I’m not sure why, but opening this book I expected traditional epic fantasy. Boy, was I wrong. Bid the Gods Arise is a mash-up of fantasy and sci-fi, with a bit of Ancient Rome thrown in. Yeah, gladiators and everything! Oh, and it’s allegorical, too.
Serious strengths in this novel: characterization, dialog, action, originality.
There’s a pretty big cast in the story, and I could keep them all straight because Mullin really brings them to life. Dialog really adds to this, without being superfluous–everything works both to build the characters and move the story forward. Action is at every turn, and it all works with the plot rather than weighing it down. Originality–did you read my opening comment? Seriously, the blend of genres was flawless.
My only gripe, which is what brought the star rating down to 4.5 instead of 5, is a bit of choppiness here and there. Certain places where if it were a movie, the camera would have just abruptly cut off from one character or scene and jumped straight into something else. It was by no means overwhelming, but it was more than just one or two places and enough to make me want to write in some transition phrases so I don’t get whiplash reading those sections when I read the book again. 😉
Overall, a great story.
(Previously published at Amazon.com.)