Tricia Mingerink’s newest novel Decree is releasing today! Decree is the fifth book in the Christian fantasy/kingdom adventure series The Blades of Acktar.
I first heard of The Blades of Acktar online long before I read them. I even attended a Facebook party in their honor where characters from the books showed up to chat, and though I enjoyed the party, I had no idea who the characters were or what their stories were.
When I finally got my hands on the first book, I was captivated by the rich, deep story and the truths in it. I quickly read the second book, then hunted for the Facebook party to read the backstory and character chats with my new understanding. When Book 4 was releasing, I splurged on Book 3 simply to read and review it before Book 4 came out – and when Book 5 was announced, I jumped at the chance.
Before we get into the review, here’s the official tour page.
Here’s my spotlight of this book and the two others in this tour. You can also find a giveaway for the whole Acktar series at that link.
Decree: ten stories of varying lengths of our beloved Acktar characters. I appreciated the cohesion, even though they were at different times in Acktar’s history and followed different characters.
Meeting Martyn: Martyn was one of the characters I connected with earlier in the series, so reading his backstory and how he met Leith was adorable and heartstring-tugging. The author did an excellent job crafting his story to elicit sympathy, and the tentative meeting between him and Leith was everything it should be.
A Blizzard for Brandi: This was short and centered on Brandi’s musings – not as memorable as the other stories in this collection, but interesting as a support story.
The Blades as They Should’ve Been: This story was perfect. In a sense, it brought Leith’s story of involvement with the Blades full circle. Furthermore, the Keevan storyline is something the series needed. Previous books may not have presented Keevan as a convincing “good king” type, and seeing his struggles with accepting Leith was excellent. I loved how the baby factored into this, and I love how he had to choose to act on what’s right regardless of his feelings.
The First Mission: I loved this! It brought Martyn’s story full circle as well. His struggles, his choices, his realizations, his awkwardness with children . . . so perfect. Of course, Kayleigh was the perfect sidekick.
Honeymoon Holdup: Short and cute, this story was excellent. It was fun to read how Leith and Renna worked together so well!
The Wedding: This was a fun story, even though I don’t connect with Shad and Jolene as much as with other characters.
To the Far Great Mountains: Leith and Martyn are adventuring across Acktar together! What could go wrong . . . what couldn’t go wrong? I enjoyed this tale of their adventures together and this glimpse into what life as a Blade Marshal looked like. I loved the balance and the tension between their love for adventure and heroism and their desire for home and family – it perfectly set the scene for this story. Of course, Leith’s creativity strikes again!
The Healer and the Clerk: I loved this tale! So simple and so awkward . . . so much character growth and mistakes and failing and love and learning. I’m so glad Ranson starred in a story – he’s a great character, and his plot was excellent to read.
The Perfect Plan: This short story was set long before the other stories of Acktar, but it was interesting to read about Renna’s parents.
The Treaty: I loved this little tale of one of Leith and Martyn’s missions! Leith is so creative and resourceful, and watching him go after a law-breaker in a lawful manner is so refreshing and fun. I could read little tales like this one all day long.
All in all, I enjoyed this collection greatly! I look forward to future books in the series – this collection seems to bridge the way quite nicely.