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Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite
The Blood of the Spear by Mark Timmony is a high fantasy fiction novel and the first book in the ambitious epic series, The Eye of Eternity. Timmony builds an entirely new world from scratch, providing the fractured continent of Athmay with a wealth of varied settings, the realms, in particular, each hosting its own distinctive microcosm. The primary protagonists are Darien and Kaiel in a deeply character-driven storyline, brothers with an unknown pedigree linking them back to the Ancient War. Vestiges from this time remain in the form of surviving daemons, but also in the brothers themselves who descend from a House that puts them at odds with virtually everyone and everything. The irony of a desire to hunt daemons when, ultimately, Darien and Kaiel become the hunted creates a cataclysmic shift that barrels forward and launches the start of an exceptionally well-plotted series.
As a reader, it is always difficult to start a brand new fantasy series, and doing so requires a great deal of faith that the author will deliver. We have to trust that all new names, places, and political systems, their magic structures, societies, creatures, and characters will be worth wading through with some initial confusion until the ball starts rolling. The Blood of the Spear starts in the same fashion, but what sets author Mark Timmony and his writing style apart is his ability to make the complexities feel comfortable. I loved that the focus extended beyond the brothers and was particularly drawn to Meg. She has moxie that is almost universally reserved for men. I also enjoyed the witty dialogue and viewing realms through those talking and not being buried under information dumps. A perfect example of this is when Darien sees a spectacular tower for the first time, calling it “the work of Gods.” We are then able to view the same tower through the eyes of Meg. It’s a fascinating and effective storytelling method that Timmony masters. The dialogue is authentic, and the pacing is steady. This is a debut novel and a series that is wholly addictive.