This along with The Emperor's Edge series would make a fantastic movie! Hollywood, are you paying attention? Keep writing, Ms.
Buroker and I'll keep reading. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves to read and lose themselves in the escapism. Feb 28, retro rated it it was ok Shelves: fantasy , het-romance. Good for a quick read and, if looking for a steampunk fantasy fix, definitely worth considering. But while the writing is decent and I quite liked the worldbuilding airships!
Spoilers below. I couldn't stand Ridge from the get-go and Sardelle began to grate on my nerves as the story progressed. Their interesting names aside, Ridge is your standard Han Solo-type hero.
Badass captain of his own airship, he punches t Good for a quick read and, if looking for a steampunk fantasy fix, definitely worth considering. Badass captain of his own airship, he punches the wrong diplomat in an effort to defend the honor of a female crew member it had to be a woman, of course and gets sent to manage a prison mining operation. Sardelle, for her part, has been hibernating for three hundred years after Ridge's ancestors buried her magically-inclined people inside a mountain.
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And, you've guessed it, the mountain is what the prison mining operation is built around, which is how Sardelle gets woken up and the plot is set in motion. Of course, common sense dictates that Sardelle should hotfoot it right out of there - and doubtlessly she would if her soul-bonded sword, possessed by the spirit of a dead teenage witch, weren't also stuck inside the mountain with her.
If Ridge is a proud graduate of the Han Solo school of leading men, Sardelle starts off with an advantage. She's a lot more complex. The last of her people, she wrestles with the moral quandary of using her abilities against men who mean her harm and adapts to her new surroundings as best she can. She's interesting In a world where crystals power airships and soulblades can be inhabited by teenage witches, perhaps it's only normal that language doesn't change at all in three centuries and the same two people are still fighting each other.
And perhaps it then follows that the last of the witchy kind should make peace with helping the descendants of those who killed literally everyone she ever knew, going as far as to risk her own life for them, all within the space of a month. But perhaps not. Perhaps that only happens because the descendants in question are now led by the aforementioned Ridge. He's a man. She's a woman. From the moment he sees her, he can't stop thinking about her. From the moment she sees him, she becomes a lovesick teenager, on par with the actual teenage witch with which her soulblade is infused.
And there's nothing wrong with that, if the emotional stakes measured up. He's so enthralled with her that it's hard to imagine he won't forgive her if she were to reveal she's a serial killer on par with Hannibal Lecter and she's so mind-bogglingly concerned about morality that it's clear she'll be nice to the bad men who burn witches or women they think are witches because they're all on the same side.
From canoodling in a cave after being chased by a giant owl just go with it to midnight rendezvous in the prison library again, just go with it , Ridge and Sardelle really did seem to fall in love awfully quick. I can only assume the sex was just too good for common sense to enter the equation.
What I loved:
Perhaps their thirst for each other was intended as a character flaw, but as a reader I just found it frustrating that two supposedly bright people in their thirties would go from vague mutual attraction to sleeping together, to defying orders on his side and risking life and limb several times, on hers for each other all within the space of a month.
And if that's not bad enough, we have the obligatory insertion of a would-be romantic rival in the last third of the book as well as a second older bureaucrat who rains on Ridge's parade and is then killed off-screen , who is presented as little more than a bad knock-off of Sardelle. Vespa's only role seems to be to give Sardelle someone to be jealous of - other than Ridge's only now dead shipmate, and don't get me started on that response to finding your lover literally drinking his grief away - and give Ridge the chance to once more reiterate why she's better than other women.
I'm actually sorry I didn't like this more. The worldbuilding has so much potential and I wanted to see more of the prison, to get to know the people there. Instead, because the story all too quickly becomes the Ridge-and-Sardelle show, the Cofah attack on the fort doesn't really pack much of an emotional punch. I don't care how many prisoners or soldiers die. I feel about as conflicted as Sardelle when she literally stabs a man through the heart - which is to say, not at all.
Although I am a little bit sad that that man isn't one cocky flyboy True Rating 3. I was excited to read it because it is toted as a steampunk romance.
Balanced on the Blade’s Edge (Dragon Blood) (Volume 1)
It was a fast read that was entertaining and witty. I think it is steampunk-ish but not full on steampunk. Sardelle's character was one that I want to know more about. She is a mage that has awoken after a three hundred year stasis and has no idea what that three hundred years have passed. Her soulblade Jaxi luckily has been aware and learning wh True Rating 3. Her soulblade Jaxi luckily has been aware and learning while Sardelle was in stasis so she was able to help her acclimate. Sardelle's one focus is to retrieve Jaxi and search the world looking for others like her.
Ridge was hilarious. I enjoyed his character immensely. He was a typical pilot who enjoyed taking to the skies more than anything.
Unfortunately he thumbed his nose at his superiors one to many times and was put "in charge" of the mountain prison that Sardelle found herself at. He was taken with her when he first laid eyes on her but his interest soon turned to suspicion as he tried to figure out who Sardelle really was. The relationship between the two main characters was pretty fast and not based on anything besides lust initially. There was witty banter and a true relationship did start to form.
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Overall, it was humorous, entertaining and I think I want to continue on with the series. View 2 comments. I liked the characters especially the fact that they were in their 30s and 40s and thought the world an interesting one. There was humor and a little bit of romance. Unfortunately, I didn't think it was quite as meticulously written as past books and there was a little too much he felt drawn to her but didn't know why sort of hand waving.
Balanced on the Blade's Edge (Dragon Blood, book 1) by Lindsay Buroker
It made the whole thing feel a bit rushed. But despite that I'd be happy to read more of series. Sep 07, cEe beE rated it really liked it Shelves: my-kinda-hero , action-sci-fi , spirited-heroine , book-series , couldn-t-put-down , kick-ass-heroine. Lindsay Buroker is an expert in writing charming heroes and heroines, witty and funny dialogue and break-neck adventure. Balanced on the Blade's Edge is a perfect example.
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The world building and character depth here is much lighter compared to The Emperor's Edge series but it has the same type of fast action and suspense. It overrides one's sensibilities to keep turning the pages and find out what happens next. A light escapist fast, fun read. If you are a fan of Buroker, I highly recommend this! View all 20 comments. Apr 01, Hallie rated it really liked it Shelves: i-hate-moving-special.
Seems an astonishingly quick romance or whatever for those who've read all of the Emperor's Edge books, but still a lot of fun. Interesting premise too, and good characters. You never know what you're getting when you download a freebie, but this time I scored! Balanced on the Blade's Edge is the first book in the Dragon Blood series and it's definitely worth checking out!