Thursday, September 29, 2016
Author: Tim Marquitz
Publisher: Self Published, Available through Amazon
Release Date: January 24, 2016
Length : 191 pages
I actually got to beta read for this book, so I saw it before anyone else. I am so glad, because it was so good! Kaede and Bess, a retired pit fighter and a witch, convince Sand, a farm boy with an unhealthy fascination with sheep, that he is prophesied to win the War God Tournament, a contest to determine the best gladiator in the world. The problem is, Sand is dumb as a box of really dumb rocks, and he's going to need a lot of help.
The story continues on with lots of combat, a stuck up magical sword named Clarence, and the final climactic battle with the current War God. There was no way to see the ending coming, and it is perfect! This is the funniest book I ever read, so the tag line of Monte Python meets Gladiator is apt. The humor of this book is very adult, so keep that in mind before buying it for a kid with a Kindle.
Like all Tim Marquitz books, the characters are a real strength. Kaede and Bess are great characters, funny and snarky and conniving. When I see them in my minds eye, I think of Peter Mensa from Gladiator and Lena Headey from Game of Thrones. Sand is just a big doofus. Think a blond Channing Tatum. The rest of the characters, like Clarence the magic sword, AKA Whineblade, are a lot of fun too. I could hear the voice of the Great Kazoo from the Flintstones as Clarance's mental voice.
The setting is well drawn out, and the plot never slackens, keeping the reader turning pages to see what happens next, but not wanting the book to end. The combat, as with any Tim Marquitz book, is outstanding, bloody and realistic and makes you feel as if your on the arena floor, sword in hand, waiting for the killing strike. Its that good. I can't wait for this to get an Audio version. That will be a lot of fun.
Any fan of Rob Kroese's Land of Dis books or Scott Meier's Magic 2.0 series should love this series, as should anyone who likes adult slapstick humor.