Battle Mage by Peter A. Flannery

An unholy demon and its army of possesed are on the march to destroy the human race. This has been the cycle for hundreds of years. An unlikely hero who is looked upon as a weakling, untrust worthy, and the son of a traitor. The only way to win is to fight the fear released by the demons and look for the strength not only within but in that of the legendary Battle Mage. It should be noted that I did listen to the audio version of this book as it is a huge doorstop of a novel. Written in a classical fashion, this standalone epic is everything you could ever want in a book and a top 5 read of 2022 for me!

Before we get into the plot and characters it is essential that I provide the proper backround for this tale. For over four hundred years the demons have been rising to the surface to cause fear and death to the human race. The only thing that can fight these demons is a Battle Mage. We do have normal mages in the story as well but the main difference being how each can use magic. Mages need days or even weeks to store enough energy to unleash an attack while Battle Mages can do this instantly.

After a Battle Mage completes his or her training and trials, they are granted the gift of a calling. The calling is where the Battle Mage is accompanied by several mages to the mountains to call forth a dragon from a foreign land. Dragons can be many different sizes and colors from yellow to blue to red to black. There are three events that can happen during a calling: The call goes unanswered, a dragon appears to be a comrade to the Battle Mage, or the dragon has to be killed if the color is black. Black dragons are mad with hate and vengeance for the human race. They can not be allowed to live which is why the mages are present to distract the dragon before the Battle Mage can kill it. This is just the tipping point of the worldbuilding but lets move on to the characters.

A tournament has come to the main town of our three main characters to determine who will travel to city of Wrath to join the queens army. Malaki is the son of the local blacksmith and although not of royal birth, is know to be the best fighter in towm. He is loyal, steadfast and strong to find his place amoung the knights of Wrath. Brenna is a skilled archer looking for her place of fame in the army. Determined to make her father proud, Brenna has an underdof story all reads will grow to love. Finally we have Falco Dante, son of the traitor battle mage who killed his fellow knights and mages for refusing to kill his dragon once it turned black. I should mention that over time all dragons will eventually turn black and mad with rage. Falco’s father was killed for his betrayal with the son to forever live in the shame and misery of the father. Falco is also very weak as he has a sickness from when he was very young that affects the lungs. When the town is attacked by a demon horde and no Battle Mage in sight, the warriors are all trembling with fear and horror. All except for Falco who resists the demons powers until the day is saved by the queens forces. It is determined that Falco has the traits and skills to come to Wrath and start his training to be a Battle Mage himself and thus his journey has only just begun.

First of all, I must say right off the bat that this is a very long book that takes its time in building the world and character interactions. Although there are several battles and fights along the way don’t expect this to be a quick read. The character moments drained every single emotion out of me along with the trials and epic size battles. Peter Flannery does something similar to Steven Erikson in that he will switch view points in each chapter quite frequently. In some cases, you will read a section from a random character on the battlefield. This will take some time to get use to but I loved this approach to the story and it added another element of depth. We also get to learn a great deal about the Battle Mages and the connections they have with the Dragons. I don’t want to get into spoilers but these scenes are so vivid in my mind that I can’t imagine them not staying with me for a long time. Battle Mage is essentially a combination of Dragon Mage by M.L. Spencer and Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter. Both of these novels are among my favorites in the genre and now Battle Mage has joined the company.

This standaone epic has joined the company of To Ride Hells Chasm by Janny Wurts as my top two standalone epic fantasy novels on the market today. Battle Mage already has hundred of reviews on both amazon and goodreads as it is well deserving. If you need a complete story on a epic scale, this is the book for you. I could ramble on for pages and pages but that will take time away from you reading the book. I will be recommending this book for the rest of my days as a blogger and you will too!


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