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Blood's Pride

(Shattered Kingdoms #1)

3.42  ·  Rating details ·  617 ratings  ·  140 reviews
Evie Manieri's Blood's Pride is the first book of The Shattered Kingdoms, an engaging, action-packed, and "highly imaginative" (Kirkus Reviews) series of fantasy novels with epic scope and "the perfect mix of romance, family ties, betrayals, and agonizing dilemmas" (RT Book Reviews).

Rising from their sea-torn ships like vengeful, pale phantoms, the Norlanders laid waste to
Hardcover, 512 pages
Published February 19th 2013 by Tor Books (first published August 30th 2012)
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3.42  · 
Rating details
 ·  617 ratings  ·  140 reviews

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Feb 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I chose this book on a whim and I'm glad I did as it turned out to be a hidden gem. I'm not quite sure why, but the synopsis left me with the impression that this would be an action fantasy with a bit of romance following the story of the Mongrel. Imagine my surprise then when this turned out to be a dark, intense, complicated multiple POV fantasy with excellent world building and characters that were all shades of grey.

The Plot

A generation ago the strange Norlander raiders arrived in their shi
Mar 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, this book is one I had seen on a lot of the shelves in bookshops, but I just never got around to picking it up. I am really glad that the publisher decided to send me the whole series and that gave me the push to finally try it, because it's exactly the kind of fabulous fantasy that I enjoy (and it's a female fantasy author which is even better!)

This story is set in a world where two cultures are constantly at odds and they have a slave/master relationship. The Norlanders invaded Shadar a
Anzu The Great Destroyer
At first I felt lost. Loads of weird names. Freaking weird names. Really. For everything. Couldn’t remember anything. And the thing is, Blood’s Pride has a shitload of main characters. The point of view changed throughout the book more times than I could remember. It was overwhelming, especially since Evie Manieri has a thing for overly-complex idiotic names.

I need my books to be special in order to feel sucked in and enjoy what I’m reading. Blood’s Pride caught my attention with its first few
Evie Manieri
Sep 27, 2012 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Excerpt of the prologue and first chapter is available on

Note from the author: "Blood's Pride is the story of an epic rebellion told on a very personal level. If you like character-driven fantasy, epic fantasy that steers away from convention, strong and varied female characters, emotional depth, and unique societies not even loosely based on the civilizations of medieval Europe, then I encourage you to check it out. I sincerely hope you enjoy it.
Kells Next Read
Dec 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was such a fantastical read. I honestly was not expecting to fall in love with every single character ( yes the good and the bad ). The plot had so many twist and turns that I never saw coming, not to mention the swoon worthy ships. Guys this underated masterpiece is a must read and must have on your bookshelf.
Jul 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I got this book on a whim. the cover looked badass so I said; why the heck not! ...

and it was absolutely phenomenal. the characters journey were deep and transforming, and to be honest a little exhausting. the shifting points of view might throw off some readers, but I had no problems following. there's still some minor things I don't get but that's ok. I'm sure they'll be explain later.
Milo (BOK)
Oct 07, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
“A great new voice in fantasy that’s not to be missed.” ~The Founding Fields

I had the opportunity to read Blood’s Pride late last year through NetGalley – but held off writing the review until closer to the publishing date in the USA even though it had already been released in the UK. But needless to say, Evie Manieri’s debut novel is a strong one, character focused despite having the backdrop of an epic rebellion. If you’re a fan of Joe Abercrombie and George RR Martin’s Game of Thrones, I stro
Feb 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I really loved this book. I have read my share of formulaic fantasy, and don’t get me wrong – I love a great Naive Hero vs. Big Bad Evil formula book as much as the next guy. A few new names, a new ‘code’ of magic, then you pretty much know how the story is going to go without working too hard. Hey, who doesn’t want to believe that the little guy can’t just rise up and defeat pure evil? I do. That’s why it’s fantasy.
Alex McGilvery
Mar 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Evie Manieri does a fantastic job of creating a fascinating world for the action of Blood’s Pride. In a series, the world becomes a character in the story and is shaped and reshaped by the action. There are some really wonderful things happening here. We are given hints of odd magic. There are old gods who watch and care about what is going on. The single thing that caught my imagination the most was the idea of a people who lived in darkness and at night, who burned in the sun. What was best wa ...more
Sep 28, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012, fantasy
An interview with Civilian Reader first made me aware of Evie Manieri's debut novel Blood's Pride. It sounded really good, plus I saw several people be very complimentary about it on Twitter. So when I had the chance to review it, I jumped. It turns out that the people of Twitter spoke truly when they said Blood's Pride was a wonderful debut. It is a wonderful epic fantasy tale, with a close personal feel. On the book jacket there is a quote from Fantasy Faction that says "Combine Trudi Canavan ...more
Dec 28, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: just-no
1.5Stars rounded up

Struggled through this one!

A totally frustrating read. While it seems to have all the ingredients for a good book. It totally fell short in the delivery.
Not epic fantasy - just a long book with a couple of good ideas added to the usual same old and rather tedious writing.

I had high hopes for this Blood's Pride. It sounded like exactly my kinda book. So I was rather pleased when I got approved to read the ARC.
After reading the prologue, this impression was confirmed. I was sur
Jul 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
I actually really enjoyed this book. It kept me turning the pages!

There are a lot of characters, so sometimes I had to stop and remember who was who. The sword names were a bit cheesy as well, but it was non-stop action and I think a very interesting world.
Feb 19, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013, fantasy
Evie Manieri describes herself as a fan of intricacies. I would describe the plotting of The Wire as intricate, where certain actions don’t pay off for 1 or maybe 2 seasons. Blood’s Pride must be a whole other sort of intricate, most likely meaning cramming as much as possible into a single story.

The story of Blood’s Pride takes place a generation after the city state of Shadar is conquered by the seafaring Norlanders. The Norlanders have come in order to control magical ore which can only be fo
Apr 17, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This started out promising - the Shandari people conquered by the warring Norlanders and then forced to live as less than second class citizens for decades, the brewings of an uprising fueled by an underground rebellion - but it all lost steam along the way. There are at least two pairs of star crossed lovers reaching across enemy lines and a lot of changing alliances that all seem to happen with not a lot of soul searching going on so it's hard to take the supposed seriousness of the situation ...more
Blood’s Pride, in the end, left me incredibly frustrated. The world and cultures show incredible potential, but the plot and characters are completely lacking. Awkwardly paced, with events that never seem to stop happening and characters that you’ve probably read about in a hundred other books before, Blood’s Pride never really surfaces. Too many events, too many battles, uninteresting characters, and a clunky plot bog down this book, which is unfortunate because juxtaposed to that is some great ...more
May 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Most authors shy away from having so many main characters for fear of losing the interest of readers or lack of skill in creating so many unique voices. This was skillfully done though. Each character was well developed, and the interwoven stories were gracefully written in such a way that not only did I not lose track of who was who, I was drawn even deeper into the overall story by following the various perspectives. Overall this book was a joy to read and had one of the best first book in ser ...more
Jan 31, 2015 rated it liked it
I first heard of Blood's Pride right around the time it came out, on It fit right in with my plan to read more fantasy novels by women*, but I never got around to reading it. Turns out, the second book in this trilogy is coming out this month, so it was time to get going on this series at last!

* Then and now, it seems like the gents constantly get the spotlight in fantasy: for example, 90% of the recommendations goodreads provided off my reading this book were by men.

The prologue and fi
Jan 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc, net-galley, fantasy
Blood’s Pride is a debut epic fantasy series. Blood’s Pride begins with the Norlanders’ invasion of Shadar and the conquering of the Shardari people. A generation since the invasion has passed and the Shardari want to be free from the Norlanders so they have hired the Mongrel, a scarred mercenary, to overthrow the Norlanders. When the Mongrel steps in it is unclear what side of the rebellion she is on. Does the Mongrel have a legitimate reason to support the Norlanders or has she given all of he ...more
Ryan Viergutz
Mar 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: epic-fantasy
How did I forget to ramble about this? It was AMAZING. It's ... surprisingly hard to describe. The big picture is easy to describe, it's about a group of rebels fighting against an empire, yay, right? But at its heart it's about the /people/ and Mein Bog is it one seriously bonkers character story.

It's one of those books that's almost too fast so it's hard to remember how it all goes together. But the characters are the real point of the book. Some of the POVs...

-> A pregnant woman adventurer
This was a slog from start to finish, full of characters whose motivations I did not understand and worldbuilding that frequently seemed contradictory. I kept waiting for it to all click and come into focus; when it (sort of) did, I groaned. There are some interesting ideas nestled in here, but I am extremely unlikely to read further.
Jan 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Stars

When I was fourteen, I absolutely loved fantasy books. I read Terry Goodkind's tomes back to back, and basically finished all epic fantasy books in our library. Enter Goodreads and blogging. I fell in love with urban fantasy, then with paranormal romance, and then with YA. Fantasy books went forgotten and gathered dust. Blood's Pride is the first straight up fantasy book I have read in years.

Blood's Pride is set in the Shadar, a desert city next to the sea. Towering over the city is
Note: This is the author's first foray into fantasy--a debut novel. With that in mind, I have to say it was a good one.

Blood's Pride is perhaps the most tumultuous story I have ever had the pleasure of reading. From the first hundred pages to the very end, it is a single, prolonged battle. Loyal men are turned traitors, cowards become heroes, alliances are forged and broken, a great deal of world building is accomplished, and, above all, the characters are each distinguished from the other throu
Feb 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Harotha and her brother Faroth were just children when the Norlanders attacked Shadar. They wanted to precious ore of the region and enslaved the Shadari as servants and miners. Now the Shadari has banded together to hire the Mongrel, a legendary mercenary who just might be able to help them overcome the Norlanders. But she has an agenda of her own.

BLOOD'S PRIDE is the first in a trilogy and that definitely became clear by the time I finished reading - there's no true cliffhanger ending but the
Mar 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: novel
The book had me hooked after just a few chapters, and I powered through it, easily reading 100 pages a day and still wanting more. At first, after reading reviews on here, I was a little worried... "complicated names" and "multiple POV" and "POVs are all the same", etc? Please, anyone who wants to read this book, do yourself a big favor and ignore those negative reviews!

Well, Isa, Frea, Eofar - such complex names, I know! Multiple POVs made me worried, I love bonding to a certain character for t
Whew! Ok. So the 3 stars are specifically for the audiobook. Here's why:
While I enjoyed the reader...come to think of it, I probably would have stopped with another reader...this is not the kind of book I can listen to successfully. There's just too much going on, too many similar-sounding names, everyone and everything has at least two separate names and the whole thing was a cluster in my mind. I got lost so many times because I wasn't fully concentrating on the story, I kept getting one perso
Alex Murphy
This book is a bit like a cake. It has all the right ingredients there; flour (interesting backstory), eggs (wide mix of characters), sugar (conflict between them). And from the description on the back I was looking forward to it.

However, this book/cake wasn’t left in the oven long enough, so came out a bit soggy and left me feeling unfilled and disappointed.

The initial premise starts off well. The Shadari live relatively peacefully on the edge of a desert, in the shadow of a mountain top temp
Mar 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Mostly a three star book to me, but since this is the first book in a while where I said "No!" out-loud, that's a four star book right there. I actually cared about several of the characters, including ones that grew on me throughout the book. I loved the different types of family interactions as well. I liked the fact that this wasn't a book focused on one character for the most part; I tend to like ensemble-y books, and this didn't disappoint in that. Also, the author didn't linger too long on ...more
Fantasy Literature
Aug 22, 2013 rated it it was ok
Blood’s Pride is a debut fantasy from Eve Manieri that unfortunately reads not so much like a first novel, with all the usual attendant issues of a first novel, but more like an early draft of a first novel. There’s the very strong opening scene that one could see perhaps sparking the whole idea, a few intriguing “what if one character did this to another character” plot points to create both internal and external conflicts at the outset, and several neat background ideas concepts with regard to ...more
May 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
I have mixed feelings about Blood's Pride. Well written, sucks you in, and breaks the heart at every turn. My mothering sensors raged. My empathy feelers tingled. My disappointment in a couple of the characters was overloaded. And the futility in some situations was downright... well... despairing. This is not a "romance" or a "fairy tale" and one should not anticipate it being such. This is, for a dark fantasy, very realistic in how things would most likely go if Murphy's Law were but child's p ...more
Feb 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Evie Manieri has birthed a new world where three tribes with radically different customs exist. She begins the series with intrigue and an uprising while developing rich characters.

She left me wanting more ... I guess that is where book 2 and 3 come in. Really can't want to see what happens next to the Mongrel, Jachi and the baby, Rho and Dramash and if there can be peace with all the tribes.

I also love the original work since there are so many books of this genre that follow a formula.

Kudos! W
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Evie Manieri is the author of the Shattered Kingdoms trilogy from Tor Books and Jo Fletcher Books. She's also a UX designer with a software company, a mom, an obsessed knitter, and a classic film buff. She can usually be found lurking around Twitter. Evie lives with her family in New York City.

Other books in the series

Shattered Kingdoms (3 books)
  • Fortune's Blight (Shattered Kingdoms, #2)
  • Strife's Bane (Shattered Kingdoms, #3)