by G.A. Aiken
Series: The Scarred Earth Saga #1
Release Date: August 27th 2019
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Magic, Romance
Format Read: ARC, eBook
Buy on Amazon
When a prophesy brings war to the Land of the Black Hills, Keeley Smythe must join forces with a clan of mountain warriors who are really centaurs in a thrilling new fantasy romance series from New York Times bestselling author G.A. Aiken.
The Old King Is Dead
With the demise of the Old King, there’s a prophesy that a queen will ascend to the throne of the Black Hills. Bad news for the king’s sons, who are prepared to defend their birthright against all comers. But for blacksmith Keeley Smythe, war is great for business. Until it looks like the chosen queen will be Beatrix, her younger sister. Now it’s all Keeley can do to protect her family from the enraged royals.
Luckily, Keeley doesn’t have to fight alone. Because thundering to her aid comes a clan of kilt-wearing mountain warriors called the Amichai. Not the most socially adept group, but soldiers have never bothered Keeley, and rough, gruff Caid, actually seems to respect her. A good thing because the fierce warrior will be by her side for a much longer ride than any prophesy ever envisioned …
I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This story had all the elements that made me sit up and pay attention – warrior women, centaurs, witches, magic, Game of Thrones level of plotting and backstabbing…
And yet…I don’t know what it was about this book, but it just really didn’t vibe with me.
There were elements that I really enjoyed, which I’ll speak about. I loved the women in this book/world – they were varied and strong in more than one way, and I just had such a clear picture of them in my mind that they felt one step closer to stepping off the page. We’re talking Ser Brienne of Tarth levels of badassery here, ladies and gents. Which I am always here for.
The characterizations of the centaurs were cleverly done, and I also enjoyed the other hints of magical creatures that we got to see in the story.
But that was pretty much it, in terms of what I enjoyed. The plot itself was, in my opinion, a bit weak and stifled – the big AHA moments weren’t all that shocking or surprising. In fact, I found the whole thing a bit predictable, which is usually the kiss of death for me in any novel, but especially in a High Fantasy.
I think a lot of this also had to do with the author’s voice and writing style. In the end, it just felt a little too jarring or modern or, I’m not sure really. This could be because of its ARC status, but more so, I just don’t think that I enjoy this author’s writing style. Which is fine! There are plenty of people who will disagree with me and find it perfectly suited to their own tastes!
That’s the beauty of books, isn’t it? To find stories, authors, and fellow readers who both agree and disagree with you?
In the end, The Blacksmith Queen fell just a little flat for me.
A brief snapshot into everything you need to know about me: I’m a 25 year old Ravenclaw living in the Deserts of Arizona (but, hey, it’s a dry heat, right?). I’m 90% water and 10% caffeine, and I proudly declare myself both a Sassenach and Queen in the North. In addition to reading practically anything and everything I can get my hands on, I graduated with a degree in European History and a full-out obsession with Hamilton and Disney. I’m fluent in English, Sarcasm, and Movie Quotes (there’s French in there as well) and am that friend of a friend who will run off on tangents about the most random topics. I hope you enjoy my reviews and I can’t wait to discuss with you all!