Product info (from Goodreads):
In the distant past, the Kingdom of Harcia was torn apart by royal brothers who could not accept a lesser inheritance. Now, the consequences of their actions are coming to light.
Balfre, son of Aimery, Duke of Harcia, is his father’s heir. But he has dreams of a crown, not a coronet. He dreams himself the king of a Harcia re-united, but his brother Grefin, their father’s favorite, stands in his way.
Harald, debauched Duke of neighboring Clemen, is feared and despised by his nobles. He thinks he can trust his bastard-born cousin Ederic … but Ederic fears for the duchy and will do what he must to save it.
And caught between dangers is Harald’s infant son, Liam. Stolen by his nurse, vanished into the lawless Marches, he is the spark that will grow to set the world on fire.
My first thought, concerning this one, was: ‘a quintet? REALLY?’ Ok, some authors do write a book thinking already about a whole series but a quintet? Isn’t it too optimistic?
I started reading because I do like historical fantasy from time to time. Soon after the prologue (yes! It had a prologue!) which was, from my point of view, one of few good chapters, I couldn’t believe my own eyes. Basically I was reading A Game of Thrones all over again but with many boring fragments which forced me to skim, and skim, and skim again. Three kingdoms, three rulers, different problems (revolving mainly around the lack of heir or an improper heir/heirs plus a bastard or two in the background). Politics, carnages, the plague, more politics, marriages without love, politics, stupid but ambitious aristocrats murdering other aristocrats… you get the drift. Oh, there was also a witch called Izusa who practiced magic involving dead parts of infants and her superior called Salimbene. It wasn’t especially original either.
Definitely worse than the Godspeaker series which I didn’t like too much to begin with. Worse than A Game of Thrones which I started to despise after a while. A total failure.
Other books by Karen Miller reviewed on this blog: