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Book Reviews of The Blue Sword

The Blue Sword
The Blue Sword
Author: Robin McKinley
ISBN-13: 9780425063187
ISBN-10: 0425063186
Publication Date: 12/1/1983
Pages: 250
Reading Level: Ages 9-12
Rating:
  • Currently 4.4/5 Stars.
 22

4.4 stars, based on 22 ratings
Publisher: Berkley
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

10 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Blue Sword on + 14 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This is a classic book of fantasy that is very well written. This is a book that I find myself reading over and over again.
LadyVampire avatar reviewed The Blue Sword on + 87 more book reviews
For those who love Robin McKinley, this is one of her "must have" books. For those who don't know her but enjoy fantasy novels..you will not be disappointed by this book. If you enjoy books by authors like Terry Brooks or Anthony Piers then you should give this book a chance and you may find you want to read some of her other novels afterward as well.
reviewed The Blue Sword on + 38 more book reviews
Love Mckinley's books. More good stuff.
skywriter319 avatar reviewed The Blue Sword on + 784 more book reviews
Well, they dont really write high fantasy as they used to, now do they? There has to be a reason that Robin McKinleys THE BLUE SWORD, first published in the 1980s, is still being widely read and adored, and that is because it is arguably the absolute best in its genre, an unmatched blend of strong characters, political intrigue, and quite simply the best damn fantasy world ever imagined and written.

Its a little strange for me to read THE BLUE SWORD for the first time, nearly ten years after I picked up The Hero and the Crown and read it to pieces for about four years straight, it having been my favorite book in middle school. THE BLUE SWORD was written before The Hero and the Crown. I can hardly wrap my mind around that! The depiction of the Damarian landscape is incredible: ranging from endless red deserts to the hidden valleys and villages within the mountains. Robin McKinleys language is not quite lyrical, per se, but there is a certain hypnotic rhythm that her descriptions possess. That, combined with the scope of the worldbuildingthe politics, myths, fashions, traditions, everyday dutiesis entrancing. McKinley inspires awe in readers.

Harry, of course, serves for many as the blueprint of the admirable fantasy heroine. True, at times it feels like the mysterious magic of Damar is carrying her along, instead of her leading it. But her magnanimity, her determination to succeed even as she does not completely understand whats happening to her, is inarguably admirable. Corlaths appeal, I think, comes less from his specific characteristics, and more from his inexplicable status as the archetypal complement to Harrys heroine role. However little or much we perceive of Harry and Corlaths personalities, beliefs, or desires, however, they are a pair for whom we feel absolute sympathy.

I have little more to say because I feel like this is one of those instances where the more I try to examine what made this book move me so, the less impressed I will be by it. So Ill just say that the scope of what it accomplishes is unparalleled, and if you read it at the right stage of lifesay, on the brink of adolescence, just when youre searching for a role modelthen THE BLUE SWORD will undoubtedly become your bible of sorts.
skywriter319 avatar reviewed The Blue Sword on + 784 more book reviews
Well, they dont really write high fantasy as they used to, now do they? There has to be a reason that Robin McKinleys THE BLUE SWORD, first published in the 1980s, is still being widely read and adored, and that is because it is arguably the absolute best in its genre, an unmatched blend of strong characters, political intrigue, and quite simply the best damn fantasy world ever imagined and written.

Its a little strange for me to read THE BLUE SWORD for the first time, nearly ten years after I picked up The Hero and the Crown and read it to pieces for about four years straight, it having been my favorite book in middle school. THE BLUE SWORD was written before The Hero and the Crown. I can hardly wrap my mind around that! The depiction of the Damarian landscape is incredible: ranging from endless red deserts to the hidden valleys and villages within the mountains. Robin McKinleys language is not quite lyrical, per se, but there is a certain hypnotic rhythm that her descriptions possess. That, combined with the scope of the worldbuildingthe politics, myths, fashions, traditions, everyday dutiesis entrancing. McKinley inspires awe in readers.

Harry, of course, serves for many as the blueprint of the admirable fantasy heroine. True, at times it feels like the mysterious magic of Damar is carrying her along, instead of her leading it. But her magnanimity, her determination to succeed even as she does not completely understand whats happening to her, is inarguably admirable. Corlaths appeal, I think, comes less from his specific characteristics, and more from his inexplicable status as the archetypal complement to Harrys heroine role. However little or much we perceive of Harry and Corlaths personalities, beliefs, or desires, however, they are a pair for whom we feel absolute sympathy.

I have little more to say because I feel like this is one of those instances where the more I try to examine what made this book move me so, the less impressed I will be by it. So Ill just say that the scope of what it accomplishes is unparalleled, and if you read it at the right stage of lifesay, on the brink of adolescence, just when youre searching for a role modelthen THE BLUE SWORD will undoubtedly become your bible of sorts.
Hairsprayartist avatar reviewed The Blue Sword on + 38 more book reviews
Wonderful, Wonderful Story. Strong Can Do Girl! Loved it!
marcella avatar reviewed The Blue Sword on + 5 more book reviews
This a wonderful book and one of my favorites. It's fantasy and adventure in away you can believe, and just a pinch of romance to make it complete it all. Overall, it's a good read for when you've nothing better to do.
reviewed The Blue Sword on + 2 more book reviews
This book is amazing! I love the glimpses the audience gets of an unfamiliar culture. However, what I most enjoy about this book is the main character. Harry is strong yet emotional, and naive yet clever. Simply put, Harry Crewe is one of the very few female protagonists in the Fantasy genre that I adore, let alone find compelling. I would recommend this book to Fantasy lovers as well as Young Adult readers.
reviewed The Blue Sword on + 27 more book reviews
Harry Crewe is an orphan girl who comes to live in Damar, the desert country shared by the Homelanders and the secretive, magical Free Hillfolk. When Corlath, the Hillfolk King, sees her for the first time, he is shaken - for he can tell that she is something more than she appears to be. He will soon realize what Harry has never guessed: She is to become Harimad-sol, King's Rider, and carry the Blue Sword, Gonturan, which no woman has wielded since the legendary Lady Aerin, generations past...

** I've actually never read this book, so my rating of 5 is average by default **
scoutmomskf avatar reviewed The Blue Sword on + 2537 more book reviews
I love this book. I haven't read it for many years, but it called to me for a reread. Harry has come to Damar after her father's death to be with her brother. There is something about the land that draws her like nothing else ever has. When Corlath, king of the Hillfolk, comes to Istan to warn of a threat to all of them there is something about him that speaks to her also. After his warnings are ignored, Corlath leaves, but returns in the dark of night to steal Harry away, as his powers demand. This begins a journey for Harry that opens up a whole new world and way of life to her.

I absolutely love both Harry and Corlath. Harry is miserably unhappy in the Homelander settlement. She is used to being able to do things and her life is now very restricted. She also doesn't feel like she really fits in anywhere. She finds a couple people there that seem to feel the same way about Damar that she does, that see the beauty of that land. When Corlath kidnaps her, she doesn't understand why. She also feels like she doesn't fit in there, as she is mostly ignored at first. When the magic of the Hillfolk finds her, Corlath starts to soften toward her and begins to understand why he was called to take her. His elite guard, the Riders, begin to accept her when they see that she possesses the same magic the king does. Then Corlath has one of the Riders begin to train her as a female warrior. Her journey through the fear of her kidnapping, the culture shock of her training, then her melding of her two worlds is an incredible story of growth. It is not easy for her. We see the difficulty of her training, the culmination of that training, and then the decisions she has to make along the way.

Corlath is a man with an impossible job. He has a very small kingdom that is being threatened by a less than human foe. His attempts at getting some help fail, but his powers require him to steal away the Outlander girl without telling him why. Their initial days together are rough because he doesn't want her there and she can tell. But when her visions make it obvious that she will play an important role, Corlath takes steps to make sure she is ready. I loved the way that Harry eventually takes to the training, though it is difficult at first. We also see her discomfort with the way everyone seems to be counting on her, though she is determined to do her best. She also has no trouble standing up to Corlath and trying to make him see what she tries to tell him. She wrestles with her decision on what she has to do, but ultimately does what she feels is right.

The characters in this book are so well done that they feel absolutely real to me. I can feel their torment and their happiness and I can't help rooting for them, even when I know what will happen. My favorite part in the entire book is Harry's reappearance at the Outlander fort. I also love her training sessions and her return to Corlath at the end. I highly recommend this book and its prequel The Hero and the Crown to everyone, but especially those looking for strong female role models for girls.