Hello and welcome to the latest review on my blog. Westu hal to you, I hope that you are reading something awesome and staying safe.
I have a review today of book 2 in a series that is taking shape to be one of my favourites, I read the first book and was wowed and eagerly awaited the 2nd book. This is a dark fantasy story of good vs evil, gifted and cursed individuals and one epic siege that will keep you captivated. Welcome to my review of Tristan’s Folly book 2 in the Gifted and The Cursed Trilogy by Marcus Lee.
Firstly, this my first blog tour in a little while and I want to say a big thank you to Justine and Timy for hosting my blog on this tour. I also want to give a big shout out to all the other bloggers and bookstagrammers on this tour, check them all out via this link.
Now the premise of the book.
Tristan’s Folly. An ageing fortress built over fifty years ago to repel the invading hordes of the Witch-King, Daleth, an invasion that never materialised – until now.
Now the stronghold is a crumbling reflection of its former might, with a mere fifteen hundred men all that stands between Daleth’s savage horde of a hundred thousand, and certain doom for the Freestates.
As Kings and Daemons face one another, there is but one shining light that pushes back the encroaching darkness, but even her flame is slated to be extinguished thanks to Tristan’s Folly.
In this epic tale of a battle against the odds, the best and worst of humankind collide … sacrifice, bravery and love, set against betrayal, greed and hatred.
Something I love about books is the potential sequel, this book is worthy of one of the best sequels ever done. Not only does Marcus develop the story and depict one incredible siege, but he develops some great characters that I loved in the first book into some of the more memorable and well depicted characters I have read this year.
The book picks up pretty much where the first book ends, what I loved is that the promised siege action kicks off fairly quickly. Sieges are one of my favourite actions sequences in a book and I have read only one which equals how good this one is. The ebb and flow of the action is wonderfully described by Marcus, but a master stroke is depicting the action on both sides. It pulls the reader’s sympathy to both sides, and was brilliant to read.
Marcus really develops the world of The Ember Kingdom and Freestates. He opens the readers eye to this world, the traditional fantasy location which is wonderfully depicted is complemented by glimpses and further information about other parts of the realm and further locations. It is shaping up to be one fantastic world to explore and glimpse while you are there, this is arguably one of my favourite reasons why I read fantasy. Also this is another fine example of character driven fantasy, being book 2 you do really need to have read book 1, but it is through the characters and their past and new experiences that Marcus develops this fantastic world.
Now the magic system, it developed through book 1 as quite a light but potentially rules based magic system that developed with the story. Oh my does it develop in this book, Marcus has hinted about it, but the elements of how characters are both gifted and cursed are revealed and the magic system evolves. I am becoming more of a fan of an evolving magic system, particularly one that becomes well defined with rules and other aspects…needless to say I was very curious to understand what was going on. I was rewarded but I am still curious about this brilliant sounding magic system.
Characters make or break a story for me (along with other issues), they define stories and are one of the major parts of storytelling. Marcus has created some memorable and brilliant characters, what makes them so compelling is that they are clearly all driven by motivation and it is so well defined. From Astren, Tristan, Yana, Raken, Taran and Maya and an amazing roster of supporting and secondary (Drizt!) everyone is driven, hides a secret or two but does what they can, will or must to survive! I love the direction that Marucs has pointed the story and I eagerly await book 3 of this fantastic trilogy.
There you are, another fine example of self published character driven fantasy, I have tried to keep this review spoiler free for anyone yet to read the book or read book 1. I wouldn’t want to spoil this story for you, it is something to be savoured and enjoyed. A talented writer is here and making his mark on the fantasy genre, an amazing novel of warfare, survival, love and determination await you. It’s a fantastic read but make sure you read book 1, an introduction is needed for this dark fantasy tale, but as sequels go this is one fantastic book. It easily gets my seal of approval and as mention I cannot wait for book 3.
Just before I go, a competition is running with this tour! You could win yourself a digital version of Kings and Demons and Tristan’s Folly, it’s an international competition as well and you can enter via this link – go on these books are incredible!
I just want to say a big thank you again to Justine and Timy for hosting my blog on this brilliant tour!
That’s all from me, every click, like and read of the blog is really appreciated and I hope that this review has inspired you to pick up a copy of Tristan’s Folly or start the series with Kings and Demons.
Westu Hal, stay safe and keep reading something awesome!