Since the Game Of Thrones by George R.R. Martin books were released I’ve been hopelessly searching for another epic fantasy series to delve in to.
I get through so many books a year, that my two measly Audible book credits just aren’t enough to keep me going each month.
So when I stumbled across The Falcon Throne The Tarnished Crown trilogy by Karen Miller, I was pleased to discover that the audio book version is nearing 35 hours long, that should keep me going for a while.
I’ve read other books by Miller, but I’ve found them slightly predictable in places, and the elements of magic were lacking in substance.
Where were the spell books, the wands, or whatever they need to make the magic work, because surely it just doesn’t happen.
The Falcon Throne didn’t exactly feature magic as such, but the suggestion of a higher power at work was ever present in the story.
To describe the book as complex is an understatement, and doesn’t do justice to the well thought out characters and plot lines that were at play here.
The reader starts off with a character called Salenbeen who is instrumental to the story, and the way it plays out.
You could be fooled in to thinking that his association with the story is short lived, as the reader is only aware of his presence right at the very beginning of the book.
Salenbeen is the first born son of a king, who is rejected because of superstition around an illness he contracts.
The illness leaves him horribly disfigured, and by his physician’s estimation on the verge of death.
So the King disinherits Prince Salenbeen in the hope that his new wife will bare him another son to take his place.
Salenbeen vows he will take his revenge on his father, with the aid of a book of magic that was passed down to him by his dying mother.
We then jump forward a couple of hundred years in to this fantasy world’s future, with no knowledge of whether Salenbeen lived or died, or even managed to carry out his revenge.
The once mighty kingdom has been split in to two countries, ruled over by Dukes, and bad blood exists between both Harcia and Clemen.
Balfre first son in line to his father Aimery’s Dukedom, has an insatiable lust for blood and violence, which threatens to unbalance his position of succession.
Its clear that Aimery believes that his second son Grefin, should be the one to succeed his father, and keep the peace in Harcia and the Green Isle.
However Balfre has other ideas about Harcia’s future, he has a grand plan of wearing a crown and not a coronet.
Clemen’s unstable position on the political stage, gives Balfre just the excuse he needs to stir up trouble.
The Lords of Clemen meanwhile are unhappy with their current Duke, things are taking a turn for the worse and Harold has had enough chances to make it right.
So the Lords take matters in to their own hands, and kill Harold, his wife, and their infant son Liam, and place his bastard cousin Ederic on the throne instead.
The trouble that Balfre is creating in Harcia seems to affect Clemen’s new Duke where ever he goes,, and things steadily go down hill for the country.
Tax’s are raised, harvests are poor, and his grace fails to produce a living air, could anything get worse for Duke Ederic?
In fact yes it could, it gets much worse, war is declared between, Harcia and Clemen, Duke Ederic’s wife dies in child birth, just after she confesses a grave sin, and he is captured by two young boys who seem to have a vendetta against him.
Meanwhile Balfre couldn’t be doing better for himself, he has become Duke of Harcia after Aimery’s death, conveniently done away with most of his family, and found himself a seductive new lover to keep him occupied.
To go in to much more detail about this epic first novel, is to give more of the plot away than I already have done.
Its the best book I’ve Read in a long while, and I highly recommend this to anyone looking for something new to read.