Friday, June 21, 2024

Review: The Silverblood Promise by James Logan

The Silverblood Promise (The Last Legacy #1) by James Logan
Tor Books
Publication Date: May 7th, 2024
Hardcover. 528 pages.

About The Silverblood Promise:

"Lukan Gardova is a cardsharp, academy dropout, and―thanks to a duel that ended badly―the disgraced heir to an ancient noble house. His days consist of cheap wine, rigged card games, and wondering how he might win back the life he threw away.

When Lukan discovers that his estranged father has been murdered in strange circumstances, he finds fresh purpose. Deprived of his chance to make amends for his mistakes, he vows to unravel the mystery behind his father's death.

His search for answers leads him to Saphrona, fabled city of merchant princes, where anything can be bought if one has the coin. Lukan only seeks the truth, but instead he finds danger and secrets in every shadow.

For in Saphrona, everything has a price―and the price of truth is the deadliest of all.

This review is long overdue, but I had to make sure to get one up given how much I loved The Silverblood Promise. This book kept me sane during some long airport waits for delayed flights and subsequently long flights, so I am enormously grateful I had it as a companion while traveling!

The Silverblood Promise is everything I've been looking for in a fantasy lately: adventure, well-developed characters, intricate world-building, and layers of intrigue to get lost in. I've seen it compared to The Lies of Locke Lamora (which is one of my favorite fantasy books), and while I agree in terms of general vibe and atmosphere, I wouldn't compare them too closely. While both books have plenty of careful plotting and subterfuge, The Lies of Locke Lamora is a heist novel, whereas The Silverblood Promise embarks on a much different type of adventure.

The story centers around Lukan, who has recently learned that his father has been murdered and takes it upon himself to figure out why someone wanted his father dead. This purpose takes him to a city known as Saphrona, where Lukan is somewhat sidetracked (due to reasons beyond his control) and drawn into a seemingly endless series of additional secrets and quests that lead to a myriad of twists and turns that made this a book I couldn’t put down.

Logan somehow found the perfect balance between a fun fantasy adventure with quippy characters and a story where you can find something more sinister and serious in almost every corner. Because of this, I never felt overwhelmed with grittiness or heavier topics, but rather found myself enjoying a really well-rounded fantasy that offered a little bit of everything. This is also a single POV story that follows Lukan exclusively in the present, and I cannot tell you how much I liked that. Somehow it felt like a breath of fresh air when every other book out there lately seems to be multiple POVs or jumps around in time and has constant flashbacks thrown in. The simplicity in the present single perspective was something I really loved about this book.

Lukan is a really lovable character and feels a bit like a personality that I’ve seen around in fantasy stories before, but I don’t mind at all because he made a fantastic protagonist. He’s a little on the morally grey side, but I think he’s pretty ‘good’ overall, and I found his humor and perspective on the world around him were aspects I really connected with and enjoyed. I also absolutely loved his friendship with Flea, which turned into more of a father-daughter sort of role as the story progressed and really made for a perfect team. Their personalities bounced off of one another perfectly and made each conversation between them a true joy to read.

The world James Logan has created for The Silverblood Promise is fascinating and richly layered, and I really loved the mix of more “normal” everyday areas and places that felt much darker and lent themselves to more of an underbelly of the city where the real action occurs.  I was really pleased with everywhere we got to explore in this book–though I’m certainly looking forward to exploring even more of it in the sequel. There’s really nothing I love more than the sense that there’s a big new fantasy world sprawled out for me to explore, and this book really delivered on that feeling which I thought added a lot of depth to the narrative. There’s also tons of other intrigue in this book and an abundance of hidden plots and conspiracies to keep you hooked, so I promise that despite it being 500+ pages, you really won’t get bored while reading it.

I was also really curious about the magic system in The Silverblood Promise and appreciated how Logan incorporated it in as something central but not overwhelming to the story. While we don't see too much magic up close through the main characters, what we do see was primarily composed of darker magic that I think was executed with a perfect amount of awe and wariness of its power. There was some explanation of the magic itself, but I’m hopeful that future books will delve a bit deeper in the magic and expand upon it.

I could probably keep raving about this book for a while yet, but I’ll save you the time and just encourage you to give this one a read. Overall, I’ve given The Silverblood Promise five stars! If you can’t already tell, I had a blast with this book and am eagerly anticipating the sequel. If you’re looking for a big fantasy that’s packed full of adventure, mystery, magic, endearing characters and friendships, and plenty of twists, then The Silverblood Promise should be your next read.

*I received a copy of  The Silverblood Promise in exchange for an honest review. This has no effect on my rating.*

Buy the book: Amazon |

1 comment:

  1. I absolutely loved this too! And I know what you mean about the single character perspective with no flashbacks. That's one thing that made this so enjoyable for me😁