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(Raven's Mark #3)

4.50  ·  Rating details ·  222 ratings  ·  51 reviews
In the third gritty installment of the Raven's Mark series, Blackwing Captain Ryhalt Galharrow finds that all power comes with a price...

A sorcerous cataclysm has hit the Range, the final defensive line between the republic and the immortal Deep Kings.

Tormenting red rains sweep the land, new monstrosities feed on fear in the darkness, and the power of the Nameless, the god
Paperback, 416 pages
Published July 2nd 2019 by Ace Books
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4.50  · 
Rating details
 ·  222 ratings  ·  51 reviews

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Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
Crowfall provides a spectacularly epic conclusion to a trilogy that has the potential haunt your nightmares in its creepiness; it’s so dark, so bleak and so wonderfully written. Everything is brought together here perfectly, a very clever ending indeed!

And I must admit, I’m pleasantly surprised. Going into this I felt that there was a little too much to conclude in just one book, but it all slots together. Ed McDonald demonstrates his ability for planning as he delivers the final strokes of the
James Tivendale
May 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, freecopy
"Another Heart of the Void? The sky is shattered, the rain sends men mad. Even the geese are trying to eat us. What the fuck do we have to gain by unleashing that kind of power again?"

I received an advanced reading copy of Crowfall in exchange for an honest review. I would like to thank Ed McDonald and Ace Books for the opportunity. May contain spoilers for Ravencry.

Crowfall is an engaging and thrilling final chapter to an excellent dark fantasy trilogy. I have seen the Raven's Mark series ref
Mar 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Galharrow has been monstrously changed by his time in the Misery; underneath the transformation, a desperate plan to make himself powerful enough to alter the future. And he’s not the only one. Time has passed and people are not who he remembers them to be. Everyone has their own hopes, their own schemes, their own… betrayals? The Deep Kings are coming. And now a new weapon has been found, strong enough to crack open the skies once again. But who in this world can be trusted to use it?

‘[I] still
Apr 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dark-fantasy
There is no mistaking the distinctive voice of Ed McDonald and his protagonist - Ryhalt Galharrow, a captain of shadowy Blackwings. His story ends here*. If you thought that Ryhalt went through hell, and nothing worse would happen to him, you were wrong. 

Crowfall concludes Raven’s Mark trilogy, and it’s epic. Not only does it reveal schemes and treasons of various parts and characters, but it also riffs on the themes of belonging, love, honor, identity and the ability to find a home in hostile n
Peter McLean
Apr 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy

They say that misery loves company, and in the Misery you're never alone. Especially If you're Backwing Captain Ryhalt Galharrow, haunted by the bitter ghosts of the past.

This book is raw and emotional in a way I didn't expect. It's a very different book to its predecessors, yet is still an almost inevitable conclusion to Galharrow's character arc. Watching him fall apart through his own narrative brings a fresh edge of pain to the storytelling.

This series is ultimately a story of love and remo
Apr 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When facing duress for long periods of time, sanity can be fleeting. It’s no stretch of the imagination to see how prisoners, hostages, or fugitives can be driven toward poor decision-making when lives are at stake. If the stakes are raised to apocalyptic levels, then any form of predictive behavior becomes unreliable. Enter: Ryhalt Galharrow. Savior of Valengrad. Captain on the Blackwings. Desolate madman. Ed McDonald’s previous novel Ravencry concluded with Ryhalt leaving Valengrad to go live ...more
May 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: most-anticipated
Never alone.

All things must end, and the saga of Ryhalt Galharrow comes to a close with one magnificently striking and emotional conclusion. All the events of McDonald's Raven's Mark series have brought us to this moment, as the threat of the Deep Kings hovers like a black cloud about to release a cascade of poison rain upon the Misery and beyond. Galharrow stands alone against the storm, persevering in the face of failure and forging ahead when the world is set on relentlessly beating him down.
May 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Full review is here on my blog!~

Everything is coming to a head in this final volume of The Raven's Mark series. That said, I'll try my level best not to spoil anything from the first two books for those of you who haven't read them.

But, I mean for those of you who haven't read them... go... go do that thing. :D

Things between the godlike Nameless and their nemeses, the also-rather-godlike Deep Kings are coming right to a head, and where 90 years earlier, Crowfoot detonated a weapon that created t
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Damn! This is Some Great Stuff! You Should Try This!
And if you haven't read this series yet then you're wasting your time, literally.
Jun 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
*copy from the publisher in exchange for a review*

Crowfall is the conclusion to Ed McDonald’s “Raven’s Mark” series. I’ve been a big fan of the series since the get-go. There’s something about the hard-bitten cynicism of (most of) the characters, the haut-feudal world run by gangs of squabbling, unknowable gods, and the twisted, broken border between them which makes for a compelling read. That compulsion is, of course, helped along by the well observed and convincing characterisation.

At the cen
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Rating: 4.7/5

Review: Wow, what awesome cover art.

The world building is what sets this novel apart from others in the genre. It is built around the characters in order to influence the direction of the story line. Very clever writing, as it also develops the characters in various ways as to be mesmerizing at times. This novel does not lack in creativity or poignancy. The distressed often have personal insights that are not only deeply appropriate for the scene but might churn the thoughts of the
J.L. Scritchfield
Apr 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Crowfall delivers.

McDonald manages to work a substantial amount of worldbuilding into his third book so that a number of the history questions I had were answered. Not all of them. This world feels ancient, and she hides her secrets well. I hope to learn more about her someday.

McDonald's writing (in Ryhalt's voice) continues strong throughout, and the philosophical journey the reader takes with Ryhalt over the series is impressive. From cranky man with a deathwish to cranky man with a...lifewish
Crowfall is the third book in the Raven’s Mark series and it was a truly visceral read filled with raw emotion, schemes, and double-crosses. This story picks up six years after the end of Ravencry and much has changed over the years since Ryhalt Galharrow chose to live in isolation in the wastelands of the Misery. Spending time there was not safe or healthy and to willingly subject oneself to such a sentence was pure insanity. Which was exactly what was taking place with Ryhalt. The writing desc ...more
Miriam Michalak
Jul 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow! That was some fucking ride!!

Dark, monstrously brutal, visceral, grimmer than most grimdark novels but oh, the humanity. The wonderful, awful, beautiful, flawed humanity of the book. Hope in a dark world shines through and the ending was unexpected and really rather good :)

A fabulous end to a great series. Am already missing the Misery.

Patrick St-Denis
Jun 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Despite certain flaws, I felt that Ed McDonald's Blackwing was a promising debut. The kind of work Joe Abercrombie and Glen Cook would come up with if they ever teamed up to collaborate on a novel. And even though the second volume showed marked improvement regarding certain facets, it did suffer from some of the same shortcomings that had plagued its predecessor. In my review of Ravencry, I opined that the author needed to elevate his game if he was to finish this trilogy with panache and if he ...more
Mike Shackle
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sheer bloody genius. What an ending. Grimdark, grimheart. Galharrow is a modern fantasy icon and Ed is up there with my favourite authors
H. P.
Jul 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: modern-sf
Ed McDonald does something remarkable with Crowfall. Crowfall is the third (and presumably final) book in his stellar Raven’s Mark series. Third books—especially third books that close a series—follow a certain pattern. The first book sets up the world; the second book in particular sets up the story for the third book. That is certainly true here. But McDonald places a major event—the titular Crowfall—in the six year gap between the events of Ravencry and Crowfall. Doing so helps him sneak a st ...more
Jun 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Ravencry ends with Saravor thwarted, Nenn slain, and Ryhalt staring out over the Misery. Crowfall opens with Galharrow hunting drudge. The Deep Kings (shockingly) didn’t abandon their plans to overthrow the Range following Saravor’s defeat atop the Valengrad spire. They had since evolved a new breed of servants; drudge that are blue in pallor and cast, noseless, featureless, they retain very little of their former humanity. He has recently come across quite a few of their number and left their b ...more
Lashaan Balasingam (Bookidote)

You can find my review on my blog by clicking here.

To make a long story short, there are only a few authors who manage to successfully deliver a perfect trilogy in my books. They come once in a blue moon and leave an everlasting impression on you with their characters, their worlds, their ideas, and their prose. When I first came across Blackwing, my heart was stolen and sealed in a lockbox for Ed McDonald to do whatever he wishes with it. With Ravencry, he manipulated my emotions and broke me d
Jul 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rating: ★★★★☆+


Crowfall is a gritty epic fantasy for fans of Mark Lawrence, Scott Lynch and Daniel Polansky.

‘Dark, twisty and excellent . . . Grimdark with heart’ Mark Lawrence

A sorceress cataclysm has hit the Range, the final defensive line between the Republic and the immortal Deep Kings.

Tormenting red rains sweep the land, new monstrosities feed on fear in the darkness, and the power of the Nameless, the gods who protect the Republic, lies broken. The Blackwing captains who serve them
jonathan finn
Jun 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A stunning ending..

Crow fall is the final book in the raven mark sequence and reads as grim dark, dark violent morally ambiguous fantasy as written by a hopeless romantic.

The book is set in the Misery, a area of the world despoiled by magicial fallout from the unleashing of a powerful weapon known as Nalls engine by a group of immortal wizards known as the Nameless agaisnt there enemies a group of lovecraftian entities known as the Deep kings, this isn’t really a story of good vs evil then as no
C.W. Snyder
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've loved this series since book 1, and there's a reason for that. It's brilliant. It's mutable. It's just so well put-together that it's almost impossible to dislike it. Each book is a solid collection of theme and story that changes just enough to keep the series fresh with each entry without alienating readers.

While book 1 is a gritty fantasy noir, and book 2 a race against time with the backdrop of a looming war, book 3 is the slow burn of an impending apocalypse. Or in the case of the Ran
Jul 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome. Simply Awesome. What a satisfying conclusion to what for me was the best fantasy trilogy going since last year. I absolutely devoured these books and loved every second of them. I've been reading for 40 years, have sampled most fantasy and sci-fi writers out there and Mr. McDonald has soared to the top of my must-read-their-book-the-day-it-comes out authors list. Beautiful writing, damn near poetic at times, but also visceral, grim, and realistic without ever becoming hopeless. Characte ...more
Sarai Henderson
See the full review at Book Confessions of an ExBallerina

The one thing that draws me to this series is the way the author has built this amazingly rustic fantasy world. It almost feels like an old western at times, but the fantasy elements that weave through the story give you a sense of the magic that holds the story together.

Our main character is back, aging, but has spent so much time in the Misery that his body has changed. He can heal faster than a normal person. The problem is, everyone w
Micah Hall
Jul 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Ed McDonald with another stunner, although looking at the standard of the previous 2 books in the trilogy, this one is my least favorite (but it's still awesome). I struggled at points with the decisions of Ryhalt bc I felt you got to know the loveable curmudgeon so well in the previous entries and in this one he descends into further madness, distancing you from him. While done on purpose and the revelations provided near the end explain this purpose, it made for some tough reading at time
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was AMAZING!!

I had never heard of Ed McDonald until I saw Blackwing on Net Galley. It sounded pretty good, so I requested it. It ended up being one of my favorite books of all time. I love his writing style. The world he has created is fascinating. I can picture the Misery in my mind. I love the magic. I can picture the raven coming out of Rhyalt's arm. The writing makes everything seem so vivid in my imagination.

This series also has some of my most favorite characters. Ryhalt, Nenn,
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I loved the first book in this series for its intricately imagined world and it’s tough-guy narrator. The second one was almost is good. This third one is disappointing. The problem is that the two winning aspects of the series cancel each other out. The narrator is a complex character but it is impossible to sustain the reader’s interest in a single man, no matter how conflicted, for three long novels. And the more the last novel centers on the narrator, the less space there is for exploring th ...more
Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Full Review Here:

An absolutely spectacular conclusion to one of my most hotly anticipated books of 2019. Ed McDonald has absolutely killed it with this series!

I recommend McDonald’s work because he writes the stuff that people need to read in times like this. He packages himself up like another Grimdark author, while under it all he’s a man out there preaching a message of love and hope, and the danger that both can cause to their enemies. That's what set
Jul 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Crowfall is such a satisfying conclusion to the Raven’s Mark series.

The detail about and use of the Misery is particularly inspired, wonderful, haunting descriptions enough to give you nightmares and yet Mcdonald manages to create a character out of a location.

The plot moves well and as always you are not quite sure of people’s plans and motivations. I loved the way McDonald brought together the varying threads of individual character’s stories and the way they interacted. Galharrow in particul
Mark Mieczkowski
Satisfying conclusion to an amazing trilogy.

I absolutely loved the Blackwing trilogy. The final installment was a satisfying conclusion to the series but it wasn't quite as good as the first two books. I enjoyed the gritty, noir fiction tone, amazing world building, and deeply flawed characters.

IMHO the book delved a little too deeply into nihilism. That aspect got tedious at times. But there was plenty of action to balance out the navel-gazing.

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Ed McDonald is a UK born fantasy writer. He writes dark, fast paced, action fantasy with a focus on well developed characters.

Ed is a medieval historian and swordsman by training. He currently lives in London, UK.

Other books in the series

Raven's Mark (3 books)
  • Blackwing (Raven's Mark, #1)
  • Ravencry (Raven's Mark, #2)