Greetings lovely internetlings.
This is Cartography Blaise.
I’d like to say that some of you may know her from certain exciting Flipbooks (http://www.fable-forge.com/#!cartography-blaise/csxh), but I think that may be a little on the optimistic side.
So, we’ll do introductions:
Internet- This is Cartography Blaise, Action-Thinker and Philosopher –for –Hire.
In addition to being a SellSage, if asked, Cartography Blaise will do book reviews. Sometimes, as in the case of the talented and unsuspecting Chantelle Roberts (Link), she will even do that unasked. This is that review.
Prayer for the Blood Angel
“See, I have a healthy respect for writers. Story, words, sentence-weighting, heavy tools for an illustrious trade. I couldn’t do it. Writing is hard. (So is action-philosophy, but it’s hard in a different way, less important because it sings to fewer people). Writers, like the sciency-buggers in labs and bunkers, also build the world(s) of tomorrow, but in a slightly different way. They build it, by building people. Not like cyborg AI’s. We tried that back in the 2050’s. Not so much fun there.
No, writers speak to the latent things deep within the heads of human beings, heroism, love, loss, sacrifice. They tame the fundamental forces of rage and honour and unleash them on the page so that people can get far enough away from the smallness of their everyday lives, and, through knights and princess, dragons to be rescued and evil corporations to be fought, to see the epic implications of even the most insignificant of their actions.
Also, so that people can have fun.
This is also important.
Prayer for the Blood Angel is one of those stories, stories that deal in big, epic themes that are universal enough that most people can relate to them. It’s a story and world that is meaty (sometimes nastily so, this lovely lady writer certainly doesn’t pull her punches) and rich, with most of the grandeur of fairytale and little bit of the grit and complexity of reality.
You wouldn’t think that starting it out. The opening reads like a fairly generic high fantasy opening. I’m calling false advertising on that, though, because if you run with the story, that’s not what you get.
See, Chantelle Roberts has done quite a clever thing, in the way she fuses the story-structures of fairytale, fantasy, science-fiction and social critique. It’s one thing that is many things that has space for many things in it.
I liked it. Mostly. I never like anything absolutely on principle; all of life is a shade of grey, no black-and-white-binaries.
But I liked it. It had heart, and guts (lots of guts) and resonates of New Epics that are gritty and sensible as well as sweeping.
I liked reading about the elephant too.
More light and life in this book than not, and it certainly tickled my fantasy pallet.
I wonder what she has planned next.”