I turned the final page of The Blood Knight and looked up to see the horizon brightening. I glanced at the clock: 5:00 am.
That should tell you all you need to know. Greg Keyes has hit his mark again and in fact these books (The Briar King and The Charnal Prince came before this one) just keep getting better. All our favorite characters have returned, but the plotlines continues to twist and turn back on themselves like one of the mythical beasties who’re tormenting the world.
In fact it really struck me how, well, non-linear these books are. Characters do return to places they’ve already visited, rather than the typical fantasy motif of starting at point A and heading to point B where the story ends. These wanderings make the world seem very real to me.
It also struck me that just about everything that Cartography did wrong, The Blood Prince does right. There’re made up words and slang but they never throw you. The meaning of them tends to be evident from the context and they help to make the world feel unique. There are many plotlines with different chapters being devoted to different characters, but somehow they all come together to feel like a cohesive whole.
Be warned, though. This is not the final book in the series, and since it came out in hardcover just last month, I suspect we have a good long wait for the next one. That said, Keyes is a master of tying up enough plotlines to make the book feel like it has a satisfying ending, while leaving enough dangling to keep the reader hungry for more.
I’ve loved this series so far. I can’t recommend it highly enough.