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Blood Song (Raven's Shadow, #1)
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Archived Group Reads > May 2014 - Fantasy: Blood Song by Anthony Ryan

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message 1: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments Started. Okay. I loved the prologue. But then it became another (view spoiler) Don't get me wrong. I like it. And the writing is good. Better than good. But I'm a little worried that this is going to be another Kingkiller Chronicles.


message 2: by Emily (new) - added it

Emily (ohmagichour) | 510 comments It is reminiscent of that in story telling strategy, but it distinguishes itself as it goes I think.


DavidO (drgnangl) | 81 comments Probably one of my favorite epic fantasy series. Here's hoping book 2 doesn't blow it.


message 4: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments My problem with the Kingkiller Chronicles comparison is (view spoiler)

Btw- I love Makril. Does anyone else hear GoT's Hound when he speaks though?


message 5: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments Finished. I ended up liking it more than I thought I would. It had a quicker pace than I was expecting. And that is lacking in the Kingkiller Chronicles.

Anyway -

The Good -
the narration - I'm a sucker for this style of narration
the hero - I love a good anti hero type
the characters - the supporting cast was mostly strong
the world building - the politics

The Bad -
the romance - it felt out of place to me and formed too quickly
the end - (view spoiler)


message 6: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, Bad Girls Deadlift (new) - added it

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 5312 comments SO I started this last night. It started giving me a slight "dark and grim" vibe so I put it aside to start What Lies Beneath the Clock Tower.

Then I read some reviews and Sensei said he really liked it - and since he doesn't do dark and grim I'm going to start again.

I did like what i read so far.


DavidO (drgnangl) | 81 comments I don't think it's that grim. It's grimmer than Kingkiller Chronicles, but that doesn't take much. That verges on silly.


message 8: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, Bad Girls Deadlift (new) - added it

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 5312 comments DavidO wrote: "I don't think it's that grim. It's grimmer than Kingkiller Chronicles, but that doesn't take much. That verges on silly."

I never finished the Kingkiller chronicles - Kvothe got on my nerves and the long stretches of horrible things that happen to Kvothe gave me a headache from crying too much.


DavidO (drgnangl) | 81 comments MrsJoseph wrote: "I never finished the Kingkiller chronicles - Kvothe got on my nerves and the long stretches of horrible things that happen to Kvothe gave me a headache from crying too much. "

Suddenly I feel like a robot. That book didn't make me the slightest bit sad.


message 10: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, Bad Girls Deadlift (new) - added it

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 5312 comments DavidO wrote: "Suddenly I feel like a robot. That book didn't make me the slightest bit sad. "

Well, maybe it was just me - but from (view spoiler)


Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments I´m about 25 pages in. I think I´m liking it but it´s taken me two days to get this far. Here´s hoping it grabs my attention soon.

I haven´t read Kingkiller and I didn´t read Harry Potter so this school thing is newish to me in spite of being a common trope.


message 12: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, Bad Girls Deadlift (new) - added it

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 5312 comments Halima wrote: "BEST BOOK EVER"

Good to know, Halima!

What did you like about it?


message 13: by L.K. (new) - rated it 5 stars

L.K. Evans | 7 comments This is one of my favorites. I love Scratch and Spit. And Sorna capture my attention rather quickly. Not to mention the story moved along at a pace I very much enjoyed. By the way, if anyone loves his writing, he has a sci-fi series (Slab City Blues) that is very well done. The ones I've ready are short, but extremely enjoyable.


message 14: by Becky, Modderific (new) - rated it 1 star

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 2997 comments Hmm... OK. So, maybe I'm just in a nitpicky mood, but I've only read 2 paragraphs of this book and there are punctuation/formatting errors. A missing comma in the first line, and random italics removal for a section.

Maybe this is just something in the ebook, and not an error... but I'm now a little worried that the book will be one of those that expects me to ignore errors in favor of the story.


message 15: by Becky, Modderific (new) - rated it 1 star

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 2997 comments Maybe it's both. The italics could be formatting and commas just plain old errors.


message 16: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments I don't remember any mistakes in my copy. I downloaded the nook edition. That doesn't mean there weren't any. But none that I noticed.


DavidO (drgnangl) | 81 comments Well, hopefully the sequel will be edited more heavily. (I didn't notice a ton of coma errors, but if I'm enjoying a story I only notice the worst ones)


message 18: by L.K. (new) - rated it 5 stars

L.K. Evans | 7 comments In the beginning I noticed a few, but, like DavidO, once I was engrossed in the story I didn't pay much attention. I just finished The Red Knight for another book club read and picked up on quite a few blatant typos (tp instead of to, I'm instead of I), but I haven't seen it mentioned in reviews. Heck, I didn't either when I gave my thoughts on it. I was entangled in the story enough that it wasn't at the forefront of my mind. Blood Song was more captivating for me, so I probably glossed right over grammar errors.


message 19: by Becky, Modderific (new) - rated it 1 star

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 2997 comments I notice them all the time, regardless of whether I'm enjoying the book otherwise. It's one of those things that will make me NOT enjoy the book.


message 20: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments I notice mistakes in names, pronouns, etc. Things of that nature. I might notice a few misspelled words. But to be honest my punctuation is so iffy I don't really notice others mistakes.


message 21: by Becky, Modderific (new) - rated it 1 star

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 2997 comments I'm struggling with this one and I'm not even 3% in yet. The amount of errors is pretty much making this unreadable for me, because when I am not finding errors, I'm looking for them and that's distracting. :(


message 22: by Laurel (new)

Laurel NO!!!

I was thinking about getting back to this one tomorrow, but if there are that many typos, I'm sure it will completely take me out of the story!

Dead tree edition?!


message 23: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, Bad Girls Deadlift (new) - added it

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 5312 comments I'm reading a DTB right now. I haven't picked it up in a few days but I can't seem to remember errors this bad.


Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments I'm reading the hardcover and while I haven't seen any typos, I notice the missing or extra commas. Lots of them. A lot of sentences are very weirdly structured, too... very distracting. I know this was originally self published and I think it went through a revision before being published in print, but it really could have used more editing.

Having said that.... this book is very good! It took me a little while but I'm now officially hooked. I just finished Part I and now it's Saturday night and I'm seriously considering staying home to read. (I won't, though!)


message 25: by Paolo (last edited May 10, 2014 07:43PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments Becky wrote: "Hmm... OK. So, maybe I'm just in a nitpicky mood, but I've only read 2 paragraphs of this book and there are punctuation/formatting errors. A missing comma in the first line, and random italics rem..."

I think the italics removal you're referring to is actually just Verniers' thoughts, his own voice in his head, which would go in italics. But since this entire section is in italics it gets reverted to non-italics.

But I'm with you on this general subject, I can't just ignore the errors. They piss me off.


message 26: by Becky, Modderific (new) - rated it 1 star

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 2997 comments Yes, Paolo, that's exactly it. There haven't been typos that I've seen, but the sheer number of comma issues and odd sentences is killing me! I already have over 50 highlights & notes because of this stuff and I'm at 3%. That's REALLY bad.


message 27: by Becky, Modderific (new) - rated it 1 star

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 2997 comments Paolo wrote: "Becky wrote: "But since this entire section is in italics it gets reverted to non-italics."

Yes, but the non-italics should only be one or two words, not the whole section. And, even worse is that none of the other names given were de-italicized. Why Just that one? Maybe it's bad formatting, but it's still annoying- especially Considering how many other errors there are.


message 28: by Becky, Modderific (new) - rated it 1 star

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 2997 comments I gave up on this one. The punctuation issues were driving me batty. Now I've started The Martian, and so far it's awesome. :D


message 29: by Beth (last edited May 12, 2014 07:13PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth (bethandluna) | 108 comments I didn't notice as many typos as you guys did. Maybe I was just too immersed to have noticed, because I usually notice that kind of thing.

I really enjoyed this book. I've had a lot of good luck in finding good epic fantasy books this year. I've had this one on my to read list for a few months now, but just hadn't gotten around to it.

I kind of agree to your guys' view of it being similar to the Kingkiller Chronicles, but as much as it's similar, it's different too. It kind of reminded me of Mercedes Lackey's Valdemar books and The Lies of Locke Lamora a bit too--but with a lot less cussing. :D I was actually surprised with how little cussing there was. There was a lot of name calling, but the few times I actually saw a curse word, it really stick out because of the lack of it elsewhere.

The italic portions bugged me a lot. Put a header on it and remove the italics. It would have been just as easy to tell it's not part of the main story and would have been a lot less annoying.


message 30: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments You know, italics are starting to annoy me too, and they never did before. I don't mind a simple italic font. But the elaborate ones distract me from what I'm reading. The ones in this book didn't bother me too much, though.

I do love the use of flashbacks, however. Although, in this case flashforwards, I suppose.


message 31: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments As for the similarities to the Kingkiller Chronicles - after finishing this book, I think the biggest difference for me was, the Kingkiller books are a story about 'legend' and 'myth'. Blood Song is a story about the 'history' and 'truth' behind legend and myth.

The schooling portion didn't bug me as much as I expected it to. Not as much as "that other" series, anyway.


message 32: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, Bad Girls Deadlift (new) - added it

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 5312 comments I really should pick this up again tonight.


Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments I´m around page 250...

I´m still reading, and still getting annoyed by the punctuation issues. You can find an example virtually on every page.

The story is still pretty good. I like Vaelin, and the other boys at the order are nicely done secondary characters. I particularly like Nortah and Caenis.


message 34: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments I'm going to have to download my ebook again and see if my copy has a lot of errors. I really don't remember. I did think the beginning was a little confusing. But I think that was the writing itself and not the punctuation.


message 35: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth (bethandluna) | 108 comments I had problems with the beginning too. I had actually started it a while ago and then put it down. When I started it again a few days ago though, I couldn't put it down and finished it in a couple of days.

I'm hoping that it is just your edition that has so many errors in it, because that would mean I completely didn't notice all those mistakes, which I usually do. :)


message 36: by L.K. (new) - rated it 5 stars

L.K. Evans | 7 comments Beth wrote: "I had problems with the beginning too. I had actually started it a while ago and then put it down. When I started it again a few days ago though, I couldn't put it down and finished it in a couple ..."

Not that this has anything to do with Blood Song, but I love your profile pic, Beth :)


message 37: by Beth (last edited May 14, 2014 06:22PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth (bethandluna) | 108 comments Thank you. It's a picture of my dog Luna. :) Yours is really cute too.

Kind of reminds me of Scratch in that she's ornery and pretty much only listens to me, but she's a lot nicer.


message 38: by L.K. (new) - rated it 5 stars

L.K. Evans | 7 comments Beth wrote: "Thank you. It's a picture of my dog Luna. :)


Kind of reminds me of Scratch in that she's ornery and pretty much only listens to me, but she's a lot nicer."


Soooo adorable! I've got two huskies of my own and they only listen when they're in the mood :) wouldn't trade them for the world!


message 39: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth (bethandluna) | 108 comments Two! And in Pheonix!? Living dangerous aren't you? :D


message 40: by L.K. (new) - rated it 5 stars

L.K. Evans | 7 comments Lol...you'd think, but mine are sun bathers. They go in the yard and lay out for near an hour. I don't get it. I certainly avoid the outdoors during the summer. Only 4 more years though and we'll me moving up near Seattle. I'm sure they'll have more fun up there. I might have to buy them sweaters ;)


message 41: by Nuitblanche (last edited May 17, 2014 04:50PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Nuitblanche | 1 comments How many books, movies, plays, paintings/illustrations whatever... truly have complete "original" plots, themes or ideas? In a few cases it is how the author, artist, musician, etc.. has taken the idea(s) and ran with it in a truly new way and unique presentation.


message 42: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth (bethandluna) | 108 comments I agree. It's hard to come up with an original plot anymore. It's the twist and combination that makes a story special.


message 43: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments For me, it's all about the character, or characters, if I don't like who I'm reading about it's hard for me to get into the book.


Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments I´m getting started with part IV. Commageddon aside, I´m enjoying the book.

(view spoiler)


Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments Also, about the Faith: (not really that spoilery)

(view spoiler)


message 46: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth (bethandluna) | 108 comments I've found that books like these seem to gain a level of better when religion is added. The politics and fighting always seems more realistic and intricate when religion is involved. It just isn't as good when it's only war.


Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments I agree Beth, but I would add that religion in fantasy is hard to pull off. For me, it has to be sufficiently removed from any real-world analogies for it to work properly.

I think it´s nicely done in this story. The Faith is somewhat original with its concept of divinity focusing only on the Departed and the Beyond, while still managing to be an important institution in the world. The other religions are not given much detail but I think it works - they are purposefully left vague and we only know as much about them as Vaelin does.

Other books (*cough* The Way of Kings) only managed to piss me off when dealing with religion.


message 48: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth (bethandluna) | 108 comments I agree. I hate it when I'm reading a fantasy book and find that they just carried over Christianity or something. It makes it feel more like a futuristic novel where the universe has devolved into medieval times. Which is why I don't like The Broken Empire series. I was all into that one until they started mentioning Plato and stuff.


message 49: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee | 939 comments I actually like some romance in my reading, even when I'm not reading romance, but I like to feel a connection to the pairing, which I didn't. I felt more of a connection between the Princess too, in a love/hate kind of way.


Paolo (ppiazzesi) | 166 comments Finished! My review.

I really liked this book and I´m glad I stuck with it, but man, that was fucking exhausting. Commageddon indeed. I´m invested in the story and I look forward to the sequel, but I really hope that Ryan´s editors can get a grip on proper comma use for the next book or I probably won´t pick it up.

Spoilery thoughts:

(view spoiler)


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