Learn more Shop now Learn more Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Learn more Click Here Shop Kindle Learn More Shop now Shop Women's Shop Men's

on 4 September 2017
This is another good book, it builds from where the first book leaves off.

The characters are mostly the same as before with some new ones added in, nice and not so nice, crazy and slightly less crazy, there is very little character building here with the exception of Nita Qwan who is changing due to his new role and culture and gives us a window in the actions of The Green.

There is very little action here, the battles are simple and largely anti-climactic; there is a feeling of building pressure and glimpses of the bigger game being played but this feels like a middle book, entertaining but doesn't really stand strongly in its own right.

The pace is decent, a lot happens and we are continuously swapping between different characters and sub plots, it is nice to see that not everything The Red Knight tries succeeds, sometimes luck intervenes.

A good sequel, leaves you wanting more.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 7 November 2016
I read the first novel, The Red Knight, and was not really enamoured with it. However I persisted in the hope that the series would get better but gave up about half way as I realised the prospect of picking it up and finishing it was beginning to feel like a chore.

My main gripe is that I did not find the story overly interesting, the hero himself seemed a bland 'Mary Sue' type character, a young hero who never seemed to ever make a mistake. The structure of the chapters also seemed a bit all over the place as it seemed to alternate between telling the story from a character POV to narration by the author, as if trying to mimic George R. Martin albeit poorly. There was a vast cast of characters but none who felt fleshed out enough to empathise with and understand.

I'm sure many people may like this series but it wasn't for me.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 23 August 2017
Some great battle craft and powerful ideas of otherworldly existence combined with strong characterisation. A little tidying up at times of the complicated landscape being conveyed would have benefited this reader's experience. I will continue to follow this tale as it unfolds further.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 18 July 2017
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 24 March 2014

This is a book that has taken me longer than any other to read this year so far, not because its a bad book, very much the opposite. This book contains some of the most involved, imaginative and impressive world building i have seen, right up there with the depth and passion of lords of the rings.

This is book two in the series following on directly from the fabulous debut that was the Red Knight, once again following the mercenary band headed by the Red Knight, the Captain. A man who is both a fighting Knight at the peak of his prowess, but also a magister (a sorcerer) very powerful and growing in skill all the time. Unlike many books we don’t just live the story from the point of view of the hero (the Red Knight) we get a Multi POV, we see the opinion and perspective of all, and as such get to see what the individual see’s, themselves a hero, or in the right. This multi POV is very encompassing, so much so that there are times it becomes hard to keep all the threads and all the names straight, hence the length of time needed to read the book.

The world of the Red Knight is HUGE, made more so by the depth of detail, history and politics. This world encompasses much of the real world just with a twist. Outwallers that are native Americans for example, countries that resemble Canada, Great Britain, France, an empire that bears a striking resemblance to a decaying Byzantine empire, the fantastic Nordikans, who more than resemble the Varangian guard. All of these people and places imbued with the authors rich depth of historical knowledge. Miles Cameron being the highly renowned Historical Author Christian Cameron, a writer who imbues all of his work with not just literary research, but with physical research, hours spent in armour and training with weapons. Walking the wilds of Canada wearing the garb of a true knight, all of this detail is powered into his books to stunning effect.

Does Fell sword bring a better book with more satisfaction than Red Knight? yes and no, i found the ending more satisfying than Red Knight, but i think that may be because Red Knight had so much hard work to do with regard to world building, it was only the latter quarter of book one that truly showed the excellence of his writing talent. Fell Sword was a much more immersive encompassing tale, one that carries the reader into the depth of the wilds to learn more of the creatures who dwell there, more of Thorn and what drives him, or more importantly who. Most important of all it takes the reader into the depths of the politics of the world, a truly dark murky, back stabbing politics, politics fueled by ambition and magic. Most interesting is that Fell Sword reveals the true darkness from the wild, we now know what is coming, we just don’t really know why. Its exactly what a middle book should be, if not more, many middle books are a pause, this is anything but. Next year 2015 will see the third book in the series The Tournament of Fools, i highly recommend getting a Pre-Order in, i feel its going to sell fast.

Its a book i highly recommend you read in large bites, not small. But most of all its a book i Highly recommend to all readers, not just fantasy of Historical fiction.


Other books by this author

Traitor Son Cycle
1. The Red Knight (2012)
2. The Fell Sword (2014)
3. Tournament of Fools (2015)

1. Tyrant (2008)
2. Storm of Arrows (2009)
3. Funeral Games (2010)
4. King of the Bosporus (2011)
5. Destroyer of Cities (2013)
6. Force of Kings (2014)

1. Killer of Men (2010)
2. Marathon: Freedom or Death (2011)
3. Poseidon’s Spear (2012)
4. The Great King (2014)

Tom Swan and the Head of St George
1. Castillon (2012)
2. Venice (2012)
3. Constantinople (2012)
4. Rome (2013)
5. Rhodes (2013)
6. Chios (2013)

Washington and Caesar (2001)
God of War (2012)
The Ill-Made Knight (2013)
The Long Sword (2014)
0Comment| 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
TOP 100 REVIEWERon 17 February 2014
Just like in the Red Knight, the first volume, reading this one gives the impression that the author essentially has fun writing a piece that takes place in a fantasy world that borrows from European 14th century. It also makes "the Albin" into some kind of cross between Britain and North America, with the North West part of the continent full of monsters (Trolls and Giants, in particular, but no dragons in this episode, except "in disguise") but also elf-like creatures and various types of Indians (with some suggestive tribe names and place names such as the Abenakis or Ticondanga for Fort Ticonderoga).

The eastern part of the continent is called "Morea" and is the seat of a fictional and much reduced Empire modelled on the Fourteenth Century Byzantine Empire, with the capital city called Livianopolis (instead of Contantinopolis) and the second largest city called "Lonica" (instead of Thessalonika). Also very much present are the "Etruscan" merchants, with their respective city-states and colonies inspired from Venice, Genoa and Pisa. The southern part are the lands of Jarsay (would this be inspired from Jersey by any chance?) and Occitan (Languedoc?) while south of the North Cross Ocean lie the lands of Galle, Iberia and, to the south west, Ifrikiya.

At least some of the main characters seem to be loosely inspired from historical figures, although several of the historical figures are often blended together to make up one of the book's characters. For instance, the Imperial Princess Irene seems to be a cross between the Byzantine empress of the same name and the Princess Anna Komnene, although she appears both younger and much less ruthless that the two historical characters. The King of Galle (France) somewhat reminded me of a petulant and younger version of the French King Louis XI. The Red Knight himself reminded me of a rather youthful and sympathetic cross between John Hawkwood, the English mercenary to made a career for himself in Italy and Roger de Flor (whose real name was Rutger von Blum), a rather infamous ex-Templar sergeant and leader of the Catalan Company of mercenaries. He and his men did serve the Byzantine Emperor Andronikos II for a few years at the beginning of the 14th century before being murdered by his employer.
Then there is the story itself, which I will not discuss and let you discover. As in the previous volume, you can expect plenty of physical and magical fights, including a few battles. There are however a number of differences with this book.

First, there are many more stories being told in bits and pieces and in parallel, sometimes more than half a dozen, with events taking place in Morea, Galle, at sea, in the Albin Kingdom (whether at Court, in the South or in the North) and in "the Wild". Depending on preferences, some will like this and find that the device is useful in showing the events taking place simultaneously and in creating some additional suspense, a bit like R.R. Martin has tended to go in his Game of Thrones, while others might find that it complicates the story and spoils the flow.

While I tend to incline towards the former, and very much liked the book, I must also admit that the plot itself was not exactly a surprise, although the story remained rather exciting and I leafed through the whole 600 pages in a couple of days. Note, however, that despite the device of having multiple stories unfolding within each chapter, the real action takes place in Morea with the Red Knight and his Company. Despite some desultory warfare in the North, and the increasing trouble raised by the Galle knights and their insufferable leader at the Albin Court, I could not help feeling that these were all sideshows and "holding actions".

Second, there are the military elements: the respective armies, their equipment and the battles. The Morean forces, irrespective of which side they are fighting on, are a collection of units mixing up regiments and forces that really existed between the 11th (for instance the Scholae) and the 12th and 13th century (for instance the Vardariots and the Latinikon), even if some names have sometimes been modified (the Varangians been perhaps the most obvious example). The Company is a rather typical English force of the mid and second half of the 14th century, with a mix of men-at-arms and squires, on the one hand, and long bowmen on the other hand.

The outcomes of the confrontations between the two types of forces tend to be somewhat predictable and one-sided, however much the author conveys the impression of hard fighting and hotly contested battles, as the long bowmen are shown shooting their opponents to pieces time and again. One exception to this is the merciless contest opposing the simili-Varangians to the mercenary knights serving with the rebels. This is inspired from the battle of Dyrrakhion in 1081 when the Varangians (largely made up of Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-Dane exiles at the time) faced Normano-Lombard heavy cavalry and were largely wiped out after inflicting heavy casualties on their opponents.

Anyway, I started this review by suggesting that the author may have had fun in writing this book, which does not preclude some hard work also. I do not know whether this is true or not, although I hope it is. What I do know for sure, however, is that I had a lot of fun reading it and very much enjoyed it...

Four stars and highly recommended. One thing to note however: it is also recommended to read the first volume before this one.
0Comment| 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 5 June 2016
The best part about the book as always, is the Red Knight. However, it isn't often that I have read so many characters that are so one dimensional it beggared belief. You honestly did not care if they lived or died. At some point I couldn't even remember which side what knights were fighting for.
I found the pace of battle over descriptive and wholly unbelievable. How can one side essentially win all its battles?
This book is a serious drop off from the first in the series
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
VINE VOICEon 28 September 2017
The Fell Sword continues the saga in very similar vein to The Red Knight. The first 200 or so pages (re)introduce the vast number of characters and locations. The tale is set in a medieval Christendom, with much we can recognise - kings, queens, castles, knights, wars, chivalry, the church and Machiavellian intrigue etc. but with a heady mix of magic and monsters thrown in. Whilst this febrile blend got me through the first instalment easily enough, I found myself struggling to complete this sequel. There are a few skirmishes and one major battle, depicted in expertly visceral terms but, between the action scenarios is an awful lot of less than enthralling conversations and rather mundane descriptions of how to feed an army and put on your armour. Furthermore, like its predecessor, The Fell Sword suffers from a huge amount of typos and other sloppy mistakes like inconsistent location names. A shame that the author didn't employ an effective proof reader. Oh and don't hold your breath whilst awaiting the appearance of the fell sword - it only features in a blink and you'll miss it cameo near the end.
Overall, it's worth staying the course for the dramatic final showdown, but I certainly didn't enjoy this as much as The Red Knight.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 17 January 2014
Good so far but be warned... read 'The Red Knight' first
There's no context setting here, it's straight on from the story line in the Red Knight, which was such a superb debut, with a truly epic length also ( about three standard books in one). This sequel has been long awaited, and has taken some time to develop, requiring reader patience, but also boding well that the author has committed a lot to doing justice to the storyline. So far so very good, except for the concern that, if you hadn't read the first book, how on earth would you figure out what was going on!
Will post a final review when I am finished, but wanted to counter the initial negative review. If you have read the first book, buy now with no hesitation.
0Comment| 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 27 February 2014
Many people who have thus far reveiwed this book have made some harsh comments. First among these is the point that if you hadn't read the first book you wouldn't know what was happening. Two things. WHY WOULD YOU READ BOOK TWO FIRST? And do you think a quick 2 page summary in chapter one of the new book will at any time be abloe to sum up an entire first book satisfactorily. The comments on these lines are simply unfair when considering the book itself and if they are deemed severe eough to make it a 4* instead of a 5* then ou simply shouldn't review a book if you plan on axing the author for negligent readership.

The Red Knight chartered the path to a skirmish between the Wild and Men, The Fell Sword is builiding on that but READ the first book first and then after enjoying it move on to the second and the end result should be a great read. I read books a lot, my favourite authors sometimes cost £12 a book and I can polish one of in a day or two. The Red Knight and The Fell Sword are good books, well writen and inventive but they are also fantastic value for money both in price and in length.

For other great titles check the historical fiction releases by the same author. They might not be fatasy but they are fantastic and full of thorough reseacha and passion.

A+++ 5*
0Comment| 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse