web site hit counter Grievar's Blood - Ebooks PDF Online
Hot Best Seller

Grievar's Blood

Availability: Ready to download

In a world where single combat determines the fate of nations, the Grievar fight in the Circles so that the rest can remain at peace. But given the stakes, things are never so simple. The Daimyo govern from the shadows and plot to gain an edge by unnaturally enhancing their Grievar Knights. Cego and his team enter year two at the world's most prestigious combat school, th In a world where single combat determines the fate of nations, the Grievar fight in the Circles so that the rest can remain at peace. But given the stakes, things are never so simple. The Daimyo govern from the shadows and plot to gain an edge by unnaturally enhancing their Grievar Knights. Cego and his team enter year two at the world's most prestigious combat school, the Lyceum. Though he'd like to focus on his martial studies, Cego feels the pull of his mysterious past and two missing brothers. Solara Halberd, daughter of the fighting legend, embarks on her own quest to bury the past. She must utilize every lesson her father taught her to explore unknown lands where evil lurks in the shadows.


Compare

In a world where single combat determines the fate of nations, the Grievar fight in the Circles so that the rest can remain at peace. But given the stakes, things are never so simple. The Daimyo govern from the shadows and plot to gain an edge by unnaturally enhancing their Grievar Knights. Cego and his team enter year two at the world's most prestigious combat school, th In a world where single combat determines the fate of nations, the Grievar fight in the Circles so that the rest can remain at peace. But given the stakes, things are never so simple. The Daimyo govern from the shadows and plot to gain an edge by unnaturally enhancing their Grievar Knights. Cego and his team enter year two at the world's most prestigious combat school, the Lyceum. Though he'd like to focus on his martial studies, Cego feels the pull of his mysterious past and two missing brothers. Solara Halberd, daughter of the fighting legend, embarks on her own quest to bury the past. She must utilize every lesson her father taught her to explore unknown lands where evil lurks in the shadows.

30 review for Grievar's Blood

  1. 4 out of 5

    Petrik

    I have a Booktube channel now! Subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/petrikleo Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. Grievar’s Blood is a daring sequel to The Combat Codes. The cast is bigger and the stakes are higher than before. “Don’t run from it,” Cego said. “I’ve done that. I think I’ve been doing that my entire life. Running away from my past, trying to escape. And I know now that path only leads deeper into the darkness.” “So, what then?” Sol asked. “ I have a Booktube channel now! Subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/petrikleo Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. Grievar’s Blood is a daring sequel to The Combat Codes. The cast is bigger and the stakes are higher than before. “Don’t run from it,” Cego said. “I’ve done that. I think I’ve been doing that my entire life. Running away from my past, trying to escape. And I know now that path only leads deeper into the darkness.” “So, what then?” Sol asked. “If we can’t get away from it, what can we do?” “Embrace it,” Cego said. “Welcome the weight of your past. Don’t run from it. Stand in front of it and let it flow through you. Let it make you stronger. Sometimes, we need to hurt ourselves to kill the demons. Sometimes, we need to feel the pain, every darkin’ bit of it, raw as it comes, before we can pick ourselves up again.” The story in Grievar’s Blood takes place about two years since The Combat Codes started. Cego would love to focus on his study of martial arts, but the revelations about his mysterious past that he found at the end of the first book distract his concentration. However, Cego isn’t the only main focus character now; two new main POV characters are included here, Solara Halberd and The Slayer. I honestly didn’t expect the direction of the narrative in Grievar’s Blood; Darwin has taken a risk with his storytelling decision. Instead of focusing the narrative exclusively on Cego like in the first book, Darwin decided to made Solara and The Slayer receive equal moments of the spotlight as Cego did. This could’ve easily backfired, and I’m sure it DID backfire for many readers who solely want Cego and Murray as the key characters. This has happened to Tower Lord and Queen of Fire (shudders) by Anthony Ryan, and for a while, I did worry that Grievar’s Blood would encounter the same issue because I DO want to read more of Cego after spending an entire book with him. Thankfully, my worries were unfounded. “Thoughts constantly barraging the mind are like thieves entering a home. First, a Grievar must learn to recognize the thieves upon entry, see them for their true nature. Second, a Grievar must accept the thieves within their home, the intruders have arrived and there is nothing to do. Finally, a Grievar must show the thieves that their home is empty, there is nothing to steal within.” There were indeed moments where I thought to myself, “Solara’s story seems to be unnecessary” or “Is Cego’s story being put on the bench now?” because Cego’s POV didn’t appear in the final 35% of the book. But Darwin has done a terrific job in connecting all three storylines together, and by the end of it, he has successfully transformed the small scope story established in The Combat Codes into a larger-scope narrative about freedom, justice, and revenge. There’s an emphasis on politics and world-building, and we get to learn more about the Daimyo. This indeed made the action scenes relatively fewer in quantity, but they’re certainly not lacking in quality. Duels felt more impactful in Grievar’s Blood, and the trial scene plus its result were my favorite scenes in the book. “Practice a technique once and you’ll know what it looks like. Practice it a hundred times and you’ll know what it feels like. Practice it one thousand times and you’ll hit it on a lesser-skilled opponent. Practice it five thousand times and you’ll hit it on an opponent of equal skill.” Overall, Grievar’s Blood is a great middle-installment. Darwin has raised the tension and scope of the series without losing the entertaining factor of the series. I couldn’t put the final 15% of the book down, every storyline converged at the end, and now I’m eagerly looking forward to reading the conclusion of the series that will also come out within this year. You can order the book from: Amazon UK | Amazon US You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions Special thanks to my Patrons on Patreon for giving me extra support towards my passion for reading and reviewing! My Patrons: Alfred, Alya, Annabeth, Ben, Blaise, Devin, Diana, Edward, Hamad, Helen, Jimmy Nutts, Joie, Lufi, Melinda, Mike, Miracle, Nicholas, Seth, Shaad, Summer, Zoe.

  2. 5 out of 5

    kartik narayanan

    Review coming in January!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Adam

    A solid sequel that avoids taking the easy route into already-familiar fight school territory, and instead offers up some well-deserved new POVs, more emphasis on world-building and its power hierarchy, and some neat set pieces. Overall there’s a good deal less fighting this time around, but the fights we do get are more epic in scope. I quite enjoyed Sol’s POV but I found myself wondering why it would be related to the overall story at large; it almost felt like her story could better be served A solid sequel that avoids taking the easy route into already-familiar fight school territory, and instead offers up some well-deserved new POVs, more emphasis on world-building and its power hierarchy, and some neat set pieces. Overall there’s a good deal less fighting this time around, but the fights we do get are more epic in scope. I quite enjoyed Sol’s POV but I found myself wondering why it would be related to the overall story at large; it almost felt like her story could better be served as its own standalone novella. Introduced some really cool new characters, though. So SPFBO6 introduced me to Combat Codes, and curiosity led me to pick up the sequel. I’ll happily pick up the next volume whenever it drops. This is a fun, fast-moving series with detailed combat scenes, interesting fantasy and sci-fi elements, themes of brotherhood, revolution, loyalty, and freakishly large test-tube baby heads. So if you have that last one on your bingo card, you’re in luck!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lukasz

    A satisfying sequel. Things get epic and what started as a smaller-scale story turns into a multi-arc tale of revolution. I'm in for the next in the series. A satisfying sequel. Things get epic and what started as a smaller-scale story turns into a multi-arc tale of revolution. I'm in for the next in the series.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kristin B. Bodreau

    There was a lot more large scale world politics in this second installment than what we see while following Cego in the first book in this series. This made for a better setup for the rest of the series, but meant that we had less of Cego and Murray, who were the main reason I enjoyed the first book. Also as a result of following more storylines, this had a less cohesive feel. However, because we got more background and more information about the wider political landscape, it does make me more l There was a lot more large scale world politics in this second installment than what we see while following Cego in the first book in this series. This made for a better setup for the rest of the series, but meant that we had less of Cego and Murray, who were the main reason I enjoyed the first book. Also as a result of following more storylines, this had a less cohesive feel. However, because we got more background and more information about the wider political landscape, it does make me more likely to continue.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Dmitriy Fabrikant

    "I had to wait so long for this one! But it was worth it. If you're a fan of progression fantasy, in particular martial arts stories, you're going to want to pick up the first two books in this saga. They take place in a world where fighting with armies is replaced by one-on-one martial arts style combat. So of course each nation spends all their resources training and 'enhancing' their fighters. The writer is an expert in martial arts and so describes the action scenes with vivid detail, it was "I had to wait so long for this one! But it was worth it. If you're a fan of progression fantasy, in particular martial arts stories, you're going to want to pick up the first two books in this saga. They take place in a world where fighting with armies is replaced by one-on-one martial arts style combat. So of course each nation spends all their resources training and 'enhancing' their fighters. The writer is an expert in martial arts and so describes the action scenes with vivid detail, it was one of my favorite parts. Book two picks up where one left off, with the MC at the world's best fighting school, now as a level two. There he needs to take various martial arts classes with his crew, as well as compete against rivals in 'the Circle' in order to gain rank within his class. But book two also expands the world quite a bit outside of the school setting. It follows a strong female character, Sol, on a quest across the world where encounters both friends and rivals. Overall, I liked the second book even more than the first. Just hope book three comes soon!"

  7. 5 out of 5

    Vinay Badri

    This book surprised me and in a good way. I expected book 2 to follow an almost Harry Potter-esque journey through school for our lead Cego but what I didnt expect was for the story to branch out in different directions. Sol, who was our Hermoine stand-in, becomes an important POV and starts on her journey to address the events of book 1. Cego almost vanishes from the book as newer surprising characters find their way in and I think the book is richer for it. But managing all of these views and st This book surprised me and in a good way. I expected book 2 to follow an almost Harry Potter-esque journey through school for our lead Cego but what I didnt expect was for the story to branch out in different directions. Sol, who was our Hermoine stand-in, becomes an important POV and starts on her journey to address the events of book 1. Cego almost vanishes from the book as newer surprising characters find their way in and I think the book is richer for it. But managing all of these views and still maintaining it well organically is a balance and Grievar's Blood just about manages to balance it. The 2nd book definitely got a bit messy, some leaps of logic too far out and there was movement away from what we think as the core of the book to something else larger and much higher stakes. The movement away wasnt exactly seamless but nonetheless works Despite these flaws, the book works very well. The characters from the last book are developed further, the world drawn out more and the stakes get more personal. Cego's journey is a mix of his youth but also his maturity. He has as many questions as he gets answers about himself, his journey, his training and his brothers. Sol's journey on the other hand moves her a mere supporting character to a more active player in this book. She has always been a fighter but now she is forced to be more political, more cunning as she focuses on her goal Overall, while not as action packed as the last book, this one is more plot heavy, twist heavy and builds out a fascinating world. What I really do like is how the author does play within the tropes in terms of the story but is willing to completely play around the rules of the tropes - willing to sacrifice them in order to move the story forward brilliantly

  8. 5 out of 5

    Laeth George

    Strong sequel, improves on the original Overall—would recommend this book, especially as the story has taken a deeper, more developed and nuanced turn in this sequel. Compelling with growth of and introduction/expansion of new characters and the overarching plot line. Looking forward to the next book in the series.

  9. 5 out of 5

    David Sweeney-Bear

    Full disclosure: I narrated the audiobook of book 1 in this series and was given an advance copy of Grievar's Blood in preparation for narrating it also. That said, as a reader I thoroughly enjoyed this next installment in the Combat Codes saga - It continues the story of Cego as he undertakes his training at the Lyceum. There are a number of new characters, expertly portrayed and some captivating new environments within the dystopian sci-fi world of this series of novels. If you haven't read or Full disclosure: I narrated the audiobook of book 1 in this series and was given an advance copy of Grievar's Blood in preparation for narrating it also. That said, as a reader I thoroughly enjoyed this next installment in the Combat Codes saga - It continues the story of Cego as he undertakes his training at the Lyceum. There are a number of new characters, expertly portrayed and some captivating new environments within the dystopian sci-fi world of this series of novels. If you haven't read or heard Combat Codes 1, do so now! Then you can have the unparalleled pleasure of moving straight on to Grievar's Blood. You won't want to put it down. Alex's writing goes form strength to strength, I can't wait for book 3 :)

  10. 4 out of 5

    Andy

    The next instalment of Alexander Darwin's excellent 'Combat Codes' saga continues with 'Grievar's Blood', picking up where book 1 left off, with Cego and his team now studying at Level 2 at the Lyceum combat training school. More lessons, more rivalry, more techniques and philosophies to learn that will aid them in the combat arena. Where book 1 mostly followed Cego's journey from zero to hero, 'Grievar's Blood' builds upon the lore established in book 1 and also expands on the world building, wi The next instalment of Alexander Darwin's excellent 'Combat Codes' saga continues with 'Grievar's Blood', picking up where book 1 left off, with Cego and his team now studying at Level 2 at the Lyceum combat training school. More lessons, more rivalry, more techniques and philosophies to learn that will aid them in the combat arena. Where book 1 mostly followed Cego's journey from zero to hero, 'Grievar's Blood' builds upon the lore established in book 1 and also expands on the world building, with new character POVs away from the Lyceum, at the Isles of Besayd and in the northern frozen wilds of Myrkos. It was great to see more of the world and the different cultures outside of just the main combat academy complex and follow these two character arcs. Both of these new expanded POVs didn't feel like filler at all, but as well as freshening the story and giving us a break from Cego's exploits at the Academy, actually pushed the narrative as well as adding a lot of depth to their character development. I really liked Sol's character arc in this book, starting out on what was a personal quest to claim and return home with the body of her father - a legendary fighter that was killed in the ring and his body on show as part of a Collector's grisly collection - but by the end of her quest, you could see that her narrative, as well as the other POVs we follow; of Cego and his 'brother' Silas, are all threads in a bigger story that is actually coming together where we'll likely see the conclusion of in book 3. A revolution is coming! The combat is written really well and sounding detailed and authentic, which it should do considering that author, Alexander Darwin, is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt! It is a one of the many positives; fast paced and action-packed, as well as deep character and expanded world building, that kept me immersed and turning the pages to find out what was happening next! Note: I did receive an ARC edition of the book from the author, but I really enjoyed the book, even moreso than the first, and will be looking forward to next instalment in the 'Combat Codes' saga.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Izar Tarandach

    Like most anybody, you probably also embarked into the thought experiment of "what if there were no more wars by simply having nations decide disagreements via 1v1 combat?". Well, Alexander Darwin takes that to completion while at the same time building a well-connected and well-formed caste system, with sub-divisions, rivalries and politics, and a supporting framework of combat modifiers (the elements "Circles" are made of) to enrich the tale. At first I was a bit incredulous, expecting somethin Like most anybody, you probably also embarked into the thought experiment of "what if there were no more wars by simply having nations decide disagreements via 1v1 combat?". Well, Alexander Darwin takes that to completion while at the same time building a well-connected and well-formed caste system, with sub-divisions, rivalries and politics, and a supporting framework of combat modifiers (the elements "Circles" are made of) to enrich the tale. At first I was a bit incredulous, expecting something like "Harry Potter and The Undefeatable Armbar": kid shows raw talent, kid gets recruited into elite school, kid gets rival, kid gets mentor, yada yada yada. BUT was I surprised. Alexander manages to infuse the basic hero journey with enough texture, side stories and depth to turn it into something different. If at times things seem a bit previsible, it is just an author growing into it, I believe. For those looking for the "combat" part I find the fights pretty believable, based probably on Alexander's own martial arts experience (needs more Capoeira!). All in all, strong series, well written and enjoyable. I am looking forward to the next books!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Carl-Erik Høyum

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This was an intense read. I picked it up and couldn't stop reading before I'd finished it. In this sequel we get to explore more of the Combat Codes universe and it's fascinating and though-provoking. The strategy to combat the characters utilize and the Grievars way of life is expanded on, but we also get to learn more about the structure of the society they live in and the to other races of people in their universe. The first book raises psychological questions of identity and artificially pla This was an intense read. I picked it up and couldn't stop reading before I'd finished it. In this sequel we get to explore more of the Combat Codes universe and it's fascinating and though-provoking. The strategy to combat the characters utilize and the Grievars way of life is expanded on, but we also get to learn more about the structure of the society they live in and the to other races of people in their universe. The first book raises psychological questions of identity and artificially planted memories, the second book continues on this, but includes the struggle for freedom from oppression and a battle for a life that isn't stained by technology and unnatural forces.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Wesley

    Thank you I dont normally do these 'reviews'. who am i to try and explain or critique something as personal and private as a story written for strangers by a stranger. im just glad the author was brave enough and dedicated enough to allow me the opportunity to stumble upon this journey. reminded me of how i felt reading about the Sons of Ares. a story with that resonated with me personally. All i can say is thank you Darwin. if youre reading these reviews as a way to ascertain wether or not you s Thank you I dont normally do these 'reviews'. who am i to try and explain or critique something as personal and private as a story written for strangers by a stranger. im just glad the author was brave enough and dedicated enough to allow me the opportunity to stumble upon this journey. reminded me of how i felt reading about the Sons of Ares. a story with that resonated with me personally. All i can say is thank you Darwin. if youre reading these reviews as a way to ascertain wether or not you should read the Combat Codes Saga, youre wasting your time. Read it

  14. 4 out of 5

    Eric Lin

    Thank You for writing such a goos book beautiful writing. Immerses you into the fight scence with details that only a veteran fighter can describe. This is not similar to Endgame or Hunger games it is on a whole other level.

  15. 5 out of 5

    April Rasmussen

    Need book 3 This book was a phenomenal continuation of the first, can't wait for the next book! As a note for the author, I would love to see more development of Silas, still don't really understand why he is so driven, and maybe a little less focus on flashbacks. They sometimes broke the flow of the story. This is just my opinion though so take it with a grain of salt. Need book 3 This book was a phenomenal continuation of the first, can't wait for the next book! As a note for the author, I would love to see more development of Silas, still don't really understand why he is so driven, and maybe a little less focus on flashbacks. They sometimes broke the flow of the story. This is just my opinion though so take it with a grain of salt.

  16. 5 out of 5

    David DeRouchie

    Good writing, good story. I hope there's more to come. Not the same old story. Inventive imagination. Crazy world with greed and power and loved. I want to see what's next. Good writing, good story. I hope there's more to come. Not the same old story. Inventive imagination. Crazy world with greed and power and loved. I want to see what's next.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Nick

    Martial Arts Specialist A must for Cradle & Ender’s Game fans. Non-stop read. Finished both books in 4 days. Can’t wait for Book 3.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Garrett

    Great series Great series and character development. Fight scenes are technical while still action packed. Good mystery and story development. Things will really start to kick off with next installment.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Tim Vogel

    Thanks for the spotify format! Hope more authors try it out, really enjoyed the weekly episodes/chapters. Waiting for book 3 now!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jon Adams

    A little bit more editing and proofreading would've made this 5 stars. Really looking forward to the next one. A little bit more editing and proofreading would've made this 5 stars. Really looking forward to the next one.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Steven Brown

    A promising book 2 of the series that’s a bit of a mess This was almost a 4-star book to many things that pulled me out for that. However, it is a very good 3-star book, and I am very much looking for to seeing what Alexander Darwin comes out with next and how he develops as an author. I do wonder how much beta reads this went through and if they had read book 1.  Book two of the series continues in a third person limited style with the addition of more pov’s.  It is appropriate for YA and above t A promising book 2 of the series that’s a bit of a mess This was almost a 4-star book to many things that pulled me out for that. However, it is a very good 3-star book, and I am very much looking for to seeing what Alexander Darwin comes out with next and how he develops as an author. I do wonder how much beta reads this went through and if they had read book 1.  Book two of the series continues in a third person limited style with the addition of more pov’s.  It is appropriate for YA and above though does have violent and gory scenes.  I felt I had to qualify my review a bit because for a book I enjoyed reading, and a series I am looking forward to seeing where it is going to go, they’re some real issues with it. First off Darwin is great at transparent prose. He pulled me into the first book and I feel made a certain promise to the reader as to what the series was going to be.  The set up was the classic YA protagonist with a secret fight/finding his way into an elite school.  Yes, there were certain societal elements at play with elitism, racism going in all directions, and certain elements of dystopia. However, we see him building a group of friends overcoming minor antagonists and growing all around.  The focus was fairly much all on Cego and the secrets surrounding him.   Book 2 flips everything Book 1 was on its head revealing the series is not what it was portrayed to be. Cego is still relatively the main protagonist but he sees little page time and disappears completely for nearly a third of the book as a new unexpected Pov takes over till we see Cego briefly at the end. This will put some readers completely off and feel like breaking promises.The school basically disappears from the story halfway through.  Nonetheless Book 2 Is engrossing for the most part.  Darwin’s style pulled me in easily even when i was scrambling to figure out what was going on.  With all its reader speed bumps it is a good read with interesting characters doing interesting things. They are some really good characters and I think that is one of the author’s strongest attributes in his writing.  Reader speedbumps are little and large things that can jar you out of the story. They are things that should be often caught in content editing and with beta readers if you having them. There were timeline issues.  Book 1 is said to have taken place over a semester.  A semester is around 4-6 months. Somehow that’s gets expanded to 2 years in a rather confusing way. Also, time seems rather fluid in between povs.  For example, almost six months is said to have passed in a late pov between when a side character was introduced, only a pov chapter or two before, till that moment.  Between all the povs the times are fluid and are not told in concurrent order.  This can be highly off-putting and confusing. The character of Murray is given a rather dramatic cliffhanger chapter in the being only not to appear at all till then with another rather dramatic chapter that does not reveal the cliffhanger.  I highly suspect what the twist was in his first chapter but it is not addressed in the is book.  Which is asking a lot of the reader to remember or have the patience for it to come out in the next book. Promises in the beginning of the book need to be delivered within that book others...nerd rage arggggg. There were some maid and butler dialogue that was a glaring, awkward attempt to deliver two new names of very minor side characters. Ex… “Terry what do think about….”  “I don’t know Bob…”  Not that bad but… yeah.  Sol is an interesting character that I feel was wasted in the way.  She has a pure motive in retrieving her father’s body but it all seems contrived.  Even the build and twist that reveals feels unearned.   The ending and almost all the twists we see feel unearned. It is as if the author cut an entire book with story out, but it does have me intrigued with where the series is going.  There are stories/series that you complain about because you hate them...This is not that.  I truly enjoyed book one and did enjoy book 2. I complain because it is an awesome story to follow.   

  22. 5 out of 5

    Captplanet

    I hate to say it, but Grievar's Blood is a hot mess. I quite enjoyed The Combat Codes (the first book in this series), despite its flaws. The story was cohesive and engaging, the pacing was well-tuned, and I was generally excited to find out what came next. Sadly, the same cannot be said of Grievar's Blood. This book reads as if the author couldn't decide what story he wanted to tell. Characters (e.g. (view spoiler)[Kōri Shimo and Cego's other classmates (hide spoiler)] ) and concepts (e.g. (view sp I hate to say it, but Grievar's Blood is a hot mess. I quite enjoyed The Combat Codes (the first book in this series), despite its flaws. The story was cohesive and engaging, the pacing was well-tuned, and I was generally excited to find out what came next. Sadly, the same cannot be said of Grievar's Blood. This book reads as if the author couldn't decide what story he wanted to tell. Characters (e.g. (view spoiler)[Kōri Shimo and Cego's other classmates (hide spoiler)] ) and concepts (e.g. (view spoiler)[Circle types and spectrals (hide spoiler)] ) from the first book that were hinted to be major players in the series, are instead completely forgotten. Even the new characters brought in to functionally replace old ones (e.g. (view spoiler)[the Northmen and Brynn Mykili (hide spoiler)] ) barely feature in the story, and are abandoned by chapter 8. The plot itself is similarly jumbled and underdeveloped - Cego is herded from set piece to set piece, as if providing the reader a tour of this dystopian world is more important than spending time actually telling a story in it. A Harry Potter -esq school mystery is set up in the beginning of the book, only to be left unfinished and meaningless. Cego's seemingly lifelong rival is (view spoiler)[completely and abruptly removed from the series early on (hide spoiler)] . And half of the perspective chapters are of Sol, whose plotline here focuses on an extremely low-stakes and anticlimactic heist that's almost completely unrelated to everything else in the series. But perhaps most frustrating is the insane "power creep" within the story. The strongest feature of Combat Codes was Darwin's compelling descriptions of realistic fight scenes and grueling training. I was excited to experience Cego's gradual growth from a young teenage scrapper to a honed fighter, with skills gained over years of personal trials and tribulations. Yet in only the second installment of the series, Cego (still barely a teenager) (view spoiler)[handily destroys the system's strongest, undefeated, nearly-inhuman executioner (hide spoiler)] , and by the end it's revealed that some fighters (view spoiler)[can transform into bulletproof, steel-crushing beings of pure energy (hide spoiler)] . Only two books in, and the tone has already drastically shifted from MMA to DBZ. Ultimately, my impression of Grievar's Blood was that the author is already bored of his own series. Characters and plot points are introduced then immediately abandoned, concepts that seemed fundamental to the first installment are completely absent from this one, and the multiple arcs packed into this book - Sol's heist, the mystery at the Lyceum (and the entire Lyceum school plot in general), (view spoiler)[Cego's trial (hide spoiler)] , and (view spoiler)[Silas's revolution (hide spoiler)] - are underwhelmingly rushed and shallow. When I finished Combat Codes, I couldn't wait to read the next installment. But after reading Grievar's Blood, I regret not stopping with the first book. I sincerely hope Darwin is able to refocus and regain his spark for his next novel, so that Grievar's Blood proves just an unfortunate misstep in an otherwise strong series.

  23. 4 out of 5

    TormIronhand

    I received an ARC of Grievar's Blood from the author. I'd been waiting a while for the second book in the Combat Codes series, and I have to say I wasn't disappointed! The story picks up close to where the last one left off, where Cego and his crew are attending combat school at the Lyceum, now as Level Twos. Darwin includes much of the same feel as the first book that I love - the school / academy setting where the characters attend martial arts classes and learn various techniques and combat p I received an ARC of Grievar's Blood from the author. I'd been waiting a while for the second book in the Combat Codes series, and I have to say I wasn't disappointed! The story picks up close to where the last one left off, where Cego and his crew are attending combat school at the Lyceum, now as Level Twos. Darwin includes much of the same feel as the first book that I love - the school / academy setting where the characters attend martial arts classes and learn various techniques and combat philosophies. Very reminiscent of some other fantasy/ sci-fi books that I love in similar settings like Mage Errant and book one of Blood Song. Grievar's Blood expands the world of the Combat Codes quite a bit - taking us to far reaches of the world away from the Lyceum - the Isles of Besayd and the far north frozen lands of Myrkos - through some great new character POVs. I do like that Darwin made the primary female in the book (Sol) a POV as I always found her story to be one of the more interesting ones. My only complaint is I would have liked a bit more time at the Lyceum in the academy setting, as that is really my favorite part! But Darwin really pushes the narrative forward with some great surprises so I'm guessing he didn't want to stall things. Can't wait for the next one!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    I absolutely loved the first book in this series and minus some minor editing mistakes, this one was no different. The story doesn't pick up right where it was left off, but we sort of get a clue as to where a certain character from book one is in that opening scene. There are returning characters, Cego, Sol, Dozer, Knees and friends. Also Menmon, who I am glad we got to know better in this book. Murray is largely missing, but his presences still looms large. We travel farther in this book and t I absolutely loved the first book in this series and minus some minor editing mistakes, this one was no different. The story doesn't pick up right where it was left off, but we sort of get a clue as to where a certain character from book one is in that opening scene. There are returning characters, Cego, Sol, Dozer, Knees and friends. Also Menmon, who I am glad we got to know better in this book. Murray is largely missing, but his presences still looms large. We travel farther in this book and the world building is wonderful. Learning more mythos, a glimpse as to how things became the way they are (is it reliable?), And even an introduction to Silas' POV, one of Cego's brothers if you forget from Combat Codes. Silas is not just a ruthless killer, he has heart, he's fighting for something he believes in, and it turns out he's powerful on his own accord - and that's what he is fighting for. The Damiyo are an interesting group who rely on stims and enhancements to live their lives the way they do, and understanding their world more makes this book fly by. Seeing Cego's struggles Silas' heart, Sol try and understand her father - and the introduction of new characters who didn't feel one dimensional all made this a 4.5 star read for me. I can't wait to see how it all comes together in the end. This world is brutal, it's full of heart, a touch of fantastical, and even some sci-fi - it's a coming of age tale of underground revolution, brotherhood, and growth.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Arundeepak Jayaseelan

    3.5/5 A neat sequel that avoided the usual second year at the academy trope. The story begins some times after the events of first book. Cego and friends are in the second year, Sol and Murray are gone and new students from another places are enrolling to the school. First of all I liked how the book didn't go through the usual second year trope and introduced new POV's and extensive world building. I also liked the fact that the book was not a single page longer than it should be. The only thing I 3.5/5 A neat sequel that avoided the usual second year at the academy trope. The story begins some times after the events of first book. Cego and friends are in the second year, Sol and Murray are gone and new students from another places are enrolling to the school. First of all I liked how the book didn't go through the usual second year trope and introduced new POV's and extensive world building. I also liked the fact that the book was not a single page longer than it should be. The only thing I had a problem with this book is, actually two things are Sol's POV which I'm not sayin was written badly or anything, It just felt Outta place and not as compelling as Cego's storyline. It almost felt like a standalone merged with the main book. Second problem I had with this book was that there wasn't any WOW moment in the final chapters like I had experienced with The Combat Codes. But overall, the book was a solid sequel with a nice setup for book 3.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Nutzu

    A Stellar Sequel The first book was good focusing more on developing the world and the combat, but the second one goes deep into the story with focus on more characters. It's a very good book and I'm curious when the next book will be available as the good parts seem to come in the next one. Thank you for your work Alexander and I wish you inspiration to keep the good job for the next book or books in the series. A Stellar Sequel The first book was good focusing more on developing the world and the combat, but the second one goes deep into the story with focus on more characters. It's a very good book and I'm curious when the next book will be available as the good parts seem to come in the next one. Thank you for your work Alexander and I wish you inspiration to keep the good job for the next book or books in the series.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Michael J. Conway

    Good read, but too much going on! So I enjoyed the first book in this series and wanted more of the same. Although a good read, this book had way too much going on, with not enough background on Silas and a seemingly disappearance of the main character. Even with the increase in storyline for Sol, it seemed so disjointed. Still a good read, but expected so much more.

  28. 5 out of 5

    AliceAnn

    I'm glad I continued on with this series, because I am fully invested in the story now. We got to follow more characters in different locations, so we got a broader look at the world. There was less fighting, but the fights we saw had much higher stakes. I'm definitely looking forward to the next book when it comes out. I'm glad I continued on with this series, because I am fully invested in the story now. We got to follow more characters in different locations, so we got a broader look at the world. There was less fighting, but the fights we saw had much higher stakes. I'm definitely looking forward to the next book when it comes out.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Excellent story I really liked the storyline of this series. Unfortunately the only thing that took away a star was my sense that the writer often got lost in his love for his sport causing the story to often not be as tight and focused as it could have been.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Leraaen

    When is book 3??!!! If you’re a martial arts student, teacher, a sci-fi fan or just an avid reader of martial arts books... this grabs your mind and doesn’t let go... when is book #3?!!!!

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.