* * * B
This dark and violent post apocalyptic fantasy delivers solid entertainment. The first of a trilogy (The Broken Empire), it tells the tale of Jorg, a prince of one of the many small kingdoms which are fragments of a once great empire. After his mother and younger brother are killed in front of him by a rival duke and his father allows himself to be paid off, Jorg runs away and joins a band of cutthroats.
When the book begins, 4 years have passed. The brutal tale of Jorg’s return home is the first of several adventures. The writing is good. The story is told in the first person, with chapters of backstory interjected here and there. Jorg’s character is naturally the strongest, but his companions and foes are also well drawn. The post apocalyptic setting blends magic and devilry with the remnants of once powerful technology.
I really enjoyed this book and recommend it (though not for children). A minor criticism: some of the plot developments seem a little arbitrary in places. The next two books in the series, King of Thorns and Emperor of Thorns, have been written. King of Thorns is in my stack of books to read next.