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Blades of the Old Empire: Book I of the Majat Code Mass Market Paperback – February 25, 2014

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Mass Market Paperback, February 25, 2014
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Blades of the Old Empire: Book I of the Majat Code + The Guild of Assassins: Book Two of The Majat Code
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Product Details

  • Series: Majat Code
  • Mass Market Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Angry Robot (February 25, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857664123
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857664129
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #631,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“Both Kyth and Ellah are likeable characters and it is a joy to follow their stories…A solid start to what looks to be an exciting series.”
– The British Fantasy Society

“If you’re in the mood for a fun fantasy with mercenaries, an evil brotherhood, then, yes, give Blades of the Old Empire a try.”
- Tenacious Reader

“Another great book from Angry Robot…I enjoyed this book and would recommend it for anyone who likes a good swashbuckling storyline.”
- Every Book Deserves to be Read

“Strong roots and parallels to history keep the reader grounded and enrich the world of this novel while magic and the characters keep it fresh and interest.”
- Heather McCorkle

“This book is action packed from the very first page, and is a good start to a series that I will look forward to reading more of.”
- Avid Reviews

“You get fast-paced travel with political intrigue and danger, amazing martial arts fights of extreme skill, cultural immersion from around the world, and a little hint of romance without ruining the tough fighter feel… I really cannot express enough times how highly I recommend this story to everyone.”
- In Pursuit of My Own Library

“I really enjoyed this book despite not being a huge fan of romance-themed novels. I feel it is for those who want more romance in their fantasy while also getting a hefty dose of action, adventure, and intrigue… It was a good book, and well worth the read. I’ll be reading this one again.”
- R.J. Blain

“Each scene is very well written. Action and dialog keep the story moving at a fast clip. The fight scenes were especially well written making it easy to see what was happening. Now I want to see what happens in the next book.”
- Mixed Book Bag

Praise for Anna Kashina:

"Kashina's Arabesque novel ... will have readers dream of summoning their own djinn."
-Publishers Weekly

"Substantial and vivid ... Enthralling" -RTimes Book Reviews
"A rich treasure trove of imagery, color, romance, intrigue, and mystery"
- ForeWord Reviews (Featured Review)

About the Author

Anna Kashina grew up in Russia and moved to the United States in 1994 after receiving her Ph.D. in cell biology from the Russian Academy of Sciences. She works as a biomedical researcher and combines career in science with her passion for writing. Anna's interests in ballroom dancing, world mythologies and folklore feed her high-level interest in martial arts of the Majat warriors. She lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

More About the Author

Anna Kashina was born in Russia and moved to the United States in 1994. Her fantasy and historical fiction appeared in original editions in Russia, Germany, Australia, and the US. She lives in Philadelphia, PA, and combines her writing with a successful career in biomedical research.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Fraser Sherman on February 27, 2014
So it's nice to be reminded how much fun it can be. The strengths of the books are the spectacular fight scenes (well executed) and all the complicated (but not too complicated) intrigues swirling around Prince Kyth as a mysterious cult tries to capture and exploit him.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Olga Karengina on February 27, 2014
I have read this book in one breath and enjoyed it a lot. The plot is catching and the characters are very much alive. I had some favorites among the secondary characters and felt amazed at how they all stood out, each a distinct person. I also loved the romance elements, especially the alternate story that does not involve the two main characters--great chemistry, and every turn of their interaction is just so unexpected. The writing is so vivid that I could actually see all the scenes when I read. I think this book would make a superb movie. If you are looking for an engaging fast-paced read, don't miss this book.
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BLADES OF THE OLD EMPIRE is a refreshing high fantasy novel with both male and female protagonists for the reader to connect with. While the main plot line centers around a powerful order intent on capturing Prince Kythar and using his undeveloped powers to raise an ancient evil, the author weaves multiple plot lines seamlessly throughout the book.

The story starts off a bit awkwardly, working as a first book in this series even though it was technically written as a sequel. I believe the first book is out of print, and getting the rights to republish it may have been an issue. That being said, I think the author did a great job trying to catch the reader up on what they missed without making the reader feel like they missed much.

The most unique and interesting part of this series are the Majat - skilled mercenaries who can be hired by anyone with enough gold to pay their fee. Men and women from all parts of the world are trained from a young age to fight and kill, to protect and defend with their lives. These Majat have a strict honor code, where duty trumps everything. The author deftly challenges this by asking: what happens if love interferes with their duty?

The reader gets a heart-racing, page-turning novel as Prince Kythar and his Majat bodyguard Kara face down the biggest threat their world has faced in centuries - with the help of a few friends along the way. The reader also gets a beautiful paperback with a stunning cover featuring this mysterious Majat named Kara. It's a perfect addition to any bookshelf.

I really enjoyed this novel, and am looking forward to reading the sequel. That said, I will admit that the writing style may not be for everyone.
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