Review of “Bloodstone”Book I of “The Kane Trilogy” by Karl Edward Wagner

bloodstone

In Earth’s distant past, there walked a man named Kane; a mysterious, tormented, cursed immortal doomed by the Gods to wander the Earth until he is slain by the same violence he has perpetrated. While running with a group of bandits, Kane obtains a mysterious ring that seems to emanate a sinister alien intelligence. The ring draws Kane to  the lost city of Arrelarti in the foreboding, monster-haunted swamplands of Kranor-Rill. And while a vicious war rages on between the Breimen and Selonari, Kane is confronted by a malevolent, powerful entity that desires his soul. An entity known as Bloodstone…..

As my girlfriend would say, “Holy shiitake!!” This was one hell of a book! Certainly one of the greatest sword and sorcery/dark fantasy novels I have ever read, right up there with Michael Moorcock’s Elric and Robert E. Howard’s Conan. The dark tone of this book is perfect, and Kane is a kickass antihero. Set on an antediluvian Earth populated by dark gods, demons, monsters, wizards, and warriors, “Bloodstone” the first book in “The Kane Trilogy” crackles with action, adventure, intrigue, magic, battles, horror, mystery, romance, and practically everything you could want out of a sword and sorcery/dark fantasy novel. Kane is one of the fiercest, most bloodthirsty, most intriguing antiheroes you will ever read about. I was hooked from the very first page and could not put this book down. Karl Edward Wagner, the creator of Kane was a genius, and it’s a tragedy that he had to die so early in his career. As I’ve heard it so perfectly stated, Kane is what would come about if Conan of Cimmeria and Elric of Melnibone had a baby. This book is a must-read for any fan of sword and sorcery/dark fantasy.
I give “Bloodstone” by Karl Edward Wagner a 5 out of 5.

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