If you are a fan of the VOWS AND HONOR and ARROW trilogies, then you will love this book. BY THE SWORD bridges these two series and does it well, weaving together old and new charcters brilliantly.
Kerowyn has never felt happy since her mother died and she became trapped in running her Fathers Keep. (Un)fortunately Lady Luck comes callimg and changes Kero's unfulfilling life forever. A band of mercenaries kidnap her future sister-in-law, leaving her father dead, her brother seriously ill and most of the men dead or incapacitated. She vows to rescue the delicate Dierna and during the resulting adventure fully embraces her unusual heritage. We learn that Kerowyn is in fact the grandaughter of Kethry,the powerfully gifted mage whose tales are captured in VOWS. Though she has no affinity to magic (despite her formidable mind powers), under the expert tutelage of Tarma, Kero becomes the warrior the Shin'a'in has always dreamed of training.
After years of intensive education and a brief love affair, Kero begins life as a mercenary, armed with her Grandmother's magic sword and her Shin'a'in bred Battlesteed. Her life takes her through many realms we've encountered before but it is not until she reaches Valdemar that Kero finally faces her destiny.
I loved this book. Yes it tended to be slightly sentiment, but on occasion it's poignancy did bring a tear to my eye or a smile to my lips. If you love Mercedes Lackey then you will not be disappointed by this offering.
I loved this book....i mean i love most of M L's work. I know people who don't like this book because they think it's not relavant to the whole saga thing, but i don't agree at all...Valdemar isn't a saga, it's a world where you can escape to and growing up with someone like Kero helps with life a bit! She's a great role model for most wimpy girls in the world who scream at mice!
This tells the story of Kerowyn, how she came to receive a magic sword which can help heal her (or other people) directs her fighting & helps defend her from magic. I have read all the Arrows & Wind series but this bridged the gap between the 2 series explaining what happens to everybody etc. I highly recommend it.