Top 5 Tuesday – Top 5 books with war / battle

Hello everyone! Today’s prompt is top 5 books with war / battle. I read a lot of fantasy and historical fiction. So, I think it might be easier to pick books without war in them. lol. Here are five with warfare that I really enjoyed but haven’t talked about quite as much recently. The covers all link to the book’s Goodreads page, and I’ve included the official covers and synopsis when available. Top 5 Tuesday was created by Shanah @ Bionic Book Worm, and is now being hosted at Meeghan Reads!

A Song of Steel by J. C. Duncan

If you love historical fiction and/or Vikings, then this book is for you. It presents an alt history where the Vikings unite under one king and fight back against the spread of Christianity into Norse lands. It has tons of action and great scenes of epic warfare.

Alternate history – 1116 AD. Three hundred years of cruel Viking raids have finally united Christian Europe against the pagan Northlands. A great crusade has been called to pacify the wild Norse kingdoms. The banner of the cross has been raised against the north, and all the power and fury of the west rides under it.

Ordulf, a talented young German swordsmith, is ripped from his comfortable life and cast into the bloody chaos of the crusade. As fate deals him a cruel blow in the lands of his enemies, he will have to forge a new path through the chaos, or be consumed by it.

In the Northlands, three rival kingdoms must unite to survive the onslaught. But can any man, king or commoner, unite the bickering brotherhood of the Norse? Or is the time of the Vikings finally drawing to a violent end. Heroes will fail, kings will fall, and ordinary people will fight for the right to a future.

An epic saga of war, love and politics sure to delight fans of Bernard Cornwell, Giles Krystian, Matthew Harffy, Christian Cameron and all lovers of historical fiction.

She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan

This was one of my favorite books of 2021. It’s queer AF with compelling characters and plenty of epic battles. There’s also a sequel coming out later this year that I’m very excited to read. 🙂

Mulan meets The Song of Achilles; an accomplished, poetic debut of war and destiny, sweeping across an epic alternate China.

“I refuse to be nothing…”

In a famine-stricken village on a dusty yellow plain, two children are given two fates. A boy, greatness. A girl, nothingness…

In 1345, China lies under harsh Mongol rule. For the starving peasants of the Central Plains, greatness is something found only in stories. When the Zhu family’s eighth-born son, Zhu Chongba, is given a fate of greatness, everyone is mystified as to how it will come to pass. The fate of nothingness received by the family’s clever and capable second daughter, on the other hand, is only as expected.

When a bandit attack orphans the two children, though, it is Zhu Chongba who succumbs to despair and dies. Desperate to escape her own fated death, the girl uses her brother’s identity to enter a monastery as a young male novice. There, propelled by her burning desire to survive, Zhu learns she is capable of doing whatever it takes, no matter how callous, to stay hidden from her fate.

After her sanctuary is destroyed for supporting the rebellion against Mongol rule, Zhu uses takes the chance to claim another future altogether: her brother’s abandoned greatness.

Kings Rising by C. S. Pacat

This epic finale of the Captive Prince trilogy was a great conclusion to both the emotional and political plot-lines of this series. Damen and Laurent had to learn to work together with all their cards on the table despite their tumultuous history. This led to tons of tension that kept me on the edge of my seat until the end.

Damianos of Akielos has returned.

His identity now revealed, Damen must face his master Prince Laurent as Damianos of Akielos, the man Laurent has sworn to kill.

On the brink of a momentous battle, the future of both their countries hangs in the balance. In the south, Kastor’s forces are massing. In the north, the Regent’s armies are mobilising for war. Damen’s only hope of reclaiming his throne is to fight together with Laurent against their usurpers.

Forced into an uneasy alliance the two princes journey deep into Akielos, where they face their most dangerous opposition yet. But even if the fragile trust they have built survives the revelation of Damen’s identity – can it stand against the Regent’s final, deadly play for the throne?

The Oleander Sword by Tasha Suri

This second book of The Burning Kingdoms trilogy was filled with machinations, warfare, and a fascinating deepening of the lore of this world.

The prophecy of the nameless god—the words that declared Malini the rightful empress of Parijatdvipa—has proven a blessing and curse. She is determined to claim the throne that fate offered her. But even with the strength of the rage in her heart and the army of loyal men by her side, deposing her brother is going to be a brutal and bloody fight.

The power of the deathless waters flows through Priya’s blood. Thrice born priestess, Elder of Ahiranya, Priya’s dream is to see her country rid of the rot that plagues it: both Parijatdvipa’s poisonous rule, and the blooming sickness that is slowly spreading through all living things. But she doesn’t yet understand the truth of the magic she carries.

Their chosen paths once pulled them apart. But Malini and Priya’s souls remain as entwined as their destinies. And they soon realize that coming together is the only way to save their kingdom from those who would rather see it burn—even if it will cost them.

In the Shadow of Lightning by Brian McClellan

This book had warring city-states and rival families jockeying for power. The prologue starts off with an absolute bloodbath, and the warfare only gets even more intense from there. It all leads up to a cliffhanger reveal that I don’t think anyone will see coming.

From Brian McClellan, author of The Powder Mage trilogy, comes the first novel in the Glass Immortals series, In the Shadow of Lightning, an epic fantasy where magic is a finite resource—and it’s running out.

“Excellent worldbuilding and a truly epic narrative combine into Brian’s finest work to date. Heartily recommended to anyone who wants a new favorite fantasy series to read.”—Brandon Sanderson

Demir Grappo is an outcast—he fled a life of wealth and power, abandoning his responsibilities as a general, a governor, and a son. Now he will live out his days as a grifter, rootless, and alone. But when his mother is brutally murdered, Demir must return from exile to claim his seat at the head of the family and uncover the truth that got her killed: the very power that keeps civilization turning, godglass, is running out.

Now, Demir must find allies, old friends and rivals alike, confront the powerful guild-families who are only interested in making the most of the scraps left at the table and uncover the invisible hand that threatens the Empire. A war is coming, a war unlike any other. And Demir and his ragtag group of outcasts are the only thing that stands in the way of the end of life as the world knows it.

So, there you have it. My top 5 books with war / battle. What books with warfare have you enjoyed? Let me know down in the comments!

6 thoughts on “Top 5 Tuesday – Top 5 books with war / battle

  1. I haven’t read any of these yet although three of them are on my TBR and I will hopefully get to them soon. I really want to read In the Shadow of Lightning as I loved the Powder Mage books but I’m waiting until it’s out in paperback!!

  2. The first book that comes to mind is definitely The Poppy War (series?)! I still have to read Oleander Sword but I loved Jasmine Throne and I swear, one day I will *finally* read SWBTS. 😂 Great list!

    • It was the first that came to my mind too for obvious reasons. Lol. I was just trying to focus on some books I hadn’t talked about in a while for this one. You definitely need to read both Oleander Sword and SWBTS. They are both so good!

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