Without Bloodshed review
Author: Matthew Graybosch
5 out of 5 stars
Book Info: Genre: Speculative Fiction
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: fans of metal, scifi, fantastic worlds
Trigger Warnings: sexual assault, abuse of power, murder, violence, fighting
My Thoughts: First of all, I absolutely love the cover on this thing. It is just gorgeous. This is the first book in the Starbreakers series, and it was a terrific read. It is described at the Starbreakers series website as: “Androids unaware of their nature fight demons from outer space. It's totally metal.” If I had known that little bit going into the book I might have caught on to what was going on that much more quickly, but it is eventually revealed to the careful reader. Additional stories that can provide background can also be found and read online by starting at the Starbreakers series website story page.
I love the complexity of the characters in this book. None of them are one-dimensional, nothing is really ever quite what it seems, and every time I started to figure out what might be going on, a new twist or kink was thrown in and I was right back at ground zero. It was beautifully done to keep the reader engaged with the story rather than frustrated. I particularly was amused by some of Claire's random ejaculations and swearing, which I am unable to add into the review due to Terms of Service issues at some of the sites where I post them. I did post some updates including some of them on Goodreads, which were apparently amusing enough that one of my friends told me she'd picked up a copy of the book based on my updates on only the first 11 percent of the book.
The “metalness” of the stories is more obvious in the short stories available on the website, but it comes through a bit in this book, too. I think a lot of people will enjoy this book, so if it sounds like your sort of thing, definitely check it out.
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from Curiosity Quills in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
Synopsis: "All who threaten me die."
These words made Morgan Stormrider's reputation as one of the Phoenix Society's deadliest IRD officers. He served with distinction as the Society's avenger, hunting down anybody who dared kill an Adversary in the line of duty. After a decade spent living by the sword, Morgan seeks to bid a farewell to arms and make a new life with his friends as a musician. Regardless of his faltering faith, the Phoenix Society has a final mission for Morgan Stormrider after a dictator's accusations make him a liability to the organization. He must put everything aside, travel to Boston, and prove he is not the Society's assassin. He must put down Alexander Liebenthal's coup while taking him alive.
Despite the gravity of his task, Morgan cannot put aside his ex-girlfriend's murder, or efforts to frame him and his closest friends for the crime. He cannot ignore a request from a trusted friend to investigate the theft of designs for a weapon before which even gods stand defenseless. He cannot disregard the corruption implied in the Phoenix Society's willingness to make him a scapegoat should he fail to resolve the crisis in Boston without bloodshed.
The words with which Morgan Stormrider forged his reputation haunt him still.