First Lines Friday – 24/02/2023
Good evening and welcome to this week’s feature post – First Lines Friday!
For today’s post, I set myself the challenge of featuring a book I read last year. When I planned this post on my blog, I hadn’t a clue which book to feature. That is why I decided to set myself the challenge. It gives me some parameters to work within, but also a little bit of opportunity to look back and explore the books I read to see what would appeal to you, my readers.
Today’s featured book is the third book of a series I went back to last year at around this time. I picked it up again as a comfort read, and if you are a fan of grimdark or fantasy, then I think this is something that will interest you. To give you an idea of how much I enjoy this series, I have not only re-read it, but I have also gifted out the trilogy to two of my friends. If that isn’t recommendation enough, then I don’t know what is!
If you like the sound of today’s First Lines feature, here is a link to another post in the series in which I’ve featured the second book of the trilogy.
Let’s look at today’s First Lines Friday excerpt: –
I threw myself down in the sand. I hadn’t been seen, and I wasn’t certain how many they were, but I was going to have to kill a lot of them.
“What’s the plan?“ Nenn asked. She sat cross-legged on a rock, picking at the threads of blacksap in her teeth.
“Disappear or keep silent,“ I said quietly. “If they see you, this is going to go backwards pretty fast.“
“You taught me not to fight outnumbered,” Nenn said. She found the strand of gristle and tossed it away into the sand, where it disappeared into nothing.
“I taught you to fight smart,” I growled. “For all the good it did either of us.“ Nenn considered that, then snorted derisively.
Crowfall – Ed McDonald
Genre: Epic Fantasy / grimdark
Publication Date: 13 Jun 2019
A sorceress cataclysm has hit the Range, the final defensive line between the Republic and the immortal Deep Kings.
Tormenting red rains sweep the land, new monstrosities feed on fear in the darkness, and the power of the Nameless, the gods who protect the Republic, lies broken. The Blackwing captains who serve them are being picked off one by one, and even immortals have learned what it means to die. Meanwhile the Deep Kings have only grown stronger, and are poised to deliver a blow that will finally end the war.
Ryhalt Galharrow stands apart from it all.
He has been deeper into the wasteland known as the Misery than ever before. It has grown within him – changed him – but all power comes with a price, and now the ghosts of his past, formerly confined to the Misery, walk with him everywhere.
They will even follow him, and the few surviving Blackwing captains, on one final mission into the darkness.
The Raven’s Mark trilogy is one that I will recommend to readers again and again. Overall, the world building and characterisation is perfectly balanced to appeal to fantasy readers who enjoy books set in completely different worlds. But at the same time, there isn’t so much information as to overwhelm.
My favourite thing about the books is that the main character Ryhalt is seriously flawed. He does things selfishly for his own reasons, he battles with alcohol addiction in order to cope with the traumatic event in his past. And in amongst all that drama, he is at the beck and call of a God at a time of growing conflict. He is far from a natural altruist, and yet he finds himself in the position of trying to defend the world as he knows it.
Whether you are an avid reader of fantasy, or just looking to experiment with the genre, I would recommend this series either way. It is one that I have already re-read, and I will no doubt to go back to it again. It is relatively easy reading for me, and being as captivating as it is, it’s a story I will enjoy it regardless of the number of times I read it.
Have you read Crowfall or any of the other books in the series? Let me know in the comments!