My heart went through an emotional roller coaster with Blade Breaker y’all. In some ways, the pacing felt a bit slow to me at the beginning, but like with Realm Breaker, once it began it BEGAN. If you read the first, you should definitely read the second, but also know that this a series. For some reason I thought it was a duology! Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts.
Fighting beside her band of unlikely companions, Corayne is learning to embrace her ancient lineage and wield her father’s powerful sword.
But while she successfully closed one of the Spindles, her journey is far from over.
Queen Erida’s army marches across Allward with her consort, Taristan, right beside them, opening more portals into nightmarish worlds, razing kingdoms to the ground.
Corayne has no choice but to assemble an army of her own if she’s to save the realm as she knows it. But perilous lands await her and the companions, and they face assassins, otherworldly beasts, and tempestuous seas all as they rally a divided Ward to fight behind them.
But Taristan has unleashed an evil far more wicked than his corpse armies. Something deadly waits in the shadows; something that might consume the world before there’s any hope for victory.
(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)
I immediately began Blade Breaker with intrigue. I wanted to see if they could get out of this while also always traveling great distances. Seriously. I’d never make it out of the first kingdom because I’d need a break. I mean I know the actual world would be waiting on me, but there’s only so much my body can take. Even with this being a sequel, Blade Breaker had an almost ‘rolling out’ feel to beginning. Like an obstacle that you have to push for a bit before it gets moving.
And I think part of it is that the scale of this epic fantasy is….epic. There’s so much ground to cover literally and with the different POVs – of which we see more Ridha in this one – there’s a lot to bite off. While it does begin with more action, sometimes it doesn’t feel like a straight drop like a roller coaster. More like one that traverses, has us screaming in the descent and catching our breath in the moments in between. It’s a book with one step forward two back which felt strangely more in tune with reality.
Like in actual more evenly matched large scale chess board style manipulations. And that’s definitely what it feels like for Erida as her soldiers pay the price for their ambition. But I digress. So I’d say I had to be in the right headspace to dive into this chunky fantasy, but once I got into the swing of things, I was steaming through the chapters. Interestingly, Blade Breaker doesn’t give us cookie cutter relationships as our band of allies are still very much figuring each other out. Old habits die hard and while they’ve been forced to work together, how long can it survive?
One large advantage to the multiple POV – which I think is sometimes overshadowed here by the interaction of numbers of POVs and pacing – is that we are able to get peeks into each of our favorites. I have a soft spot for assassins, so you know Sorasa and Sigil are some of my favorites. But at the same time, Blade Breaker comes up against an age old question – will greed and the ambition to raze the world for our own naked ambition prevail? What exactly will help motivate not only our allies, but all the characters in the book?
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So while there were some slow parts in Blade Breaker, and you definitely need to be in the mood for a slower paced fantasy, I enjoyed the character movement and development. I can’t tell yet if it feels like a Second Book Syndrome – mostly just because I loved seeing more of Sigil and Sorasa – but it does have me wondering at the larger scale plot movements for the next one. Ultimately, if you liked Realm Breaker, I think you should read this one if not just for Sigil and Sorasa! Find Blade Breaker on Goodreads, Amazon, Indiebound, Bookshop.org & The Book Depository.