Published: August 4, 2020
Publisher: Ace Books
Series: Raven’s Blade #2
My Rating: 3.5/5.0
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
A matchless warrior is pitted against a near-God in the second epic installment of the Raven’s Blade series.
It has long been our lot in life, brother, to do what others can’t.
Vaelin Al Sorna was known across the realm as the greatest of warriors, but he thought battles were behind him. He was wrong. Prophecy and rumor led him across the sea to find a woman he once loved, and drew him into a war waged by the Darkblade, a man who believes himself a god–and one who has gathered a fanatical army that threatens all of the known world.
After a costly defeat by the Darkblade, Vaelin’s forces are shattered, while the self-proclaimed immortal and his army continue their terrible march. But during the clash, Vaelin regained some of the dark magic that once gave him unrivaled skill in battle. And though the fight he has been drawn into seems near unwinnable, the song that drives him now desires the blood of his enemy above all else…
I could sum this book up quite quickly – Vaelin uses his mad battle skills to kill lots of people, has issues with his new gift, and finds feelings for women that want nothing to do with him. Don’t get me wrong, I love Vaelin and appreciate that this series is a return to what I loved about Blood Song but he is certainly a predictable character.
This picks up with Vaelin struggling with/against his new song, which he creatively dubs the “Black Song”. It is darker in nature than the blood song he lost and it revels in death, so much so that he stays drugged until he can reach the Temple of Spears. He hopes they will have a solution to more than one of his problems and they do join him to fight the Darkblade. The book is full of battles, reunions, and mysterious hoo-doo about the Tiger and the Wolf (two ancient spirits).
While I enjoy the characters in this series, I think they lacked in development this time around and ended up feeling somewhat flat. The story itself seemed to drag in places, though it was never actually boring. I think this suffered somewhat from second book syndrome, though it was in fact the end of the duology. It just didn’t quite capture me the way The Wolf’s Call did initially.