[Peter McLean] Priest of Bones [f m f Book] DOC

Peter McLean æ 6 CHARACTERS

The war is over and army priest Tomas Piety heads home with Sergeant Bloody Anne at his side But things have changed while he was away his crime empire has been stolen and the people of Ellinburg his people have ru. Priest of Bones is a very ish book very readable The prose is solid the single first person character who delivers the story has a strong voice It s a very satisfying book to read the plot never gets away from itselfBasically Priest of Bones is a story of organised crime with shades of the Godfather here and there Our protagonist returns from a horrific war with old friends family and new friends formally under his command I say friends but Tomas Peity is a leader sometimes a priest always a soldier he commands respect rather than friendship and he is returning to the city he was born in to pick up where he left off ruling the streets of a sizeable district as its crime lordNaturally others have moved in during his absence and heads have to broken knee caps removed Things grow complicated and the plot thickens but essentially this is about driving out other gangs re establishing control building an empire of brothels pubs gambling houses and the likeIt sounds uite old school It really isn t The cast is diverse in terms of gender race and sexual preference It sounds grim and dark and it is but our priest of bones is uite the humanitarian for a ruthless crime lord intolerant of rape violence against women unless they are armed child abuse the drug trade treating the poor badly the list goes on It doesn t stop him leading an exciting life though and cutting his way through some very grimdark situations There s blood and shit in large measureTomas Piety is a good fighter but he leads by choosing the right man or woman for the job be it Bloody Anne Billy the Boy Black Billy Sir Eland Kant the Cunt Jochan Piety his wild brother Will the Wencher or any other of his crew of Pious Men It s fun to watch him rebuild his empire a piece at a time ripping down someone else s as he goesGiven the single point of view and the high tempo action most of the characters remain little than nametags but we get to know a few much better and it s well doneFantasy enters the story through the sporadic appearance of sorcerers with a trainee on the home team The magic is definitely of the mysterious variety rather than the magic system sort I found it to be a really good read It s not a book that stuns you with originality powerful prose cunningly engineered plot it s just very fun to read It s a charismatic book I think it could do really wellEDIT now there s a cover Join my 3 emails a year newsletter prizes The White Nights of Ramadan under his command I say friends but Tomas Peity is a leader sometimes a priest always a soldier he commands respect rather than friendship and he is returning to the city he was born in to pick The Black Ice Score (Parker, uite old school It really isn t The cast is diverse in terms of gender race and sexual preference It sounds grim and dark and it is but our priest of bones is The Black Painting uite the humanitarian for a ruthless crime lord intolerant of rape violence against women Fire and Desire unless they are armed child abuse the drug trade treating the poor badly the list goes on It doesn t stop him leading an exciting life though and cutting his way through some very grimdark situations There s blood and shit in large measureTomas Piety is a good fighter but he leads by choosing the right man or woman for the job be it Bloody Anne Billy the Boy Black Billy Sir Eland Kant the Cunt Jochan Piety his wild brother Will the Wencher or any other of his crew of Pious Men It s fun to watch him rebuild his empire a piece at a time ripping down someone else s as he goesGiven the single point of view and the high tempo action most of the characters remain little than nametags but we get to know a few much better and it s well doneFantasy enters the story through the sporadic appearance of sorcerers with a trainee on the home team The magic is definitely of the mysterious variety rather than the magic system sort I found it to be a really good read It s not a book that stuns you with originality powerful prose cunningly engineered plot it s just very fun to read It s a charismatic book I think it could do really wellEDIT now there s a cover Join my 3 emails a year newsletter prizes

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Priest of Bones

N out of food and hope and places to hide Tomas sets out to reclaim what was his with help from Anne his brother Jochan and his new gang the Pious Men But when he finds himself dragged into a web of political intri. I received an advance reading copy of Priest of Bones in exchange for an honest review I would like to thank Peter McLean and Ace for the opportunity The crime boss soldier and priest Tomas Piety has spent the last three years fighting a war he was conscripted into Although victorious it all seems hollow with the death destruction plague and famine that has ravished the land We join Tomas and his crew of trusted mercenaries as they are venturing home warworn and looking to return to their previous lives Upon reaching Ellingberg the city where Tomas and his gang the Pious Men once controlled the streets he soon realises that his businesses have been stolen whilst he has been away spilling blood and guts for his ueen With his crew of loyal military veterans at his side he decides it s time to reclaim what is rightfully his It is soon unravelled that there is going on in the city than meets the eye this time and the turf war skirmishes of his previous business regime are the least of his worries To uote the back of the advanced reading copy The war is not over It s only just beginningI can safely say that this will be the book dark fantasy and grimdark fans will be raving about at the end of this year It is reminiscent of McDonald s Blackwing for the mercenary crew camaraderie Puzo s The Godfather or Lee s Jade City for the crime family intricacies and Horowitz s House of Silk for a few very uncomfortable moments This narrative is presented in the first person perspective as if Tomas is dictating or writing his memories Within the first chapter I was gripped by the voice the flow and Tomas thoughts and opinions Essentially being inside the mind of a crime boss we are privy to all of his views ambitions agendas and secrets which none of the other characters in the dramatis personae are This cleverly ascertained instant empathy pulled me in and even though you d never call Tomas an unflawed person you will than likely be on his side throughout There is a pretty sizable cast of characters in Priest of Bones and for a relatively short book I intially thought there would be too many The way it s written as if we are following Tomas train of thought and views makes it easy to recognise differentiate between and feel for the wide range of many different individuals within the ensemble Many of the players including our narrator have hidden objectives motives and a secret past existence As the first of a proposed trilogy not all uestions regarding the characters are answered but enough nuggets and reveals are presented that it s truly enticing although often gritty and I m excited to find out going forwards Especially with reference to three of my favourite characters including Tomas second the scarred veteran Bloody Anne his brother the slightly disturbed but warrior berserker Jochan and his mysterious cunning and adopted 12 year old nephew Billy the Boy There is also a character called Cutter who is described as a professional murderer with a mysterious past who I can t wait to find out about in the rest of the series I ll point out that it is a coincidence that he shares a name with an assassin in Malazan Book of the Fallen McLean himself described the first entry in War for the Rose Throne as being influenced by a combination of Peaky Blinders and The Godfather but set in Tudor era Edinburgh crossed with Industrial Revolution London I can readily see all these influences however I also analysed it as having a sort of medieval Irish twang and in addition it features lots of fantasy greatness such as deadly magicians named personal weapons and secret assassin groups The world building is exuisite and it mostly takes place within Ellingberg as the Pious Men are trying to rebuild their business empire and find out about who their opposition is Who is this Bloodhands who is just described as a very very scary man I m sure a map of the city will be featured in the final edition but McLean painted perfect imagery with his lexical choices so that it felt that I was walking down the streets of the Stink or the Wheels and even feeling as if I was with the gang drinking in the local tavern before an inevitable ruckus occurred My only negative of this story is very minor I felt that occasionally there was slight in my opinion needless repetition of statements that had been said in chapters before yet that didn t take anything away from my enjoyment An extra point for me to mention is that this book is a complete standalone and all wraps up nicely That being said there are enough loose threads and intrigue that it sets up the next entry expertly and I will definitely be continuing this series There is a segment in the last chapter that hints at what may follow in book 2 and it s an exciting prospect I m pretty certain Priest of Bones will be one of the finest grimdark books of the year Dark fantasy alumni such as Mark Lawrence Ed McDonald and Anna Stephens have already posted glowing reviews regarding Priest of Bones and I believe it will be fans of the above mentioned who will find a lot to enjoy here Although McLean s released the Urban Fantasy series The Burned Man previously in Priest of Bones he has presented a brilliant debut grimdark outing that is fascinating gripping and has everything that I look for in a crime focused novel

SUMMARY Priest of Bones

Gue once again everything gets complicatedAs the Pious Men fight shadowy foreign infiltrators in the back street taverns brothels and gambling dens of Tomas's old life it becomes clear The war is only just beginnin. This was a pretty good grimdark fantasy tale It was basically a gangster story set in a fantasy world so was not your typical epic fantasy tale in terms of scope but that worked well enough as the story was interesting and the fantasy world McLean created might have been an intimate one but for all that it was well crafted and intriguing The premise was good Tomas Piety like most other males of his generation has been fighting in the ueen s War in Abingon for years since being conscripted at the start of the war The story picks up in the aftermath of the fall of Abingon With the war over the majority of the conscripts in the army have been released to go back to their lives so Thomas Piety like many others heads back home to restart his life Of course things are a lot complicated as years of war have left the local economy in ruins so both jobs and food are in short supply and poverty is abundant Not ideal for the thousands of violent men cut adrift from their army pay packets For Thomas Piety the end of the war means he gets to go home to Ellinburg and resume his old role as gang boss of the Pious Men The Pious Men lord it over the Skints region of the city Well they did until all the Pious Men got conscripted to the army Thomas returns home to find foreigners have seized his territory and business interests The good news is that with jobs in short supply Thomas has managed to convince a bunch of his old army brothers to return to Ellinburg with him His brother manages the same and soon the Piety brothers set about reminding everyone in Ellinburg that the Pious Men are not to be fucked with if one wants to keep their guts on the inside It ended up being a good story Thomas was not a particularly likeable guy but he was not so awful that he become too loathsome to tolerate He was a villainous gangster but he had a few morals and just enough charisma going for him that I felt myself rooting for him against his various enemies It definitely helped that most of them were gangsters who were even worse people than he was There was some added intrigue injected into the gangster elements of the story and that came from the fact that foreign agents were operating in Ellinburg and Thomas had been singled out by his countries euivalent of MI5 to root them out It gave the story that extra edge and delivered a fun wild card element to the happenings Peter McLean is a talented storyteller and he has an engaging writing style so it was easy to get sucked into this story and world The world building was good The Ellinburg setting was pretty intimate but we got hints of the wider world via peoples memories of the war and the intrigue delivered by the presence of foreign agents in the city This was a story low on magic but that is not to say there was none It remained a bit of a mystery but there was still a few mages and witches on the go in this fantasy world I do not think Thomas Piety was a super likeable guy but he was easy enough to root for most of the time and I do think that was an important upgrade from the protagonist of Peter McLean s Burned Man series Priest of Bones is definitely an upgrade on The Burned Man books as the tweaks I felt needed to be made to make Don Drake a tolerable protagonist to root for were made in this story with Thomas Piety It was all done without Thomas losing any of his grit and it definitely made a big difference to my ability to invest in and enjoy McLean s fantasy story Just as I thought it would The other big plus this series had was the pure fantasy setting It meant a lot of the cringey banter of the London setting of The Burned Man books was eliminated and that was a good thing for sure This series also lacked the humour which was to be found in The Burned Man series That was both a strength and a weakness It was a strength as it decreased the amount of cringey moments in the story The Burned Man did get a bit cringey when the humour went awry It was a weakness as well though as when McLean got the humour right in The Burned Man series he got it really right and there was some truly laugh out loud moments to be had That side of McLean s writing was not on display in this series On the whole this was a book with a fairly dark and serious tone but I did not feel like McLean went over the top with the violence or dark bits of the story The balance was OK Which is to say I was happy this was a dark fantasy story that did not end up being an overly depressing read I like dark fantasy but I m not a fan of misery porn and McLean did a great job of keeping on the right side of that distinction so this ended up being a fun and enjoyable tale despite its dark content and serious tone This is still Peter McLean so there was still some cringe to be had This time around it was mostly in the form of the nicknames No one was calling Thomas Tom Boy which was a blessing let me tell you but we did get hit with the likes of Bloody Anne because she liked to kill people rather than because she was the only one menstruating on the crew Cutter you guessed it he liked to cut people Simple Sam he was a bit dim William the Woman he cried a few times Black Billy has was not white obviously Billy the Boy he was a boy and Billy the Kid has already been ruined lol Billy Big Baws the gangs notorious exhibitionist and Milli Vanilli it was later revealed this dude was actually just called Billy but had been lying to folks to look cooler OK I might have gotten carried away with a few of the nicknames towards the end but you get the picture They brought some of that trying to hard cringe that was in abundance in McLean s UF series On the whole I did feel the cringe in this series was greatly reduced and that definitely made a positive difference There was also less Goodkindisms in this one as McLean cut the old man technology rants and the kinky sadomasochism scenes I cannot say that I liked Thomas or any of his gangster friends but I was not praying for them to be brutally murdered and I was caught up in the story so I feel like this ended up being an interesting and engaging fantasy story Rating 45 stars I m not sure if I should round up or down This book was good but just lacked that special something to make it a real favourite and it had a few tiny flaws I ll go ahead and go with the 5 star rating as despite the flaws I was caught up in the story and that is what counts most for me It definitely helps that I ve just finished reading two books in McLean s Burned Man series so know what to expect from him as an author and am into the groove with his style of writing I do feel like I enjoyed his for having read Drake firstAudio Note I went the US version of the audio which was narrated by John Lee The UK version was narrated by David Morely Hale I listened to an audio sample and he sounded competent enough but he had a lower class regional UK accent so I gave him a pass It likely fit the characters of the story but I was already familiar with John Lee as a narrator and felt I would enjoy this better with him doing the narration I like his neutral if slightly aristocratic accent John Lee gave a good performance of this story but my feel is that both the UK and the US versions of the audio ended up with decent narrators at the helm


10 thoughts on “Priest of Bones

  1. says:

    Priest of Bones is a very ish book very readable The prose is solid the single first person character who delivers the stor

  2. says:

    MY BLOG MY Woot This one went right into my favorites list Happy Freaking Day I loved almost every character in the book My favorite being Bloody Anne I don’t want a fucking love spell Bloody Anne snarled at him I’ve paid you si

  3. says:

    Priest of Bones has been on my radar ever since I attended a book talk at SDCC 2018 It sounded so good a heavy dose of grimdark with all the usual nastiness and morally grey characters But I could not connect with a single character or event in this book no matter what I didI'm sure the right sort of reader will eat this up and a

  4. says:

    455 starsPeeky fookin bloindah with a powerful one chapter syndromeA confession first I’m not a fan of the TV show Peaky Blinders

  5. says:

    Gritty violent and highly addictive Priest of Bones kept me glued to the pages until the very endThe story begins when our badass protagonist Tomas Piety returns to his hometown after fighting in a long brutal war Bringing

  6. says:

    I received an advance reading copy of Priest of Bones in exchange for an honest review I would like to thank Peter McLean and Ace for the opportunity The crime boss soldier and priest Tomas Piety has spent the last three years fighting a war he was conscripted into Although victorious it all seems hollow with the death des

  7. says:

    The war at Abingon is over but the scars remain Thomas Piety and his small band of war brutalised ex soldiers have no use to the Crown now the conflict has been won they have been set adrift one group among many let loose in a land already devastated by famine and plague However these may just be luckier than most for Thomas Piet

  8. says:

    Absolutely sensational What Low Fantasy should beTomas Piety returns from war to see everything he has worked so hard for in his life taken from him While he was fighting for his country and his ueen foreigners invaded his city and took all of his businesses and therefore his throne as one of the city's most powerful crime lords But while he

  9. says:

    This was a pretty good grimdark fantasy tale It was basically a gangster story set in a fantasy world so was not your typical epic fantasy tale in terms of scope but that worked well enough as the story was interesting and the fantasy world McLean created might have been an intimate one but for all that it was well crafted

  10. says:

    This Review ✍️ Blog 📖 Twitter 🐦 Instagram 📷 “One thing I have noticed in life is that the men who speak the most of honor are usually those who have the least of it” I have seen a lot of rave reviews for this book and it being a dark fantasy book meant that I needed to read it at some point After finishing the book I felt

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