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antonakis

Nightgate Inn

A blog about fantasy and science-fiction books, new and old, popular and obscure. Stay a while and listen...

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The Books of Skyrim
Nate Ellis, Matt Daniels, William Shen, Alan Nanes, Shane Liesegang, Jon Paul Duvall, Brian Chapin
King of Thorns - Mark  Lawrence Another very good book and worthy sequel from Mark Lawrence. As always, in my review I won't describe any summary of the plot or something like it, it's up there and you can read it. I'll just word my thoughts which are mostly possitive. I think what Lawrence does with this book is take everything from the first book and turn it up a notch. That includes everything that is good but also some things that are not so good.
Negatives first and I'd say that for me there are 2 of them. One is that even though I feel that I'm a tough guy who won't shy away at the mention of blood and gore and despicable things and I like a big dose of grit in my reading everyday... still some scenes or their graphical descriptions in King Of Thorns felt a bit too much and made me wonder if Lawrence was maybe trying too hard for the shock factor. Not often and not too much, but those thoughts came upon me occasionally while reading this book.
The other minor problem I had were the temporal points of view during the story. There are actually 3 of them. The chapters are divided among 2 points of view but there's a third for Jorg's memories. I know that Lawrence used this technique to reveal things when appropriate and make the plot more interesting but at the same time it was confusing sometimes. And rather jarring as it was not perfected or smooth as say something GRR Martin or Gene Wolfe would have written (but ok... that's not even a fair comparison, I'm doing it for the example's sake).
There's a bunch of positives compared to the fist book though! For one, there's more magic! More unexplainable/unexplained things that add to the mystery of the world!!! The world-building is also expanded and it doesn't feel limited anymore but wide and huge and deep which is always good for me. The battle/fight scenes are definitely better written with the right amount of tension, detail and length to them.
For me a major plus of this sequel is the secondary character characterization! This is no more a Jorg-only book. During this book I came to love his Brothers, I learned about them, started to recognize them for what they are. And not only them, but most secondary characters are well defined and described which is surely the biggest improvement from the first book!
All in all, this is a worthy 4-star book. If you liked the 1st book, you will certainly love the 2nd.