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Oathblood (Vows and Honor, Book 3) Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 1998

4.4 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews
Book 3 of 3 in the Vows and Honor Series

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$8.68 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 3 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Mercedes Lackey is a full-time writer and has published numerous novels and works of short fiction, including the best-selling Heralds Of Valdemar series. She is also a professional lyricist and a licensed wild bird rehabilitator. She lives in Oklahoma with her husband, artist Larry Dixon, and their flock of parrots. She can be found at mercedeslackey.com.
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Product Details

  • Series: Vows and Honor (Book 3)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: DAW (April 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0886777739
  • ISBN-13: 978-0886777739
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #113,661 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
To clear up some misconceptions that seem to have arisen: this is a collection of short stories featuring Tarma and Kethry. It is NOT a novel, and I don't know why anyone mistook it for one. To judge its quality fairly, each story has to be weighed on its own merits (instead of expecting 'narrative continuity' which is only applicable to novels).
To get the individual earlier stories which have already been in print, you would have to own Sword & Sorceress 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10, all of which are (where still in print) somewhat difficult to get, at least where I am. Getting a back issue of Fantasy Book Magazine I leave to the experts. Unless you've consistently collected Sword & Sorceress, the _Oathblood_ collection is the simplest way to get these stories. Only 2 out of the 11 were blended into _The Oathbound_.
"Sword-Sworn" - First appeared in Sword & Sorceress III (they thought it was exceptionally good, accepting it despite their avoidance of rape-and-revenge stories). The tale of the massacre of clan Tale'sedrin, from which Tarma emerged as the last survivor, and its consequences, including Tarma's first meeting with Kethry. Tarma's fiance, her family, her voice, and her old life have all been destroyed - so she petitions Kal'enel to become one of Her Sword-Sworn, the only Shin'a'in who have the right to cry blood-feud. All she wants is to live long enough to avenge the dead - but she listens to her teachers' advice not to reject help along the way.
"Turnabout" - First appeared in Fantasy Book Magazine (Sword & Sorceress received it at the same time as Sword-Sworn and preferred the former). This is the tale of the song "Threes", which actually appeared first (in _Arrow's Fall_, for one).
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Tarma is a Shin'a'in warrior of the Dhorisha Plains, sworn to serve her Goddess. Kethry, a former noble, is a White Winds sorceress working toward Adept status. The two are paired together by the oath that they have sworn.
"Oathblood," the third book in Mercedes Lackey's Vows and Honor series, is a collection of short stories chronicling some of the missing links in Tarma and Kethry's adventures, including their lives at their newly created school. I enjoyed reading it and went through it very quickly. The short stories were just the right length to keep the reader interested without getting bored, and the mini-novel was even more exciting. My favorites of the eleven total stories were "Sword-sworn" (which told of how Tarma and Kethry met), "Wings of Fire," "Spring Plowing at Forst Reach," and "Oathblood."
However, I was slightly disappointed that two of the stories were nearly identical to chapters from "The Oathbound."
Bottom Line: A quick, enjoyable read but only for readers who are familiar with Tarma and Kethry.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
When I fist heard that this book was coming out I was very excited. Its been awhile since a new Lackey book came out. I was greatly disappointed to find out that this is not a new book. It is a compilation of the Tarma and Kethry stories that have previously been published in Marion Zimmer Bradley's SWORD AND SORCERESS anthology with only one new "short novel" added in. While most of these short stories are very good, I had read them before. For the devoted Lackey fan this is a good way to get all of the Tarma and Kethry stories together. For people who have not read Mercedes Lackey before you would probably be better off starting with the first of this series THE OATHBOUND and it's sequal THE OATHBREAKERS, both are excellent books. If you read OATHBLOOD first you will find out how Tarma and Kethry meet, but the rest of the stories will probably confuse you since they rely on a base knowledge of the other two books and the rest of the Valdemar series. Over all I gave this series a seven because these stories are not new. They are good, but I already had all but one of them. It also gets a seven because now I do have all of the Tarma and Kethry stories together. But please, please do not buy this or the other "new" Mercedes Lackey book THE BEDLAM'S BARD if you are expecting new material.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
"Oathblood" is a very good short story collection.
Some previous reviewers have been rather upset that two of the short stories were put into the original "Oathbound" book. I'm not; I figured that Ms. Lackey needed to put all her short stories in one place, as they were originally published, for two reasons.
One, it helps fans get all the stories in one place.
Two, it helps to understand Tarma and Kethry chronologically if you're buying one of Ms. Lackey's books for the first time. Not everyone who picked this book up had read anything about Tarma or Kethry before; Ms. Lackey basically had to do this.
Although I have nothing wrong with the "commercial" instinct some folks seem to be decrying, I really don't think that's what this was about. (More than any other writer wanting to make a living, that is. And really, what's wrong with that?)
Tarma is a super warrior with a twist; she's a Swordsworn votary of the Shin'a'in goddess, and as such, is "as neutral (sexually) as the blade she bears." (Hope that isn't too bad a paraphrase.) She likes men personally, but has no interest or desire in them, and likes it that way due to a personal tragedy in her past. (Plus, the Shin'a'in goddess takes people as her votaries for various reasons; they're all turned effectively neuter -- the Swordsworn, that is, not others -- so it's just as well Tarma had no real intention to marry after all that anyway. She can't miss what she doesn't want.)
Kethry, on the other hand, is very beautiful, intelligent, spirited, and a strong magic user. As Tarma's partner, originally you'd think they'd never get on. But they do, and quite famously in every respect.
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