eBook publitags.co ´ Seven Blades in Black PDF/EPUB ✓ Seven Blades

Sam Sykes returns with a new fantasy that introduces to an unforgettable outcast magician caught between two warring empires Among humans none have power like mages And among mages none have will like Sal the Cacophony Once revered now vagrant she walks a wasteland scarred by generations of magical warfare The Scar a land torn between powerful empires is where rogue mages go to disappear disgraced soldiers go to die and Sal went with a blade a gun and a list of names she intended to use both on But vengeance is a flame swift extinguished Betrayed by those she trusted most her magic torn from her and awaiting execution Sal the Cacophony has one last tale to tell before they take her head All she has left is her name her story and the weapon she used to carved both Vengeance is its own reward

10 thoughts on “Seven Blades in Black

  1. says:

    Funny how school never teaches you the important things like taxes mortgages or how to cope with the emotional turmoil of getting sorely disappointed by one of your most anticipated releases of the yearThe experience of reading this novel is rather cloudy in my memory as it took me two weeks to finish it I would often put it in the corner the way one might lean a broom or umbrella when not using it and pick up something griping to read The story spun a single night the length of many and when I finally finished it it was as though I were setting down a heavy weight—I felt light as a ghostAt the outset of the novel Sal the Cacophony is captured stripped of her infamous weapon a sentient blood soaked gun with whom she struck an obscure barter and clapped into chains for crimes against the revolutionary government While she awaits execution Sal recounts her story—the story that defined her life—to an officer that could not be any impervious to it The memories thundered at Sal and her mind leapt with images of destruction Sal tells of the Scar a city scorched away in pieces leaving ragged holes rimmed in cinders of turncoat mages allying to throw off the empress’s yoke of revolutions igniting like a chain of firecrackers of the part she played in the great machine of death during the war between the empire and the Revolution and the seven names that caught in her skull scouring out all thought And now here she was the onetime near deity held taut in chains now a pariah Sal would happily ignite the whole world if only to roast marshmallows in the embers of those who betrayed herSal runs with swift clear rage and her desire for revenge is a force as destructive as any Revolution weapon and harder to end than the Empire Sal is too steeped in the landscape of this nightmare to glimpse her loved ones their faces twisted in anguish trying to pull her back while she clung so resolutely to her revenge But as Sal will come to learn vengeance is a difficult thing to bear alone To have the ability to grasp you need to be able to let things go And the greater their meaning the greater their power Seven Blades in Black bristles with imaginative flourishes but they unfortunately don't always stick While the novel does eventually get its legs underneath it for a somewhat satisfying conclusion it remains something of a tepid noncommittal journey And for a book about unforgettable grudges it is sadly far too forgettableThe plot lucid yet leisurely is the toughest part of Seven Blades in Black On the one hand the action is rather straight forward so it would seemingly be a smooth fast reading experience but on the other hand a large portion of the novel dwells too much on extended emotional monologues gratuitous violence and snaillike developments so it becomes drab dense and slow to maneuver through There also aren't many fixed points in this stirring landscape—or in Sal’s mercurial character—to cling doggedly onto and follow into the dark This was bad enough but what had lowered my spirit still further is that despite the intricacy of the worldbuilding the novel still somehow feels uncluttered and understated When I try to recall moments that are arresting enough to reverberate like a tolling bell my mind slides away like a fish that would not be caughtBrilliant but brittle as badly tempered iron fiery but sometimes obnoxious dauntless but lacking in crucial wisdom Sal the Cacophony is an engaging insightful narrator capable of crafty—sometimes even poetic—feats of observation but her destructive shenanigans soon begin to wear thin Sal’s brassy delivery is sometimes downright leaden and the hours often pass in a dreadful streaky blur of impassive deadpan angst which—almost inexorably—mutates into a heel dragging burden There’s nothing too disagreeable about angst ridden stories but they can tread on overwhelming lest the author sets bounds upon it It makes sense that Seven Blades in Black is a grim novel but it's not a very dynamic one either Some complications that are hurled Sal’s way feel schematic and forced rather than horrific The story is also unrelentingly bitter and locked in existential crisis mode and there's only so much acerbic bleakness that any book even this one can take before it lapses into languid melodramaThough the novel does try to counterbalance that sumptuous darkness with bawdy humor and a dose of absurdism mixed with sly philosophical musings even poking fun at Sal’s wordy tendencies and eventually spins all that horror into thought provoking notions about free will salvation and the ghosts we both battle and become—at which point the book finally begins to resonate—I’m not sure it’s enough to forgiveThe main narrative is a lengthy flashback recounting the story of Sal the Cacophony before her arrest The shifts between past and present are clever and I admit that the sense of intrigue that rose in me when I first started this book was reluctant to fade as I felt my own uestions about Sal’s past burgeoning within me And after the introduction of a few late arriving characters some old spark of that anticipation flared in me trying to relight Unfortunately it was uickly dismissed by the fact that most of these new characters make brief appearances and they’re either promptly killed off or appear so infreuently that they’re stuck at being two dimensional; not to mention the ultimate reveal felt glib than exciting and I was not impressedCavric Proud’s character in particular was interesting Cavric is a fresh faced officer of the Revolutionary one of the few who still believed in good deeds and defense of the small He’d followed orders his entire life and he will eventually become the person giving them—just one identical cog swapped out for another to keep the Revolution’s machinery running the exact same way it had for years But it’s not until Cavric stands upon the smoking ash heap of war that he begins to see into the cracks of the cause he’d joined “The loudest sound in the world” says Sal when the true face of the war slips into Cavric like a stone sinking to the bottom “is a man of faith beginning to doubt” Liette a brilliant Freemaker is another character I wish got to step wholly into the page instead of merely being relegated to the role of “Sal’s lover” trying and failing to fix her hurts fix her their relationship always fraying to the point of breaking to the point of one of them snipping the thread between them clean in half deciding to never look back I really hope she takes on a bigger role in future installmentsAs a first person narrator Sal the Cacophony is a character thatdisintegrates under analysis Let’s be honest Sal is an asshole An appealing asshole mostly but definitely an asshole Sal’s world has very small horizons She can see clearly enough to pull a fast one on someone but she isn’t capable to see past the immediate repercussions She also believes herself to be beyond redemption broken beyond repair like a drowning man—the you struggled to save them the harder they fought She kept the jagged edge of her affection sharp a blade so that those near her never knew how to handle it without cutting themselves Sal is ungovernable flawlessly self serving resentful and sly Her anger is mad dog vicious and never yields to explanation or prediction and her selfish confidence—while refreshingly different—tends to be repellent when it visibly ruins other people's lives I didn't really warm up to her character and all the aforementioned made rooting for her very difficult “No one ever gets the death they want” I replied “Just the one they deserve” There’s a faint uicksilver trace of curiosity still inside me to find out where Cavric and Liette’s journeys lead them but I honestly don’t know if it’s enough to tempt me to continue with this seriesBLOG | TWITTER | INSTAGRAM | TUMBLR

  2. says:

    Ah the usual caveat I know Sam Sykes and I read this book as an Advance Reading Copy an edition sent to me for free by the publisher As always this does not affect my review of the bookSeven Blades in Black weighs in at a substantial 771 pages; the edition I have is a chunk For fantasy readers who enjoy a complete immersion in a new world with a uniue magic system this book is for you In a time when most new fantasies seem to be part of a trilogy or longer series Seven Blades in Black is a stand alone story with a completely satisfactory ending Even so there is plenty of room in the world and setting for other tales to be told WHOOPS Editing this Unbeknownst to me at the time I posted this this is book one of a trilogy But I will repeat that I found the ending satisfactory So if you want a great big read that can lead to even big books this is a solid entry pointI try to refrain from spoilers in my reviews Instead I'll tell you that the narrator protagonist is a uniue character As her back story unfolds along with the action pieces fall into place in a very satisfactory way But it's not only the protagonist who is believable; the other characters evolve with the story This is a story where the villains are as memorable as the heroes and sometimes the dividing lines between them are narrow indeedThere is action humor and romance as well as magic in a well developed setting Its a solid read

  3. says:

    This book is a perfect example of why GoodReads needs half stars It's a 35 for sure Sam shows incredible promise as a fantasy author I am excited to see his masterpiece SBIB can close but no cigar I was invested in the characters and world but the story slumps and the lack of stakes at times prevented me from loving this book as much as I really wanted to Full review here

  4. says:

    UPDATE 299 Kindle US today 92420I uite enjoyed this book and look forward to the next one Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾

  5. says:

    This is my kind of book Fast paced and funny tempered with tender moments and some really excellent worldbuilding The characters from Sal the Cacophony to the entire supporting cast especially the bad guys are colorful and complex And if like me and every other rational human being on the planet you're a fan of Final Fantasy and anime you'll find a lot to love in this seriesAlso there's a sword named Jeff Need I go on? No No I needn't

  6. says:

    This is something you don’t see very often; a fantasy obviously inspired by westerns It’s filled with outlaws lone gunmen and our hero wandering the desert like setting with a trusted steed though in this case the steed is a giant mean spirited bird inspired by Final Fantasy’s ChocobosThe plot focuses on Sal the Cacophony who is awaiting her execution She decides to give a last confession though telling of the recent events that lead to her leaving several towns burning and countless lives lost She tells us how she once was a completely different person She tells of how she created a list of people who took her old life away and how she recently crossed off some of those namesSounds a bit like a fantasy Kill Bill right? Well if you’re looking for that check out Best Served Cold by Joe Abercrombie which fits that description much better and is also uite good This isn’t a book about picking names off a list one by one While names of course do get crossed off this is closer to your classic uest story where it focuses on the traveling and the goals with the revenge being accomplished in the process of completing the uest What makes this interesting though is that Sal doesn’t really see the uest aspect she only see the names on her list and will go through any length to cross them off even if means doing some good to get them doneThe characters in this one are all a treat What Sykes accomplishes is something of a marvel in terms of characters Every villain who shows up be they a one chapter event or plot important multi chapter encounters comes off as interesting and uniue Hell my favorite one is a bounty which opens the book before the main plot kicks in gear with a magic user who floats weapons around him during a duel while having polite conversation and listening to opera Each one is interesting enough that I wanted to know about them While the side characters are great two of our leads are downright wonderful Sal is a delightful lead bringing charm humor and a badass protagonist filled with surprises She’s a character who is scarred both physically and emotionally yet has had to learn to live with it She’s had to find a drive to keep going and in this western style setting she plays a classic drifting bounty hunter The other character I really enjoyed is Liette who comes off as something of a jack of all trades support character acting as a combination of arr medic and mad scientist She’s if anything cynical that Sal and yet hopeful of things improving I won’t say about her than that other than every scene with her was a delight and I wish she would have been used a bit The book is also very funny I found myself genuinely laughing throughout Characters are very snarky and cynical so the humor may not be for all but personally it had me grinning throughout There were many times I thought about posting an update uote but I realized that so much of the humor needs context of the scene to make it funnier but when you have that context there are some dialogue gems here I do have a few minor complaints but only two are really noteworthy First off the middle of the book drags uite a bit There’s a lot of wandering around looking for someone to kill and then going to the next checkpoint The other is a slight annoyance with the character of Sal In so many ways she’s a very well written character She’s funny clever and I enjoyed seeing her outlook on things but for someone so cynical who has been betrayed so many times in the past and such you would think that when things start going really well for her she might possibly just possibly consider if things are going well because of a trap I get that in most of these scenes tensions are high and she’s dealing with a lot of conflicting emotions but seriously after a while I was counting the pages until she would get knocked out againThose complaints aside this is an excellent fantasy novel It is the first in a series but it works very well as a standalone while still leaving plenty story to tell Well worth your time and a solid 45 stars Oh and if all I said before didn't make you want to read it let me close by just saying that there's a sword in the book called Jeff JEFF

  7. says:

    Author sexually harasses women at conferences so fuck his book

  8. says:

    Exciting and inventive I never realized how much I needed wizard hunting gunslingers in my life Buy Sam’s book

  9. says:

    I think I'll drop this to a 45 starsThe exact same thing happened again I was highlighting everything in the first half of the book then I stopped and was reading just to reach the last parts It's a shame bc the second part had action yet it didn't feel like itIf I had to say something bad about this it's the pacing of the book and the action seuences were as compelling as they could've been tooOther than that I loved it it was cool cool cool 499999999We have a saying here it's actually of a gesture when someone does something the hard way and ignores the easy way you stretch your hand over your head you grab the ear on the other side of your head and say this is my earI feel some parts of the book did just that It wasn't bad I just didn't have the mental capacity and the right environment to read this book This book needed me to focus and I couldn't do that after like 30% mark and that's the only reason I'm not giving it 5 starsIt's a shame tho bc the writing is really good I was highlighting like crazy at the first chapters of this but I guess you can be too good it's badBut that's all the bad things I can say about this If you like characters with depths if you like strong cool badass female characters than this book is for you If you have read Red Sister or Nevernight and enjoyed either the writing or the protagonists then you'll enjoy this And if you have no idea what I'm talking but still likes to read about a girl firing magical bullets than this book is for youNow I must say this tho if this book confirmed anything it's that I'm a total sucker for a good revenge story specially one narrated after the events took place and you know the fate of the protagonist there's just something that keeps me gripped to see how did we get here XDSal the Cacophony is probably the coolest character I read about I didn't say best I said coolest Imagine if Mia Corvere from Nevernight decided to get her a gun that fires magical bullets and was one heck of a gunslinger Yeah that's how coolAnd than Sal the characters in this book are all amazing in their own way They all have depths and the development of everyone good and bad was phenomenal And honestly only now that I'm writing this that I'm thinking that every character in this by the end has its arc and it's so good now to look back and see how they changed I'm in awwLiette or maybe you know her by her other name Twenty Two Dead Roses in a Chipped Porcelain Vase 😂 Cavric Jindu even Tretta and she wasn't featured that long she basically just listened to Sal talking they all weren't the same by the end Can you really ask than that from a book?

  10. says:

    This was one of those stories that had a fun premise but which never uite managed to translate that into a decent story It was a bit of a flop in truth and that was a shame as the blurb was fun and this seems like a book that was well liked by most of my fellow fantasy readers I lasted 12 hours of the 20 hour audiobook before I pulled the plug It just never hooked me at all I soldiered on for a while as there was nothing offensive or particularly awful about it but it was pretty dull and I found I just reached a point where I had zero motivation to continue The premise was actually decent enough This was basically a revenge western in a fantasy setting with all the added magic one might expect as well as a bit of humour to keep things from getting too dark The set up of the story was the exact same one as that found in Blood Song The main character Sal the Cacophony was relating her tale to her jailer as she awaited her execution It meant we got the story told in the first person format and had Sal as the sole POV character I felt like it should have been a fun tale especially as Sal seemed likeable enough and Sykes tried to balance out the darker aspects of the story with a bit of humour but that it ended up flopping because I just never connected with Sykes writing At no point was I ever sucked into the story It was a shame really as this really should have been my sort of book There was nothing overly original to be had in this one The story and characters were fairly standard for revenge western tales and the setting was fairly typical for fantasy series with vaguely 1800s era inspired worlds I'm not going to moan too much about the lack of originality as I feel like this could have worked in the hands of a talented writer If I had to single out a specific flaw outside of the writing which I just did not connect with it was the fact that the book was a bit too woe is me in tone This is becoming a common complaint for me when reading modern fantasy as I feel like authors go overboard with the woe and the doom and gloom atmosphere to the point where their stories end up feeling like a ridiculous parody of proper dark fantasy I've read a lot worse than what we got in this story but it was a mild annoyance and Sal's constant whining did annoy me a bit All in all this bore was a bit of a flop I'm not having great luck with the modern fantasy series I'm trying of late I guess it is a good thing the self published fantasy market is in a golden era since the traditional big fantasy publishers are churning out a bunch of crap lately Rating 25 stars I'm rounding down to 2 stars as this one did not manage to hold me until the end Audio Note I feel like Daisy May did this lacklustre story no favours with her performance She was well spoken but had no real talent for performing the story and breathing life into it