eARC Review – Blood Sworn

Title: Blood Sworn (Ashlords #2)

Author: Scott Reintgen

Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers

Publication date: February 16th, 2021

400 pages

4/5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis

Three cultures clash in all out war–against each other and against the gods–in the second book of this fantasy duology that’s sure to capture fans of The Hunger Games and An Ember in the Ashes.

The Races are over. War has begun.

Ashlord and Longhand armies battle for control of the Empire as Dividian rebels do their best to survive the crossfire. This is no longer a game. It’s life or death.

Adrian, Pippa, and Imelda each came out of the Races with questions about their role in the ongoing feud. The deeper they dig, the clearer it is that the hatred between their peoples has an origin point: the gods.

Their secrets are long-buried, but one disgruntled deity is ready to unveil the truth. Every whisper leads back to the underworld. What are the gods hiding there? As the sands of the Empire shift, these heroes will do everything they can to aim their people at the true enemy. But is it already too late?

Review

Blood Sworn is the series finale in the Ashlords world, a world divided by race, wealth, and the gods. We have three main characters – Pippa, Adrian, and Imelda. An Ashlord, a Longhand, and a Dividian, each trying to fight for a better world. Set almost directly after the end of Ashlords, Blood Sworn continues the action and brings about new twists and even better, new magic.

The world building and imagery is phenomenal in this series. I appreciate that the Races are similar the Games without being too exact, and taking it a step further in the revolution plot line. The gods and magic system are unique and compelling. The plot went in ways I didn’t expect and didn’t see coming, and I kept getting thrown for more and more loops up until the very end. The characters are all so different but well defined, and you completely understand each of their motivations.

There was something missing from this book for me, and I can’t quite explain what that is. I almost feel like the pacing was too quick, and needed more quiet moments to set up the action. There is a hint of a romance too, very subtly, and it was AMAZING, but I always love more romance.

I highly suggest this series, specifically this sequel, to YA Fantasy fans out there.

Thank you to Crown Books for Young Readers and Netgalley for an early copy in exchange for an honest review.

Happy reading, folks!

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