We pick up exactly where a Time of Dread Left off. The ancient war between Elyon's Ben-Elim and Asroth's Kadoshim is still raging its way through the Banished Lands leaving everyone in-between either choosing a side or trying the escape the never ending war. We continue to follow the two main characters. One of the these being Drem, the son of two warriors of the Order of the Brightstar. After his fathers death, Drem finds himself amongst warriors from the Order, desperate to get back to Dun Seren to reveal what they have seen in a cave out in the Wilderness. The other is Riv, a white wing warrior of Drassil whose just grown wings. Being half human half Ben-Elim, she is seen as an abomination according to Elyons-Lore. Everything is about to change for Riv and a whole new world is about to open up for her. Although we mainly follow the two main characters, Drem and Riv, we also get to know some of the other characters that were only briefly mentioned at the of the last book, mainly those of the Order. We also get to see some of the old characters from the previous series such as Balur One-Eye and Alcyon. My favorite character from this series has to be Cullen. He's confident and arrogant at times but holy shit can he back it up. You can't help but love him. If that wasn't enough, he's also the descendant of the greatest warrior the Banished Lands has ever seen, Corban. Gwynne has proved once again that he is a master when it comes to characters and world building. But be prepared! Gwynne is a savage when it comes to the fate of his characters. Another thing I love about his books!
I know if my review of A Time of Dread I mentioned the fact you don't necessarily have to read the first series in order to enjoy this new series. But there's so many references to the events that happened in Faithful and The Fallen that in my opinion it makes sense to read the first series just to understand the references and history that little bit better, particularly the last book, Wrath. Certain characters from Faithful and The Fallen are now the legends and stories told around campfires at Drassil and Dun Seren. Its weird in a way but you also have a sense of pride when your favorite character (Maquin) is announced as being one of the greatest warriors in history. If that doesn't show you how much I love the banished lands and their tales then I don't know what will!
I would like to thank John Gwynne and Pan Macmillan for providing me with an oppurtunity to the read and review A Time of Blood, as ever, Im massiively greatful.
Truth and Courage!