Title: The Rage of Dragons
Author: Evan Winter
Series: The Burning #1
Edition Read: Kindle eBook
Blurb: The Omehi people have been fighting an unwinnable fight for almost two hundred years. Their society has been built around war and only war. The lucky ones are born gifted. One in every two thousand women has the power to call down dragons. One in every hundred men is able to magically transform himself into a bigger, stronger, faster killing machine.
Everyone else is fodder, destined to fight and die in the endless war.
Young, gift-less Tau knows all this, but he has a plan of escape. He’s going to get himself injured, get out early, and settle down to marriage, children, and land. Only, he doesn’t get the chance.
Those closest to him are brutally murdered, and his grief swiftly turns to anger. Fixated on revenge, Tau dedicates himself to an unthinkable path. He’ll become the greatest swordsman to ever live, a man willing to die a hundred thousand times for the chance to kill the three who betrayed him.
To say that this is one of the best books that I’ve read this year would be completely accurate. To say that this is one of the best new fantasy novels that I’ve read ever? Also completely accurate. I was kind of blown away by this one, to be honest. This book has been getting quite a bit of hype and it is deserving of all of it.
Let’s start where I always start with fantasy books: the story world. I loved how this world was built being ultimately very unfair to most of the Omehi people. People born into a certain caste don’t have much chance to prove themselves or advance. Add to that corruption from the top down and things are really not good for Tau, our main character. Even one of his good friends doesn’t hesitate to remind him of his place as lower in rank, despite the fact that Tau is a much better fighter. Once his father is killed in front of him, all bets are off for Tau. He is determined to get his revenge.
And then there are the dragons. Very different from what I am used to reading about dragons, I’ve read a fair amount. These dragons are from another dimension/plane of existence and can be summoned by the Gifted to aid in battle. It’s dangerous, though. In order to do so, one of the Gifted has to partially stay in that other dimension, and there be demons.
The battle scenes, of which there are many, were also very well written. Sometimes I tend to skim over battles in books, but these were great.
Of course, all books rely on having good characters and this book has some great ones. As the main character, Tau is the one you cheer for. Seeing his journey from a nobody to someone bent on revenge to one of the most savage fighters was pretty spectacular. I also really liked Jayyed, Tau’s instructor in the military, as well as the others in Tau’s group.
In short, if you like fantasy and want to see something that feels refreshing and new in the genre, read this. Like, now. It was so well done and I can’t wait to read book #2!
GoodReads rating: 5 stars
Categories: Books I've Read