I gave this debut a 3.5 stars, for its debut effort and entertainment factor.
This story has a new narration angle, where our protagonist Chel is not hero-like, and is thrown into extremely violent circumstances unexpectedly, where he has to protect his life and the life of one of the crown Princes – Prince Tarfel. They make a very uncharasteric pair. The Prince is annoying and whiny most of the time, so much so, that I almost laughed at his scenes. And Chel, has no skills as a body guard, but somehow manages based on luck alone.
In come the gang of mercernaries, called the Black Hawks – Rennic, Loveless, Lemon, Foss, Spider and Whisper. Now, the book gets interesting, and all the scenes which involved this bunch of people, were absolutely entertaining and sometimes downright funny, if you can ignore all the different ways of cussing 🙂
We get a glimpse of each Black Hawk member’s characteristic in the first book, but what I missed was getting some more back story on each of the characters and how they came together. Maybe that will come in the second of third books, I hope it does. There was no romance in the book too, something that I missed a little:) I did care about the Black Hawk members, who doesn’t care about a bunch of misfits who have no moral compass, other than looking out for each other’s backs? But I did miss having more dialogue from the band. There were a few poignant dialogues between some of the characters, but most of their banter revolved around cussing at each other in funny ways, or fighting.
Hmm, and that brings me to the next bit – the amount of action in this book, goodness. Ok, so if you thrive on action, are an action movie buff – then this is the perfect book for you. But for someone like me, I like a good healthy mix of action, dialogue, world building and character building – even in a Robin Hood or gang of misfit mercenaries out on an impossible mission kind of book – Six of Crows anyone? I will always cite Six of Crows as a heist and mission impossible done with misfits with action and soul – as the perfect balance of entertainment. The actions scenes were well written, but there was JUST TOO MUCH of it. I got tired in the middle.
However, all that was made up for in the unexpected twist in the end! I had not guessed that at all. So full marks on surprising me at the end. But, there is a cliffhanger. If you don’t like books ending with major cliffhangers, hmm, maybe wait till the next book is out 🙂
All in all, a good debut effort, but I felt some soul lacking. I hope that will be made up for in the next installments 🙂