What is this? Kate, finally reviewing a book again?
The Apocalypse must have begun!
But, no. There are no zombies holding me at knifepoint, my friends. I actually love flailing about books with you! I do. It’s just… I’m lazy, okay?
This is my process… Read book. Flail over book in journal in incoherent sentences that only I could ever decipher. Copy and paste incoherent flailing into draft for blog post. Never post because editing incoherent words is hard, mon.
I do not recommend this process if you are an inexperienced blogger, pregnant, or dislike having your drafts in a shambles.
I have, however, gotten my lazy self to polish this lovely review for your longing eyeballs. Enjoy!
The Oath of the Brotherhood is the first book in the Song of Seare trilogy. If this trilogy is unfamiliar to you, you haven’t been around long because I flail about how brilliant it is and try to shove it down the throats of my close friends at every opportunity.
As previously stated, this trilogy is pure brilliance. I happen to think it builds with each book, making the first, unfortunately, the weakest.
It can be a bit slow getting off the ground, as many opening books are apt to be. I’ve read this series three or four times now – it’s that good – but the first time, I remember being unsure of whether or not I was going to like it. This is forgivable, though! Beginnings are notoriously hard. Or I’m just picky?
The characters are a mixed bag.
Aine is our love interest and improves upon acquaintance. We meet her when she is about seventeen years old, but for some reason she struck me as much younger and I couldn’t seem to erase that first impression from my mind, no matter how hard I tried. So it felt weird for this “twelve-year-old kid, Aine” to be falling in love with someone. Except she wasn’t a twelve-year-old kid. Oops?
She’s also too goody-goody of a character for me. I can never relate to those characters!
I loke Conor and Eoghan’s friendship but it always makes me sad when there starts to be this… distance between them. Moo! It distresses me when friendship is realistic!
I realize that this happens. Some might say that, like change, it is inevitable, but does that make it any less sad? Not for me! Sometimes the inevitable things are the saddest because there’s nothing you can do.
That just got introspective and depressing. I’m sorry.
Conor and Riordan’s relationship is also difficult for me to accept. Riordan loves Conor but seems resigned as if he’s accepted that this is simply “the way things are.” I want to bean him over the head and tell him to make an effort to improve his relationship with his son! Ugh!
The bad guy, by the way, is my favorite. He’s reluctant because he knows the Good Guys are in the right, but is still compelled to be evil and it’s just… perfection.
As you can see, I have conflicted emotions. Remember, though, that having strong feelings about a book is always a good thing! Apathy means the book was poorly done.
Can we briefly discuss some of the themes of this book? Because, wow, there are a lot of them. And they are… hard.
Kudos to you, Carla. I would be terrified to dip my little toe into some of those waters!
One prevailing idea revolves around the fact that Conor doesn’t want to kill – and this is a good thing. But by the end of the book, Conor has actually decided that it is unavoidable. If that isn’t devastating…
Some other questions brought to the forefront of my mind when reading this book… To whom do we ultimately owe our allegiance? Those in authority over us, our own conscience, God…? Eoghan, Riordan, and Conor all disobey authority at various times in this book because they believe that doing what they thought was right was more important. But isn’t keeping your word important? Something you owe to yourself?
Some things to think about.
Last but not least… Read! The! Glossary!
Save us all a little pain and agony, yes? Because the names in this book are hard! Which I have mixed feelings about, to be honest with you. One the one hand, Laureano went to great lengths to get a feeling of Gaelic culture, which is awesome! Go her. On the other hand… I like to be able to read without wondering if I’m butchering the pronunciation?
Let’s do a brief recap, shall we?
I thought “Aine” was pronounced “AY-nuh.” The correct pronunciation is… Anya. Of course. Silly me.
I had difficulty deciding whether “Eoghan” was to be pronounced “EE-yog-an” or “EE-oh-gan.” It is actually pronounced… Owen. Duh.
There are the evil spirits called “Sidhe,” which I naturally assumed were said like “SID-ee.” But no! They are, in fact… “Shee.” And by extension, “Bean-sidhe” is to be pronounced “Banshee.” Not “Bean-SID-ee.”
And “Seare,” which I thought was pronounced “Seer” is supposed to be “Shara.” Which sounds way cooler, so I’m glad of that.
Now that I have regaled you with Gaelic pronunciation tips and bored you to death with this review… we can all go home and eat ice cream! Hooray!
In closing, I’m sorry if this post was a bit dull. I tend to review as if the reader has already read the book in question, so pardon my unusual methods. Hopefully you gleaned that I love this book and the entire trilogy and that you. Should. Read it! If even one of you says that you picked it up because of me, I will consider my life’s calling fulfilled!