“This swirling sequel to Promise of Blood draws the reader deep into political intrigue and military matters in a gunpowder-sprinkled fantasy world.” – Publishers Weekly (SPOILERS)

Kirkus says, “impressively distinctive and pungent, with solid plotting and exceptional action sequences.”

Over on RT Book Reviews they said, “The way McClellan draws out the very human failings of these characters while keeping them likable remains the most compelling thing about this series, though fans of gunpowder fantasy will appreciate the detailed tactical battles.”



RT Book Reviews gave it 4.5/5 stars. They say, “The opening chapters spin a web full of complex but sympathetic characters…” and that the magic and political intrigue are “well drawn in this captivating universe.”

It was a starred review on Kirkus, who said “McClellan’s debut packs some serious heat… This is a stew of splendidly diverse and flavorsome ingredients, outstanding action sequences… A thoroughly satisfying yarn that should keep readers waiting impatiently for further installments.”

Publishers Weekly says, “McClellan neatly mixes intrigue and action, effectively showing the tensions among uneasy allies… in a society where new forces like labor unions, gunpowder-armed soldiers, and explosion-causing “powder mages” clash with traditional magics, mores, and beliefs.”

Nicholas Schmiedicker of Fantasy Faction gave the book 4.5/5 stars and went on to say “Promise of Blood is filled with engaging characters, original worldbuilding, and a plot that left me unable to put the book down until I finished two days later.”

Shadowhawk says, “One of the most inventive and unique takes on fantasy with some really good characters and unique magic system.” Bane of Kings goes on to say, “An awesome debut, if you’ve enjoyed the likes of Brent Weeks, Brandon Sanderson and Joe Abercrombie - Promise of Blood is a book that you’ll want to get on board for. Unputdownable.” In this dual review over at The Founding Fields, Promise of Blood receives 4.5/5.

“A winning debut and a top 25 for the year,” says Fantasy Book Critic.

“Brian McClellan’s debut is a lot of fun, a historically influenced fantastical romp,” claims SciFiNow. “…is reminiscent of authors like Brent Weeks and Brandon Sanderson.

At the Bookbag over in the UK, Promise of Blood gets a sterling review: “Brian McClellan is a veritable word mage and I shall remain on the edge of my seat with anticipation, excitement and, knowing me, impatience until Book 2, The Crimson Campaign comes out in February 2014.”

“If you’re looking for a fun, original and engrossing new fantasy series, then I would certainly recommend this.” – Civilian Reader

At SFFWorld, Rob H. Bedford says, “[McClellan has] drawn characters who made a powerful mark and whose plight I want to follow over the course of the subsequent novels in the series. The addictive narrative pace, inventive world-building, and gestalt of this novel are impressive.”

“Promise of Blood is, hands down, my favorite read of the year…” says Tyson of Speculative Book Review. “Brian McClellan has written an instant classic and will be hard pressed to top what he has already written.”

BookThing said Promise of Blood is “…an amazing debut that entertained and engaged me, while giving me that tingle of discovering something good and very special.”

The BiblioSanctum gave Promise of Blood 4/5 stars: “A lot of great fantasy books have been written over the years, and despite being new on the scene, Brian McClellan has definitely written a novel that can stand on the shelf next to any of them.”

“[Promise of Blood] is a damn cool novel full of action, energy, gods, special powers, magic, and old-school snipers with muskets,” says Bastard Books. “…easily one of my favorite novels so far this year.”

Justin Landon of Staffer’s Book Review said, “I found Promise of Blood wildly entertaining. McClellan’s style is a compelling one, with the kind of pacing and flow that debut novelists often stumble around… there’s something for every kind of reader.”

“Reading through the book was a joy… Everyone should pick up Promise of Blood. Brian McClellan will easily make it to our short-list next year when nominations for the Campbell Award are open. Yes, it really is that good.” – Shawn of Elitist Book Reviews.

Galaxy Books tells us that “I was in and gone instantly with this book, this world. It was love at first sight with the ideas, the world, the story and ALL the characters. There’s just so much to like.”

“McClellan’s writing,” says Deseret News, ”expertly allows the reader to visualize the action, understand each character’s psyche and motivation, and keep turning the pages well into the night.



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