The Sword Chronicles: Child of the Empire

The Sword Chronicles: Child of the Empire

by Michaelbrent Collings

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The Sword Chronicles: Child of the Empire 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Nicki2323 More than 1 year ago
Amazing story, wonderful character development. The story sucks you in quickly and has you on the edge of your seat. Action packed until the very end. The characters will stick with you long after the books is finished. I'm familiar with Collings horror novels. This is one of his best works. Very much looking forward to the second book of this series.
ToManyBooksNotEnoughTime More than 1 year ago
I would like to thank Michaelbrent Collings for a copy of this e-book to review. Though I received this for free, that has no impact upon the honesty of my review. Definitely a unique world, with a fascinating twist to an old story. Following her journey from Dog, to Sword, and the changes that follow her once she becomes Sword is intriguing, entertaining, and emotional. Watching her navigate the world outside the kennels is astounding, as it's so well done that the kennels and attendant lifestyle seem very real. Which is rather horrifying to say the least. But her innate intelligence shines through, and given just the smallest crumbs Sword promptly begins making up for all the education she lacked in those dark years. But part of what makes her so interesting is that she doesn't regret her years as a Dog, for they pared down her world to the very basics, the only true rule of which was survival. And when she meets others that lacked that experience she sometimes feels sorry for them; sorry that they've not had an experience to hone their sense of life and refine their inner fire. Sword finds a family in the other Blessed Ones, something she's never had before, or at least not in her memory. Her joy in having a family, in finally belonging, is almost tangible. But it comes at at cost. She accepts everything about her life as a Blessed One at face value, never questioning the Empire and the things that are allowed, or even encouraged, under its rule. She accepts what she sees and is told as truth. So when forced to confront the fact that her current truths may in fact be lies she struggles mightily. Sword must once again find her way in her latest incarnation. She must face the new realities of her life, regardless of how she feels about them. And eventually she comes to terms with the changes in her life, though they bring both great satisfaction and heart rending sorrow. The other characters, especially the Blessed and Cursed Ones, are very powerful influences in Sword's life. As such they've been well crafted and most could easily stand alone with their own story, though we're not usually given anything remotely close to their whole story. But each one has qualities that are necessary, and all play roles of similar importance. In fact I think I'd have been quite happy to follow most any of their stories much further, going much more deeply into their backgrounds. Hopefully I'll get the chance in future books in this series. All told this story moved quite smoothly, with nice transitions between each segment of Sword's life thus far. The character development played into the arc of the story very melodiously, creating a book that was as much story as it was bardic tale. Even the time of the Empire lent itself well to the crafting of one epic bard's tale. Each character helped to create yet another layer to the tale, adding a warp and weft that made a tapestry of imaginary people come to vivid life before my very eyes. I cared about these people, and found myself invested in the outcome of their personal stories. I can't think of better praise for a book than that!
TracyJTJ More than 1 year ago
I’ve declined some cringe worthy books in the last few months for review and The Sword Chronicles: Child of the Empire was a blast of fresh air. Collings knows his craft and fans (teens through to adults) of fantasy and dystopian fiction will enjoy reading this book. Collings’ novel is set in the kingdom of Anborn. Anborn is built on five mountains named – Faith, Strength, Knowledge, Fear and Center. It rests above the cloud line and anyone from Anborn who attempts to travel below the clouds dies horribly. The one dynasty has ruled Anborn for generations. The narrative opens with the dramatic, bloody dream of a girl – a dog. People, often children, are sold into the fighting pits (kennels) and once there, they are known as dogs. Everything about life in the kennels is dehumanising and torturous. The rule of life, for this girl, is kill or be killed. The girl doesn’t know her name or her age. She knows nothing of life outside the kennels. At the end of one of her fights events take a strange turn and she becomes one of Anborn’s Blessed Ones and in the service of the emperor. This sparks the beginning of an adventure that is action packed and has plenty of heart as well. Collings’ opening scenes had me intrigued and hooked me to continue reading this story. The initial dream and the girl’s point of view are conveyed wonderfully well. The action sequences are gritty with no holds barred. The use of staccato sentences in the action sequences adds to the pacing, provides great emphasis on key elements and directs the reader’s attention. “There was that particular noise of sword cleaving flesh. A gurgle…He laughed. The blood washed away. The day was begun.“ These abrupt sentences also place emphasis on the girl’s fragmented point of view early on. It serves to highlight animalistic nature of her existence – moment to moment survival and a struggle to understand the unfamiliar. This also works to create an effect for the reader like a camera panning in on specific moments in a film. This is a very cinematic piece of writing. The reader will have no trouble visualising the story as it unfolds and Collings sets a cracking pace. The characterisations within the novel are well written. The girl's culture shock at life outside the kennels, her psychological recovery and gradual education are handled well and though she is the heroine of this story she is not without fault. The supporting cast are all well rounded and given detailed backstories which are woven into the narrative seamlessly. My only complaint was that it became clear to me early on who the bad guy really was, although there was a nice little twist to that which I didn't anticipate. Collings blends familiar dystopian elements along with many fantasy genre tropes and the tech in the novel is a blend of science and magic. Overall the world building has an eastern flare to it. The combination works and even though I knew where the story was heading, its execution was so good that I really didn’t mind – I was carried along on the roller coaster ride until the end. Would I read the next one? You bet! Four Stars!
RIA_Reviews More than 1 year ago
There are always these wonderful moments when I find a book that is so perfectly long and detailed and adventurous that I know I will love it every single time I read it. I can without a doubt say that Child of the Empire is one of those books. I could open it back up right now and read it all over again and enjoy it just as much as the first time. In fact, I know when I re-read it I will still be left loving it and wanting more. Child of the Empire takes place in a world sat upon five mountains. The mystery surrounding even that aspect of the story was amazing. I was constantly wondering what could be below the clouds, and how this empire came to be. Then there was the empire itself. Ansborn is a complex empire, with a lot of shady dealings and unanswered questions. The characters the Michaelbrent Collings created are amazing. They are a complex cast, each bringing something important to the story. Sword is a survivor and I loved her. She was clever and learned quickly. She was blunt and asked questions that many would probably avoid. Her personal journey from a Dog to Sword and everything she does as Sword is impressive. Other characters throughout the story pull everything along and add so much. I fell in love with so many of them. I was surprised by them, grieved for their troubles, and was excited by their triumphs. I loved this book so much. It is an epic fantasy that will intrigue readers. I wish they could make a movie that could do it justice. Now I am left, as it always seems when I find a new series to love, waiting for another book. I think it will be well worth the wait.