The Martyr

Anthony Ryan

Covenant of Steel #2




Copy received from Netgalley, all opinions are my own.

Summary: Times have changed for Alwyn Scribe. Once an outlaw, he’s now a spymaster and sworn protector of Lady Evadine Courlain, whose visions of a demonic apocalypse have earned her the fanatical devotion of the faithful. 

Yet Evadine’s growing fame has put her at odds with both Crown and Covenant. As trouble brews in the kingdom, both seek to exploit her position for their own ends.

Sent to the Duchy of Alundia to put down a uprising, Alwyn must rely on old instincts to fight for his new cause. Lethal feuds and ancient secrets are laid bare as war erupts, a war that will decide the destiny of the Kingdom of Albermaine and, perhaps, prevent the coming of the prophesied Moment Scourge.

I liked The Pariah when I read it final year and The Martyr was just as enjoyable. Ryan continues the story he started and builds on it, so it becomes a multi-layered and very interesting book.

I continue to like Alwyn as the leading POV character and it’s fantastic to see him develop more throughout the novel. I like his interactions with the other characters and his narration is always entertaining.

One of the matters Ryan does very well is seamlessly weave the politics and religion of the world into the narrative.  Sometimes, this can bring a book down and make it a lot less enjoyable to read but Ryan not only makes it readable, he makes it interesting. The world created in this series is fascinating and the dominance of religion just adds to that.

The Martyr was a very enjoyable read. Ryan is very good at writing entertaining and sympathetic characters even when they’re not doing especially likeable things and I love the world he has created. The book just sucks you in and you don’t want to put it down until you have found out what has happened. It’s dark, brutal and funny like The Pariah. It was a very entertaining novel which furthers the story of Alwyn and makes you want to know what happens next.

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