Customer Reviews for

Warrior (Blades of the Rose Series #1)

Average Rating 3.5
( 40 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

The first Blades of the Rose Victorian Era romantic fantasy is a fabulous thriller

In 1874 former British Army Captain Gabriel Huntley has just come home to England with no plans. However, when he sees a lone person under assault by a group, Gabe rushes in to help. He is too late to save the life of Anthony Morris. Before dying Anthony pleads with ...
In 1874 former British Army Captain Gabriel Huntley has just come home to England with no plans. However, when he sees a lone person under assault by a group, Gabe rushes in to help. He is too late to save the life of Anthony Morris. Before dying Anthony pleads with his Good Samaritan to deliver a message to Franklin Burgess in Urga, Outer Mongolia. Huntley agrees giving a death bed vow to Morris.

Huntley travels to Asia to find Burgess. He does, but the man has a broken leg and cannot follow up on Morris' missive. Burgess explains to his visitor that he is a member of the Blade of the Rose that prevents magical objects or "sources" from the possession of the "Heirs" who want world domination. Desperate he assigns his daughter Thalia and Huntley to locate and bring in the Mongolian Source at the same time a deadly Heir seeks to obtain it too.

The first Blades of the Rose Victorian Era romantic fantasy is a fabulous thriller as the lead couple struggles with their attraction and their mission. Fast-paced and filled with action and adventure in an exotic late nineteenth century locale, Zoe Archer opens her new series with a strong tale.

Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on September 20, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

When will I learn?

I keep asking myself when I will learn to BELIEVE negative reviews and not be so enthusiastic to click the "buy now" button. That's the third time now I've spent my money on an e-book that just ended up at the bottom of my archive list on my nook. This book had so much ...
I keep asking myself when I will learn to BELIEVE negative reviews and not be so enthusiastic to click the "buy now" button. That's the third time now I've spent my money on an e-book that just ended up at the bottom of my archive list on my nook. This book had so much promise though: adventure, unique Victorian setting, recovery of ancient relics, historical elements, riddles, a handsome male "warrior" and the old fashioned plot of saving the world from certain destruction. Unfortunately that's all this book had going for it. I just wanted to escape for a few hours to something that resembled an ancient treasure hunt with a strong, charismatic, intelligent "warrior"--what I read was far from my desire. I found the main characters just plain irritating and dull. The main purpose or plan of the villains was in a word "lame"--I think that is when I really lost interest. The romance was just over the top, laughable and needless.
Oh and to all those referring or trying to sell this book as an "Indiana Jones type fiction" please stop, you lured me (great job) but I have to tell all those potential readers, this book is as far from being anything resembling Dr. Henry Walton "Indiana" Jones, Jr. Ph.D. Comparing Indiana with this Captain Huntley is just an insult. Don't waste your money (like I did).

posted by -LadyinWriting on January 25, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2011

    When will I learn?

    I keep asking myself when I will learn to BELIEVE negative reviews and not be so enthusiastic to click the "buy now" button. That's the third time now I've spent my money on an e-book that just ended up at the bottom of my archive list on my nook. This book had so much promise though: adventure, unique Victorian setting, recovery of ancient relics, historical elements, riddles, a handsome male "warrior" and the old fashioned plot of saving the world from certain destruction. Unfortunately that's all this book had going for it. I just wanted to escape for a few hours to something that resembled an ancient treasure hunt with a strong, charismatic, intelligent "warrior"--what I read was far from my desire. I found the main characters just plain irritating and dull. The main purpose or plan of the villains was in a word "lame"--I think that is when I really lost interest. The romance was just over the top, laughable and needless.
    Oh and to all those referring or trying to sell this book as an "Indiana Jones type fiction" please stop, you lured me (great job) but I have to tell all those potential readers, this book is as far from being anything resembling Dr. Henry Walton "Indiana" Jones, Jr. Ph.D. Comparing Indiana with this Captain Huntley is just an insult. Don't waste your money (like I did).

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 11, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Loved it!

    Victorian era paranormal romance. Um, yes please? I have been trying to figure out how to describe the world of the Blades. It feels very Indiana Jones meets a protect-the-native-interests kind of mood.

    The world that the Blades strive to protect and defend is made up of all those bits and pieces of mythology and magic we've heard stories about. They're real. The god Thor, ancient Oriental powers, all of them exist, and because of that fact - people are out to abuse them; in this story it's the Heirs. The Heirs are predominantly English gentry who want to use the magic Sources to create a global English empire. Sources are powerful magical objects.

    Thus, the Blades have decided to defend them. In Warrior, this journeys to Mongolia and across the steppes and desert, traversing a culture rich with hospitality and adventure. I can only think of one other book I've ever read that touches Mongolia as a setting. I was fascinated reading Warrior on an intellectual level, learning about the people and customs of that place. It's a rarity to find a novel that also educates, which makes the Blades of the Rose books all that much more of a great read.

    This story features two people, Thalia Burgess and Captain Gabriel Huntley. They're both awkward and confident in their own way. Thalia is an English woman raised in Mongolia, fighting to protect precious secrets and the interests of people alien to her. Her father is a Blade of the Rose, and that's what she wants to be; it's why she accepts the task of protecting a Mongolian Source without hesitation. Thalia has also spent most of her life in Mongolia and is more Mongol than English - so the very English Captain Huntley makes her self-conscious that she isn't a proper lady.

    Gabriel Huntley has lived his life as a soldier and isn't sure how to stop soldiering, or even converse with a woman. Kill something? Track an enemy? Plan a multi-level defense? He can do those! Have a domestic conversation with a woman? Out of his skill set. Believe that there's magic in the world? Need a stiff drink there.

    I love the awkwardness between the characters, and I especially love Gabriel's gruffness. Maybe it's just reminding me of the very country/cowboy men I've grown up with, but he's a plain, ordinary man. There's something refreshing about his character not being a suave, alpha male hero that sweeps the woman off her feet. The love that develops between Thalia and Gabriel is both instantly combustible and also tangible.

    To date there are now two of these books out, Warrior & Scoundrel, though Rebel should be out by the time this blog is published.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 29, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Genre defying adventure romance!

    I haven't read a book like Warrior in a long, long time. In some ways, it's very old fashioned. In a good way. In other ways, this book is entirely new and fresh. There are echoes of Rider Haggard, the Amelia Peabody series, the Mummy movies, and even Indiana Jones in this book. The setting is one I haven't read a lot about: Mongolia. But it's clear that the author has done her research. The climate, customs, even the sprinkling of Mongolian words throughout the story all add to a nice sense of authenticity.

    I love that this book is hard to pin down to a single subgenre. There's suspense. There's paranormal. There's history. Even some steampunkish elements. But all of it is woven with such subtle skill that no one element dominates any other. It's entirely new, yet borrows from an extensive film and literature lore-which only adds to the richness of the storytelling.

    I don't think the cover of this book really does it justice. Although it does have that Indy feel, this is about much, much more than a rogue adventurer. At its heart, Warrior is a romance about two people who have trouble fitting into society who discover that with each other, they can be accepted and appreciated as they are. Gabriel is a recently retired soldier who isn't thrilled with what retired life holds in store for him. Thalia is an Englishwoman living in Mongolia. She's far too accustomed to freedom to ever be comfortable being "proper." But their unconventionality is exactly what makes a relationship between the two of them possible.

    There's a lot to love about Archer's writing, too. Although it's told in the third person, she makes sure that whenever we read about a character's thoughts or emotions it is clear which character it is. Plus the book is incredibly funny.

    Like this line when he first hears her swear.

    "...to hear such language come from her edible-looking mouth was something of a thrill for Huntley, not unlike going to a prayer meeting and finding it full of unrepentant strumpets."


    I also really love how Gabriel treats Thalia as an equal. He's protective and arrogant. But not smothering. And he doesn't devalue her feelings, capabilities, or skills.


    This book was flat-out fun to read. I think it will appeal to a wide variety of readers and

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 20, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The first Blades of the Rose Victorian Era romantic fantasy is a fabulous thriller

    In 1874 former British Army Captain Gabriel Huntley has just come home to England with no plans. However, when he sees a lone person under assault by a group, Gabe rushes in to help. He is too late to save the life of Anthony Morris. Before dying Anthony pleads with his Good Samaritan to deliver a message to Franklin Burgess in Urga, Outer Mongolia. Huntley agrees giving a death bed vow to Morris.

    Huntley travels to Asia to find Burgess. He does, but the man has a broken leg and cannot follow up on Morris' missive. Burgess explains to his visitor that he is a member of the Blade of the Rose that prevents magical objects or "sources" from the possession of the "Heirs" who want world domination. Desperate he assigns his daughter Thalia and Huntley to locate and bring in the Mongolian Source at the same time a deadly Heir seeks to obtain it too.

    The first Blades of the Rose Victorian Era romantic fantasy is a fabulous thriller as the lead couple struggles with their attraction and their mission. Fast-paced and filled with action and adventure in an exotic late nineteenth century locale, Zoe Archer opens her new series with a strong tale.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2013

    Runtfur

    Walks to salt last resalt

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  • Posted September 13, 2012

    this was the one in the series that really grabbed at me, the ch

    this was the one in the series that really grabbed at me, the chemistry was amazing

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2013

    Fun ride

    Wouldn't compare this book to any other. I enjoyed it on its own. Fun adventure plus romance.

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  • Posted June 15, 2011

    Great Fantasy

    Zoe Archer wrote a compelling book that introduces her own brand of magic. Very imaginative. I enjoyed learning about it along with Captain Gabriel. Thalia, the female hero in the story is not the typical 'wild girl that needs taming,' but a real woman with intelligence and skills. Both Gabriel and Thalia are well written characters with a solid backstory. Setting up the series, this first book has a real ending. Instead leaving you with a cliffhanger, the book gives you a taste of the magic and wonders to experience if you pick up the next volumes, but has a well rounded conclusion that doesn't make me feel cheated.

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  • Posted January 26, 2011

    Interesting new series - yet with a forced romance

    Warrior is the first book in Zoe Archer's The Blades of the Rose series. Captain Gabriel Huntley has only known the life of a soldier, but now that he has left the service he has plans to settle down in the English countryside. Not long after leaving the docks he witnesses a group of people attacking a man. Never one to stand an unfair fight, Gabriel comes to the man's assistance. Unfortunately, the man dies and Gabriel makes a promise to go to Mongolia to deliver a message. When Gabriel gets to Mongolia, he becomes embroiled in a mission upon saving magical artifacts that must not get into the wrong hands. Never one to back away from danger, Gabriel takes it upon himself to protect Thalia Burgess, whose father is a member of The Blades of the Roses and is too sick to go on the mission himself.

    For me the strength of this book is the unusual setting of Mongolia and the paranormal plot development. The scenery and customs of the Mongolian people is unique and interesting to read about. The history of the people and how magic is tied to the earth reminded me some of Native American culture. The fact that the story is told through an Englishman and woman makes it all the more different.

    While I like both Gabriel and Thalia, I felt that the romance between these two seemed forced. Instead of showing me how the relationship developed, the author told me. At least this is how it was in the beginning of the book. By the time I had read half the book, I felt the writing had gotten better and the relationship felt less forced. For me though, I was more focused on the external conflict between the Blades and Heirs. I definitely see the potential in this series. It is unusual enough that I will be giving the second book Scoundrel a try.

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  • Posted November 20, 2010

    Great Steampunk in an alternate setting

    I loved the setting; it takes place in 1800s Mongolia, which definitely isn't a common setting for a historical romance but works really well here. Add in some awesome steampunk elements (like brass compasses and kite maps) and it made for a really interesting read. On top of that awesomeness, the characters were fantastic! I loved their personalities and strengths and their dialogue. My only complaint is that at times I was distracted by how easy going and accepting everyone was of differences and how the plot would slow a smidge at times. Overall, though, it was great and I can't wait to read the next one in the series!

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    Posted November 10, 2011

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    Posted October 11, 2010

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    Posted September 27, 2010

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