Beasts of Men and Gods: Soldiers of Fire a 1 great fantasy novel
Mythical Beasts and Forgotten Gods abound in this fantasy novel.
Soldiers of Fire is the first novel in Ryan M. Oliver’s projected five-volume fantasy novel series, Beasts of Men and Gods, and it is his first fantasy novel to be published in North America. Those who enjoy the works of J. R. R. Tolkien, George R. R. Martin, and other classic fantasy authors will delight in the world-building, adventure, and comedy that can be found on every page of this incredible novel. This is a great fantasy novel.
The storey begins when an elderly man named Nestor has a terrifying dream about war erupting on Ruxar, a continent made up of five kingdoms that have lived in peace for as long as anybody can remember. Nestor meets the warrior Aedan, whom he had foreseen in his dream, and manages to persuade him that war is coming to the town of Brédon, where they are both strangers. Nestor and Aedan become fast friends. To everyone’s surprise, the neighboring kingdom of Hydraria launches an attack on the small town of Hydraria. Having joined forces to form a resistance, Nestor and Aedan quickly establish themselves as leaders in the struggle against the invaders, earning the nickname “Soldiers of Fire” alongside another warrior, Aloysius.
The rest of the book is an engrossing storey full of mysteries and revelations, which Oliver weaves together. Ruxar has been plunged into war, and no one can believe it has happened. Several of the characters travel to Brédon in order to watch what has occurred in the town. In order to inform the other kingdoms of the Hydrarians’ hostility, Nestor, Aedan, and Aloysius commit themselves to doing so, but they find it impossible to convince anyone of the threats they face.
Oliver masterfully manages the numerous subplots that emerge as the Soldiers of Fire disperse to warn Ruxar’s people of the impending catastrophe. Scenes that progressively disclose the sinister designs of Ulysses, King of Hydraria, and the motivations that drive him-motivations that are religious at their source-and that are shocking to the other characters as they are gradually revealed-are interspersed throughout their storylines.
In addition to the chaos and war, there is a series of magnificent mythical beasts that are a part of everyday life in Ruxar, which makes for an exhilarating journey. Each of Ruxar’s kingdoms is associated with one of these powerful beasts: the manticore, the hydra, the Cerberus, the gargoyle, and the dragon, to name a few. Many of the features of these beasts have rubbed off on the inhabitants of those regions, with some more prominently than others. In addition to having prophetic visions, Gargoyles can also see visions, which makes Nestor of Gargolia a prophetic visionary. Aedan is of Dragonia, and he is gradually becoming aware that he is developing dragon-like characteristics. For some of the characters, these animal characteristics are hardly more than hints, but their inherent proclivities will most likely be hinted at in subsequent volumes.
Finally, throw in an evil warrior princess who goes by the moniker “Blade Maiden,” and you’ve got a storey with lots of characters to love, as well as some you’ll want to kill.
After reading the finale, I was on the edge of my seat since it hinted at the huge surprises that would follow later in the series. Fortunately, in the conclusion, Oliver gives us a sneak preview of the first chapter of Book 2: Forgotten Fathers, whetting our appetites even further.
Soldiers of Fire is the beginning of what appears to be a tremendously interesting trip through a fantasy world unlike any other that has ever been created. Fans of Game of Thrones, Greek mythology, or simply a good getaway from the real world will like this new series, which will premiere on HBO in 2019. You can click here to purchase this fantasy novel.