Review: Crowfall (Raven’s Mark #3) by Ed McDonald

RATING: 9/10

SYNOPSIS

Crowfall is a gritty epic fantasy for fans of Mark Lawrence, Scott Lynch and Daniel Polansky.

‘Dark, twisty and excellent . . . Grimdark with heart’ Mark Lawrence

A sorceress cataclysm has hit the Range, the final defensive line between the Republic and the immortal Deep Kings.

Tormenting red rains sweep the land, new monstrosities feed on fear in the darkness, and the power of the Nameless, the gods who protect the Republic, lies broken. The Blackwing captains who serve them are being picked off one by one, and even immortals have learned what it means to die. Meanwhile the Deep Kings have only grown stronger, and are poised to deliver a blow that will finally end the war.

Ryhalt Galharrow stands apart from it all.

He has been deeper into the wasteland known as the Misery than ever before. It has grown within him – changed him – but all power comes with a price, and now the ghosts of his past, formerly confined to the Misery, walk with him everywhere.

They will even follow him, and the few surviving Blackwing captains, on one final mission into the darkness.

REVIEW

“Fate is a spinning coin, balanced on an edge so fine that the slightest breath of wind can set it spiraling away from you. But sometimes, in a moment of utter certainty, you have to slam your hand down upon it and make the call”

Crowfall is a satisfying conclusion to the Raven’s Mark series. All the politicking, and scheming between the Nameless, between the Captains and Saravor’s (a.k.a. the Fixer, one of the antagonist of the story) agenda is so intriguing! I have to admit that the first half of the book is rather slow and there are a lot of things going on which left me a little confused. But no worries, all your confusion and questions will be duly answered at the last few chapters of the book. I literally cant put the book down when I am reading the last few chapters. The revelations and plot twists in this book are definitely on par with some of the established fantasy series out there!

“Guilt is a powerful thing. It wraps you, weighs you down, breaks your connection to the truth of the world, and yet, we cannot relinquish it, because in letting go we betray those we failed”

I had some problems with the characterization of the main character in this installment. He is so moody, dark and demoralised in this book. I can literally feel all the negativity coming out from him. I understand that Ed is trying to carve out his fear, guilt and weakness. But such demoralizing mentality took up a substantial number of chapters in the book and I ended up feeling demoralized as well. It is not a bad thing as Ed successfully translate such negativity to the readers. But at some point of time I really wanted to shake Ryhalt and scream “PULL YOURSELF TOGETHER!”.

The Raven’s Mark series is a must read for fans of grimdark fantasy. A strong 9/10 star rating for this installment as well. I am looking forward to a new series by Ed which i hope will be based on this world as I have a feeling that there is going to be a continuation for the adventure of some of the characters in this series.

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