I read Sword of the Guardian a couple of years ago and loved it. Gave it 5 stars on Goodreads and told everyone who would listen that they had to read this book. Andy and I discussed it on Cocktail Hour, along with the author’s other book, Branded Ann. I finished a re-read of it a couple of days ago and couldn’t believe I hadn’t posted a review here before now.
Since I knew what to expect from the plot, I remembered almost all of it, I was able to pay closer attention to the writing itself. One of my good friends didn’t like the book so I wanted to try to figure out what it was that she could possibly have had a problem with. We’re going to be discussing the book in a week for our book group so I wanted to write my review before she has a chance to tell me.
The book starts out with Talon and her sisters, Lyris and Bria, performing at the 16th birthday celebration for the twin prince and princess of Ithyria. Talon, who passes as a man, and her sisters are orphans and part of a troupe of performers who are managed by a brutal man but when an assassin tries to murder the royal twins, the three sisters’ lives change forever.
Sword of the Guardian is a well written book. Merry Shannon has a great gift for story telling and world building. I very much enjoyed watching young princess Shasta grow and mature into someone I liked and respected. Talon was always honorable and strong and worked hard to keep the princess and her sisters safe but I think Shasta’s growth is what we really see the most.
There’s loads of political intrigue within the palace and I love to hate that bastard Kumire. And let’s not forget about the priestesses. They come into play later in the book and they rock! The only thing I really had an issue with was how long some things took. There seemed to be months that would pass while waiting for an event or discovery to move the plot along. The book spans over four years so it’s not that the reader is forced to go through extra crap while waiting for the action or revelation, the author just moves us ahead in time. But there were some plot points that felt, to me, that they shouldn’t have taken so long for the characters to figure out or resolve.
All that being said, this book will remain one of my favorites and most recommended. I love it. Shannon’s working on the sequel now and I’m looking forward to it. You can watch the trailer that the author put together for Sword of the Guardian and get info on the upcoming sequel on her website: http://merryshannon.com/