antiopia and Yuros are separated by what appears to be a rather large ocean. Something pretty cool happens each Moontide when the Leviathan bridge rises from the depths to connect to both of these places for trade etc. But as with all things there are those that are not very happy and the bridge has been used for conquest. So tensions are slightly at breaking point as another Moontide is around the corner. War is at hand.
Amongst all this the story focuses on several different characters and their own trials and tribulations on the build up to Moontide. Antonin Meiros, who is a very old mage is looking for a wife, so he travels to Lakh in Antiopia where we meet his wife-to-be, Ramita but my dear friends, she is already betrothed to Kazim. And then in the North the reader meets Elena Anborn who is the bodyguard of a royal family but yet much more than just a bodyguard. And then we meet Alaron Mercer who is about to take his final exams to lawfully become a Mage in Noros. Alaron is Elena Anborn’s nephew (its worth mentioning that Alaron’s mother and Elena’s sister has a pretty cool name … Tesla. Just thought I would mention that.) And finally one of the stories main antagonists is Gurvon Gyle who seems to be in control of a lot of things and makes life very difficult for Elena and the Javon royal family, which in turn effects everything else.
This book has been likened to A Game Of Thrones and even though I can see that link I think this is a book that deserves to be read without any preconceived ideas of GoT. As I have mentioned everything is connected and even with things that dont seem to be integral to the storys’ plot, it turns out they very much are. So In this I really applaud the attention to detail that the author has shown. I felt at times this book had elements of grimdark but it was done in a way of emphasis and not in a gratuitous manner, also, I give this book the award for “Sex-scene-that-will-put-you-off-your-dinner.”
The ending of this novel is a proper “Wow!” moment, and rather unforgettable. It really left things nicely for The Scarlet Tides to carry on with. A smooth but powerful ending.
So if someone were to ask me if I enjoyed Mages Blood now? I would tell them that I certainly did enjoy it and would recommend it to anyone who loves Fantasy. And thats my truth.
You can find out more about the author here
Mages Blood is available now from Jo Fletcher Books