Author: Brian M. Oldham
Published: December 2017
Rating: 4 stars
‘My hopes are my own,” she replied, squeezing Minia’s hand. “No one owns my dreams.”
I will start by saying that I was given an ARC copy in exchange for an honest review. These opinions are my own.
The Sarpathian people are under rule of a barbaric nation after the catastrophic defeat on the pains of Godsfeld. Their emperor, Leo Dillianos of the House of Lily was dethroned and sent to live out the rest of his days in exile; his heir, Serilla, taking in by their enemy; and the surviving soldier’s, like Ward Captain Hyde, lock in chains and sold as slaves. In the three years since that battle a revolution has been bubbling and is about ready to attack. Forgotten by myth and memory a long burnished power begins its ascension — a power that may redeem or end the world once and for all. Will the Sarpathian Empire survive or crumbling into the history books?
I picked this book up because I really loved the sound of the premise, however struggled a little with it at the start. This is because I haven’t read much traditional style, epic fantasy so this was new to me and took a bit of a learning curve. Overall it was Serilla’s character and the world that peaked my interest and kept me reading, which I’m so glad I did.
The book is split into four perspectives— exiled Emperor Leo Dillianos, Leo’s daughter and empress to be Serilla Dillianos, the traitorous, smoothing talking Tarjun and Sarpathian Ward Captain Hyde. Not all characters get an equal amount of chapters, in fact I’d say the two main protagonist are Serilla and Hyde.
We see every little of this world, but the little we see I’m already in love with. We see the castle of Sarpathia and the ruins of the city. We also get to experience the shocking hardships of the mines and gladiatorial arenas all covered in gritty sand and blistering heat. The magic in this world is quite subtle so far and I’m looking forward to seeing which direction Oldhamn takes it.
Overall this is a pretty great start to a new series! I have so many questions and I need to know the answers. Highly recommend if you’re interested in epic fantasy.