Ken Liu has received Hugo awards and a World Fantasy Award for his short stories. Now he has released his debut novel, which is a big epic fantasy story that is likely to gain many fans of the genre.
The Grace of Kings is the first novel in a trilogy. The story focuses on the Islands of Dara, which have been put together under single banner by Emperor Mapidéré. As the Emperor faces his deathbed, this then leads to the start of an epic confrontation as a race is made to establish a balance of power within Dara. The novel has two central characters, Kuni Garu and Mata Zyndu. They both have separate motivations to rise against the imperial army of the Emperor. As they form a gang of bandits and an army, they join together as they try to change the political stance in Dara and put an end to the corruptive rule of the Emperor. As they lead a war, it becomes clear that the aftermath could lead to an even greater battle for power.
The novel raises some moral issues, with a fine line between whether the war to take power from the Emperor is right or wrong. Ken Liu creates some vivid and detailed characters that will be loved by fantasy fans. A lot of effort has been put into creating not only relatable central characters, but also side characters that are likely to become more central to the story as the trilogy continues. Ken Liu has been able to create a fresh and original fantasy story amid the truly cluttered genre. This novel will satisfy fans of both war like fantasy as well as fans who like some political intrigue in their fantasy. A triumph in storytelling.
THE GRACE OF KINGS / AUTHOR: KEN LIU / PUBLISHER: HEAD OF ZEUS / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW