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Raven: Blood Eye (Raven 1) [Paperback]

Giles Kristian
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
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Book Description

7 Jan 2010 Raven (Book 1)

The first book in a thrilling Viking trilogy that launched the career of acclaimed historical novelist Giles Kristian - who's now confronting the tumult and devastation of the English Civil War in The Bleeding Land...

For two years Osric has lived a simple life, though he is feared and shunned for his mysterious past and blood-red eye. When raiders from across the sea ransack his village, Osric finds himself taken prisoner by their chief, Sigurd the Lucky.

Immersed in the Norsemen's world and driven by their lust for adventure, Osric proves a natural warrior and forges a deep bond with Sigurd, who renames him Raven. But the Norsemen's world is a savage one, where loyalty is often repaid in blood, and a young man must become a killer to survive...

Frequently Bought Together

Raven: Blood Eye (Raven 1) + Raven 2: Sons of Thunder + Raven 3: Odin's Wolves
Price For All Three: 16.42

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi; Paperback Edition, First Printing edition (7 Jan 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552157899
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552157896
  • Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 12.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 123,465 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A gripping, bloody narrative." (BBC History magazine)

"A powerful, lightning-paced tale of the Norsemen in England; an astonishing and riveting debut" (Bernard Cornwell)

"An unabashed carnival of bloodletting, betrayal and rough sex...Kristian has a knack for writing real blokes living their lives" (Daily Telegraph)

"Plenty of interest for fans of Norse tales, with battles galore and the promise of more to come" (Daily Mail)

"A gripping tale of action and treachery which splendidly conjures up the sounds, sights and smells of Dark Age Britain. It creates a believable world of men fighting, feasting and braving the sea, a time when the Christian and Norse gods were very real and very close in the thoughts of mankind. It leaves the reader keen for the sequel" (Harry Sidebottom, author of Warrior of Rome)

Book Description

A Viking adventure, packed with battles, blood and gore, Raven: Blood Eye is historical fiction at its very best and marks the debut of an outstanding talent.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blood Eye? More like blood everywhere! 31 Jan 2010
This book was my first in this genre; and quite frankly it did not disappoint. I will be reading the successive books in this series and acquiring similar themed books from different authors as a result of reading this. This book has made me hungry for more.

This is truly a man's book. Filled with violence from the almost from the first page to the last, and rich with humour only the boys can appreciate (such as the inevitable banter between a group of seafaring Norsemen when they get together). These two aspects combine to create what seems a realistic portrayal of the times gone past.

The author does not shy away from the grim aspects of battles and injuries, and can be quite descriptive about these facets.
What also adds to the realistic aspect of the book is the main character, Osric/Raven, who by no means is a character who has superhuman powers or unmatchable skills with a sword. And I like this about the main character; he is an unremarkable boy in the midst of great men. He learns from them, and I can't help but feeling that he may match their skills eventually.

What I liked the most about the book is the group of supporting characters; the `Norsemen'. I enjoyed every page that these characters graced, and I found myself wanting to learn more about these interesting and unique characters. They really add a lot to the story, even if they only play a small part.

I must disagree with one of the previous reviewers slightly; who says that the characters are all memorable and distinguishable. Whilst I will agree that this is the case for the main characters, some of the lesser mentioned characters are a bit indistinguishable at times. But this does not take anything away from the story. You remember the names you need to remember.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bit of far fetched fun! 15 Jan 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Being a total sucker for swordplay and Vikings I was never going to resist this one for long was I ?

Meet Raven a norseborn lad with memory loss. Found, presumeably washed up on shores of Wessex and raised by the English. Who has a sudden and unexpected reunion with his forgotten past when a boat load of Vikings disturb his fishing trip!

What follows is 3oo pages of Robert Low on speed. As in the company of these adventurers Raven drops his previous life and turns his back on the English faster than you can say rape and pillage!

The war band are coerced into a daring robbery by a typical English villian who of course double crosses them and mayhem, improble escapes and strangley, two heroic last stands, follow.

This book is very fast moving and great fun. Murder rape and torture all feature, so the easily shocked beware, but it is almost comic book stuff, totally ubelievable in a good escapist way.

Kristian has a winning style and writes an engaging tale there nicely sets up the inevitable trilogy. Doesn't quite match the later Low 'Oathsworn' books for the on board banter or fully realised characters, but is not unlike Cornwall in style. Which for a young debut making author has to be good thing.

In summary a Norse ripping yarn!
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Norse by NorseWest 6 May 2010
Historic fiction is having somewhat of a boom period in publishing and Giles Kristian's `Raven' series is looking to ride this wave with his debut novel `Raven: Blood Eye'. Set in the middle ages it follows Raven as young man who goes from being an apprentice carpenter to a blood thirsty Norseman within days. In terms of action the book has plenty of fighting and pillaging to keep the more savage reader at bay as Kristian does not skimp on describing in detail what happens to people who lose in battle. There are certainly parallels between Kristian's battle scenes and those of his hero Bernard Cornwell. Kristian is already very good at creating a realistic feeling battle and is able to balance the story of the individual characters and of the fight as a whole whilst the action is taking place.

The scenes of carnage stand out in an otherwise mishmash of a book. As part 1 of a planned trilogy, I actually think that Kristian attempted too much with the character of Raven. The way in which his life changes so dramatically in such a sort space of time does not feel very believable. There is also a problem with side characters coming in and out of the story at such a pace that you do not know who half of them are. It was also a real shame that one character was killed off for no other reason than Kristian's apparent inability to know what to do with them. This is a debut novel and elements show Kristian's naivety, especially in terms of a believable narrative whole. However, there are plenty of great action sequences to show that the raw talent is there and that with some more experience the second and third Raven books should improve greatly.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Read 16 Mar 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am so pleased to see someone who can fill the long gaps between new Cornwell issues of his incredible Uhtred adventures. It is unbelievable that this is Giles Kristian's first work. I read every Viking saga book I come across and this one is second only to Cornwell's tales of Alfred's world in terms of action, characterization, historical content and its ability to put one into the time depicted. The only negative is that it is just too hard to put down, thus the enjoyment ends much too quickly.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Will Read The other two now Great read fast paced full of action!
Published 2 days ago by Andrew Hill
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Powerful story. Giles kristian is an outstanding writer. Francine Maes-SChalckens
Published 8 days ago by Schalckens Francine
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
as expected
Published 8 days ago by Mr. T. S. Monaghan
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent read made u feel as you stood along side ...
excellent read made u feel as you stood along side them as they fought their battles
Published 14 days ago by D LONGMAN
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
enjoyed it almost as much as bernard cornwalls viking series
Published 1 month ago by alan hislop
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
absorbing the characters really come to life
Published 1 month ago by graham lornie
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant! I've never come across an author who takes ...
Brilliant! I've never come across an author who takes me into a Viking world so vividly - I have the others, and look forward to reading them. Read more
Published 1 month ago by ms Patricia Orme
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good reading from a first novel author , have ordered the follow up.
Published 1 month ago by AC
5.0 out of 5 stars Bloody great Viking tale!
After having read "God of Vengeance" by this same author, I decided to turn back to his earlier trilogy about Sigurd the Lucky and his friends, and I have to admit that I'm... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Anastatius
3.0 out of 5 stars Freya's tits! Rape, murder, looting, treachery and paganism. Who could...
If you want wit, read Wilde. If you want existentialism, read Sartre. If you want literature, read Austen. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Dr. W. H. Konarzewski
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