A Pilgrimage of Swords by Anthony Ryan

The Seven Swords #1

Official Blurb


It is two hundred years since the deity known as the Absolved went mad and destroyed the Kingdom of Alnachim, transforming it into the Execration, a blasted wasteland filled with nameless terrors. For decades, desperate souls have made pilgrimage to the centre of this cursed land to seek the Mad God’s favour, their fate always unknown.

Now a veteran warrior known only as Pilgrim, armed with a fabled blade inhabited by the soul of a taunting demon, must join with six others to make the last journey to the heart of the Execration. Allied with a youthful priest, a beast-charmer, a duplicitous scholar, an effete actor and two exiled lovers, Pilgrim must survive madness, malevolent spirits, unnatural monsters and the ever-present risk of treachery, all so that the Mad God might hear his prayer and, perhaps, grant redemption. But can sins such as his ever be forgiven?

Set in a world where demons and gods walk the earth, A Pilgrimage of Swords is a dark and exciting fantasy adventure from the New York Times bestselling author of the Raven’s Shadow and Draconis Memoria trilogies.

  • Subterranean; Deluxe Hardcover Edition
  • Published September 30, 2019

My Review

I really enjoyed every bit of this novella. It started quick. Before you know it, we are introduced to a small a group of people, who have sacrificed much to get to this point. Each character was written so well. I had no difficulties imagining each one from the start. I find it usually takes me awhile to get the hang of who’s who in most books. Each kept me curious about the lives they led, before embarking on a path that would lead them to the lands of the Mad God. They all are clear on the knowledge that this is most assuredly going to be a one way trip.

Original art by Didier Graffet

They will be led by a priest, to seek out the Mad God, with an expectation that only one person shall be granted a wish. They travel through a land changed, with the unnatural taking many forms.

The main character, Pilgrim, carries a sword that speaks, a lot. It’s clear that the sword and Pilgrim have been together for some time, and the sword is good at pointing out the types of things that you normally wouldn’t say out loud, and it drives Pilgrim crazy at times, yet, he also relies on it as an an instrument of protection, and power, but also as a constant challenge. It likes to push for outcomes that tend to be on the selfish side, and Pilgrim seems to use that to help him make the decision that puts his ego, and drive an afterthought.

It moves along to a satisfying end, an ending that filled me up. Although it was short, at no point did I feel like things were being rushed. Imaginative and refreshing, I’m glad I finally started it, and an even more excited to start, The Krakens Tooth, which is book two.

Has to be said that the covers of this series have become some of my favorite fantasy covers. Great job by Steven Brand, brought the characters to life and will be more aware of books that he has narrated before.

This story reminded me at times of Hyperion, which is a bit more on the sci-fi side of things, yet carries a similar weight and feel. Both are also quality work, and I will be happy to recommend this series to fantasy and sci-fi fans.

It’s easily a 4 Star read for me, mainly for the enjoyment and escape it provided.

Narrator Steven Brand Goodreads page https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5659982.Steven_Brand

Anthony Ryan website https://anthonyryan.net

Cover artist website https://www.alanlynchartists.com/didier-graffet

Thanks for visiting! Stay sane and safe, and keep on treating each other with kindness!

2 thoughts on “A Pilgrimage of Swords by Anthony Ryan

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