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Oathblood

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This exciting new anthology includes a new novella featuring Mercedes Lackey's most popular heroines, Tarma (one of the sword-sworn and most feared of all warriors) and Kethry (who wields magic and weapons for the greater good), whose fates are suddenly bound together in blood by the powers that control their destinies. Also included in the unique volume is the complete co This exciting new anthology includes a new novella featuring Mercedes Lackey's most popular heroines, Tarma (one of the sword-sworn and most feared of all warriors) and Kethry (who wields magic and weapons for the greater good), whose fates are suddenly bound together in blood by the powers that control their destinies. Also included in the unique volume is the complete collection of Lackey's short stories about these two brave sisters as they answer the call of their destinies with sword and sorcery!


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This exciting new anthology includes a new novella featuring Mercedes Lackey's most popular heroines, Tarma (one of the sword-sworn and most feared of all warriors) and Kethry (who wields magic and weapons for the greater good), whose fates are suddenly bound together in blood by the powers that control their destinies. Also included in the unique volume is the complete co This exciting new anthology includes a new novella featuring Mercedes Lackey's most popular heroines, Tarma (one of the sword-sworn and most feared of all warriors) and Kethry (who wields magic and weapons for the greater good), whose fates are suddenly bound together in blood by the powers that control their destinies. Also included in the unique volume is the complete collection of Lackey's short stories about these two brave sisters as they answer the call of their destinies with sword and sorcery!

30 review for Oathblood

  1. 4 out of 5

    eyes.2c

    I've read this series so many time since the titles first became available. My copies are all mass market paperbacks that were purchased way before GR and ebooks. It's only now that they make it onto my list but the titles are amongst my forever favorites. I've read this series so many time since the titles first became available. My copies are all mass market paperbacks that were purchased way before GR and ebooks. It's only now that they make it onto my list but the titles are amongst my forever favorites.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jeffe Kennedy

    Continuing my #readinghistory tribute to the Vows & Honor trilogy. I love how Tarma and Kethry establish their school - and a long-term platonic partnership. This also sets the stage for Kerowyn's tale, BY THE SWORD, which I entered a while back. I love it when stories interweave like this! Such a terrific, classic set of tales about kickass heroines, one a warrior, the other a sorceress. Clearly a big influence on me! Continuing my #readinghistory tribute to the Vows & Honor trilogy. I love how Tarma and Kethry establish their school - and a long-term platonic partnership. This also sets the stage for Kerowyn's tale, BY THE SWORD, which I entered a while back. I love it when stories interweave like this! Such a terrific, classic set of tales about kickass heroines, one a warrior, the other a sorceress. Clearly a big influence on me!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Victoria

    Mercedes Lackey’s Valdemar series provides one of the cornerstones of my reading history. After discovering her when quite young, I still follow new additions to the series - nearly twenty years later! I read and re-read these books over and over again throughout my youth, but I haven't re-read this series in its entirety in a long time - and never as an adult. There are some new books added to the series since the last time I read them, so this re-reading project is pretty exciting for me since Mercedes Lackey’s Valdemar series provides one of the cornerstones of my reading history. After discovering her when quite young, I still follow new additions to the series - nearly twenty years later! I read and re-read these books over and over again throughout my youth, but I haven't re-read this series in its entirety in a long time - and never as an adult. There are some new books added to the series since the last time I read them, so this re-reading project is pretty exciting for me since it will include these new volumes, and will be in a new order. These books really just remind me of being young, reading them in the back seat of the car on family road trips... I think I was in 4th or 5th grade when I first started reading them, and they've always been a pleasure to re-read - and I am sure this will continue to be the case! The Valdemar series is broken up into (for the most part) separate trilogies. In my re-reading project, I am going to try to read them chronologically - not by publication date, but by their timeline within the series. After thoroughly enjoying the second book in the Vows & Honor trilogy, Oathbreakers, this is a bit of a disappointment in that it isn’t an actual novel. It’s a book of short stories (at least it is more straightforward about it than the first book in the series!). It is still a pretty fun read, but it feels very short as many of the chapters from The Oathbound are re-printed as their original short stories here. That disappointment aside, it’s still an entertaining read, and the collection does contain some new stories which add a lot to the overall story arc of Tarma and Kethry. It is a relief to see more into their lives. Each short story has a special introduction by Mercedes Lackey which definitely adds a sort of “behind-the-scenes” feel to the collection. It’s an entertaining group of stories, surrounding a lot of strong characters - I just wish that there hadn’t been any overlap between the first book in the trilogy and this one!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kathleen

    A collection of short stories about Tarma the horsewoman warrior and her partner Kethry the White Winds mage. Two of the stories were integrated into Oathbound, the first Vows and Honor book. These stories are interesting because they span the entirety of Tarma and Kethry's friendship as well as over ten years of Lackey's professional writing career. Moreover, all of the stories are entertaining and fill in anything the reader wanted to know about the pair outside of what is covered in the novel A collection of short stories about Tarma the horsewoman warrior and her partner Kethry the White Winds mage. Two of the stories were integrated into Oathbound, the first Vows and Honor book. These stories are interesting because they span the entirety of Tarma and Kethry's friendship as well as over ten years of Lackey's professional writing career. Moreover, all of the stories are entertaining and fill in anything the reader wanted to know about the pair outside of what is covered in the novels.

  5. 5 out of 5

    D Dyer

    3.5 stars. I enjoyed these short stories and adventures, particularly the novella which gives this book it’s title but it fails to deliver a completely satisfying end to the trilogy. This book was fun, if you are a fan of the characters you’ll enjoy spending time with them, but the second book in this trilogy is definitely the High Point. I did find it particularly interesting to see Lackey’s early work with these characters and the ways in which some of the stories repeated hear from earlier in 3.5 stars. I enjoyed these short stories and adventures, particularly the novella which gives this book it’s title but it fails to deliver a completely satisfying end to the trilogy. This book was fun, if you are a fan of the characters you’ll enjoy spending time with them, but the second book in this trilogy is definitely the High Point. I did find it particularly interesting to see Lackey’s early work with these characters and the ways in which some of the stories repeated hear from earlier in the trilogy changed from one iteration to another.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Alex James

    The third part in the Vows and Honor omnibus is not a novel, but rather a collection of short stories. Though there are a lot of repeated stories from earlier in the omnibus, there are a lot of new stories too, one reaching back in time to when Tarma met Kethry in Swordsworn after the slaughter of her tribe. There are stories about Leslac the bard, a cup being poisoned, a large bear on the loose, a giant monster that has a town cowed, and a chambermaid being forced into abuse and then on the run The third part in the Vows and Honor omnibus is not a novel, but rather a collection of short stories. Though there are a lot of repeated stories from earlier in the omnibus, there are a lot of new stories too, one reaching back in time to when Tarma met Kethry in Swordsworn after the slaughter of her tribe. There are stories about Leslac the bard, a cup being poisoned, a large bear on the loose, a giant monster that has a town cowed, and a chambermaid being forced into abuse and then on the run for a new life. If you’re familiar with Tarma and Kethry’s stories you’ll love the short stories, which combine brutality, morality, adventure, and humour. If you aren’t familiar with the main novels and you’re not sure whether to try them, these short stories give a good indication of what you can expect and I don’t think you’ll leave disappointed.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Rachel Teferet

    I loved this series when I was a kid, and I thought I would re-read it. The first book was awful, but the second and third books were pretty OK. I’m sad to say that the books haven’t held up to my fond memory of them when I was a teenager, but they were still fun to read. The characters are rad :-) The final book, this one, has a short story that should’ve gone at the beginning of the series, which is followed by a collection of short stories and a short novel. They were fun but I’m afraid that I loved this series when I was a kid, and I thought I would re-read it. The first book was awful, but the second and third books were pretty OK. I’m sad to say that the books haven’t held up to my fond memory of them when I was a teenager, but they were still fun to read. The characters are rad :-) The final book, this one, has a short story that should’ve gone at the beginning of the series, which is followed by a collection of short stories and a short novel. They were fun but I’m afraid that they are fantasy pulp. Still, I enjoyed reading. The fourth book in the series, “By the Sword,” far out strips the original series and is one of the best Valdemar books that Mercedes Lackey has written. I’ll still cherish this series because I loved it so much as a kid, but really the only one worth reading is the fourth book!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jean

    This is a collection of short stories featuring Kethry and Tarma. Some I had read in anthologies. but others were totally new to me. Two had been subsumed into Oathbound. Those I skimmed as I had just read that book and they were nearly the same. Both the characters and the author matured and the stories steadily improved. In the end, I could tell that Tarma and Kethry knew they were good at what they did, but also didn't consider themselves "real" heroes. This quotation sums it up: "There’s your This is a collection of short stories featuring Kethry and Tarma. Some I had read in anthologies. but others were totally new to me. Two had been subsumed into Oathbound. Those I skimmed as I had just read that book and they were nearly the same. Both the characters and the author matured and the stories steadily improved. In the end, I could tell that Tarma and Kethry knew they were good at what they did, but also didn't consider themselves "real" heroes. This quotation sums it up: "There’s your real heroes—the people who keep coping, keep trying, no matter how many blows Fate takes at them. Nobody’ ll make a song about them, but they’re heroes all the same." If you read and enjoyed Oathbound and Oathbreakers, you'll enjoy finding out more about Tarma and Kethry.

  9. 5 out of 5

    A. Nixon

    Well, now I know why the first book in the series felt like a series of short stories - because it was! This volume had a slow beginning because I'd already read the first few stories in book 1. Which was a little disappointing, honestly. But the later stories are so entertaining and satisfying! I loved seeing more about Tarma and Kethry's adventures and their lives between book 2 and Kero's tale. Honestly, I'm not ready to give up my awesome-female-mercs stories. I might just have to re-read By t Well, now I know why the first book in the series felt like a series of short stories - because it was! This volume had a slow beginning because I'd already read the first few stories in book 1. Which was a little disappointing, honestly. But the later stories are so entertaining and satisfying! I loved seeing more about Tarma and Kethry's adventures and their lives between book 2 and Kero's tale. Honestly, I'm not ready to give up my awesome-female-mercs stories. I might just have to re-read By the Sword and to hell with the rest of my to-be-read pile.

  10. 4 out of 5

    CatBookMom

    This has 2 stories that were in The Oathbound, book #1 of this series. This has 2 stories that were in The Oathbound, book #1 of this series.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ria Bridges

    There are some ups and downs to this book. On the up-side, this book is a bunch of short stories and doesn’t pretend to be anything but that, no half-hearted attempts to string them all together into something resembling a coherent and continuing plot. It was nice to see a few interesting adventures that Tarma and Kethry have suffered through, particularly the one inspired by Murphy’s Law. Also, I finally got to read the story in which the two main characters met in the first place. The down side There are some ups and downs to this book. On the up-side, this book is a bunch of short stories and doesn’t pretend to be anything but that, no half-hearted attempts to string them all together into something resembling a coherent and continuing plot. It was nice to see a few interesting adventures that Tarma and Kethry have suffered through, particularly the one inspired by Murphy’s Law. Also, I finally got to read the story in which the two main characters met in the first place. The down side is that about half the book consisted of stories that had been seen in other places, most notably the first book of the Vows and Honor trilogy. This would be fine if it was a standalone book unconnected to another series, but as it was, I’d already read some of what was being presented to me, with few to no changed in the presentation between the original short story and the time it made it to the first book of the trilogy. Rather disappointing, I think, to read what I’d already read, especially when I was expecting new things. What was interesting, though, was to see the obvious progression of the author’s writing talents. From the earlier stories to the later ones, it’s easy to see Lackey’s style become more solid, more confident as she grows into it. Her sense of humour is evident throughout, though; some things just never change. Overall, I’m glad I can say that I’ve finally read this trilogy, which I think means I’ve read all the Valdemar novels except for one (and that one’s in the mail as we speak). I’m equally glad, though, to say that I don’t have to read it again; this was definitely my least favourite trilogy in the series. Decent, but not the best.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jackie B. - Death by Tsundoku

    Oathblood is, very clearly from the start, a short story collection. This is quite a contrast to Oathbound, where only in retrospect I discovered this was a short story collection all tied together to tell a moderately-cohesive story. It was refreshing to read small, complete tales about Kethry and Tarma. I found myself geeking out at returns of well-loved characters (yes, even the Bard Leslac!) and name dropping of people, places, and things from previous books. Each story contained an introduc Oathblood is, very clearly from the start, a short story collection. This is quite a contrast to Oathbound, where only in retrospect I discovered this was a short story collection all tied together to tell a moderately-cohesive story. It was refreshing to read small, complete tales about Kethry and Tarma. I found myself geeking out at returns of well-loved characters (yes, even the Bard Leslac!) and name dropping of people, places, and things from previous books. Each story contained an introduction by Lackey. This helped provide structure to this collection, but I found them hit or miss - particularly with the eBook formatting. I loved getting to know Kethry and Tarma better. With each passing story the duo felt more and more a proper pair. Watching their deep, platonic relationship develop reminded me repeatedly of the power of friendship. What a wonderful thing to be reminded of! Regardless of how much I enjoyed reading this collection, In the end, I still wanted more. Seeing Keth and Tarma's life piecemeal like this is dissatisfying. I want to know more about Keth's relationship with Jadrek, the re-establishment of the Tale'sedrin with (and without) Keth's children, and whether or not the school flourished. I will admit, by leaving these holes Lackey has me craving more from Valdemar -- even if I know I won't be reading about Kethry and Tarma perhaps ever again…

  13. 4 out of 5

    Katy

    I really enjoyed reading this book. At first, I was a bit disappointed, as it looked as if the book were full of stories that came from the previous two but, fortunately, there was only the first couple that I'd read before when, suddenly, I was knee deep in the kind of stories I had hoped for! I loved reading of Tarma and Kethry's future adventures - but, especially, the stories of Kethry and Jadrek's children. It was wonderful to read of their adventures, and how alike, and yet so different, the I really enjoyed reading this book. At first, I was a bit disappointed, as it looked as if the book were full of stories that came from the previous two but, fortunately, there was only the first couple that I'd read before when, suddenly, I was knee deep in the kind of stories I had hoped for! I loved reading of Tarma and Kethry's future adventures - but, especially, the stories of Kethry and Jadrek's children. It was wonderful to read of their adventures, and how alike, and yet so different, they were to their parents. I just hope I'll come across some more Tas and Kethry stories as I go through all the books I have, but still haven't read, by Mercedes Lackey! I'm just so grateful that I live in a time where we have so many wonderful writers to choose from - and the freedom to be able to choose who we want to read. So, I say goodbye, for now, to this wonderful duo, but day hello again to my journey through the history of Valdemar, as my next book on the shelf, is Exile's Honor! Yay!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Melanie Page

    Oathblood is distinctly and beautifully female, from the severe cramps Kethry suffers one night to the close friendships between girls who exchange prized gifts, to the way Tarma teaches her male students that she is not subservient to them thanks to her gender. While I was lulled into think Oathblood by Mercedes Lackey would be a simple collection of stories that harken back to the days of serial sci-fi and fantasy magazines, I realized through the passages I marked that there was much more goi Oathblood is distinctly and beautifully female, from the severe cramps Kethry suffers one night to the close friendships between girls who exchange prized gifts, to the way Tarma teaches her male students that she is not subservient to them thanks to her gender. While I was lulled into think Oathblood by Mercedes Lackey would be a simple collection of stories that harken back to the days of serial sci-fi and fantasy magazines, I realized through the passages I marked that there was much more going on — just not in your face. Check out the full review at Grab the Lapels.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jay

    This book was all over the place. Some stories good, some bad, some (songs) were a little much for me. They're little glimpses into the lives of Tarma, Kethry, Jadrek and Warrl. My favourite was the last story, Oathblood. I'm glad they decided to publish it so that there weren't bits and pieces floating all around. Though, having read By The Sword, I felt some of the more exciting topics - establishing the school, re-establishing the Clan, more time on Jadrek and Kethry's relationship, early day This book was all over the place. Some stories good, some bad, some (songs) were a little much for me. They're little glimpses into the lives of Tarma, Kethry, Jadrek and Warrl. My favourite was the last story, Oathblood. I'm glad they decided to publish it so that there weren't bits and pieces floating all around. Though, having read By The Sword, I felt some of the more exciting topics - establishing the school, re-establishing the Clan, more time on Jadrek and Kethry's relationship, early days with the Sunhawks - stand out as missed opportunities.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kaye

    I liked every character in these tales. Each chapter was a self-contained story about the adventures of Tarma, Kethry, and Warrl. The first two, Turnabout and Keys, came from other books in the series. The rest were new to me. It would be best to read the first two books in the series first. Establishing the strength of character and the courage of the two women made them all the more interesting as central characters.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Li

    The good: old-school Lackey is so much better than current Lackey in terms of world-building, story-telling, and pacing, and the magic that drew me into her Valdemar world was still very much there. The bad: Did I never notice how rape-y this series was? Gendered violence galore, some very stereotyped thinking, and I ended up skipping the Tarma/Kethry origin short story, because I just couldn’t.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    I started this collection of Tarma and Kethry stories because I plan to start the duology and this volume had the initial short story with their meeting. That being said, I very much liked most of the stories, although some were clearly set after the duology so I didn't have all the context needed to really them. Perhaps I'll revisit this book after reading the duology to see if I like the later set short stories better. I started this collection of Tarma and Kethry stories because I plan to start the duology and this volume had the initial short story with their meeting. That being said, I very much liked most of the stories, although some were clearly set after the duology so I didn't have all the context needed to really them. Perhaps I'll revisit this book after reading the duology to see if I like the later set short stories better.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kate H

    I like the books Mercedes Lackey writes, she is good at creating a believable world and people to populate it. While her writing is not the strongest I do find it engaging ang and enjoyable. I like a series I can live inside of and her books are ones that have characters I feel invested in and a world I believe could exist.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Rhonda Johnson

    This is a delightful collection of stories about the adventures of Tarma and Kethry. Each story is unique and has it's own arc, with the geas on Kethry and the woman's blood oath tying them together. I got to know and admire them as they had fun outwitting and clobbering the bad guys. This is a delightful collection of stories about the adventures of Tarma and Kethry. Each story is unique and has it's own arc, with the geas on Kethry and the woman's blood oath tying them together. I got to know and admire them as they had fun outwitting and clobbering the bad guys.

  21. 5 out of 5

    April

    I'm rereading Valdemar in chronological order - so much fun! This anthology has some really cool stories in it. I really liked reading about how Tarma and Kethry meet. I also loved the final story, which takes place many years later and involves one of Kethry's daughters. I'm rereading Valdemar in chronological order - so much fun! This anthology has some really cool stories in it. I really liked reading about how Tarma and Kethry meet. I also loved the final story, which takes place many years later and involves one of Kethry's daughters.

  22. 5 out of 5

    J.

    A collection of short stories about the same two main characters that was overall pretty good. Definitely some stories were better than others and a few hardly seemed worth reading. Still, I enjoyed enough of it to recommend it to fantasy fans.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Cait

    This was not a third novel in the trilogy. It was just a bunch of short stories, some of which were included in the previous two Tarma and Kethry novels, and a novella. I found this highly disappointing.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Ali

    I rather love this collection of Tarma and Kethry short stories. They shine with their variety and content. I especially love the novella within. I am far less fond of the cover art, but it makes sense for this volume.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nora Manca Wickman

    I wish is known Ashraf od Rome that it rant a full bill like these others, and many if these excerpts were from previous books. The bit at the end was great though. I'd love more books about their school and the growing of the clan. I wish is known Ashraf od Rome that it rant a full bill like these others, and many if these excerpts were from previous books. The bit at the end was great though. I'd love more books about their school and the growing of the clan.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Christopher

    Short stories to fill the gaps This collection of sport Sprite’s is nice to provide backstory and additional insight and filler for the characters. Showed how many stories she had in her pocket about these two.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Natty

    Finally the tales of the meeting of the two mains.

  28. 5 out of 5

    R

    I've never been a fan of this type of book, a series of backstories but it did fill in some gaps. I've never been a fan of this type of book, a series of backstories but it did fill in some gaps.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kristin

    A nice way to scratch the itch to know what happens to some favorite characters without writing an entirely new long novel.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Olga Godim

    2.5 stars A collection of short stories about Tarma and Kethry. Readable but nothing more.

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