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review 2019-10-09 14:45
ARC REVIEW The Blacksmith Queen by G.A. Aiken
The Blacksmith Queen (The Scarred Earth Saga, #1)The Scarred Earth Saga #1,  I'm no stranger to Shelly Laurenston but this is my first time reading her under the name Aiken. I'm picky about the fantasy genre I read and I was hesitant to pick this one up fearing it would be overly dramatic, long winded, and full of political backstabbing bs but then I remembered who the author was and read it........And loved it. The beginning of the book with The Old King dying and the sons all killing each other off kind of reminded me of Stardust except less humorous and way more violent. I didn't dislike all the violence, because this book is full of it, I was surprised by how gorey it was described, again not a bad thing for me I just wasn't expecting it. True to form Aiken writes her female characters full of snark. With Keeley you see many sides of the strong fighter standing up for those who can't and when she's around her family you see a funnier side but overall she is protective. But when it comes to her sister, Gemma, you see a more childish side like picking fights doing things she knows bug her. Gemma and Keeley are both head strong and very similar which causes them to butt heads and argue at the drop of a hat but you see throughout the book they are starting to trust each other more and more and that there is love between them. Keeley has plenty of depth. Aiken wasn't gratuitous with the sex either, like some others, for which I am grateful. I loved how the story played out and how the narrative switches to other characters so you get the full picture, one reason I prefer third person I must know everything. I liked the characters everyone has quirks that make them unique and memorable. Caid, I really like, he's a good strong warrior and you can see the gradual change in him the more he's around Keely.

It all started as a simple journey protecting her sister, the girl who would be Queen, but turns into an all out war with Keeley in the lead. Keeley must now find allies to fight with her against The Old King's remaining sons. Overall, it was a fun read. There is no cliffhanger there is a definite end to the book but it's far from over.      


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text 2019-09-25 02:34
The Blacksmith Queen by G. A. Aikw
The Blacksmith Queen (The Scarred Earth Saga #1) - G.A. Aiken

Let me start by saying that I love the authors writing. I have kept myself up to date with all her series and eagerly wait for new work by her to released. I am very happy that she has started a new series, though I must admit I would have rather had another installment to one of her already ongoing other series.


I very much enjoyed this. As with all her books the ladies of this are kick ass and take charge. They never rely on a man to come and save them.


In this the main character sets out to protect her sister, and unexpectedly gets a target painted on her own back. She learns she must fight for her future.


Laurenston/Aiken always adds A LOT of humor to her novels. This one made laugh a lot, out loud and embarrassingly, might I add.


I was a bit nervous when I discovered the male love interest was a centaur. My mind immediately went to thinking about how the hell were the sex scenes going to be? What am I about to read? I shouldn't have worried, the centaur can change to full human in appearance.


I will definitely continue this series.


Netgalley provided arc copy. I did not promise a favorable review and formed my opinion on this book of my own reading experience.

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review 2019-09-17 02:09
Loved It!!
The Blacksmith Queen (The Scarred Earth Saga #1) - G.A. Aiken

With the demise of the Old King, there’s a prophesy that a queen will ascend to the throne of the Black Hills. Bad news for the king’s sons, who are prepared to defend their birthright against all comers. But for blacksmith Keeley Smythe, war is great for business. Until it looks like the chosen queen will be Beatrix, her younger sister. Now it’s all Keeley can do to protect her family from the enraged royals. Luckily, Keeley doesn’t have to fight alone. Because thundering to her aid comes a clan of kilt-wearing mountain warriors called the Amichai. Not the most socially adept group, but soldiers have never bothered Keeley, and rough, gruff Caid, actually seems to respect her. A good thing because the fierce warrior will be by her side for a much longer ride than any prophesy ever envisioned.

There’s something about the way this author makes her characters that I absolutely love. She writes differently than most authors and I never know what to expect!! I really loved this book and devoured it as quickly as I could. Keeley is definitely one of my new favorite characters. I can’t wait for the next book in this series. I highly recommend.

**I voluntarily read and reviewed this book

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review 2019-09-14 12:03
The Blacksmith Queen (The Scarred Earth Saga #1) - G.A. Aiken


This story snuck up on me. At first I wasn't sure if I was going to love it. I don't want to say it felt simple, because that isn't quite right, but maybe as if it was kind of immature. In a sense some of it is a bit immature, with the constantly bickering sisters especially, but honestly it ended up just being so much fun! The plot was interesting, the action was an ever flowing gift from the gods, and the characters and their banter were wildly entertaining.



Can we also just talk about how freaking awesome it is to have kickass heroines that aren't stunningly beautiful without knowing it?! A big-burly-hammer-toting-foul-mouthed-warrior-blacksmith-queen....YAAASSSS.



That alone really sets this one apart from many others in this genre and I'm so here for it. I mean how could you not love Keely extra hard? That girl has a heart of gold and a fierce unrelenting spirit. The whole Smythe clan was a riot, not to mention the myriad of magical/mmythical beings they befriend along the way. Even the animals were captivating! Long live the demon dogs!


* "THEY ARE WOLVES" Caid adamantly reminds *




This book was full of little surprises like that. I also wasn't expecting it to be as brutal as it was in the fighting scenes either, but it was, in the best possible way. I love that this author doesn't shy away from things, she goes for it...with gusto. Whether it be bloodshed, swearing, or even just traversing a giant willful family dynamic. It also managed to feel very light to me even though there was so much destruction and danger. The banter and camaraderie kind of helped give it this awesome balance. I really appreciated that.



This was a bolder book in a lot of little ways like that and it made the journey incredibly entertaining and just so darn fun! I see this author has other books out and I can't wait to read more by her.

I received an ARC of this book from Kensington Books via Netgalley and this is my honest review.


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review 2019-09-06 03:40
5 Star Blacksmith Queen
The Blacksmith Queen (The Scarred Earth Saga #1) - G.A. Aiken


The Old King has died and a prophecy that a queen will ascend to the throne of the Black Hills has emerged and the king’s sons are prepared to defend their birthright against all comers including each other. Blacksmith Keeley Smythe is benefiting from the war until it looks like the chosen queen will be her younger sisters, now it’s all she can do to protect her family from the enraged royals. Luckily she doesn’t have to fight alone, because the clan of kilt-wearing mountain warriors called the Amicahi have joined the quest.


The author has given her fascinating world life once again with some truly wonderful additional elements that readers can definitely appreciate. The dragons may not be a full part of this story, but it takes place in the same world, just a different part. The characters of this new series are strong and blood thirsty as the others and there definitely grab all of the reader’s attention from the very beginning. While Keeley reminds readers of the Human Queen, she has her own refreshing personality that readers can definitely enjoy and the budding relationship that is building between her and Caid promises to be epic.


This fast paced story is full of adventure, suspense, excitement and emotional angst, but the way these characters deal with that turmoil can be a bit frightening as well as charming. The author makes this blood thirsty world seem so very reasonable that readers can’t help but have fun and be delighted with the captivating characters, which includes centaurs, dwarves, barbarians, witches, and wild horses, while they are completely enthralled by this riveting and exhilarating adventure.


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