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The Judas Blossom

Book I of The Nightingale and the Falcon

Stephen Aryan



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Angry Robot
19 September 2023
An imaginative and sprawling epic fantasy reimagining of the Mongol Empire's invasion of Persia, following the lives and treacherous journeys of four key figures in the heart of war.

1260, Persia-

Due to the efforts of the great Genghis Khan, the Mongol Empire covers a vast portion of the known world. In the shadow of his grandfather, Hulagu Khan, ruler of the Ilkhanate, is determined to create a single empire that covers the entire world. His method? Violence.

His youngest son, Temujin Khan, struggles to find his place in his father's bloody rule. After another failure, Temujin is given one last chance to prove himself to Hulagu, who is sure there is a great warrior buried deep inside. But there's something else rippling under the surface... something far more powerful and dangerous than they could ever imagine...

Reduced to the position of one of Hulagu's many wives, the famed Blue Princess Kokochin is the last of her tribe. Alone and forgotten in a foreign land, Kokochin is unwilling to spend her days seeking out trivial pursuits. Seeking purpose, she finds herself wandering down a path that grants her more power than a wife of the Khan may be allowed.

Kaivon, the Persian rebel who despises the Mongols for the massacre of his people, thirsts for revenge. However, he knows alone he cannot destroy the empire. When given the opportunity to train under the tutelage of Hulagu, Kaivon must put aside his feelings and risk his life for a chance to destroy the empire that aims to conquer the world.

Family and war collide in this thrilling and bloody reimagining of the Mongol Empire's invasion of Persia.

File Under- Fantasy

A Conqueror's choice | Flickering light | Rebellion sparks | Stolen Survival

Imprint:   Angry Robot
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Edition:   New edition
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 135mm, 
ISBN:   9781915202192
ISBN 10:   1915202191
Series:   Nightingale and the Falcon
Pages:   432
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Stephen Aryan is the author of the Age of Darkness and Age of Dread trilogies. His first novel, Battlemage, was a finalist for the David Gemmell Morningstar Award for best debut fantasy novel. It also won the inaugural Hellfest Inferno Award in France. He has previously written a comic book column and reviews for In addition, he has self-published and kickstarted his own comics.

Reviews for The Judas Blossom: Book I of The Nightingale and the Falcon

"""The Judas Blossom is a tale of family bonds and rivalries, assassins and long-forgotten magic. Bloody and epic, Stephen Aryan has depicted the brutal Mongol Empire by weaving history and fantasy together. A must read!"" - Shauna Lawless, author of The Children of Gods and Fighting Men ""Aryan’s latest is perfect for those who enjoy dynamic historical fiction with a touch of magic, like the work of Guy Gavriel Kay."" – Library Journal ""The Judas Blossom is relentless, unforgiving, and inescapable. Packed with ever expanding webs of intrigue, the story drags you kicking and screaming from page to page. The burn starts off slow, but once the stage is set the plot moves like a runaway train"" - Ryan Cahill, author of The Broken & The Bound series ""A delicious, blood soaked tale of power and duty. A thrilling and savage tale of family, imperialism and moralistic turmoil."" – Stacey McEwan, author of bestselling Ledge ""Ancient Persia provides a fresh and vivid setting for the rediscovery of long-lost magic and the machinations of secret societies fighting the Mongol Empire. Historical fantasy at its finest!"" - Cameron Johnston, author of The Maleficent Seven ""With The Judas Blossom, Stephen Aryan shows exactly why he’s the 21st Century's David Gemmell. He transports you back in time to when great Khans swept across the world, conquering all in a tale that truly deserves to be called epic. Aryan deftly interweaves grandiose battles with the intimate machinations of power politics as only a true master can. The Game of Khans has begun and I can’t wait to see what happens next."" - Mike Shackle, author of We Are The Dead ""The Judas Blossom is an ambitious, majestic and brutal historical fantasy read that impresses throughout. The novel skilfully covers an era, areas, and cultures that are not typical with fantasy novels or historical retellings, with excellent action scenes, sieges, confrontations, barbed verbal exchanges, political intrigue, deception, and cleverness. A riveting tale, set in a dynamic world that is equally beautiful and terrifying, the characters, action scenes, political intrigue, and trickery present here will make many grimdark readers extremely happy."" - Grimdark Magazine ""The Judas Blossom is one of the best books I have read. Not just this year or the last twelve months, but ever. Period. It is a powerful story of power, love and betrayal in a vivid setting; clever, character-driven story-telling at its best."" - Sarah Deeming, British Fantasy Society ""An explosive insight into the vast world of the Mongolian Empire, with Assassins and Conspiracies that threaten its very existence. Exceptionally immersive worldbuilding, this novel illustrates why the Mongols were feared, and for good reason. Excellent dialogue, excellent worldbuilding, and one you don't want to miss in the world of Historical Fiction!"" - Mada, Fanfiaddict ""A diamond in the fantasy rough. The Judas Blossom is entirely focused on creating an intricate historical world for us to explore and discover for ourselves. I couldn’t put it down."" - Holly Hearts Books, YouTube ""This book is incredible and exhilarating; Stephen Aryan just wrote the first book in what I believe will become his legacy series."" - Lezlie, The Nerdy Narrative, YouTube ""Vivid historical, military fantasy showing rebellion from within and epic, ancient magic elements."" - Jashana, YouTube ""A fascinating and gorgeous historical fantasy that will tug at your heartstrings."" - M.C. Frank, author of No Ordinary Star ""Historical fantasy fans will be delighted by The Judas Blossom and the sweeping scope of its narrative that will transport them to a breathtaking world of danger, intrigue, and magic. Seamlessly weaving together intricate world-building, vibrant characters and resonant themes of courage, love, and sacrifice, this novel will leave you mesmerized."" - Stephenie Sheung, The Bibliosanctum ""This is why we read! A historical fantasy at the very top of it’s game, and it should be on top of everyone’s reading pile. Characters that feel fresh and authentic, a plot that explores the fate of the Mongol empire with all of the breathtaking action and twists that you love to see in modern fantasy. An early contender for book of the year."" - The Brothers Gwynne “Aryan evokes a rich sense of time and place. Persia in the 13th century comes to vivid life on the page, in clean prose that never needs reams of exposition to build the world in our imaginations.""  - SFF180 ""Stephen Aryan continues to prove why he is the true successor to David Gemmell. Brutal, compelling, and full of heart Judas Blossom is a masterclass in historical fantasy."" - Andrew's Wizardly Reads, YouTube ""Engaging and exhilarating, with a fantastical cast, balanced pacing, and an exciting plot, The Judas Blossom is filled with lots of characters to connect with, history to uncover, magic to behold and drama to unfold. I’d recommend this to fans of Ken Liu, David Hair and anyone who wants diversity of cultures in their fantasy."" - Kitty G Books, YouTube"

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