This gritty dark fantasy ushers you into a dangerous world of tarnished heroes and magic-slinging fugitives.
Some of the darkest minds in Perilisc attacked Mending Keep, releasing all its prisoners.
Despite his strained relationship with the crown, Rayph Ivoryfist calls old friends to his aid in a subversive attempt to protect King Nardoc and thwart terrorist plots to ruin the Festival of Blossoms. But someone else is targeting Rayph, and even his fellow Manhunters might not be enough to save him.
Dive into the stunning exploits of this bold and daring crew!
The foreword starts with "So, what if there was a fantasy equivalent of the Avengers?"
The moment I read that, I was sold. I'm a Marvel movie fan, and I am absolutely a fan of twisting up the fantasy genre into new and unexpected things (see: the whole series of The Clan of Outcasts) and thanks to Mark Lawrence, I'm slowly developing a tolerance for gritty, gory, disturbing, occasionally raunchy, grimdark fantasy--and this one is no exception.
Unlike Lawrence, Teller doesn't quite seem to have the gift for prose or intellectual observations in his narrative... but the world-building is absolutely solid, and I found plenty of characters I could root for as I read their exploits in the pages, while others could go take a long walk off a short cliff, if you get my meaning! I'll admit, the dual point of view was a little disorienting at first. The tale is told from the perspective of two characters: Rayph Ivoryfist, the legendary warrior who first launches the group of fighters known as Manhunters; and Konnon Crillian, a ruthless mercenary who teams up with his brother to hunt down a job that will get him the money he needs to help his ailing child. Basic enough, right?
Get ready for all the twists and turns. First, the build-up is such that the beginning tends to feel a little slow, punctuated with scenes here and there that actually get your attention, tug your heartstrings, or set your imagination buzzing. A few times, I found the plot dwelling on one character for a long time, when I really would have preferred knowing what happened to the other character, or the narrative spent a lot of time on one character, by the time it switched perspectives, I would have to take a moment to "reorient" myself and remember where that other character last left off! That being said, once the characters arrived in the titular city of Song, and you knew they were both in the same area, and interacting with some of the same side characters--that's when things started to get really interesting, and I found it easier to just keep reading, and much much harder to stop!
Song is a fantastic start to a series in a world that has plenty of scope for expansion and all manner of sidequests! I'm giving this a *****5 STAR***** rating because I really feel like it was executed very well, and I enjoyed it--not loved, per se, but it was a great time! I know exactly which characters I want to see more of, I'm not sure what other twists Teller might have in store for these characters, but I'm definitely looking forward to them all!
-Someday I'll Be Redeemed
-I Still Have A Soul
-I'm Still Alive
-Do You Trust Me?
-You Left Me No Choice
-They Must Be Stopped
-The Alcatraz Coup
-Jacq of Spades
-Queen of Diamonds
-Ace of Clubs
-Grave Tidings (novella)
-Murder in Absentia