Matthew Wolf, you had me when you picked a book cover with dragon on it. Luckily, this time, my attraction to anything dragon related turned out to be a good thing because I enjoyed reading The Knife’s Edge, the first book in the The Ronin Saga.
The Knife’s Edge follows Gray, a young man, who has no memory of his previous life. The only clue is the tattoo on his wrist and the sword he owns. Gray’s training with stern mentor is cut short by a surprise attack and that’s how his adventure starts. There will be epic battles, magic, betrayals, big confrontations, …
Plot of The Knife’s Edge reminded me of The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan (WOT):
- The Origin of a hero is unknown
- The hero is learning to master his magical powers. There is a lot of struggling with darkness and his resistance to succumb to it.
- On his travel hero gathers large group of friends and allies. They even were similar to WOT characters, not in an appearance but in the behavior and in some character traits (Karil & Rydel – Moiraine & Lan).
Please, don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of original features in The Knife’s Edge. I am just talking about the general feeling. Also, The Knife’s Edge has so many things happening – it’s like you squeezed 3 or 4 WOT novels into one (for epic fantasy) short book.
That’s the biggest flaw of The Knife’s Edge – it needed more pages. When I started reading I was overwhelmed. I can not accuse Matthew Wolf of info-dumping. The story has a nice flow. But there is just so many things you need to remember. The scope of The Knife’s Edge is huge with a big land, long history and a lot of characters. I took Anya‘s advice and gone with the flow hoping that I will eventually memorize names of all countries, towns, kings, heroes, … More pages with more descriptions and time for us to process all the data could have solved this problem.
On the other had, if it was thicker, The Knife’s Edge would not have been such a page-turner as it is now. There is always something new happening and the intrigues and surprises keep you reading, because you never know what is going to happen next. I didn’t care that, sometimes, I could not place some names or remember how some creatures looked like. I was glued to the pages because I had to find out what will happen next.
Oh, and if you are wondering about dragons. The cover does not lie, they do appear in The Knife’s Edge. But dragons are evil and usually their biggest part of the story is that they fly down from the sky and skewer someone with their sharp talons.
IN THE END…
The Knife’s Edge is an intense start to a new epic fantasy series. If you are not easily overwhelmed with complex world building, it will be a real page-turner for you. Or maybe you will just go with the flow, like me, and enjoy it nevertheless.
Recommended for fans of classic epic fantasy adventure series like Wheel of Time, Lord of the Rings etc.
Disclaimer: I received this ebook from Kismet Book Touring in exchange for a fair and honest review.