Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Age of Myth (The Legends of the First Empire, #1)Age of Myth by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Category: Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Content: Clean

Since time immemorial, humans have worshipped the gods they call Fhrey, truly a race apart: invincible in battle, masters of magic, and seemingly immortal. But when a god falls to a human blade, the balance of power between humans and those they thought were gods changes forever.
Michael Sullivan has become one of my favorite fantasy authors. He has the ability to write in depth characters and stories that are also easy to read. I never feel like I have to unwind my brain or come up for air after reading his books. I know I'm probably weird, but that's just what a lot of epic fantasy does to me. I feel like I have to have a good bit of time to devote to those. But with Michael Sullivan's books I can just relax and enjoy without feeling like I've got to tackle some giant tome.

I first became acquainted with Michael Sullivan's work when I won a copy of Theft of Swords through a Goodreads giveaway. I've loved fantasy for a long time now and I wanted to explore some books by authors I hadn't read yet. I'm not a huge fan of grimdark fantasy so I can be very cautious about what fantasy books I add to my list, and I was skimming through a lot of that trying to find something I thought I would like. I had finished The Wheel of Time series, I had finished all of the available books in the Green Rider series, and I had read some Sanderson and Rothfuss. While looking over many different books I came across Theft of Swords and added it to my to-read list. I ended up loving that series and looking forward to reading whatever else Michael Sullivan would write. Age of Myth was the one that I was most eagerly awaiting, mainly because I wanted to see what type of fantasy the author would come up with next and I must say that I was not disappointed.

What does it mean if the gods can be killed?

That little tag line is what hooked me. It's what sparked my interest in this book from the beginning. Age of Myth is set in the same world as the Riyria books, but 3000 years in the past. We get to learn about the truth behind the myths. Who the real heroes were and how it all came about.

I can't think of anything negative to say about this book-well ok maybe one small, tiny thing. The feelings one character develops for another came about a little too soon, but it didn't bother me much. I think because it still felt very mature and not like the insta-love where they are suddenly madly in love and can't live without each other.

Really though, everything about this book is good. The cover is gorgeous. I love that the oak in the story was chosen to be the focus of the cover, and I just plain love when a cover artist actually chooses a scene from a book and makes it the cover, and actually does a wonderful job of depicting it.

Probably the very best thing about this book is the characters. If you are looking for nonstop action you will not find it in this book. There are some tense scenes, a couple of fights and even a short battle, but the characters very much make this book what it is. They were all so relatable and well developed. Each of the characters ended up stealing my heart, with of course, the exception of the few who weren't meant to. There is a great balance of strong men and women in this book and I liked that their strengths were varied. Some were good fighters; others were very clever and smart. They each had something different and meaningful to contribute to the story. I loved Suri and Minna the most. But Persephone, Raithe, and Malcolm were great too.

This book ended nicely. There is the knowledge that more is to come, but the book itself is a complete story without any cliffhangers, which makes it a little easier to have to wait a whole year for the next book. I am really looking forward to it.

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