Blood of the King is book one of an epic fantasy series. The author’s voice is no-nonsense, strong and experienced and the end result is therefore a strong novel, tight and full of action, no fluff, no padding, no wasted words.
On page one you meet the main character, Khirro, as he is coming around from being knocked down in battle. He is not a soldier by choice, and soon he finds himself in the role of hero, the only man who can save the kingdom. There’s only one snag: Khirro is a complete and utter coward.
I found the characterization flawless. You can’t help but empathise with Khirro right away, and every supporting character is easy to understand and identify with. The gang of misfits Khirro attracts along his journey is motley and hilarious. A lot of humour and secondary plots make this book an easy-flowing read.
The storyline is well thought-through, every angle explored and every question answered. I found myself unable to put this book down because I was so desperate to know what happened next. But Mr. Blake knows perfectly well how to tease his readers and keep them hooked. He wound in and out of the main action so skilfully, there was no way I was going to stop reading until the last word. The ending is extremely satisfying and you can read the promise of a sequel there, in the last few lines. I, for one, cannot wait to see it.
I wholeheartedly recommend this book, even to non-fantasy readers. It is action cover to cover, it is fun, it is engaging – there is nothing I didn’t like about it, apart from the lack of immediate sequel, perhaps. It more than deserves the five stars I give it.