Review: Shadow of the Gods (Bloodsworn Saga #1) by John Gwynne

MY ⭐️ RATING: 4.75/5

Format: Kindle Whispersync


Set in a brand-new, Norse-inspired world, and packed with myth, magic and bloody vengeance, The Shadow of the Gods begins an epic new fantasy saga from bestselling author John Gwynne. After the gods warred and drove themselves to extinction, the cataclysm of their fall shattered the land of Vigrid. Now a new world is rising, where power-hungry jarls feud and monsters stalk the woods and mountains. A world where the bones of the dead gods still hold great power for those brave – or desperate – enough to seek them out.
Now, as whispers of war echo across the mountains and fjords, fate follows in the footsteps of three people: a huntress on a dangerous quest, a noblewoman who has rejected privilege in pursuit of battle fame, and a thrall who seeks vengeance among the famed mercenaries known as the Bloodsworn. All three will shape the fate of the world as it once more falls under the shadow of the gods…


Get ready for a fast paced and jaw dropping story of 3 very fascinating characters, Orka, Varg and Elvar. Orka is a deadly huntress on a dangerous quest to save her son from some truly vile people. Varg is a thrall who joins an infamous group of mercenary warriors called the Bloodsworn, to seek vengeance of the death of his sister. And finally we have Elvar, a noblewoman who rejects the privileged life for battle fame. This is my first time reading John Gwynne, and I’ll definitely be going back to check out his other works!

“This is a world of blood. Of tooth and claw and sharp iron. Of short lives and painful deaths.”

I had some struggles reading this, not because it was bad, because it was most definitely not! That’s obvious with my 5 star rating 😂. I struggled with the pronunciation of all of the Norwegian/Viking words, so I decided to get the audio and follow along with my book, and I’m glad I did that because Colin Mace put on an absolute clinic! He enhanced the reading experience for me and helped me immerse myself in the world. There were moments where I was tensing up as his reading speed picked up as the tension of the scene grew, I could literally feel my heart beating faster as he sped up! Gwynne did an outstanding job building this world of Vigrid and the Norse themed characters with some truly intense and exciting fight scenes. I loved everything about this book!

“We are the Battle-Grim,” Sighvat bellowed in his deep-bellied voice. “We are the slayers of the vaesen, hunters of the Tainted, the reapers of souls. If you have not heard of our battle-fame, then we will gladly teach it to you.”

Each story line was captivating, but to me, I loved Orka’s the most. An avenging mother out to do whatever, at any cost to get her son back. If Orka was my mother, I would be the proudest son ever! I might go on and on all day long about what I liked about this book, but I like to keep my reviews somewhat short and sweet and not too revealing, and this is already longer than I normally do! There is almost nothing bad I can say about this book, because it was truly a crazy adventure!

This should move to the top of your reading/listening lists like yesterday! Fantastic stories, characters, world building, and let’s not forget… a dragon!

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