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Bloody Rose

The Band, Book 2
Narrated by: Katherine Fenton
Series: The Band, Book 2
Length: 18 hrs and 1 min
4.2 out of 5 stars (73 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Tam Hashford is tired of working at her local pub, slinging drinks for world-famous mercenaries and listening to the bards sing of adventure and glory in the world beyond her sleepy hometown.

When the biggest mercenary band of all rolls into town, led by the infamous Bloody Rose, Tam jumps at the chance to sign on as their bard. It's adventure she wants - and adventure she gets as the crew embark on a quest that will end in one of two ways: glory or death.

It's time to take a walk on the Wyld side.

©2018 Nicholas Eames (P)2018 Hachette Audio UK

Critic Reviews

"Bloody Rose solidifies what Kings of the Wyld proved. Eames writes like a hurricane and has a voice like no one else in this genre." (Sam Sykes)  

"A rollicking, page-turning, edge-of-your-seat road-trip of a book...Wonderful." (John Gwynne) 

"Joe Abercrombie meets Terry Pratchett, and that is not praise I would give lightly." (Fantasy Review Barn)

What listeners say about Bloody Rose

Average Customer Ratings
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Not very good.

I enjoyed the Kings of the Wilde. Unfortunately there really wasn’t much I enjoyed about its follow up . The storyline, the characters, the narration. I found myself disinterested in the outcome and was unable to finish the book. Disappointing.

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  • JBO
  • 06-06-2019

I preferred Kings but still great.

Great book but I found I was longing for Saga characters to appear. If the next book is set in the same world, I will be longing for a glimpse of Fable. Eames is a very talented writer and I look forward to whatever is next.

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Man, it made me feel things

I like this, I like this a lot. Though I miss the subtle lisp of Moog, Katherine made every suspenseful moment a slash coated in humour and emotion weight. You can’t do this to me man, you’re making me feel emotions. I don’t know how to criticise novels but dude was it great. Thanks for the epic tales Eames!

1 person found this helpful

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Sequel is never as good

Story is ok but it is not anywhere near as good as the first book. I found having a female reading the story made it extremely difficult to keep up with which character was speaking. I didn’t actually finish this book as it just became tedious.

1 person found this helpful

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not a great second book

**contains a plof spoiler** yes I enjoyed it..but not sure i would recommend it...the story seemed to drag no where for most of the book...in the end it all led somewhere but the whole time i was wondering what was going on...they toured...then toured some more...then did more touring...then stopped touring...the humour was brilliant and i loved most of the characters..cried like a baby when Gabe was killed...Katherine's narration was spot on...but on a whole this second book doesn't even come close to the brilliance of the first book.

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A weak fan fiction version of the original. Avoid

Way to kill your career, author. Just read King's of the Wyld and stop there.

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  • Simon
  • 30-08-2018

Bloody Rose is Bloody Good!

When most sensible debut authors produce something as spectacularly good as Nicholas Eames did with his Kings of the Wyld opener to "The Band" series they tend to follow up with something that gives the fans exactly what they want. And you could argue that Eames did that by continuing his stories of mercenary bands roaming the Heartwyld and its environs. But that would be to miss the fact that he largely ditched his old characters, changed from an aging band reforming one last time to a current and vibrant one. He then changed the sex of his leading heroes, replaced the excellent Jeff Harding with Katherine Fenton, moved most of his delicious musical references to the 1980s and started 6 years after the end of the previous book! I can only imagine how deliciously smug Mr Eames might have become after taking these brave moves because "Bloody Rose" delivers an equally riotously funny, action-packed fantasy experience as the Kings book did. In fact I would venture to say that some aspects of it such as the action sequences are even better. The musical references are just as tasty with my favourite being the Hucknall Bean though the clever mention of Simon le Bon's pop rockers made me smile as well. Even us prog rockers are well catered for but these references are just a side show to the story. Katherine Fenton is also something of a revelation. She covers such a wide range of character voices and tones you'd think it was two people sometimes mastering the bizarre cast of characters and voice tones with considerable aplomb. Although Bloody Rose could stand alone I would read Kings first if you haven't already as quite a few of the events of that one are played upon and the background you will gain will add depth to this one. In short, he's done it again, despite all the changes Eames has hit the sweet spot bang in the middle and I'm already looking forwards to where the next book will take us!

12 people found this helpful

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  • Paul
  • 16-09-2018

Paler version of the first.

Perhaps my expectations were too high after the amazing first book but this one just didn't do it for me. The characters were not as interesting overall and the book seemed more about investigating the moral issues raised (eg humans treatment of so called monsters) and definitely lacked the sharp and biting humour of the first. Taken as itself, it's a decent yarn but there's almost no "wtf" moments, whether a scene or witty dialogue or commentary. It does feel as if the first book was written 'for the boys' and this second one 'for the ladies' (and yes I know this book was told from a young woman's point of view which I have no issue with) but where the first film breezed along (with serious undertones), this book seemed mired in angst and perhaps forgot what made the first book so good. The narration was ok, but nothing special and again a disapointment because the narrator in the first book with particularly its selection of US southern accents and drawls (to my English ear anyway) set an amazing tone and brought the world to life but here, there was no attempt to re-create that atmosphere. I do look forward to the next book but for me personally, more of the first book please, not the second. And definitely less angst.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Michael
  • 02-11-2019

A weak shadow of "The Kings Of The Wyld"

A weak shadow of "The Kings Of The Wyld" And not the best choice of a narrator

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-03-2019

Great story. poor narration.

great story like the first book. sadly a terrible narration. where is Jeff Harding??!! read the book rather than listening to this one.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Lee Scrutton
  • 22-01-2019

lispy

not a great narrator for this story, very lispy sounded like the snake in Harry potter.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • A. AKANNI
  • 30-12-2018

a bit of a slog to get through

Not as good as the excellent 1st book. I wasn't grabbed by any of the characters. Their back stories were fairly interesting, but none of the depth or humour of the original gang. Doesn't add anything of real value to the World previously created.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Andrew hall
  • 02-10-2020

Undead and undaunted. A good listen.

TLDR: With a darker feel than Book 1, we now follow the next generation of heroes as they come to grips with the undead and their inner demons. Bloody Rose may not burn as brightly as The Band, but it shines all the same. So, this book had a lot to live up to. If you’ve seen my Kings of the Wyld review, you have an inkling as to the rather high benchmark I’ve nailed to the rafters for this book to reach for. Kings of the Wyld was a neigh impossible act to follow, and despite a very valiant effort, Bloody Rose fell just a little short for me. That’s not to say it’s not a good book, because it is good, but it doesn’t drag me to the dizzying heights of its predecessor. That said, let’s talk specifics. I’ll avoid any spoilers for this book, but I’ll make the assumption that you have a passing knowledge of Kings of the Wyld. Though, like most good series, you don’t need to have read the first to climb on board for an adventure on this latest jaunt. Our leading lady, Tam, is a likeable character that ticks a couple of the today’s necessary diversity boxes but doesn’t shove them down your throat, something that is done too often today in my opinion. They are aspects of her character but not her sole feature. She is defined by her actions, and although I didn’t bond quite as deeply with her as I did with Kings of the Wyld’s Clay Cooper, she is still extremely well written and relatable. I think the reason that I didn’t bond with her to the same degree that I did with Clay was because she just wasn’t that funny, whereas Clay Cooper was awash with deadpan humour. All the elements were there for Tam to be a fantastic protagonist, but they just didn’t quite mesh to perfection for my own personal preferences. Where this book loses out to Kings of the Wyld a little more is in the supporting cast. Yes, they are an interesting and fairly well written bunch, but none of them grabbed me like the old boys of Golden Gabe’s band. I’d best stop comparing the two novels now, or this will just turn into another few hundred words of me gushing about Book 1. This is a good fantasy novel that can stand all on its own without living forever in the shadow of it’s over-achieving older brother. The (almost) new cast that we are introduced to are a diverse bunch, each with their own little quirks in the manner we’ve become accustom to for these sorts of adventures, and the band’s quest proceeds with the usual twists, turns, and double crosses. And that’s where the book lets me down a little once more. It didn’t get my heart pupping, didn’t leave me with that sense of desperation that I was praying to be overcome with. I just didn’t bond as deeply with the characters or their journey as I would have like. The book is good, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not spectacular. First and foremost amongst my direct critiques is that it was lacking the witty flair I was expecting from Nicholas Eames. Sure, there were a fair few pithy references and the odd moment that brought one of those half-chuckles that ends up being more like an exaggerated exhale, but it was lacking the Pratchett-esque spark I had hoped for. The fighting sequences were on point, but there was a level of predictability to the story that let the rest of its quality down. We also don’t get to see as much of the world as I would have liked. By playing off so may tropes, we have the advantage of not needing everything explained, allowing for a far greater range of topics and locations that we could visit without the necessary pages establishing lore and backstory. However, it seems like Eames is now trying to slightly distance his world from that style in this book and make the universe more his own. I can’t blame him. I firmly believe that writing fantasy gives you the opportunity to come up with something original, and I feel like he was trying to make his world more his own creation than the Frankenstein of fantasy universes that the first book set out. Unfortunately, it was that very same Frankenstein-world delivered on a bed of Eames’s sparkling prose that I was hoping to find here. This novel just has a different feel. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to it, but it doesn’t make my top twenty, and likely not even my top 50. In summary, if you like the first, this is still well worth a listen. Good action, good characters, good story. Plenty of blood, guts, and swearing, so right up my street. It just falls short of what I had hoped for, but that shouldn’t take away from what it does achieve. As for the narration, Katherine Fenton gives a sold performance. A switch in narrators between books in the same series can often be a little jarring, but considering that the main character changes from male to female between books and that only a scant few of the previous book’s characters are in this novel, so you’ll see no complaints from me. Fenton has a good range and a particular flare for nailing the older, more decrepit characters. Personal Rating: 3.75 stars Professional rating: 4 stars

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  • GigiMC
  • 07-08-2020

Another Great Battle of the Bands

The continuation of the Band trilogy. Book 2 follows Tam Ashford, a girl who wanted to be a bard for the best Band in the 5 courts, Fable, led by Bloody Rose. Rose and Freecloud were touring the arenas with Kira , the Inkwitch and Bruin, the Shaman. The characters come to life in both Nicholas Eames writing and by Katherine Fenton's narration. The world building and magic system continue to grow and develop and we meet new monsters and necromancers along the way. The end of the last book leads into this and some old friends come back and there is laughter, drinking , sacrifice and sorrow along the way. Amazing battle scenes also remain a fixture. Looking forward to the next book.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 20-05-2020

Not as good as Kings of The Wyld but still Great

Really enjoyed the story overall, Characters are welll realised, and it's a different pace to kings of the wyld but really good. Still Captures the spirit of D&D adventure which I loved about the first book but told from a completely different perspective. only have 3 complaints. 1) Katherine Fentons performance while great at portraying the nuances of the new female perspectives, does completely different voices for some of the Cameos of characters from the first book, it shows a lack of collaboration between her and Jeff Harding and makes these great characters we've seen before sound generic. (Moog is not British) 2) At a certian point One of the main characters Change motivations changes very quickly and I found that a bit Jarring and in contrast with their Fairly selfish nature. 3) One of the 'Twists' in the midpoint of the story i found very obvious and figured it out long before the characters did, I found myself asking why characters were going along with the contract and not questioning someone so blatantly untrustworthy especially when they know so much about the history of the world. Maybe this was intentional - I found it grating. if you can get past those 3 things and they are minor complaints then you'll have a great time with this book. If you're reading it rather than listening to the Audio book I imagine you'll probably enjoy it even more.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Michelle Cocks
  • 05-05-2020

great follow up

kings of the wyld was and is one of my faves, this was slow to begin with but wow it took me in