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Thursday, August 27, 2020

Those Brave, Foolish Souls from the City of Swords (Yarnsworld # 3) review


Official Author Website
Order After Sundown over HERE(USA) or HERE(UK)


AUTHOR INFORMATION: Benedict Patrick is from a small town in Northern Ireland called Banbridge, but has been living and working in Scotland since he moved there at the age of eighteen. Tragically, that was quite a while ago.

He has been writing for most of his life, and has been reading for pretty much all of it (with help from mum and dad at the beginning). Benedict's life changed when a substitute primary school teacher read his class part of The Hobbit and later loaned him the book – he fell in love with the fantasy genre and never looked back.

FORMAT: Self-published by the author on October 17, 2017 Those Brave, Foolish Souls from the City of Swords is 286 pages long. Cover design by Jenny Zemanek.

REVIEW: Benedict Patrick has a Knack for writing engaging stories that merge folktales and fantasy. Yarnsworld is slowly becoming one of my favorite fantasy places. If you haven't visited it yet, you definitely should.

Arturo is a young and naive boy who dreams of becoming a Bravador - protector of the weak and helpless. He packs his blade and travels to the fabled City of Swords to prove himself and join one of Bravadori stables. He has a Knack after all - he's able to read unnoticeable patterns from his opponents' actions and use this information to predict how they would act in battle. A useful gift that, he's sure, will allow him to get renown.

Soon, his dreams are shattered. It turns out the Bravadori of Espadapan are just thugs in masks, taking what they can for fame, glory, or the sheer joy of violence and humiliating their opponents. They're just sad echoes of Arturo's childhood dreams.

When a villager asks Arturo for help, he attempts the impossible. He will prove that Bravadori can be noble and selfless. With the help of an outcast and fallen legend, he'll try to save the distant village.

I'm thoroughly impressed with this book. It has it all: great, flawed characters, fantastic setting, and excellent world-building. It's a book about heroes, loss, and redemption. There was one character, in particular, I wanted to shake and slap who's managed to gain my respect in the end. The other two, I cared for them since the beginning.

Supporting characters were strong and memorable. Main characters' development was believable and genuinely touching. Each of them will surprise you more than once.

The writing is superb. Patrick's prose is easily accessible and while I wouldn't describe it as lyrical it does the trick and allows us to feel the characters' emotions and imagine the vibrant world he's created.

Long story short - it's Patrick's best book. It's also one of the best indie books I've ever read. It does everything I like in fantasy well - it combines myths, quest-like adventure, and redemption of flawed heroes as well as tales within the tales.

Those Brave, Foolish Souls from the City of Swords is engaging, immersive, and touching. It's a book I'll re-read with pleasure and it's not something I say often. I crave more Yarnsworld stories.

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