Book Review

Tooth & Blade – Julian Barr

Today is my stop on the blog tour for the historical fantasy series, Tooth & Blade, by Julian Barr. Many thanks to Julian, and to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources, for inviting me to be a part of the tour, and for providing me with a copy of the book.


Parts 1-3 of the legendary TOOTH AND BLADE series together for the first time!

Two worlds. One destiny.

Dóta has dwelled sixteen years among the trolls. She knows nothing but the darkness of her family’s cave. Her mother says humans are beasts who would slay them all. Yet the gods of Asgard whisper in the night: Dóta is a child of men, a monster unto monsters.

To discover her human side, Dóta must take up her bone knife and step into the light above. Secrets await her in the human realm—beauty, terror, the love of a princess.

Soon Dóta must choose between her clan and humankind, or both worlds will be devoured in fire and war.

A monster sheds no tears.

Norse mythology meets historical fantasy in TOOTH AND BLADE. Step into a realm of haunted meres, iron and magic.



Amazon UK

Amazon US


Originally published as three separate novellas, the fact that I found myself in possession of all three in the one book made me a very happy book blogger because it meant there was no frantic scramble to find the next book as I reached the end of each novella. Whilst it was the lure of Norse mythology that drew me to this book, it was the author’s exacting attention to detail that kept me reading. Dóta’s discovery of the world outside her cave is almost childlike in nature, filled with little touches of things that Dóta would not have known how to do – simple things such as dressing herself and eating with a spoon, that it would never have occurred to me to include added a wonderful realistic quality to the story, and made her a joy to get to know.

I loved that each character went through their own journey as the story unfolded. Although it was largely Dóta’s story, no character was neglected or left on the sidelines, and each captured my interest in a different way. Even Modor, who as Grethor’s mother I realistically expected to be as much as a monster as he was, deep down I wanted to discover that she loved Dóta, and that she was good. I swung back and forth on this a few times, and I will leave you to discover her story for yourselves.

Throughout the book, there is a brutality to the way the characters’ lives are led, almost as though bloodshed and death are expected, almost run of the mill, but at the same time there is a depth of emotion that took me somewhat by surprise.

Although there are nods to Norse mythology throughout, the world of Tooth & Blade is very much of Julian Barr’s own creation. I am very much looking forward to discovering his other work.


Julian Barr author photoJulian Barr first fell in love with all things ancient and magical in childhood, when he staged his own version of I, Claudius using sock puppets. After his PhD in Classics, he did a brief stint as a schoolteacher, hated being called ‘sir,’ and dived into storytelling. Although he remains open to the possibilities of sock puppet theatre, historical fantasy is his passion. He has published scholarly research on Roman medicine and the gastronomic habits of Centaurs, but prefers to think of himself as an itinerant bard. He is also the author of the Ashes of Olympus trilogy.





Don’t forget to pay a visit to the other blogs taking part in the tour!

Tooth and Blade Full Tour Banner

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