This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Free Book Program, which is open to all readers and is completely free. The author will provide you with a free copy of their book in exchange for an honest review. You and the author will discuss what sites you will post your review to and what kind of copy of the book you would like to receive (eBook, PDF, Word, paperback, etc.). To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email.
This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Review Exchange Program, which is open to all authors and is completely free. Simply put, you agree to provide an honest review an author's book in exchange for the author doing the same for you. What sites your reviews are posted on (B&N, Amazon, etc.) and whether you send digital (eBook, PDF, Word, etc.) or hard copies of your books to each other for review is up to you. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email, and be sure to describe your book or include a link to your Readers' Favorite review page or Amazon page.
This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Donation Program, which was created to help nonprofit and charitable organizations (schools, libraries, convalescent homes, soldier donation programs, etc.) by providing them with free books and to help authors garner more exposure for their work. This author is willing to donate free copies of their book in exchange for reviews (if circumstances allow) and the knowledge that their book is being read and enjoyed. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email. Be sure to tell the author who you are, what organization you are with, how many books you need, how they will be used, and the number of reviews, if any, you would be able to provide.
Reviewed by Eduardo Aduna for Readers' Favorite
Promise of Blood, the first book of Bryan Mclellan's The Powder Mage Trilogy is one of the best fantasy debuts of 2013. Set in the aftermath of a successful coup d'etat, the novel follows the fates of a ruthless usurper, his marksman son, and a skilled detective as they weather the political storms that wrack the kingdom. Betrayal and murder lurk in every corner as individuals and groups, with their own insidious agendas, squabble over the ruins of Adro. Amidst the chaos, Tamas, Taniel and Adamat must make unlikely alliances and break long-standing bonds in order to stop a god from annihilating their country.
Promise of Blood is a tightly-written and magnificently crafted work. For me, an author's ability to create a world isn't in what he or she shows, but at what the writer hints at and hides. Brian Mclellan crafts a book with explosive characters, a great setting, and a magnificently woven plot. But there is still a richness in the material waiting in the shadows, the ones hinted at in bits and pieces found in the character's dialogue, which makes the Nine Kingdoms all too real. From start to finish, the book is a dusty journey undertaken at breakneck speed. Starting with the aftermath of a coup is perhaps one of the best ways to start a fantasy novel. As the dust settles, characters are exposed at their most vulnerable state -- raw, edgy and just plain tired. Then the chaos follows as factions fight over the pieces, all the while unaware that a greater threat looms.
Brian McClellan has created distinct characters that have the potential to live on in the fantasy genre's lore. This isn't just true for the main characters. My favorite, Olem, is a bodyguard who loves smoking, can't sleep and has a wicked sense of humor. We have a god who cooks and a priest with a harem. The book has two distinct magic systems with hints of other esoteric practices just over the horizon. Readers will have a grand time imagining themselves as powder mages; snorting gunpowder and guiding flying bullets. An all around fantasy adventure that rejuvenates the genre's tropes instead of just recycling them, the Promise of Blood definitely delivers. If Mclellan keeps this up, Brandon Sanderson, Joe Abercrombie and Brent Weeks better watch out.