Katherine Coble's Reviews > Blood Song

Blood Song by Anthony Ryan
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it was amazing
bookshelves: bargain-books, indie-book, animal-dies, books-i-force-on-everyrone-i-meet, fiction-with-a-not-so-hidden-agenda, better-than-5-stars, well-worn-repeat-reads
Read 2 times. Last read October 13, 2021 to October 17, 2021.

When I first finished Patrick Rothfuss’ Name Of The Wind two years ago I was a bit sad. I knew that even though the book was wonderful (and had a sequel on the horizon), that great books which capture me as that one did don’t come along very often. Before Rothfuss was Harry Potter, and that was a good number of years before Rothfuss. It was five years before Potter that Pillars Of The Earth fell into my hands. So I’ve been working on an average of one Utterly Captivating Read every five years or so. Watching the last page of Name Of The Wind blink offscreen, I knew it was going to be another five years before I found one of those Utterly Captivating Reads.

Now, that’s not to say there haven’t been other great books. Other five-star books. George RR Martin has written a few. So has Lois McMaster Bujold. Five-star books, through and through–books that I’ve read more than once out of a desire to travel into them again.

But there are just some books that make five stars look like the sky on a cloudy night and beg for a constellation. Those are the Utterly Great Reads, the ones whose stories feel more real than the stories you know other people think are real.

I wasn’t expecting another Utterly Great Read for three more years. I wasn’t due for one, you see.

I certainly wasn’t expecting it to be independently published, released in near secret and available on Kindle for less than the price of my usual Vente Breve Chai Latte at Starbucks. Seriously. This thing was three dollars. I swear to you I want to send twenty bucks and a bottle of Macallan to the guy who wrote it. It’s that good. This is a book that should be in leather-bound hardback, smythe-sewn, gold tooling, deckle-edged paper. It’s a book that costs less than a large bag of cheetos, for crying out loud!
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Quotes Katherine Liked

Anthony Ryan
“It was a curious effect of pain that time became infinite, every instant of agony prolonged to the ultimate.”
Anthony Ryan, Blood Song

Reading Progress

September 6, 2012 – Started Reading
September 6, 2012 – Shelved as: indie-book
September 6, 2012 – Shelved as: bargain-books
September 6, 2012 – Shelved
September 9, 2012 – Shelved as: animal-dies
September 9, 2012 – Shelved as: books-i-force-on-everyrone-i-meet
September 9, 2012 – Shelved as: fiction-with-a-not-so-hidden-agenda
September 9, 2012 – Shelved as: better-than-5-stars
September 9, 2012 – Finished Reading
January 16, 2013 –
1.0% "First Read: September 2012 Second Read: January 2013 (Until GR fixes its database to allow accurate tallies of rereads I guess I'm stuck with old fashioned note taking and marginalia for tracking.)"
February 22, 2013 – Shelved as: well-worn-repeat-reads
October 13, 2021 – Started Reading
October 17, 2021 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-39 of 39 (39 new)

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Lance466 "But there are just some books that make five stars look like the sky on a cloudy night and beg for a constellation."

If I was reading your review on my kindle I would've highlighted that portion.

Couldn't have said it better myself.


Michael I'm always glad to see people giving Blood Song the praise it so richly deserves. Having come from a self-publishing background myself, I keep my eye out for new indies that are making the mark and Ryan had all the goods. I'm glad that he has been picked up by Penguin. In fact, I felt so strongly about the strength of his book that I did what I seldom do...offer a blurb for it.

“Anthony Ryan is a new fantasy author destined to make his mark on the genre. His debut novel, Blood Song, certainly has it all: great coming of age tale, compelling character, and a fast-paced plot. If his first book is any indication of things to come, then all fantasy readers should rejoice, as a new master storyteller has hit the scene.”—Michael J. Sullivan, author of the Riyria Revelations series

message 3: by Simon (last edited Jan 24, 2013 03:08PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Simon I just finished reading the book and have written a long review of it. I'm pretty stunned at finding yet another author whom I have never heard of before in my life write such a beautiful book.

I too have read Patrick Rothfuss Kingkiller Chronicles but found that I could not stomach the second book. Too much time wasted on characters doing too little or meaningless gibberish. Blood Song was completely different.

Michael S. Great review. Summed up some of my feelings and made me laugh as well!

Gary Are we giving extra points to this book because it was so unexpected? So out of nowhere? How old is that Macallan's by the way?

Katherine Coble Not really. I don't usually factor the source into the rating, which may be why so few of my friends request book reviews from me.

I am amazed, though, that the world of book creation and consumption have changed enough that books from new sources are more easily available.

I'd say we could go with Macallen 18. Anything older is too rich for my blood. Unless GRRM finishes ASOIAF. Him i'll send a Macallan aged one year for every year it took to get the series completed. I just need to make sure there is a Macallan 94.

Grant Mathews Alright, the comparisons to grrm and Rothfuss sold me. Gonna go check this one out.

Melissa This is the review that will make me read this book. You are awesome =)

message 9: by Sneha (new) - added it

Sneha I know exactly how you feel and its even about the same books that you mentioned! The Name of the Wind (not Blind Man's Fear though, that one elicits an entirely different sort of feeling) and Harry Potter have sort of become irreplaceable now. You review is encouraging though. Hope I come to like this book as much as you have! Going to read it right away :-) Thanks a lot!

Joshua Thoresen Exactly my feelings and I'm less than 100 pages into it! I just know this book will be one that utterly consumes me. I never thought I'd find an author to compete with my affection for Rothfuss... The only thing I'm worried about is the book ending...

message 11: by Brian (new)

Brian Staveley This pretty much sums it up. My family was away for a week last month, a week during which I'd planned to get all manner of work done. The first day and a half, as it turned out, were spent furiously devouring Blood Song. A really brilliant book!

message 12: by Eric (new) - rated it 4 stars

Eric First of all, your review is why I read this book. Just finished. Loved the book. Thanks!

However, one of your shelf names is a huge spoiler. I know that's not your fault b/c you should be able to name shelves w/e you want and goodreads doesn't ASK us if we want our stupid shelves attached publicly to our reviews (ridiculous feature imo)

Until the day when they change that setting though, would you mind changing that particular shelf about the animal to some codephrase or acronym only you will recognize, maybe, please? <3

message 13: by Hugh (new) - rated it 5 stars

Hugh Doyle The GREATEST debut next to 'In the Name of the Wind'! Possibly even better, if that's even possible!! This book consumed me, when at work I would be counting the hours until I got off, rushing home to jump right in where I left off! This book deserves 10 stars!

David Ive had to come to the realization the I might be in love with Vaelin Al Sorna. I am definitely in major man-crush territory.

message 15: by Gabriel (new) - added it

Gabriel random question, how old is Vaelin Al Sorna?

message 16: by Breanna Joy (new)

Breanna Joy Okay, if its being compared to the Name of the Wind, I know it must be amazing :O okay this is definitely going on my to-read shelf! ;)

Jennifer Bates I truly enjoyed Name of the Wind, but was highly disappointed with the sequel, The Wise Man's Fear. Blood Song, on the other hand, was absolutely mind-grabbing from the beginning and I will recommend it to everyone. Comparing Blood Song to Name of the Wind - tough call. Both books were great. That being said, and having read The Wise Man's Fear, I believe Tower Lord will not disappoint at all.

message 18: by Hugh (new) - rated it 5 stars

Hugh Doyle @ Jennifer, you were disappointed in Wise Mans Fear??? For real? I absolutely loved it, really showed how special Kvothe really is IMO!

message 19: by Breanna Joy (new)

Breanna Joy If anything, I liked it better--mainly because I didn't really like Denna in the name of the wind (I don't really have a reason for this, she just irked me for some reason) but in the wise man's fear I feel like she as a character developed a lot as well as Kvothe. Either way, I'm super excited for the next one!!

message 20: by Hugh (new) - rated it 5 stars

Hugh Doyle Also I don't compare In the Name of the Wind to Blood Song as far as story and theme goes, but as a first book in a series and as debut novels that both took a hold of me like no others have!

Jennifer Bates Yeah...no. I didn't like Wise Man's Fear at all (for way too many reasons to list on another book's review. Trust me - I have commented on the other book's review). Anyhoo - I am really really looking forward to Tower Lord. My guess (and hope) is that it will be just as good as Blood Song.

message 22: by Andy (new)

Andy Lai i really didn't enjoy Name of the Wind. The 700 pages i read was so dull and repetitive. I was looking forward to reading this. I hope they aren''t similar :(

message 23: by Danny (new)

Danny Bairstow After recently been totally consumed by Mark Lawrence's "the broken empire" trilogy. I have struggled to find another book to rival it. Can't wait to get stuck into this, after such good reviews!

Clayton Bretz Cannot figure out how to add a review on this site. Normally I wouldn't care but with that said I had to find a way to show my love for this book. I am an audio booker. I drive a lot and it is so much better to hear a great story then to listen to the same song over and over again on the radio. Since I drive so much I usually go through and average size book a week.
Blood song has been one if not The best book I have had thus far. I put this master piece even above the well honored song of ice and fire series. I hope mr Rhyan is able to keep it up with the rest of the series as I have just begun tower lord.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys action stories especially those that take place during the mid evil times. Again cannot praise this book enough. Great story! Well done!

message 25: by Kelsey (new)

Kelsey I really need to read this book now; you just listed all of my favorites!

Stephen Burns Completely agree, Katherine! I felt the same way about Name of the Wind, as well.

message 27: by Josh (new) - rated it 3 stars

Josh Your review is so eerily similar to my thoughts, it was like I could have written it. After reading the Name of The Wind series and A Song of Ice and Fire series, I find it so difficult to find books that meet my definition of good. I'm also very sour about this because I do audio-books, and those suckers are not cheap!

I'm Googling Lois McMaster Bujold right now since our tastes seem to be similar, and gonna check out this Blood Song book based on your review.

Also, another blew-my-socks-off book was A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki.

Series that come 'a close second' to the ones you list are the 'Words of Radiance' series (although most of Sanderson's books are really so-so), Warded Man series (not very complex but the characters are immensely enjoyable), and the Hunger Games series (even though it's so hyped now that expectations may kill it for you, if you haven't read it).

Sorry for the long comment. I'm just excited to see someone that has similar tastes and similar dissatisfaction with so many published works. Thank you!

message 28: by Abby (new) - rated it 5 stars

Abby Kimball I agree... super eerily similar to my own experience.

Kelly Parks Agree with your review but have you read Brandon Sanderson's The Way of the Kings? Amazing!!

message 30: by Naz (new) - added it

Naz completely agree. was on the lookout for another magical, historical setting as the Kingkiller Chronicles. Im glad I found this.

message 31: by Skip (new) - rated it 5 stars

Skip I was going to suggest David Gemmell's Troy series or perhaps Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson.

message 32: by Lisa (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lisa You need to read The Sword of Truth Series, by Terry Goodkind. One great book every five years is just not enough. I promise you will love, love, love this series!

Nompilo One of the best books I have read in a while...

Mandy Marek I highly recommend reading kushiels dart another epic read

Minerq I found this book because of your post here. Thanks!

Fzsjay Amen, couldn't have phrase it better myself. In my countr it is a fairly new relase so I only came around to read it now but man it is my best fantasy read ever!

message 37: by Mathew (new) - added it

Mathew Duncan Name of the wind is one my favorite books. One of my Utterly Great Reads as you put it. Harry is also very dear to me. I’m currently reading Blood Song and couldn’t agree more with you. It sounds like we have the same taste, can you recommend some other books?

Cold Medina Have you read Children of Time? It's a Sci-fi (if you're into that) and utterly captivated me like how you described. Even better than Name of the Wind in my opinion.

Bennett Stoked to read this after your review!

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