#FridayFlashbook: Wintersteel

A bookblogger roundup on a book that’s been around

Many thanks to Gary Mitchelhill of Rapidsnap at Deviant Art for the banner picture!

On Fridays, I’m going to be sharing reviews on a book on my TBR that I keep hearing about. Today, it’s the self-published book that made it to the semifinals of Goodreads Fantasy category, Will Wight’s Wintersteel, and it’s a rave fest. Reviews are in alphabetical order, and I want to include at least one audiobook review each time.

The Book Dude

An audiobook review broken down into categories. Includes trigger warnings.

I have read a lot of books this year (Wintersteel being number 65), and quite a few of them were excellent (The Library at Mount Char, The Ten Thousand Doors of January, Gideon the Ninth, etc). I can, with some measurable degree of certainty, say that Wintersteel was amongst my very favorites of this list. In fact, Wintersteel is probably one of my favorite books, period. I could not stop listening to this book. 

Jeff Chandler, “Wintersteel by Will Wight, a review,The Book Dude

Bryce Moore

A writer and librarian’s perspective with some good analysis.

So the fact that I bought Will Wight’s Wintersteel the very night it released, cleared my schedule to read it, and finished it two days later, says all you really need to know about the book. 

Bryce Moore, “Book Review: Wintersteel,” Bryce Moore

Feminist Quill

Packed with quotes that places the book into its context within the Cradle series. Depending on your information tolerance, might contain spoilers.

I think I remember complaining Uncrowned was too short. Wintersteel more than makes up for that. And the book isn’t just long. It is also insanely packed with story.

Anonymous, “Cradle #8 – Wintersteel,Feminist Quill

Novel Notions

A very thoughtful evaluation, with quotes, rating, and genre labels.

Wintersteel, in every sense of the content, is a direct continuation of Uncrowned, and I know it would go against the nature of the series to do this, but I did feel that both Uncrowned and Wintersteel would’ve been even better as one tome. Unlike many readers of the series, I actually considered Uncrowned to be one of the best installments in the series despite the abrupt ending. If you’re reading this review but haven’t started the series or read Uncrowned yet, I strongly suggest you binge-read Uncrowned and Wintersteel back to back.

Petrik Leo, “Book Review: Wintersteel (CRADLE, #8) by Will Wight,” Novel Notions

Someday I’ll get through that TBR and have a chance to review it myself—these guys have made me want to check it out.

Happy Friday!

I don’t need no stinking prophecies

The 19th Bladesman is the first installment in this series and has my least favorite component of a book in a series—it simply ends, rather than really resolving much of anything. I’m fine with outstanding storylines, but I do like to feel like I’ve gotten to a stopping point. That’s a trait it shares with many other series that I have stuck with, so it’s not a fatal error, just an annoyance.

S.J. Hartland has done a commendable job with her villains. I would snarl at them as I was reading, which is always a sign that I’ve gotten involved with them. I’m not as enamored with the protagonists, though, as I didn’t get nearly as upset as they encountered travails along the way. A part of that is because she oversold some aspects: Kaell’s desire to please his lord, Val Arques aka Vraymorg; Vraymorg’s fight with his own feelings; and Heath’s emptiness. When you get to the point where you’re thinking, “Yeah, yeah, yeah, move it along,” you know that your compassion is not being touched.

However, if you weren’t bothered by repetitions in the Wheel of Time, you might like it. Like that series, the book does touch the familiar points that many readers of epic fantasy want to see. There are big battles and small ones, an evil lord lurking about, gods with murky motives, various kingdoms with different desires, monsters, magic, questionable deaths, betrayals, secrets, beautiful men and women, and some really nasty people with power. 

The series has promise, and the groundwork has been laid so that you aren’t completely sure whom you should root for and Hartland has successfully started a labyrinthine plot. I just haven’t decided yet whether I’ll take the time to find out how it all works out.