After finishing Lancelot, I immediately went onto the audiobook of Blood Eye, also by Giles Kristian, from the recommendation of my brother, Ed. I loved it!
“Even the gods have their pride.”
Blood Eye is a historical fiction novel set in 802AD prom the perspective of a teenage boy whose life is swiftly changed as he enters the life of a Norse band of warriors.
First of all, this book is brilliant! Giles Kristian gave such an authentically grim depiction through magnificent world building that was constructed through the infusion of fascinating details that amounted to a wonderful understanding by the end of the novel.
The prose is slick, smooth and easy to read. Much the same as Lancelot. Fantastic in short. Every page seems to glide from one to the next in such a gripping and immersive manner. Couldn’t ask for more,
Kristian does a superb job with characters. In a short amount of time, he manages to introduce a wide range of characters from the Norse raiding band and make them memorable with unique and varied characteristics. From Sven the Red, to Asgot, to Sigurd. And of course, Raven, who has great character growth in this first book in the trilogy.
Osric, later renamed Raven by his new Norse Jarl, offers the coming of age story and growth from innocence and passion that we all love. He is far from perfect, offering a very interesting insight into this aspect of history as the story is told from his recount and perception of the events that take place.
“Fighting with every searing breath. Not for glory. Not for Wessex. But because a mans life is all he has, and he will not let another take it if he has the strength to fight.”
I experienced some battles and action sequences in Lancelot, but in Blood Eye I received far more. And loved every moment of it. Kristian describes each conflict in differentiating manners, disallowing any chance of repetitiveness. From small skirmishes to night raids to shield-walls, Kristian is a master of it all. I just wanted more and more. Another element that I cannot praise enough.
Overall, I hope you can tell that I loved this opening to the Raven series. I adore this period of history, and this book delivered everything I hoped for, and more. Once again I have to thank my brother for the excellent recommendation. I have already started listening to the sequel on audio, having no doubt that it will match its predecessor.
5/5 STARS - No doubt about it