Book Review. Scourge of the Betrayer by Jeff Salyards

I won a free copy of Scourge of the Betrayer from Melanie Meadors’ blog site, and being a fan of Melanie R. Meadors, Night Shade Books, and of Mr. Salyards…I couldn’t wait to start reading Book 1 of the Bloodsounder Arc.

Night Shade Books put together a nice looking book with a great cover art by J.K. Woodward and a fantastic back cover blurb by the Late Great Jay Lake (rest in peace dear warrior).

Mr. Salyards’ writing style is beautiful, almost lyrical at some points, which is what kept me going…as far as I could go in this book.

The book, being first person limited, is going to have a narrow worldview being brought to life, but Mr. Salyards did this wonderfully through Arki the scribe, our eyes. Unfortunately, I am not a fan of first person, for the most part, and this story seemed to be chugging up hill to get from one point to another. And after 80 pages, I still had no feel for Arki (Killcoin & Lloi on the other hand, have a history just waiting to be revealed). The descriptive writing was good but seemed to go on far too long at some points.

I’ll take the brunt of this here (for me struggling), but I’m a fan of maps, which would have been a plus in my eyes…and I’m also a fan of Chapters. The rhythm of this book is fine, but just keeps going on with barely a break. Too much of a good thing, maybe? But I needed more breaks, which is odd in a book under 300 pages (Trade Paperback mind you). Again, the writing was heavy at times.

Summertime activities, my scattered slow reading habits (a book to my liking will grab me and take a few weeks to finish), has taken its toll in Me vs. SotB, and it is going into the TBR library. I will keep this one in wait, knowing that as the Winter Snows come, I will have some companions that will get me through isolation.

Fans of Military Fiction/Fantasy (Glenn Cook, Chris Bunch) will enjoy this, and for them, I recommend it.

3/5*

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