Review: A Crown Imperiled by Raymond E. Feist

A Crown Imperiled (Chaoswar Saga Series #2)A Crown Imperiled by Raymond E. Feist

  • ISBN-13: 9780061468414
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/13/2012
  • Pages: 480
  • Series: Chaoswar Saga Series , #2
  • Source: Purchased

Synopsis:

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Riftwar Cycle—including the original Riftwar, the Serpentwar, the Darkwar, the Demonwar, and now the Chaoswar—comes the latest entry in one of the most treasured and enduring sagas in modern fantasy.

A Crown Imperilled

War rages in Midkemia once again, and behind the chaos, disquieting evidence points to dark elements at work.

As enemies march across the realm wreaking destruction, its brave and loyal defenders battle to survive—a struggle made more perilous now that Jim Dasher’s trusted intelligence network has been cleverly dismantled. Region by region, Midkemia is being ripped apart, and the loyal spy and his allies find themselves overpowered at every turn.

Signs of the kingdom’s impending doom surround them. King Gregory of the Isles has yet to produce an heir. Roldem and Rillanon have each been plagued by palace coups that threaten to topple their thrones. Lord Hal of Crydee and his great friend Ty Hawkins, champion swordsman of the Masters’ Court, have been entrusted with smuggling Princess Stephane and her lady-in-waiting, the lovely and perplexing Lady Gabriella, out of Roldem to safety. But the rising danger has made finding refuge treacherous.

Nowhere is safe, including Ylith, Midkemia’s strategic bastion, where Hal’s younger brothers Martin and Brendan hold off an onslaught of brutal Keshian Dog Soldiers and a mysterious force from beneath the sea. Yet courage alone is not enough to withstand the continued enemy assault. Without reinforcements, hope of success fades. Martin, Brendan, and their compatriots know that while losing Crydee, the legendary city on the kingdom’s edge, would be devastating, the realm can still be saved. But if Ylith falls, all is lost.

As Jim, Hal, and all their brothers in arms fight for their lives, Pug and the Conclave of Shadows embark on a magical quest to hunt down the dark force orchestrating the destruction before Midkemia is annihilated. And time is running out. . . .

 

My Thoughts

A Crown Imperiled is the book two in The Chaoswar Saga and the next to last book in the Riftwar Cycle.  Everything seems to be falling apart in Midkemia, and no one seems to know why.  This was a great read that left me with more questions than answers concerning the overall plot of the series.  I believe the most interesting part of the whole story though, were the few pages worth devoted to the new character, Rider.  It certainly put a different light on the entire Riftwar.  I’m definitely looking forward to the next book, but am sad that the series is ending.  The editing in this book was something that you would expect in an ARC.  Hopefully this is corrected before the next book comes out.  

My Rating:

 

 

 

This book would have been rated closer to a 4 if it were not for the editing.

Review: The Dread by Gail Z. Martin

The Dread (Fallen Kings Cycle Series #2)The Dread by Gail Z. Martin

  • ISBN-13: 9780316093613
  • Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
  • Publication date: 2/1/2012
  • Pages: 640
  • Source: Purchased

Synopsis

War has come to the Winter Kingdoms. The Dread will rise. Kings will fall.

Summoner-King Tris Drayke takes what remains of his army north for a war he is ill-prepared to fight, as reports from spies confirm Tris’s worst fear. A new threat rises across the sea: a dark summoner who intends to make the most of the Winter Kingdoms’s weakness.

In Isencroft, Kiara’s father is assassinated and she will now have no choice except to return and claim the crown. But she must leave behind her husband and their infant son to face the dark power that threatens her rule.

THE DREAD is the epic conclusion to the Fallen Kings Cycle.

My Thoughts

The Dread is the second book in the Fallen Kings Cycle by Gail Z. Martin and things are not looking too good for the Winter Kingdoms.  As the series name implies, kings are dying all across the land.  The next generation of rulers must step up and lead their nations to war, for the Winter Kingdoms are under attack, from within and without.  Internally, long suppressed dark cults are re-animating the dead, mass murderers are running loose, and traitors try to seize power.  Externally, the kingdoms are being attacked by a nation from across the sea, a nation of unknown power, led by a mysterious dark summoner.

Tris, Summoner-King of Margolan must leave his wife, Kiara, and infant son, Cwynn, behind and lead his army to defend the coastlands.  Meanwhile, Donelan, King of Isencroft, is assassinated and Kiara must assume the throne, leaving Cwynn behind.  Cam, the King’s Champion in Isencroft is left with the job of leading their armies.  Berry is Queen in Principality and must rely on Jonmarc, as Queen’s Champion.  Jonmarc has left his pregnant wife, Carina, at home and must lead Berry’s army of mercenaries while babysitting Gethin, Prince of Eastmark and potential suitor to Berry.  Meanwhile, Jair, Prince of Dhasson, is with his wife, Talwyn, and the Sworn.  The Dread, an ancient race long dead and watched over by the Sworn, have communicated to Talwyn that the invading army is trying to set the Nachele free.

For me, this was a fascinating read as I tried to lay out the various battles in my head and attempt to discern the invaders motive.  The author must have had some rather interesting notes and charts while writing in order to so smoothly bring everything together at the end.  This book was an excellent conclusion to the Fallen King Series and fitting sequel to the Chronicles of the Necromancer series.  Gail Z. Martin has become one of my favorite authors and I am eagerly awaiting the release of the first book in the Ascendant Kingdoms Saga.

My Rating:

4 Penguins


Early Review: Sky Dragons by Anne McCaffrey and Todd McCaffrey

Sky Dragons: Dragonriders of PernSky Dragons: Dragonrides of Pern by Anne McCaffrey and Todd McCaffrey

  • ISBN-13: 9780345500915
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 6/26/2012
  • Series: Dragonriders of Pern Series
  • Source: Netgalley

Synopsis:

From the New York Times bestselling mother-and-son team of Anne McCaffrey and Todd McCaffrey comes the final installment in the riveting Pern saga that began with Todd’s solo novel, Dragonsblood. Now, with all of Pern imperiled by the aftereffects of a plague that killed scores of dragons and left the planet helpless against the fall of deadly Thread, the only hope for the future lies in the past.
 
There, on an unexplored island, a group of dragonriders led by Xhinna, a brave young woman who rides the blue dragon Tazith, must battle lethal Merows and voracious tunnel-snakes to build a safe home for themselves and the dragons, whose offspring will one day—if they survive—replenish Pern’s decimated dragon population. But as the first female rider of a blue dragon, and the first female Weyrleader in the history of Pern, Xhinna faces an uphill battle in winning the respect and loyalty of her peers . . . especially after an unforeseen tragedy leaves the struggling colony reeling from a shattering loss.
 
Amid the grieving, one girl, Jirana, blessed—or cursed—with the ability to foresee potential futures, will help Xhinna find a way forward. The answer lies in time . . . or, rather, in timing it:the awesome ability of the dragons to travel through time itself. But that power comes with risks, and by venturing further into the past, Xhinna may be jeopardizing the very future she has sworn to save.

 My Thoughts:

Xhinna, rider of blue Tazith, has found herself three Turns in the past and responsible for the future of Pern.  In her own time, a plague has devastated the dragon population, leaving to few alive to fight Thread.  In a desparate attempt to repopulate the wyers, Xhinna and several others have used the unique dravonic ability to travel back in time to give the few surviving hatchlings a chance to mature before the Red Star returns, and Thread with it.  A vicious feline attack has left Tazith as the only mature dragon capable of flight.  Xhinna must now find a way to feed, shelter and protect the humans and dragons in her care.  As the first female rider of a blue dragon, her successes and failures are judged more harshly than if she had been a male rider.  When help, in the form of more riders and mature dragons, arrives from the present time, Xhinna tries to relinquish her authority.  But she finds that too many others rely on her.  In addition to her responsibility as a leader, Xhinna must also deal with the emotional conflict she experiences as her lover, Talia, becomes involved with some of the male riders.  Will Xhinna be able to save Pern?

I found this book to be one of the more emotionally touching in the Dragonriders of Pern series.  Each book seems to be better than the previous.  Sky Dragons is the final book in the current storyline. Readers new to the series would be better off starting with either Dragonflight, the first in the world of Pern, or Dragon’s Kin, the first in this particular storyline.  Long time fans of the series will not be disappointed with Sky Dragons.

With the passing of Anne McCaffery last year, Todd and his sister, Georgeanne Kennedy, are the only two authorized to write in the world of Pern.  I hope Todd continues to write, as I have found his books to be just as good as those written by Anne.  In the author’s note to Dragon’s Time, Anne mentioned she was working on After the Fall Is Over, the conclusion to the story of F’lar and Lessa.  I am hoping that Todd knows enough of the story to be able to finish it, but I have not yet heard anything about it.  Fingers crossed.

 
My Rating:
 
 
 
 
 
5 Penguins – Outstanding!