It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour The Jaguar Path by Anna Stephens – Book Two of the new epic fantasy trilogy The Songs of the Drowned by the acclaimed author of Godblind.
About the Author
Anna Stephens has worked in a variety of roles over the years, the latest being in marketing and communications for an international law firm. She’s currently living the dream as a full-time writer and hopes never to have to get a proper job again.
Anna loves all things speculative and horrifying from books to film to TV, and is a second Dan black belt in Shotokan Karate, as well as a keen weightlifter and beginner swordfighter. Visit anna-stephens.com
About the book
The Empire of Songs reigns supreme. Across all the lands of Ixachipan, its hypnotic, magical music sounds. Those who battled against the Empire have been enslaved and dispersed, taken far from their friends and their homes.
In the Singing City, Xessa must fight for the entertainment of her captors. Lilla and thousands of warriors are trained to serve as weapons for their enemies. And Tayan is trapped at the heart of the Empire’s power and magic, where the ruthless Enet’s ambition is ever growing.
Each of them harbours a secret hope, waiting for a chance to strike at the Empire from within. But first they must overcome their own desires. Power can seduce as well as crush. And, in exchange for their loyalty, the Empire promises much.
Although this can be read as a standalone, in my opinion, I would highly recommend reading the first in the series to get the entire gist of the story.
I was intrigued by the concept of the Singer’s Song, the way melody and sound are used as a tool to control the masses. It’s not done in a linear way either, depending on what those in control want from those susceptible to the melody it can release a multitude of reactions. Case in point the way Lilla is influenced and driven in certain directions, the emotional state driven and fuelled constantly to achieve maximum reaction.
It was interesting how the author gave this second book in the trilogy a slightly different atmospheric feel to it. This was much smaller space and environment driven, whereas book one was about reigning the characters in to the positions of servitude and under the control of others. The difference is most notable when it comes to the brutal combat scenes, especially in the pit. The reader can almost taste the emotional turmoil.
It will be fascinating to see the culmination of the series and how the author will approach the worldbuilding as the characters evolve. It’s incredible complex worldbuilding underpinned by an intense battle and combat element, which delivers an absorbing read.
Buy The Jaguar Path at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Harper Voyager: pub date 16 February 2023│HB │ EB │EA. Buy at Amazon com. Buy via Harper Collins Uk.