- Beer: Full Fathom 5
- Style: Coconut & Coffee Porter
- Brewery: North Brewing Company
- Strength: 6.5% abv.
I didn’t really get any coffee & only a hint of coconut, but that’s not a problem as the beer is delicious regardless. Ticks all the boxes for a cracking porter. Deep smokey flavour complemented by a sweet tinge on the tongue. Smells great too. Truly a giant among beers.
- Series: Of Blood & Bone
- Book : A Time of Dread, A Time of Blood, A Time of Courage
- Author: John Gwynne
This is John Gwynne s second trilogy. It’s set around a century after the Faithful & the Fallen. Whilst there are references you’d miss if you’ve not read the first trilogy I don’t think it’s necessary to enjoy the second. The POV characters are all fresh, while the returning characters (long-lived Giants, ‘Angelic’ Ben-Elim, & ‘Demonic’ Kadoshim.) are re-introduced in a way that provides all the relevant context.
This trilogy mainly follows Drem & Riv, though there are different minor POVs in each book. Drem has lived his whole life in the wild snowy north, apart & free of the lands ruled by the Ben-Elim. He & his father make their way in their isolated world as trappers. That is until events conspire to drag them into the ages-old war between the Ben-Elim & the Kadoshim.
Riv has been born & bred a warrior in the fortress of Drassil, the Ben-Elim’s stronghold & centre of their empire. She’s a brilliant fighter but an inability to keep her temper under control holds her back, never more so than in her trials to gain admittance to the ranks of the fabled White Wings.
The series is packed full of action. It’s almost a scrap, fight or full-on battle in every chapter. So if you’re looking for something nice & fluffy these aren’t for you. That’s not to say the plot suffers in service to the action. There are heartfelt moments aplenty, & a level of intrigue, betrayal & ‘what the fuck’ moments at home in any of the greats.
For fans of Abercrombie, Gemmell, GRRM, Bernard Cornwell & Mark Lawrence.