Review: The Dusk Watchman / Author: Tom Lloyd / Publisher: Gollancz / Release Date: Out Now
Endings can be difficult, especially in a long running series such as the Twilight Reign series. The Dusk Watchman is the final book in Lloyd’s first series of fantasy novels, and does not disappoint. Lloyd has made a name for himself by delivering eloquent, free-flowing fantasy, with a distinctly dark yet heroic bent. This is the sort of fantasy fiction that tends to be seen as very British; the heroes are always on the back foot, the hour is always dark and though there is hope, the road to victory is filled with danger and any rewards the protagonists may receive will be fleeting at the very best.
The plot is your usual fantasy world, but one filled with bleak futures, terrible weapons, horrific demons, dangerous magic and a ruined world far too injured and ancient for the terrors still yet to be inflicted on it. In other words, excellent stuff.
The author’s style is also quite alluring; this is an easy read though the content is quite dark and grim. It is also very, very violent, filled with shocking twists and a deep ending that the series really does deserve. Existing readers have been rewarded for their patience, and those new to Lloyd have picked the right moment to start reading; this is a good series.
Be warned that this is very much the end of a long-running series; despite reasonable efforts being made to keep the most casual of readers up to speed, there is simply too much here for new readers to catch up on, and certainly it would be a waste to try, as the previous works are well worth the journey. Fans of the better sorts of Warhammer Fantasy novels, the work of Steven Erikson or those who are looking for something like A Game of Thrones but with better violence and an actual ending should check the Twilight Reign series out, especially as we now know that it’s got a cracking finale.