Sep 30th

The Queen of Blood Blog Tour Presented by Irish Banana Tours

Posted in Reviews
The Queen of Blood

Welcome to my stop on The Queen of Blood Blog Tour! Check out my review below and enter the rafflecopter at the end of the post for a chance to win a finished copy of the book and an awesome tiara.

About the Book

Title: The Queen of Blood
Author: Sarah Beth Durst
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Date Published: September 20, 2016
Where I got the book: Finished copy from publisher
Where You Can Buy the Book: Flyleaf Books (indie bookseller) | Quail Ridge Books (indie bookseller) | AMAZON
Synopsis from Goodreads:
An idealistic young student and a banished warrior become allies in a battle to save their realm in this first book of a mesmerizing epic fantasy series, filled with political intrigue, violent magic, malevolent spirits, and thrilling adventure[sic]

Everything has a spirit: the willow tree with leaves that kiss the pond, the stream that feeds the river, the wind that exhales fresh snow . . .

But the spirits that reside within this land want to rid it of all humans. One woman stands between these malevolent spirits and the end of humankind: the queen. She alone has the magical power to prevent the spirits from destroying every man, woman, and child. But queens are still just human, and no matter how strong or good, the threat of danger always looms.

With the position so precarious, young women are chosen to train as heirs. Daleina, a seemingly quiet academy student, is under no illusions as to her claim to the throne, but simply wants to right the wrongs that have befallen the land. Ven, a disgraced champion, has spent his exile secretly fighting against the growing number of spirit attacks. Joining forces, these daring partners embark on a treacherous quest to find the source of the spirits’ restlessness—a journey that will test their courage and trust, and force them to stand against both enemies and friends to save their land . . . before it’s bathed in blood.

My Review

I really enjoyed this book! I was pleasantly surprised by how good The Queen of Blood was, not having read any of Sarah’s previous work (which I will now remedy). I read a lot of fantasy novels, both YA and adult, and it is very hard for a story to have little to no elements of something I’ve already read in them. I was amazed at how unique the world of Renthia and Daleina’s story are. We have a matriarchal society, which I absolutely LOVE! This society is not, however, a hereditary succession. Instead, girls with strong magic are chosen to become Heirs and one day the strongest of them will become Queen of Aratay. I also loved the fact that Daleina is not a special snowflake, quite the opposite. She does not have special powers, instead she is less powerful that the other students competing to become Heirs. She struggles so much, gets her butt kicked constantly, but she never gives up. She has the purest of motives and she is intelligent and resourceful. Even though this is an adult novel, I kind of want to recommend it for teenage girls. It has such a huge cast of powerful women, women not just using their magic but their brains, women with good hearts, who never give up. Honestly the sexual scenes are tame and it’s the violence and tragic/dark atmosphere that I believe makes The Queen of Blood an adult novel. If I had to draw comparisons to similar books I think I would liken this book to Thorn Jack by Katherine Harbour, The Darkest Part of the Forestby Holly Black, and Roses and Rot by Kat Howard. The one thing that sets this book apart is that instead of dark malevolent fairies, we’re dealing with something scarier, more animalistic and base; elemental spirits!

I can tell that Sarah has been writing YA. A lot of adult high fantasy authors can be pretty verbose (Come on we’ve all thought it! Have you read The Song of Ice and Fire or The Wheel of Time?). Sarah does not suffer from that affliction which makes The Queen of Blood all the more enjoyable to read. I love the description of the spirits! I’m a very visual reader; I love good description because my imagination conjures the images in my head, making reading, for me, far superior to watching movies. THESE SPIRITS ARE CREEPY!!! Seriously, take this quote for example:
“Another wood spirit separated from the trunk of a tree, its bulbous body covered in a thick mat of moss and leaves. Teasing the edges of the charms, an earth spirit, hairless and brown, bared its rocklike teeth.”

Isn’t that creepy?! They are also super powerful and with Daleina having trouble controlling them as others do; it makes for a really dark and scary story.

One of my favorite things about The Queen of Blood is that even though there is a male and female main character, THEY ARE NOT LOVE INTERESTS! This is so important. In most novels, as soon as you have a male and a female main character, or both a male and a female point of view, you know instantly that they are going to fall in love. Not so in this book my friends! Instead we have a strong, deep mentor/mentee relationship that builds into a partnership and friendship. I think Ven and Daleina have really complimentary points of view and their relationship really changes the tone of this novel and makes it far superior to a lot of its contemporaries.’

You really need to pick up and read The Queen of Blood. I cannot wait to get my hands on book 2. I’m sure we’ll see more of Daleina, but will we see other Queens? Will we see more of Renthia? I can’t wait to find out!

About the Author
Sarah Beth Durst

Sarah Beth Durst is the author of ten fantasy novels for adults, teens, and children, including THE LOST, VESSEL, and THE GIRL WHO COULD NOT DREAM. She was awarded the 2013 Mythopoeic Fantasy Award and has been a finalist for SFWA’s Andre Norton Award three times. She is a graduate of Princeton University, where she spent four years studying English, writing about dragons, and wondering what the campus gargoyles would say if they could talk. Sarah lives in Stony Brook, New York, with her husband and children. Visit her at www.sarahbethdurst.com.

Tour Schedule
Week 1:
9/26: The Irish Banana Review
9/27: Mundie MomsReview
9/28: Novel NoviceReview
9/29: A Backwards Story – Review
9/30: Fangs and Fur Fantasy Book Review – Review

Week 2:
10/3: Bookiemoji – Review
10/4: Kara the Redhead – Review
10/5: The Reading Addict – Review
10/6: Owl Always Be Reading – Review
10/7: The Plot Bunny – Review

Giveaway
1 winner will receive a copy of The Queen of Blood and a woodland fairy tiara (US Only)
Tiara
WordPress is Rafflecopter unfriendly! Click HERE to enter the giveaway if Rafflecopter below doesn’t work for you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


The Queen of Blood

Welcome to my stop on The Queen of Blood Blog Tour! Check out my review below and enter the rafflecopter at the end of the post for a chance to win a finished copy of the book and an awesome tiara.

About the Book

Title: The Queen of Blood
Author: Sarah Beth Durst
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Date Published: September 20, 2016
Where I got the book: Finished copy from publisher
Where You Can Buy the Book: Flyleaf Books (indie bookseller) | Quail Ridge Books (indie bookseller) | AMAZON
Synopsis from Goodreads:
An idealistic young student and a banished warrior become allies in a battle to save their realm in this first book of a mesmerizing epic fantasy series, filled with political intrigue, violent magic, malevolent spirits, and thrilling adventure[sic]

Everything has a spirit: the willow tree with leaves that kiss the pond, the stream that feeds the river, the wind that exhales fresh snow . . .

But the spirits that reside within this land want to rid it of all humans. One woman stands between these malevolent spirits and the end of humankind: the queen. She alone has the magical power to prevent the spirits from destroying every man, woman, and child. But queens are still just human, and no matter how strong or good, the threat of danger always looms.

With the position so precarious, young women are chosen to train as heirs. Daleina, a seemingly quiet academy student, is under no illusions as to her claim to the throne, but simply wants to right the wrongs that have befallen the land. Ven, a disgraced champion, has spent his exile secretly fighting against the growing number of spirit attacks. Joining forces, these daring partners embark on a treacherous quest to find the source of the spirits’ restlessness—a journey that will test their courage and trust, and force them to stand against both enemies and friends to save their land . . . before it’s bathed in blood.

My Review

I really enjoyed this book! I was pleasantly surprised by how good The Queen of Blood was, not having read any of Sarah’s previous work (which I will now remedy). I read a lot of fantasy novels, both YA and adult, and it is very hard for a story to have little to no elements of something I’ve already read in them. I was amazed at how unique the world of Renthia and Daleina’s story are. We have a matriarchal society, which I absolutely LOVE! This society is not, however, a hereditary succession. Instead, girls with strong magic are chosen to become Heirs and one day the strongest of them will become Queen of Aratay. I also loved the fact that Daleina is not a special snowflake, quite the opposite. She does not have special powers, instead she is less powerful that the other students competing to become Heirs. She struggles so much, gets her butt kicked constantly, but she never gives up. She has the purest of motives and she is intelligent and resourceful. Even though this is an adult novel, I kind of want to recommend it for teenage girls. It has such a huge cast of powerful women, women not just using their magic but their brains, women with good hearts, who never give up. Honestly the sexual scenes are tame and it’s the violence and tragic/dark atmosphere that I believe makes The Queen of Blood an adult novel. If I had to draw comparisons to similar books I think I would liken this book to Thorn Jack by Katherine Harbour, The Darkest Part of the Forestby Holly Black, and Roses and Rot by Kat Howard. The one thing that sets this book apart is that instead of dark malevolent fairies, we’re dealing with something scarier, more animalistic and base; elemental spirits!

I can tell that Sarah has been writing YA. A lot of adult high fantasy authors can be pretty verbose (Come on we’ve all thought it! Have you read The Song of Ice and Fire or The Wheel of Time?). Sarah does not suffer from that affliction which makes The Queen of Blood all the more enjoyable to read. I love the description of the spirits! I’m a very visual reader; I love good description because my imagination conjures the images in my head, making reading, for me, far superior to watching movies. THESE SPIRITS ARE CREEPY!!! Seriously, take this quote for example:
“Another wood spirit separated from the trunk of a tree, its bulbous body covered in a thick mat of moss and leaves. Teasing the edges of the charms, an earth spirit, hairless and brown, bared its rocklike teeth.”

Isn’t that creepy?! They are also super powerful and with Daleina having trouble controlling them as others do; it makes for a really dark and scary story.

One of my favorite things about The Queen of Blood is that even though there is a male and female main character, THEY ARE NOT LOVE INTERESTS! This is so important. In most novels, as soon as you have a male and a female main character, or both a male and a female point of view, you know instantly that they are going to fall in love. Not so in this book my friends! Instead we have a strong, deep mentor/mentee relationship that builds into a partnership and friendship. I think Ven and Daleina have really complimentary points of view and their relationship really changes the tone of this novel and makes it far superior to a lot of its contemporaries.’

You really need to pick up and read The Queen of Blood. I cannot wait to get my hands on book 2. I’m sure we’ll see more of Daleina, but will we see other Queens? Will we see more of Renthia? I can’t wait to find out!

About the Author
Sarah Beth Durst

Sarah Beth Durst is the author of ten fantasy novels for adults, teens, and children, including THE LOST, VESSEL, and THE GIRL WHO COULD NOT DREAM. She was awarded the 2013 Mythopoeic Fantasy Award and has been a finalist for SFWA’s Andre Norton Award three times. She is a graduate of Princeton University, where she spent four years studying English, writing about dragons, and wondering what the campus gargoyles would say if they could talk. Sarah lives in Stony Brook, New York, with her husband and children. Visit her at www.sarahbethdurst.com.

Tour Schedule
Week 1:
9/26: The Irish Banana Review
9/27: Mundie MomsReview
9/28: Novel NoviceReview
9/29: A Backwards Story – Review
9/30: Fangs and Fur Fantasy Book Review – Review

Week 2:
10/3: Bookiemoji – Review
10/4: Kara the Redhead – Review
10/5: The Reading Addict – Review
10/6: Owl Always Be Reading – Review
10/7: The Plot Bunny – Review

Giveaway
1 winner will receive a copy of The Queen of Blood and a woodland fairy tiara (US Only)
Tiara
WordPress is Rafflecopter unfriendly! Click HERE to enter the giveaway if Rafflecopter below doesn’t work for you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


By Kate Woods

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *