Monday, January 23, 2012
Daughter of the Blood by Anne Bishop
Daughter of the Blood is the first book in the "Black Jewels" trilogy by Anne Bishop; the world and concept of which has also spawned 6 additional books under the "Black Jewels" theme.
In a world with 3 different Realms, women rule as Queens and witches; whereas men are always secondary in hierarchy to women. One night, a fortune-teller in one of the Realms sees in her visions a witch rising to the status of Queen; however, this witch is to be known as Witch (with a capital W!), the most powerful woman the Realms may ever see in their lifetime.
When Witch finally arrives and her presence becomes known, she is just an innocent young girl named Jaenelle who is aware that she has powers nobody else possesses. Jaenelle then travels between the Realms to seek guidance from Saetan - the ruler of the Dark Realm - for training on ways to use and control her powers. Jaenelle also connects with Saetan's sons Daemon and Lucivar, who reside in the other 2 Realms. Upon meeting Jaenelle, both men know they are meant to love and serve her; but they must work together with their estranged father to protect Jaenelle before others break her of her innocence and she loses her powers forever.
Daughter of the Blood is one of the most colorful, vivid fantasy novels I've ever read in the genre! In all actuality, Bishop's talents are superior to others across all genres because not only can she write in a way that allows you to vision her world clearly, but a fantasy world at that, which contains the most bizarre otherworldly elements. The compliment I pay to Bishop is quite a large one; especially since I normally struggle through fantasies feeling lost and unable to grasp a clear picture of the fictional, fantasy universe in question.
Daughter of the Blood is the beginning of what is laid out to be a deep, complex saga, which is a major part of its appeal. The character development is so rich in this novel that it nearly makes me tremble in anticipation for the next 2 books in the series!
Before setting out to write the review on Daughter of the Blood, I visited the sites of other bloggers and reviewers to read their opinions on the book. I was surprised to find that most readers feel that the books are too violent, dark, and evil; especially in regards to the sexual ownership and slaving of some of the men and women characters. I, however, feel that Bishop's hierarchy and caste system are original, clever, and disturbingly sexy; which is exactly why I enjoyed the novel! In some cases, without these horrific elements, your characters cannot grow and develop in ways you need them to; especially if you plan on penning an entire series.
Anne Bishop's Black Jewels trilogy will be enjoyed by hard-core fantasy fans and fans of erotica or bondage/discipline/sadism/masochism (BDSM). Those who enjoy light fantasy leaning toward the comedic side may be offended by Daughter of the Blood.
The books that follow Daughter of the Blood in the Black Jewels trilogy are Heir to the Shadows (1999) and Queen of the Darkness (1999). The next books published under this theme are The Invisible Ring (2000) and Dreams Made Flesh (2005).
Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
Did you read Daughter of the Blood, and if so, what did you think?
What are some of your favorite fantasy series?
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