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Innkeeper Chronicles #4

Sweep of the Blade

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Maud Demille is a daughter of Innkeepers—a special group who provide ‘lodging’ to other-planetary visitors—so she knows that a simple life isn't in the cards. But even Maud could never have anticipated what Fate would throw at her.

Once a wife to a powerful vampire knight, Maud and her young daughter, Helen, were exiled with him for his treachery to the desolate, savage planet of Karhari. Karhari killed her husband, and Maud—completely abandoned by his family—has spent over a year avenging his debts. Rescued by her sister Dina, she's sworn off all things vampire.

Except... In helping Dina save the world, she met Arland, the Marshal of House Krahr, one of the most powerful vampire houses. One thing led to another and he asked for her hand in marriage. She declined. Arland is not used to hearing the word ‘no;’ and try as she might, Maud can't just walk away from Arland. It doesn't help that being human is a lot harder for Maud than being a vampire.

To sort it all out, she accepts his invitation to visit his home planet. House Krahr is extremely influential and Maud knows that a woman—a human, with a very questionable past—who's turned down a proposal from its most beloved son won't get a warm reception. Maybe she’s not sure about marrying Arland, but House Krahr isn’t going to decide for her. Maud Demille has never run from a fight, and House Krahr will soon discover that there's a lot more to Maud than they’re expecting.

322 pages, Kindle Edition

First published July 16, 2019

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About the author

Ilona Andrews

112 books30.2k followers
Ilona Andrews is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing team. Ilona is a native-born Russian and Gordon is a former communications sergeant in the U.S. Army. Contrary to popular belief, Gordon was never an intelligence officer with a license to kill, and Ilona was never the mysterious Russian spy who seduced him. They met in college, in English Composition 101, where Ilona got a better grade. (Gordon is still sore about that.)

Gordon and Ilona currently reside in Oregon with their two children, three dogs and a cat. They have co-authored two series, the bestselling urban fantasy of Kate Daniels and romantic urban fantasy of The Edge.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,945 reviews
April 17, 2023
And the moral of this rererererereread is: announcing a wedding by broadcasting recordings of the future bride and groom covered in blood and surrounded by severed limbs is the most romantic thing ever if you ask me.

👋👋 Until next time and stuff.

· Book 1: Clean Sweep ★★★★★
· Book 2: Sweep in Peace ★★★★★
· Book 3: One Fell Sweep ★★★★★
· Book 4.5: Sweep with Me ★★★★★
· Book 5: Sweep of the Heart ★★★★

[March 2021]

🏰 My Name Is Gertrude Hunt Buddy Rerererereread (MNIGHBR™) with the IA Addicts 🏰

And the moral of this rererererereread is: it's official, ushivim is my new favorite insult. Because telling someone they are like the bloody diarrhea of diseased vermin has the most delightful ring to it if you ask me.

Why thank you so much for the unexpected support, Junior Mr Han, Son of Solo.

[June 2020]

💊 IA is the Ultimate Cure to Covid-19 Buddy Rerererereread (IAitUCtCBR™) with the IA Addicts 💊

And the moral of this rerereread is: Maud the Red, the Sariv, the Learned One + snobby, cunning medieval space vamps + Bouncy Lethal Little Helen of the Ripper Cushions (BLLHotRC™) + Arland's loving, compassionate, altruistic family + cut cut cut, slice slice slice, chop chop chop + Machiavellian shenanigans galore + the tachi + the lees + oh my bloody hell of the stinking shrimp, what just happened?! 😳 = yes, this series is most assuredly the ultimate cure to covid-19. And to world hunger. And racism. And war. And bigotry. And global warming. Among many other things. So let's dance and stuff.

[July 2019]

And the moral of this reread is: if it weren’t for their slightly opposite views on pathetic bloodsuckers fearsome vampires, you’d think Maud the Red and Kate Daniels were long lost, murderously lethal third cousins thrice removed. Or something. Also, I’m still finding it quite unacceptable that Arland didn’t get a little very much drunk on coffee in this instalment. I am most put out and stuff. Also also, too disgustingly PG this was, if you ask me. So sigh and stuff. Also also also, I love my new friend Seveline so much, I decided to introduce her to my newest, Super Extra Friendly Pet (SEFP™), Bernie:

Ha! I just knew these two would get along like peas in pod barnacles on a rock!

June 19, 2019: we have a release date!!! July 16 it is!!!

Sorry about this. Cousin Gustav tends to get a teensy little bit over-excited when it comes to new IA releases, and has the hardest time controlling himself. I apologize on his behalf and stuff.

May 18, 2019: life sucks because the release date has been pushed back to June and stuff, but life isn't so very dramatically bad after all because there's a Maud snippet here and stuff!!

Cows are happy and shaking their booties, and so should you!

Don't tell anyone, but I think there's a slight chance I might perhaps like Maud a lot more than I do Dina. Maybe. Also, Helen the Tiny Badass (HtTB™) may possibly be the coolest, most irresistibly ruthless fanged little kid in the history of coolest, most irresistibly ruthless fanged little kids. It is probably probable, yes.

Don't ask.

Okay, so this shoulda-been-novella-that-turned-out-to-be-full-length-novel-oh-happy-shrimp was Slightly Very Good (SVG™) and stuff. Granted, I like Arland better when he gets drunk on coffee and runs around orchards somewhat naked, but I guess you can't have everything. Besides, I got blood, violence and severed limbs, which is all that really matters in the end. I learned how to use forks in a most creatively homicidal way while reading this book, too, so I guess I can't complain and stuff. Oh, and also: “ripper cushions. Huge ripper cushions.” Need I say more? Didn't think so.

Now patiently wait until the final, non-revoltingly PG-13 version of the book is released I shall. Let's just hope it doesn't take too long and stuff. I mean, should that be the case, I would have to put my waiting lettuce hat on, and it would kinda sorta ruin the nefarious tyrant image I've been working on for decades.

A lettuce never looked so hot, methinks.

Full not-so-fascinating-and-probably-superiorly-crappy-non-review to come when the Slightly Very Good Book™ is published and stuff.

⚠️ Bump Your Heart Out Warning: this review is going to get bumped repeatedly as new chapters are posted online. So if you are one of those freaks who convulse whenever they see the same review in their feed more than once, please feel free to unfriend and block me. I'm pretty sure we'll both be glad you did ⚠️

» December 1, 2018: it's epilogue time!!! Sob sob sob and stuff, the end is near here!

» November 25, 2018: Chapter 17, part 4 is up! So wonderfully violent, so delightfully bloody, so scrumptiously beautiful. Most blissfully happy I am right now.

» November 17, 2018: Chapter 17, part 3 is up!

» November 10, 2018: Chapter 17, part 2 is up!

» November 5, 2018: Chapter 17, part 1 is here! The Mostest Awesomest Authorlords (MAA™) wrote this instalment despite being sick as fish, that's how Mostest Awesomest they are!

» October 19, 2018: Chapter 16, part 3 is up!

» October 16, 2018: Chapter 16, parts 1 and 2 are up!

Says Gordon: "We are gently reminding you that because of the nature of this story being posted on the internet, where minors can read it, we keep things PG-13 until the story is revised for publication."

Oooooh, that means there will be hot stuff in this chapter when the book is published. I think some pre-emptively sweating is in order.

» October 9, 2018: Chapter 15, part 4 is up!

» September 28, 2018: Chapter 15, part 3 is up!

» September 21, 2018: Chapter 15, part 2 is up!

» September 15, 2018: Chapter 15, part 1 is up!

» September 7, 2018: Chapter 14, parts 1 and 2 are up!

» August 26, 2018: Chapter 13, part 3 is up!

» August 16, 2018: Chapter 13, part 2 is up!

» August 14, 2018: it's already time to read Chapter 13, part 1!

» August 13, 2018: another instalment is up! Important appearance announcements incoming! Check the main site for updates!

» August 10, 2018: Chapter 12, part 3 is up!

» August 9, 2018: Chapter 12, part 2 is up!

» July 27, 2018: Chapter 12, part 1 is up!

» July 21, 2018: Chapter 11, part 3 is up!

» July 14, 2018: Chapter 11, part 2 is up!

» June 19, 2018: Chapter 11, part 1 is here!

» June 19, 2018: Chapter 10, part 2 is here!

» June 2, 2018: Chapter 10, part 1 is up!

» May 29, 2018: GDPR Curse begone, Chapter 9, part 2 is here!

» May 19, 2018: Chapter 9, part 1 is up!

» May 14, 2018: Chapter 8, part 2 is up!

Art by Disanthus.

» May 5, 2018: Chapter 8, part 1 is here!!!!!

» April 21, 2018: no Innkeeper until May...

A very private message to the Authorlords: if your plane's engine blow up, I'm unleashing the crustaceans on the airline company. Just so you know.

» April 14, 2018: Chapter 7, part 2 is up!

» April 7, 2018: Chapter 7, part 1 is up already! Woo hoo and stuff!

» April 4, 2018: Chapter 6, part 3 is up! Who would have thought House Krahr had its very own Doolittle? Ain't no honey badger, though.

Also: Maud and Little Helen are so bloody shrimping badass I could cry nefarious tears and stuff.

» March 24, 2018: Chapter 6, parts 1 & 2 are up!

» March 9, 2018: Chapter 5, part 2 is up! And it's all about ripper cushions!

» March 3, 2018: Chapter 5, part 1 is up! And look at that most yummilicious art!

» Feb. 24, 2018: Chapter 4, part 3 is up!

» Feb. 20, 2018: Chapter 4, parts 1 and 2 are up!

» Feb. 9, 2018: Chapter 3, part 3 is up!

» Feb. 2, 2018: Chapter 3, part 2 is up!

» January 30, 2018: Chapter 3, part 1 is up!

» January 26, 2018: we have a title!! Yay and stuff!!

» January 20, 2018: chapter 2, part 2 is up!

» January 15, 2018: Okayyyyyy, so my first review for this book went poof in a wondrous blast of glorious nothingness, so here we go again! Yay and stuff!

Soooo, let's recap a little here: this most scrumptious piece of serial entertaintment has been up and running since December 25, 2017. It's a novella about Maud and Little Miss Awrawrrawrawr (aka Helen) visiting Arland's planet. Fun times ahead. Especially if coffee is involved. Because we all know how much Arland enjoys running around naked drinking the stuff.

The story so far (as of Jan. 15, 2018) :
Chapter 1, part 1
Chapter 1, part2
Chapter 2, part 1
Profile Image for carol..
1,565 reviews8,203 followers
August 23, 2019
"Maud's novella" is a drippy, uninspiring romance with absolutely boring world-building. The first four installments consist of Maud approaching the planet where her non-fiance vampire is from, landing on the planet and overhearing a gossipy conversation between two women, and then flying with her boyfriend to someplace else.

Vampires, in this book, stand in for conquistadors, royalty, billionaires or that other ruling house in their Texas series that I also didn't read the romance trope of powerful bad-ass family that has orphaned and poor woman both socially and economically unmatched. Clearly, the Andrews' moving and social media drama has taken a toll, because there's nothing of their normal character-building, humor, or world-building here. Not sure I'll continue, but since I get blog updates, it's possible I'll give it a few more installments.

Update: 04/3/19: I read more. It still didn't work well. And Maud was one hell of a Mary Sue. For those asking themselves if this book will have the same interesting world-building ingredients and action as a Kate Daniels novel, the answer is a resounding, "no."

Main Innkeeper page: http://innkeeper.ilona-andrews.com
Profile Image for Aisling Zena.
635 reviews476 followers
September 5, 2021
Re-read 29/8/21, 31/7/19
4.5 stars


We have finally reached the end my friends. If you want to read this for free, in it's entirety, this is your chance now before it gets taken down to be edited and published.Enjoy! Many, many thanks and deep gratitude to the authors for all their work on Innkeeper and sharing it with us for free.

Free online serial at: http://innkeeper.ilona-andrews.com/
Review updated on every chapter release, usually every week.

Chapter 1 Part 1


Best Christmas present ever! Many thanks to both authors for sharing this with us, especially during the holidays and while moving.

Here we go again!


Chapter 1 Part 2

“I never cared much for appearances,” he said. His eyes were soft and warm. Inviting.

She needed to get her head examined.

Poor Maud, she's gonna have her hands full with Arland.


Chapter 2 Part 1


Chapter 2 Part 2

“It’s beautiful,” Maud said honestly.

“It’s home,” he said.

It could be your home, his glance added.


Chapter 3 Part 1


Chapter 3 Part 2


Chapter 3 Part 3


Chapter 4 Part 1 and 2

Now, I'm going to be worried for Helen until the next chapter. Sigh..

Chapter 4 Part 3

"Ha! The Universe provided a teachable moment. “No, my flower. That’s a lees. Remember how I told you about hiding your strength? The lees hide their strength. They look cute, but they are dangerous and very cunning.”


Chapter 5 Part 1


Chapter 5 Part 2
Olasard, the Ripper of Souls

Chapter 6 Part 1 and 2

Lady Helen squared her tiny shoulders. “I’m here for repercussions.”

Karat stopped by the rack of practice weapons.

“We’re going to do this nice and easy,” she said under her breath. “You and I will spar, then we will drink some fruity drinks, and go back. Don’t worry.”

They really didn’t think much of her.

P.S. I've already re-read this chapter five times. Favourite one so far.

Chapter 6 Part 3


Chapter 7 Part 1

"The little transparent sphere was barely a quarter of an inch across. On Earth it would’ve passed for a tiny glass marble or a stray bead.

A high-storage datacore, likely encrypted to her. Someone left her a present.

She picked it up, leaned forward, and blew on the mirror. Faint words appeared, written in glyphs of the Merchant Clans.

With compliments from the Great Nuan Cee."


Chapter 7 Part 2

I don't usually use the authors images but you should definitely see Arland as the authors see him.


No new Innkeeper until May!


Chapter 8 Part 1

And they're back!!

Chapter 8 Part 2


Chapter 9 Part 1


Chapter 9 Part 2
“So, I am a mongrel.”

“On Earth, that’s a word people use when they don’t know what breed a dog is. You know who you are. You are Helen.”


Maud sighed. “Because some people have rigid minds. They like everything to be clearly labeled. They have a box for everyone they meet. A box for vampires, a box for lees, a box for humans. When someone doesn’t fit into their boxes, they panic.”


Chapter 10 Part 1


Chapter 10 Part 2


Chapter 11 Part 1
“The Writ of Command, Part Seven.”

He frowned. “Prohibition of fraternization between knights separated by more than three ranks? What does that have to do with anything?”


Chapter 11 Part 2

“It is a common misconception that the Lees love money above all else. That’s not exactly true. They love a bargain; they love getting a good deal. Getting more for less is the foundation of their society. Let me take something to them they will find irresistible.”


Chapter 11 Part 3

Man, I love Arland!

Chapter 12 Part 1


Chapter 12 Part 2


Chapter 12 Part 3


Chapter 12 Part 4


Chapter 13 Part 1

Ilemina! The image is direct from the authors site.

Chapter 13 Part 2


Chapter 13 Part 3

“The lees pride themselves on balance”

Chapter 14 Part 1


Chapter 14 Part 2

"It felt like an odd tea party. Here she was serving cosmic cookies and wine to a queen of enlightened predators and the head of a clan of ruthless assassins. Nothing much at stake except an interstellar alliance. Whee!"


On a side note, I just want to say whoever went and complained and belittled these authors and their assistant for not writing an instalment (something they are not in any way obligated to do) at the time they were on tour, you are one cracked and entitled cookie. To put it very mildly.

Chapter 15 Part 1


Chapter 15 Part 2


Chapter 15 Part 3


Chapter 15 Part 4


Chapter 16 Part 1 and 2


Chapter 16 Part 3

“If mommy gets flowers, can I have a kitty?”

Arland looked abashed. “We don’t really have kitties. Would you settle for a rassa puppy or a goren puppy?”

I wonder what a rassa or goren puppy look like? I can easily picture something like this. Whatever they are, it wont be earth like.


Chapter 17 Part 1


Chapter 17 Part 2

"A muscle in Seveline’s face jerked. That’s right, precious. I’m coming for you."


P.S. Many thanks and get well soon wishes to the Authorlords.

Chapter 17 Part 3


Chapter 17 Part 4







** P.S. This is the second time I'm publishing this as the first mysteriously disappeared and re-appeared with a different title(Unnamed instead of Untitled) and with it all my previous links and quotes have gone poof. I will try to get it all back as soon as I can.


Maud's (probable) cover and close up. Isn't it spectacular?:

Profile Image for Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽.
1,880 reviews22.8k followers
June 15, 2020
99c Kindle sale, June 15, 2020. 3.5ish stars. Final review, first posted on Fantasy Literature:

With Sweep of the Blade, the fourth installment in Ilona Andrews’ INNKEEPER CHRONICLES series, there is a new main character: Maud, sister of Dina, the previous main character and the innkeeper of this light SF series. We met Maud in the prior book in this series, One Fell Sweep, when Dina convinced Sean the werewolf and Arland the vampire — these are both alien races, by the way, though distantly related to humans — to help her rescue Maud and her five-year-old half-vampire daughter Helen from the desert prison planet Karhari. In the first few chapters of Sweep of the Blade, Andrews retells these scenes from Maud’s point of view.

Arland has fallen head over heels for Maud — her sword-fighting skills are as good as any vampire’s, which is a major turn-on for Arland — and after just a few weeks at Dina’s inn he asks her to go to his planet Daesyn, marry him, and live with him there and help him lead his vampire clan, House Krahr. Maud is a widow who was previously married to another vampire, however, and she’s completely soured on vampire society and afraid of what the likely rejection from Arland’s family will do to Helen. But Arland is tremendously attractive (think “Thor with fangs”), deeply in love with Maud, and a good guy in spite of being, you know, a vampire, so Maud agrees to go to Daesyn with Arland and see how things go with him and his extended family, without making any formal commitment yet.

When they reach Daesyn, House Krahr is in turmoil: they’ve been asked to host a large wedding featuring a couple from two other hostile vampire clans. House Krahr’s leaders suspect a trap, but vampire clans are big on honor, and there’s no graceful way to refuse the request. Luckily Maud is not only a kickass warrior, able to hold her own with almost any vampire, but also a highly intelligent, well-informed woman with a vast knowledge of galactic society generally and vampire society in particular. She soon gets ample opportunity to prove her value (and Helen’s) to House Krahr.

Sweep of the Blade, originally published on the Andrews’ website in serial form, is a fast-paced adventure spiced with a little romance. Helen is delightful, it’s fun to be in Maud’s head as she figures everything out and shows those vampires her own chops, and Arland is satisfyingly tough and adoring of Maud. There are several great scenes; one of my favorites was a banquet where Maud realizes that the vampires are unintentionally insulting the tachi, a giant insect-like alien race, by feeding them the wrong type of food with no artistic presentation whatsoever (the horror!), and immediately sets about making things right.
Maud plucked the blue kora fruit from the bowl, peeled the thin skin and carefully cut the fruit into even round slices. She managed eight slices, seven perfectly even and one slightly thicker. She placed the seven slices around the cubes. The eighth was a hair too thick. She pondered it.

The tachi pondered it with her.

Better safe than sorry. She reached for another kora.

The tachi to her left emitted an audible sigh of relief and then crunched his mouth shut, embarrassed.
There are some weak parts to Sweep of the Blade. This novel’s genesis as a weekly serial is apparent. While the Andrews team has added more detail and backstory to the final published version of Sweep of the Blade, it still feels episodic, with the scenes pieced together in a way that the seams still show, and the plot doesn’t quite have the depth of the best books in this series. Maud herself is so improbably accomplished and wonderful at Every. Single. Thing (except relationship commitment, which is understandable). She speaks numberless languages, including “more Ancestor Vampiric dialects than most vampire scholars.” She’s a devoted parent, an excellent diplomat, peerless fighter, highly intelligent, and even diligent about keeping her vampire armor in top shape. It all makes her a little hard to believe in and fully sympathize with.

The vampires in the INNKEEPER CHRONICLES series aren’t at all bloodsuckers in the traditional sense. They’re more like Vikings or Samurai warriors who very occasionally take a bite out of their enemies. No sensitivity to sunlight or aversions to garlic or crosses here. At least the werewolves in this series actually shapeshift into wolves.

Sweep of the Blade is fun reading if you like the Andrews’ brand of urban fantasy-flavored science fiction. It’s a light space opera romance that goes down easy, with lots of gory fighting to spice it up, but doesn’t really stick with you.
Profile Image for Heather K (dentist in my spare time).
3,880 reviews5,793 followers
August 3, 2019
Ilona Andrews books are my crack, and I don't ever want to quit!!

Gah, this book! I could NOT put it down.

If you are a fan of this series, you will be blown away by Sweep of the Blade. Technically, you could try it as a stand-alone since Maud is the main focus of the story, but I highly recommend reading the other Innkeeper Chronicles books first, mainly because they are awesome.

I was so, so addicted to the story, right from the beginning. The pace is very fast, and the time reading will simply fly by. Maud is an extremely compelling character, and there is a nice romance to boot, even if the romance isn't the mushy, demonstrative kind. Also, there is no heat at all, for those interested.

Children in books can be hit or miss for me, but I loved Maud's relationship with her daughter. I even found myself calling my own children, "my flower," despite the strange looks that I got from my husband...

All this book did was made me hungry for the next in the series. It's crack-tastic, and I guarantee you will love it too.

Profile Image for Anne.
4,053 reviews69.5k followers
January 24, 2020

I think most people are kind of over vampires, but these authors do a fantastic job of making these vampires interesting. In fact, if anyone were to ask me if I wanted to read about them, I'd probably tell them nobuthankyouforasking.
However, I'll read anything by Ilona Andrews.
And I'm glad I read this one.


Ok, so if you're unfamiliar with the Innkeeper Chronicles, it's basically an urban fantasy series about an alternate Earth with sentient Inns that contain portals to other planets...and dimensions.
Kind of.
Also, other stuff. <--and all of it extremely addicting to read about.


So the gist of this is that there are vampires, but not like the ones that we've got here in Transylvania. These guys are all on different planets, waging war, plotting against, and trying to outmaneuver each other for dominance. All while having these old-world viewpoints about class and castes.
It's fun. Really!
So this daughter of an Innkeeper (who has her own set of mysterious powers) marries a douchey (but hot) vampire. He ends up getting them and their child cast out of his (rather powerful) family and stranded on a prisonesque planet, then promptly sets about getting himself killed off because of his scheming nature.
Our heroine can take care of herself, but when another hot (but non-douchey) vampire makes a bid for her heart, will she say yes?

And there you have it. Another great story by these two authors!
Profile Image for Nicole.
749 reviews1,932 followers
September 14, 2022
2.5 stars

I'm not a big fan of Maud as a character and wasn't planning on reading this book before I learned it's necessary for the series. I saw no need to switch to Maud. The Innkeeper Chronicles are definitely my least favorite series by the Andrews (well not counting The Edge but the first two books of the latter were solid but they're not that related to each other since each book follows a different couple). I read that the Andrews want to write a Maud spin-off, I thought maybe in a novella format or so but certainly not as the 4th installment. I was expecting the worst and this book luckily, I wasn't as bad as I expected. But still one of the Andrews' weakest novels.

As usual, the book was easy to read and fast-paced, I wasn't bored reading it but I have several issues with Sweep of the Blade.

First Maud. SHE'S SUCH A MARIE SUE. She's perfect and skilled at everything. Negotiations, history, swordplay, politics, languages, and of course, she's a scholar. She always notices things no one else does (albeit they have much more experience in these things) and is quick to suggest strategies. She's basically a wiki at all species in the world and their clans' relations. In a way, she's good at everything. Better than most too. Welp, in some cases, everyone. C'MON.

I'm also not a fan of insta-love and we had barely any build-up here. Arland fell for her too fast. Speaking of Arland, he's a vampire but only in name. Why call his clans vampires if they have none of the vampires' traits.

I said in one of my previous reviews of this series that I'd love to see more of this world and I stand by my word. I just hope we see it through someone more interesting.

I did have a bit of fun reading this book but not the usual humor/witty comments/fun secondary characters type of Andrews book. The ending left me very much curious about what's going to happen next. I hope this book will be the last Maud book because I'm so over her perfection. She's not realistic at all.

Profile Image for Jilly.
1,838 reviews6,242 followers
July 4, 2020
“Can I ask you something?” Maud asked.

“Of course.”

“Why do you have a copy of Twilight in your room?”

Arland became completely still. “Um.”

“Lord Marshal?” she prompted with a small smile.

“I wanted to know how women from Earth see vampires.”

Not just a vampire romance - it's a Space-Vampire romance!!!!

[image error]

What could be better?

There is a race of alien vampires that are hosting a vampire-wedding-in-space, with guests like insectoid aliens and fox aliens. There will be intrigues and romance and bitchy vampire bridesmaids, and lots and lots of blood. You know, like most weddings.

Enough choreographed dances already, people! It's been done to death.

This book is a fun addition to the series. I loved Arland from book one, so I am glad he got his dream-girl.
Profile Image for Sarah.
3,343 reviews1,017 followers
December 9, 2020
1st read - throughout 2018 (Read as it was released as a serial)
2nd read - January 2019 (Reread online when the serial was complete)
3rd read - July 2019 (Final published version)
4th read - December 2020

As much as I love Dina and enjoy spending time at the Inn I'm really happy that we got a book about Maud and Arland. It was great to see more of the vampire culture and visit Arland's home planet but what I really enjoyed was seeing Maud find a place for herself with Arland's family - not just because Arland loves her but because they could see what an asset she is on her own merit!

Maud is very different to her sister, they both grew up in Inns so have a broad knowledge of the universe and all the different species that live in it, but Maud spent years living with vampires and in a lot of ways she's more vampire than human in her outlook on life. After everything that happened with Melizard she's wary of getting involved with Arland, she wants Helen to be happy and knows that she'd have a fuller life on Arland's home world, and more importantly than anything she loves Arland, but she's terrified of having her life ripped out from under her again. She wants to have her own place in society, one that doesn't depend on Arland where she's respected for her own abilities and she's determined to prove her worth to his family.

I loved how brave Maud is to fight for what she wanted and I really appreciated how patient Arland was, he never tried to push her further than she was willing to go and although he'd made up his mind about wanting to marry her he was happy to wait until she was ready for a relationship. I love the two of them together and when you throw adorable Helen into the mix they're just the cutest little family unit.

I've already read this story three times, first when it was being serialised on Ilona Andrews' blog, again when it had been finished so I could binge it in one sitting, and for the third time when the published version hit my kindle. I have to admit I was hoping we might have a little more heat added to the finished version but I just loved everything about this story. It's full of action, lots of humour, a sweet romance and a battle with space pirates. What more could I ask for? Oh and the ending left me desperate for the next instalment too. Interesting things are afoot in the Innkeeper universe and I can't wait to see what happens next!


Well that was bloody awesome! The whole story is now available to read online (http://innkeeper.ilona-andrews.com), it usually stays up for a couple of weeks or so before it's taken down, so if you want to try it while its free you should get to it ASAP. It'll then be taken offline, properly edited (with extra adult material added!) and then published & made available to purchase (usually as an ebook and in print).

I always love reading the instalments as this is written but I'm planning to read the whole thing again from the beginning very soon in one big binge. Then of course I'll be buying the finished version to for the Maud & Arland sexy times LOL.


Ilona and Gordon have started posting instalments of the latest Innkeeper story on their website: http://innkeeper.ilona-andrews.com

This is going to be a novella about Maud and Helen travelling to Arland's home planet to meet his family and I can't wait, let the wonderful torture of waiting for each week's new instalment begin!!
Profile Image for Holly.
1,449 reviews1,084 followers
July 25, 2019
I read this book in a single day, because Ilona Andrews. I fan girl this writing team so hard it isn't even funny. So with that said, I am obviously unbiased ;)

I can't seem to write a review for this but here's my crappy attempt at it:

This feels a little like Kate Daniels, in that Maud has a lot of knowledge and also knows how to kick ass. Also, Arland has a whole lot of tradition and authority/responsibility he has to uphold, which seems to conflict directly with his choice of Maud as his romantic interest (much like the early Kate/Curran relationship). Oh and throw in a kid, Helen, whose mixed heritage makes her a lot more dangerous than her childhood counterparts (much like Conlan) .

However it's not like Kate Daniels in that there is space travel, vampires who are more like humans, and there are political machinations on a universal scale.

So all in all, this felt familiar and yet different and I enjoyed it.
Profile Image for Lucie V..
1,012 reviews2,048 followers
May 20, 2023
✅ Characters
✅ New setting
✅ Pace and action
✅ Plot
✅ Politics and scheming
🆗 Romance

Vampire worldview, condensed into three sentences: If it’s not food or a pet, kill it, because it might be poisonous.

This book starts with Maud being stranded on Karhari with Helen, and the first chapter is kind of a recap of how she met Arland and how their relationship developed in the third book of the series, but from Maud's POV obviously. It then jumps right to the moment when they arrive at Arland's home planet, where Maud will have to deal with ruthless vampires that underestimate her and do not respect her. If only this was her only problem it wouldn't be so bad, but she also uncovers an alliance between two other vampire Houses that could present a great threat against the Krahr House if not properly dealt with.

As in the previous books of this series, there is a mix of action and politics. Thanks to her upbringing, Maud is aware of the particularities of many alien species and she helps the vampires navigate through parley with other species. She also shows us how much of a kickass she is, and how devoted to her daughter she is.

“They called me a halfer,” Helen said from the backseat.
The smile vanished from his face, as if jerked away. “You’re not a halfer,” Arland growled. “You’re a vampire and a human. Both and whole, not half and half.”

“And he said I wasn’t good enough to be his enemy. And I said, ‘I’ll punch you so hard, you’ll swallow your teeth, worm.’”
Maud hid a groan. “Where did you hear that?”
“Lord Arland.”
Oh goodie. “Then what happened?”
“Then the scary old knight came and told me that if I challenged the boy, there would be ripper cushions.”

Arland and Helen. 💙
Helen is so cute and sweet and seeing Arland being all protective of her melts my heart. They're precious.

“I know that you don’t require my protection, my lady. If I thought you did, I wouldn’t have extended the invitation. I’m not looking for a maiden to save. I’m looking for a partner.”

Arland and Maud's romantic plotline didn't impress me though. They're cute together and I really wanted them to end up together, but I feel that all the groundwork was done in the previous book and there was no real development in this book. They had feelings for each other from the start, it was all really about Maud waiting to have enough courage to take a leap of faith and "officially" get romantically involved with Arland. Don't get me wrong, I love their couple, but the romance part of the plot was bland and lacked heat and sexual tension.

The author explored another part of the galaxy in this book and I loved learning more about the vampires' ways and manners. The way Maud handled their violent and rude reactions toward her was so satisfying. I don't know how she managed to remain calm and "play her part" as a clueless and weak human though because I would have slapped some of those bitches from the very moment they were introduced... She really is a great character.

“So, she’s an assassin,” Ilemina said.
“No. She’s a woman who was dumped on Karhari with a three-year-old child and a husband who was a snake. She is a survivor. She doesn’t fight for fun or glory. She fights to eliminate the threat. Every time she draws her sword, it’s life or death. She gives it everything, because her child’s life hangs in the balance. Of all people, I thought you would relate.”

The writing is good, but the fact that vampires just revealed so much during their discussions with Maud bothered me a little. She kept telling herself that she had to be sneaky and have her poker face because vampires are very subtle and deal with lots of nuance and hidden messages, but I didn't see it in the interactions she had.

Again though, the whole family disappearance mystery is mentioned, but not explored. Klaus comes back at the end of the book and I hope that he will help move this part of the plot forward because I'm tired of hearing about how mysterious it is and how they want to find their parents, but nothing has changed since the first book... It's just getting old...

Gerard Demille and Helen meet ⭐⭐⭐
Clean Sweep ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Sweep in Peace ⭐⭐⭐.5
One Fell Sweep ⭐⭐⭐⭐.5

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Profile Image for TJ ☾.
698 reviews1,246 followers
April 20, 2021
this was freaking great. out of all the currently active IA series, innkeeper is probably the one im least enthusiastic about so i have been putting this book off for a while, and that's how you know im a certified dumb-dumb. i should've remembered even my least fav-IA's are still gonna be bomb.

i thought i didn't care about maud and arland but i couldn't have been more wrong. maud/arland > dina/sean. maud is amazing, handles things like a boss, and is so badass. and arland? too precious for this world, absolutely fantastic, don't even get me started on his relationship with mauds daughter. him and maud are a perfect couple, you can't change my mind. the fact that he kept calling her his fiancé even though she was like bro im literally not tho 🙈😂

“What I’m trying to say is, I see you. I would love you if you were a vampire or a human, because of who you are. You don’t need an inn or a broom to fascinate me. You only have to look my way and you’ll have all of my attention.”

and that ending?? you can't just leave me like that IA!! ive been wanting to meet since book 1. this book got me re-excited for this series and reminded me why ilona andrews are my fav authors. however, that fade to black sex scene? no no. no no. we're gonna need to have words about that 🙅🏽‍♀️ and um can we carry on this series with maud as the MC instead of dina? 👉🏽👈🏽 hehe no shade jus curious 👀
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,639 reviews1,509 followers
June 16, 2020
Sale Alert: Kindle Daily Deal 15Jun20 0.99

There is this thing about Ilona Andrews writing that almost always works for me. Again they have captured that blend of good story, interesting backdrop, fun characters, dash of humor, touch of alphaness, pinch of magic and a sprinkling of sword play baked at 322 pages for a delicious good time. You don’t have to have read any of the other books in this series to understand Sweep of the Blade, but you’d miss out on the great time that was Dina and Sean’s story.

Maud is a fighter, she’s been a fighter since she was a child and picked up her first sword. It made sense that her first husband came from the very battle intensive culture of the vampires. But alas he was not the prince charming with fangs she thought he was and now Maud has a dead husband and a five-year-old child to think of. Helen is totes adorbs though so probably worth the time with the idiot who was her father.

In the last book of this series Maud and Arland (super Vampire from clan awesomeness) fell in love and while she has reservations about going with him to his homeworld, she knows her daughter is never really going to fit in on earth. But, Maud wants to be smart this time, love isn’t everything and so she hasn’t accepted Arland’s proposal yet. In her words love is easy, its marriage that is hard and complicated.

I loved being on this journey with Maud, Arland and Helen. It was great seeing the human and her half vampire child out vampire some of Arland’s own family and the two rival clans that are having a wedding in Arland’s stronghold. Can anyone say…


The thing is because of how vampire politics work even though they know it is probably a trap they have to play the game until the reveal is made or the appearance is that Arland’s house is weak. Vampires, *shrugs*. Still it makes for a very interesting story as Maud works to figure out the real play, protect her daughter and figure out a way to become an asset to Arland’s house.

I enjoyed the expansion of Arland and Maud’s time together while at Dina’s Inn so that the love didn’t seem so instantaneous. I also enjoyed seeing Arland with Helen and how much of a father he has become to her. It was adorable the way he plays with and treats his future stepdaughter. This is definitely PG-rating and I could have done with PG-13 since that is what the rest of the series were so far.

I was sad not to see Dina, Sean, Gertrude Hunt and Caldenia except for in relived snippets in this book. I love them all so much. Maud however carried the story so well and I really like the magic that she may posses along with that little teaser at the end. Dare I hope that we see George, Jack and Sophie again in upcoming books. A girl can dare to dream and that is exactly what I’ll be doing until the next book set in this world.
Profile Image for Corina.
768 reviews2,181 followers
March 14, 2021
UPDATE: 2021, third time reading it, and Maud is still one of my favourite IA heroines. Would love to get a second book about her 😍

I read this book as a full novel not a serial.

It's hard to describe how utterly enthralled I was by this novel

From the very fist moment I was consumed by the story. Of course Maud is so very different from Dina (book 1-3). Different but also similar in some ways, which makes sense since they grew up in the same environment. But still, both are very distinctive and unique in their personality. Maud was incredibly smart in regards to interracial relations, and knowledgable about all kinds of dos and don'ts. She could be brutal, efficient and ruthless when protecting the people she loved. I adored seeing her in action - with and without sword.

Her willingness to give the relationship with Arland a real chance, to give her best, to not let anyone else encourage her or best her in any way, made Maud a stand out character for me. She was one of these women that kick ass in a smart way - I'm officially in love with this lady.

Furthermore, after reading the first three Innkeeper books, Sweep the Blade was a lighter, less dark and gritty, but as action packed as any Kate Daniels novel.

Arland was a perfect blend of possessive, protective, but also supportive and most of all respectful of Maud's skills and decisions. Because Maud knew how to defend herself and Arland loved that about her. Although he wanted to call her his, he gave her the time she needed to come around on her own. Above all he loved her the way she was.

The story on its own was FABULOUS!!! So much fun. Moreover I loved the uniqueness of it all. Together with the fabulous cast, who enriched the story and enthralled me, the originality of the story was what mad this book a winner. I want MORE!!! Truly, this series is, especially now since Kate is done, my new obsession. This sci-fi adventure Maud is on is my kind of jam. I'm hooked, addicted and can't wait to read more.

Unsurprisingly, this book was right up my alley. I'm blown away by how much I loved it all. There was not ONCE that I thought the novel sounded like anything else than a well crafted story. The overall flow, energy and rhythm of the plot was on par with any Kate Daniels novel.

Without a doubt this book is my new obsession. Indeed I can see myself rereading it in a month or two - that's how entertaining and awesome it was.

Bravo!! Again a truly impressive work of fiction. I just wish they would write FASTER!!!!
Profile Image for Em Lost In Books.
902 reviews1,810 followers
September 2, 2020
When everything was going great why the sudden shift of central character and story? For me Maud was a fine supporting character but I was not able to accept her as the leading lady no, no matter how hard I tried. Hope in next installment, whenever it comes out I will be reunited with Dina and Gertrude.
Profile Image for Wanda Pedersen.
1,920 reviews386 followers
April 12, 2020
A little treat that I purchased for myself, the paper version of the latest Innkeeper book. And of course, I couldn’t resist giving it another spin. I’ve read the first 3 books multiple times and now Sweep of the Blade will join that re-reading queue.

This is the polished version--previously I had enjoyed the weekly installments online--and I was pleasantly surprised at the couple of additions that made the story work so well. I’m also intrigued by the ending, which seems to indicate that there are more Innkeeper Chronicles to come. Bring them on!

Original review:

Otubar reached over and plucked Helen from the bed. “Come with me, child. It’s time we tested you with other weapons.”
“If you do well, I will give you cake,” Ilemina said.
Helen’s eyes lit up. “What kind of cake?”
“Delicious kind,” Otubar told her.

And that’s what this little novella swollen-to-novel was—delicious cake with frothy icing! No nutritional value whatsoever. It was a fun little paranormal romance, getting Maud & Arland together with lots of blood and severed limbs along the way.

From the beginning of the Innkeeper series, I have been on Team Arland. Sean Evans was fine as a love interest for Dina, but I loved Arland immediately and I will read anything featuring him. There is no doubt in my mind that Maud is a better match for him than Dina was, so I was thrilled to travel with Maud and little Helen to his home planet and sort things out.

Reading an ongoing, serialized work such as this one is less satisfying than being able to read a fully edited, printed version, but still entertaining. I had something to look forward to every Friday (besides the end of my work week). I will definitely be buying the print version (and not just to enjoy the R rated bits that the authors weren’t posting to the interwebs) to add to my Ilona Andrews collection, to be enjoyed repeatedly.
Profile Image for Cathy.
1,666 reviews242 followers
December 6, 2018
“I do not comprehend this species.  How have they ever managed to achieve interstellar civilization without self-destructing?”

Finally, after about one year of updates, the epilogue in December. And finally, finally the with a little teaser for the next installment.

I am a little underwhelmed. There was too much discussion about who does what to whom and why for my taste. And too many too detailed descriptions of endless, different settings. And Maud always being the clever one and explaining to the others how it all works got a little old as well. The action scenes were great though. Ilona Andrews knows how to write great sword fights and bloodshed in general.

And I guess it is a tough one to keep a great narrative going in a weekly online serial with barely any editing. At the moment I feel no great need to pick up the edited, improved, mature version. But if the next story in the Innkeeper universe will show up on IAs website, I am game.

PS: I am at a loss about attaching the appropriate genre label. Science Fiction it really isn‘t. Ok, there are space ships and some interstellar travel. But it‘s mostly flying through the great beyond, in vessels resembling castles, with gardens, trees etc. It‘s definitely not UF. Romantic, soft SF? Space Fantasy?

Main chapter page: (probably won‘t be available online for much longer)

What’s Next for Innkeeper, from the authors’ blog: http://www.ilona-andrews.com/whats-ne...
Profile Image for Mei.
1,882 reviews424 followers
August 2, 2019
While this can be read as a standalone, I would recommend reading the first thre books before this one! First because Maud is Dina's siter and second because Arland is present in all three of them. Besides there're also the lees with their leader Nuan Cee!

While Dina is basically a witty nice girl, Maud is forged by her circumstances into a real bad-ass woman! A true vampire more than a bad-ass human! I loved her and her ruthlessness!

Since meeting her I just new that she was perfect for Arland!

I also appreciated that she was ready to give Arland a chance and that she didn't cower in front of his family even when they were at their worst! She just showed them that she was as good as they were, if not better, at being a vampire!

I loved how she did all that! She applied what she learned from her parent's about other races and gained valuable allies while, at the same time, uncovered a dangerous plot against House Krahr! It was really fun to read!

Arland, on the other hand, showed her that she's his priority. I loved his vimpire-flowery way of speech!

Also the dynamics between him and his parents.. what to say? LOL
”My mother is never insulted. She is far too dignified and refined for that. She has the patience of a saint,”
“Lady Ilemina,” Maud quoted from memory, “Slaughterer of Ruhamin, Supreme Predator of the Holy Anocracy, Bleeder of Ert, Fierce Subjugator of…”
“Like I said, too dignified to take offence. If someone dares to insult her, she simply kills them,…”

Sweet lady, isn't she? LAMOOO

And Helen, Maud's daughter? She's like a small lioness! She hisses and growls! It's adorable!

I loved very much an insight to vampire culture! It's so convoluted and fascinating! I loved that in this world the vampires are not blood-suckers! Their fangs are used to kill their enemies like predators do!

The action is not-stop as usual in IA's books. Some of the action is stationary, other is violent and bloody, but it's always exciting! I loved them all!

And I'm so happy that the series will continue! I'm so looking forward to the next book!
Profile Image for Deborah Obida.
679 reviews619 followers
May 10, 2021
This book turned out just how I expected, If I'm been honest it exceeded my expectations. I've read 3 series by this duo and I still can't get enough. They always wow me.

“What’s bothering you?” he asked quietly.
“You told your mother.”
“Of course, I did. You’re not some shameful secret I’m going to hide.”
“No, I’m a disgraced exile who had the audacity to turn down a proposal from the most beloved son of House Krahr.”
He considered it. “Not the most beloved. My cousin is much more adorable than me. He is two and his hair is curly.”
“Lord Arland…”

The writing, world building and plot is as awesome as ever. This book is more sci-fi than urban fantasy even though they are vampires in it, lots of space weapons and space ships not to mention the species.

“Can I ask you something?” Maud asked.
“Of course.”
“Why do you have a copy of Twilight in your room?”
Arland became completely still. “Um.”
“Lord Marshal?” she prompted with a small smile.
“I wanted to know how women from Earth see vampires.”

The fight scenes were so well depicted, Arland and Maud are just great together. I love that the romance didn't take over the plot nor did the events in the book take over the romance, everything was in perfect dose. I also love Helen, even though she is a child she is so fierce and lovable. I adore Arland's mother and cousin Karat, she is not only a warrior but also kind. They is basically no character in this book that I don't like, I even love the villians.
Profile Image for Choko.
1,221 reviews2,594 followers
July 1, 2020
*** 4.35 ***

"...“Can I ask you something?” Maud asked.
“Of course.”
“Why do you have a copy of Twilight in your room?”
Arland became completely still. “Um.”
“Lord Marshal?” she prompted with a small smile.
“I wanted to know how women from Earth see vampires.”..."

Arland is not one of the Twilight sparkling vampires... He is a warrior, the Marshal of his clan, House Krahr, a tank of a man with blood thirst for a hundred Twilight Twinkies and a smile to make all of them jealous and women everywhere swear their undying love for him on the spot! Now imagine this beautiful killing machine putting all of its energy into wooing one human woman. Maude didn't stand a chance!!! She is in love, that is for sure, but she is not ready to throw herself into another marriage, since the first one had left her not wanting to ever venture in that direction... Her and Helen, her daughter, only want to have a place they are accepted for who they are and are aloud to be themselves. And she doesn't feel like proving her worth to yet another vampire family... On top of that, there is Lady Ilemina, Arland's dear mother to placate. And this is not going to be easy...

"...”My mother is never insulted. She is far too dignified and refined for that. She has the patience of a saint,”
“Lady Ilemina,” Maud quoted from memory, “Slaughterer of Ruhamin, Supreme Predator of the Holy Anocracy, Bleeder of Ert, Fierce Subjugator of…”
“Like I said, too dignified to take offence. If someone dares to insult her, she simply kills them”..."

Yeah, a sweet old lady... Their first brunch is a work of art:):):)

I loved this book as well, it just didn't quite make the same impression as book 3 did. I love Maude and i enjoyed getting a closer look into the native life of the Vampires and their bloodthirsty ways. We get to see more of the influence of being raised by Innkeepers has on the rest of the kids' lives. Maude is infinitely more prepared to deal with the vast Universe at large than the more reclusive species and is perfectly suited for diplomacy with many species. She also has the heart of a warrior and this might either make or break her relationship with the proud Krahr Clan. You guys have to read it to get the full effect:):):)

"...“Children leave,” Ilemina told her. “It is the greatest tragedy of motherhood that if you have done everything right, if you have raised them in confidence and independence, they will pick up and leave you. It is as it’s meant to be.”
― Ilona Andrews, Sweep of the Blade”..."

Profile Image for Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller.
736 reviews1,258 followers
April 29, 2020
I hate to say it, but this is my least favorite Ilona Andrews book so far… although even a bad IA book is still worthy of 3 stars.

It wasn’t what I was expecting at all. The whole framework of the Innkeeper novels is built around Dina, her Inn, and the overall goal of finding her parents. This was a HUGE tangent from that, focusing on the sister (Maud) in a continuation of things that happened in the third Innkeeper book. It doesn’t take place on Earth and it’s plot is 100% removed from any momentum the series has built so far. I wouldn’t consider it a waste of pages, because it’s still and Ilona Andrews work and everything they do is enjoyable to read, but as far as series satisfaction is concerned, I’m annoyed. This should’ve been a spin-off (or a novella) instead of a continuation. Maybe if there had been even a thread of the original plotline present, I would’ve been satisfied, but no such luck.

All that said, it wasn’t a BAD book. It included fun characters, an exploration of a vampire home world (filled with vampire politics, scheming, and warfare), and most notably, continued a romance between two characters. I liked reading about all of theses things… it’s just not what I signed up for. Compound that with the fact the first 20% was a complete recapping of things I already knew from the book before it (just in more detail), and I’m still annoyed. It soothes the blow a little bit to consider that the chapters are first published as a free online serial, then compiled later into book format, so my rant may not be that justified… but still.

Recommendations: I’m not saying skip it, but I’m saying I knew exactly what I wanted from a book 4 in a series, and this was not it. Even so, these authors dazzle me so often, even a book I didn’t care for from them gets 3 stars, so that’s still an endorsement for the quality of all things IA. I’m sure this will play into future novels, but suffice to say it wasn’t my favorite.

Via The Obsessive Bookseller at www.NikiHawkes.com

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Storm Born (Dark Swan #1) by Richelle Mead First Truth (Truth, #1) by Dawn Cook Grimspace (Sirantha Jax, #1) by Ann Aguirre Fortune's Pawn (Paradox #1) by Rachel Bach Ill Wind (Weather Warden, #1) by Rachel Caine
Profile Image for Phrynne.
3,320 reviews2,141 followers
August 19, 2019
So so good! And what a superb ending which leads perfectly into the next book. These authors really know how to write an absorbing and exciting story. All of the characters are great and I loved every bit of the vampire world they created. These are vampires with class!

I actual think I like this series even more than the Kate Daniels books. That is a huge compliment. Can't wait for the next book and more about Kraus, the Arbitrator.
Profile Image for Anna [Bran. San. Stan].
289 reviews125 followers
October 24, 2022
4.5 competence-is-my-crack stars. I really get a kick out of stories in which the protagonist is underestimated and surprises everyone with their awesomeness. Maybe that’s why I especially enjoyed this story. You might say Maud may even be a tad too competent – should she have a chink in her armor apart from being afraid of commitment? Maybe. Do I mind? Nope. She is bad-ass.

So yes, in case you were wondering, Dina is no longer the POV character; it’s her recently widowed older sister Maud. I admit I was initially a bit surprised but ultimately delighted she got her own book. Not only did this provide us with a relationship arc between Arland and Maud beyond the “love at first fight” we saw in book 3 and had Maud overcoming her (understandable) commitment issues, but it gave us more of Maud and her first husband’s daughter: 5-year-old Helen, with her cute vampire fangs and fierce bearing.

Compared to the previous 3 books in this series, Sweep of the Blade is also more character-driven rather than action-driven. However, the plot focuses a lot on Maud trying to be accepted into Vampire society and I kind of wish there had been more relationship development – seeing Arland and Maud interact more for one thing and seeing them actually have sex for another. This was surprisingly PG compared to what I’m used to with Ilona Andrews in general and this series in particular.

I also liked seeing more of Vampire society – through the eyes of someone already familiar with it at that. It feels novel to not have an outsider get the show-and-tell along with the reader.

I really hope Maud will get a second book as, so far, this has been my favorite book of series – even if George, Jack and Sophie were notably absent yet again!
Profile Image for Angela.
3,199 reviews370 followers
July 5, 2022
The published version is even better than the serial - considering how much I loved that....<3 <3 <3
Review to come.

January 2019 - online serial version. I love this world. Can't wait for more. Review to come of final purchased edition, when available.
Profile Image for Angela (Angel's Guilty Pleasures).
1,572 reviews875 followers
September 10, 2022
Sweep of the Blade is book four in the Innkeeper Chronicles series by Ilona Andrews. We are treated to Vampire politics, a wedding, a double cross, and battles that are very bloody.

OMG I loved the audio. I actually had the book and eBook on release day, but I was waiting for the audio to come out. I LOVE the audios for the previous books and felt this book would be so much better to listen too. I wasn’t disappointed.

In Sweep of the Blade we focus on Maud and her daughter. If you haven’t read the series I suggest starting at the beginning or at least read/listen to One Fell Sweep before picking up Sweep of the Blade. That is where we meet Dina’s sister Maud.

When the book starts it starts with Maud’s exile on a lawless Vampire plant where all the criminals are sent and then moves onto present day.

Maud was married to a Vampire and had a daughter. It was perfect at first, but then things went wrong. She doesn’t want to open her heart up, nor does she want her daughter to get emotionally hurt, again. It’s a tough road to let someone in and hope they won’t hurt you like her previous husband and his family. Maud doesn’t give up easily. She ends up coming to terms with her past, who she is, and what she wants in life. It felt like a rebirth and self discover story.

I loved that we get to visit the Vampires, learning more about them, and traveling to one of their home worlds.

As for the romance; well I didn't feel any romance between Maud and Arland. Like is their, but the romance was lacking for me. They are just so formal with each other; even in private. Their guard comes down some of the time, but not enough. Mainly we are focusing on Maud and her issues; instead of the romance.

Narration: We switch narrators from Renee Raudman to Natalie Naudus. This is my first time with this narrator. She was amazing and wonderful. Her voices are smooth and easy to listen too. The battles are vivid and Maud's inner issues are brought out. I really enjoyed the audiobook and recommend listening.

Rated: 4 Stars

Graphic Audio Aug. 2022: I've listened to the regular audio version several times now and read the book. But, I have to say the Graphic Audio's for The Innkeeper Chronicles are SUPERBER and UNFORGETTABLE. It truly is a movie for the mind. I learned so much more and found things I've missed. The full cast, sound effects, and cinematic music made Sweep of the Blade MEMORABLE.
Graphic Audio Rated: 5 Stars
Story Rated: 4 Stars

Profile Image for Marta Cox.
2,626 reviews195 followers
January 25, 2019
This review is for the instalment version that the authors were magnanimous enough to post for free on their website. It will disappear when the updated version is published so please be aware of that if you wish to read the tamer more PG version. Now I said tamer but honestly these Vampires are vicious, vengeful and absolutely addictive ! I'm sure Arland would quickly reach for his blood mace at the suggestion he's anything but a brutal fighting force of nature but I'm referring to the lack of erotic scenes although this couple sizzle even when dressed in full armour !
Yes I said couple and it seems remiss to leave Maud out before now , so what can I tell you about this mother who would go to the ends of the galaxy for her daughter Helen and those she loves ? Now here's the truth and that is that I actually preferred Maud to her sister Dina ( Clean Sweep) and honestly I'm shocked at that myself. I loved the quiet, sweet and pragmatic Dina but Maud facing off against Arlands family and supposed allies was exciting, intense and hysterical because as a reader I just knew when she bit back at them it would be hard and boy she did not disappoint. Plus there's the wonderful addition of Helen who every reader will absolutely love to pieces.
This might have some tidying up for publication but I'm sure it will be awesome and a must read for the fans. I'm so looking forward to the more 'adult' scenes as I'm pretty sure Arland is a male worth waiting for. This was a fabulous read and I hugely recommend it and I'm so grateful to the authors for gifting the fans with these sneak peaks.
Profile Image for Beth.
3,129 reviews270 followers
May 27, 2023
I can't get enough of this series. I love that it has transitioned into Maud and her daughter with the vampire planet as the back drop on which the adventure takes place. I've read the unedited, web published version as well as the ebook and have to say I loved them both and am glad I grabbed the ebook copy because the revisions added more to the story.
Profile Image for Choko.
1,221 reviews2,594 followers
May 27, 2022
*** 4.15 ***

"“Adapt or die,” Helen said. “It’s impossible to stop change,” Maud said. “It’s the nature of life. Those who refuse to adapt will eventually die out. But before they do, they will get nasty. They might even hate you.”"

Another light and very enjoyable read by the Ilona Andrews team! I was reading it, thinking that when I pick up a book by them, I never worry that I might be disappointed, no matter how little I know about the book beforehand. They are one of the authors I buy books by as soon as they publish, because I can count on them to find a way and bring out a pleasant experience, be it with romance, urban fantasy, or paranormal romance. I might like some of their work more than other, but I always end up enjoying myself.

"“Vampire worldview, condensed into three sentences: If it’s not food or a pet, kill it, because it might be poisonous.”"

I have a soft spot for the Innkeeper series. It is funny at times, it is full of caring, and it is magical in a very realistic way. The characters and their relationships is what makes these books special, and although we have moved on from the first three books leading character Dina, to her sister Maud, the overall light mood of the series persists and the authors guide us into their world with easy consistency.

I recommend this series to all readers, regardless of age or genre preference. I believe everyone could find something to love in them👍😃

Now I wish you all Happy Reading and may you always find what you Need in the pages of a Good Book 😃📖📚
Profile Image for Steven.
1,088 reviews394 followers
January 15, 2023
I love Maud, Helen, and Arland. Even Arland's family! I also liked the lees and the tachi too.

It was a nice change of pace from following Dina's story, though I did miss the amazing Inn and its changing rooms. :)
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