Mark Lawrence's Reviews > Blood of Heirs

Blood of Heirs by Alicia Wanstall-Burke
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it was amazing
Read 2 times. Last read December 10, 2019 to December 18, 2019.

This book is a finalist in the 5th Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off, having beaten 290 other novels for one of the 10 finalists spots!

Read more about the SPFBO here:

It's also by a long time Facebook chum of mine.

I can put all that aside though and say with honesty that it's a really good read. The story starts off with a somewhat generic feel, following a duke's son in a medievalesque setting and the daughter of a clan leader (I'm never entirely sure if he rules over more than one village / small town). The clan is of the horse-riding, archers on grasslands type, but does have added interest by being pretty close to the stone-age.

Anyway, there are many fine books with generic bones (like A Game of Thrones), and this turns out to be one of them.

The world building, plotting, description are all solid, but it's the characters that shine, and basically if you have a great character then that makes the book. It's the girl, Lidan, who is the most interesting character. With both the point-of-view characters it took me a while to warm to them but by the end of the book I was fully invested, and the last few chapters are exciting stuff. AWB is no softy, and bad stuff happens, innocents die, and there's a palpable feeling of risk for everyone.

There were, as with any book, a few niggles. Some journeys felt too long, some too short, some communications over short distances seemed too limited whereas others over huge distances seemed too comprehensive. One person fails to tell another useful information for reasons I'm not clear on. But none of it is show stopping.

The two threads of the book feel destined to come together - but don't between these two covers - which surprised me. In fact, although they are (presumably) in the same world, the only connection between them is a common source of danger, revealed only late on in the second of the two. While this does risk making the novel just two shorter books with alternating chapters, it does have the advantage of saving something for book 2 (which has recently been published).

Anyway, in short, I encourage you to give it a go. If you want solid writing, real characters that you'll end up rooting for, excitement, moments of genuine pathos, and a young girl getting stabby - it's very likely to please.

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Reading Progress

November 7, 2019 – Started Reading
November 7, 2019 – Shelved
November 19, 2019 –
page 75
22.39% "Things are heating up!

Not overburdened with originality so far, but WB writes well and the characters + their relationships are growing nicely. You can write a great book with fairly standard ideas, and a bad book with super new ones. The characters and their interactions are what brings a story to life, and this one is going well."
November 26, 2019 –
page 102
30.45% "Getting exciting! I'm enjoying it.

Minor niggles about communication and collapsing buildings, but good stuff."
November 29, 2019 –
page 102
30.45% "Has just been made a finalist in the 5th Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off!"
December 8, 2019 – Finished Reading
December 10, 2019 – Started Reading
December 10, 2019 –
page 250
74.63% "Our hero is hanging in a thorn bush! :D"
December 18, 2019 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-1 of 1 (1 new)

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David Samuels Similar quibbles here, but overall an enjoyable read

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