I remember enjoying the The Gilded Chain by this author, and this has been sat on my TBR shelf for a while since.
Although it takes place in the same universe, I don’t think there’s any overlap (aside from the odd character mention) and this can be read entirely independently.
This follows a story between the Baelish and Chivian kingdoms, and the Blades themselves play a relatively snall part.
The two nations are copies of historical ones — the Baels being Danes (AKA Vikings) and the Chivians a more ‘civilised’ European power.
This was originally released in 1999, so perhaps we can forgive what is now a fairly formulaic adventure. It’s heroes and villains, honour and blood feuds.
Another criticism would be the lack of female characters — and what few there are add very little to the story. Again, probably not something you would see in a more modern tale.
You can’t fault the action and twists though (even if some are more predictable than others) — there are plenty of both to keep you interested. There are intense sections where I was gripped and frantically turning pages.
All-in-all I enjoyed it and was able to burn through it quickly.