Friday, October 3, 2014

Blade Singer review and giveaway!

About the book:
Manuel “Manny” Boreaux, a troubled adolescent from Texas, is magically transported into the body of a goblin pickpocket in an alternate world inhabited by faerie creatures. Manny must quickly adapt to the danger all around him and try to find a way to get back home, a feat complicated by the pickpocket’s association with a notorious gang of thieves. But when Manny uncovers a plot to assassinate a young king, he must enlist the aid of an elf cavalier and a cat burglar to thwart a Sidhe witch’s scheme to ignite a civil war between humans and the Fae.

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Review:
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

After checking out the blurb of this book, I decided to read it because of all of the fantasy creatures in it. Mixing magical creatures can be a dangerous thing for authors. So much can go wrong in the process, but in Blade Singer so much went right! The mix of trolls, goblins, elves, humans, etc. really helped create the feel of another magical world.

The first thing that surprised me in the book is that the main character is not white or black, but rather he has a Hispanic background. I loved this. There is a lack of diversity in many books (or maybe I'm not seeking out the diversified books), and for the main character to be Hispanic, it was exciting. It really didn't impact the main story line, but the authors wove bits of it throughout the story.

I loved that Manny was able to reunite with his parents in Aquitania. After their deaths, he was having a difficult time coping. Even though they didn't know who he was, he was still able to interact and grow their relationship.

It was interesting to see how Manny changed over the course of the book. In the beginning, he was a thief in the real world as well as in Aquitania. But when he arrived in Aquitania and saw that being bad was changing him into a goblin, he changed his ways. He tried to do the right thing, even if it was harder to do than the wrong thing. Perfect lesson for the middle grade kids that the story is geared toward.

As kids are learning this lesson, the authors keep it interesting. Manny and Adriana face lots of danger. From sword fights and spies, to being captured and being chased by "bad guys", the action throughout the book keep readers interested and eager to turn the page.

The story is told through a single point of view, Manny's. Although it would have been interesting to get other character's take on what was going on and what was running through their minds, the single POV allows readers to show how Manny's mentality changes. This was definitely the most effective way to show that.

Readers looking for the next great fantasy adventure should pick up Blade Singer. This is a story that I'd recommend to kids, teens, and even adults!

About the authors:
Aaron de Orive
A graduate of the University of Texas’ film program, Aaron de Orive began his professional writing career in the video game industry, serving as a lead or senior writer on Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, Star Wars Galaxies: An Empire Divided, Tabula Rasa, Anarchy Online, and Star Wars: The Old Republic. He is also the creator of the fantasy role-playing game SHARD: World of the False Dawn. Blade Singer is his first novel. Aaron lives in Austin with his wife, daughter, and two very spoiled terriers.

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Martha Wells
Martha Wells is the author of a number of fantasy novels, including The Cloud Roads, The Siren Depths, The Wizard Hunters, Wheel of the Infinite, and the Nebula-nominated The Death of the Necromancer. Her YA fantasy, Emilie and the Hollow World, was published by Angry Robot/Strange Chemistry in April 2013, and the sequel, Emilie and the Sky World, was released in March 2014. Two collections of Books of the Raksura novellas will be published in September 2014 and Fall 2015. She has had short stories in Black Gate, Realms of Fantasy, Stargate Magazine, and Lightspeed Magazine, and in the anthologies Elemental, The Year’s Best Fantasy #7, Tales of the Emerald Serpent and The Other Half of the Sky. She has essays in the nonfiction anthologies Farscape Forever, Mapping the World of Harry Potter, and Chicks Unravel Time. She has also written media-tie-in novels, Stargate Atlantis: Reliquary and Stargate Atlantis: Entanglement, and a Star Wars novel, Empire and Rebellion: Razor’s Edge.

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Giveaway: Enter to win a $25 gift card for Amazon or Barnes & Noble!