This book sucked me right into its world and lore. Robins has a meticulous writing style that paints a vibrant and sometimes violent picture of the horrible war raging between the realm and the Greylings, barbaric monsters who turn out to be very formidable foes, tearing men limb from limb with ease. Though, as the story moves on, we begin to understand that humans are the most vicious monsters as the politics of Arelium come into play, and no one is as they seem.
I think we’re meant to really connect with Reed, but I found myself drawn more and more toward Jelaïa, Praxis, and Aldarin as the story progressed. I won’t say I was completely caught off guard by some of the betrayals, but that last one really hurt as I was starting to think maybe this character (view spoiler) would go against the grain and stay loyal.
One scene I really liked was Reed’s idea on how to train the guard and the use of the song to stay in rhythm! I would have never thought of that in a million years, but it makes a lot of sense and provides some much-needed levity in an otherwise very dark situation.
I enjoyed Jelaïa’s feisty personality, and I’m hoping with the sudden reveal at the end of the book, we’ll be seeing more of her as a driving force in the sequel instead of the more muted role she had in this one.
There were definitely parts of this story that could have used more development to more naturally disperse information about the world and the histories of Arelium. A few times, the narrative seemed to stop to get this info out all at once. There was also one passage that was a tad too derivative, but overall, I very much enjoyed this book and look forward to reading the second installment.
Please don’t just take my word for it. We all have different likes, interests, and opinions. Check out the book at the link below and read the blurb to form your own opinions.
Buy the book: https://books2read.com/brokenheartofarelium
None can resist the ravages of time. Knowledge is lost. Memories fade. But some things must never be forgotten.
Over 400 years ago, twelve great warriors united the beleaguered armies of men and scoured the war-torn lands of evil, pushing the enemy back into the underground pits and caverns from whence they came. To ensure their legacy, each of the Twelve founded fortress monasteries to impart their unique knowledge of war and politics to a select few, the Knights of the Twelve.
But now the last of the Twelve have long since passed from history to legend and the Knights, their numbers dwindling, are harbouring a dark and terrible secret that must be protected at all costs.
Merad Reed has spent half his life guarding a great crater known as the Pit, yearning for some escape from the bleak monotony. Then the arrival of Aldarin, one of the few remaining Knights of the Twelve, sets off a chain of cataclysmic events that will change Reed forever.
To the north, Jelaïa del Arelium, heiress to the richest of the nine Baronies, must learn to navigate the swirling political currents of her father’s court if she hopes one day to take his place. But the flickering flames of ambition hide the shadow of an even greater threat.
And deep within the earth, something is stirring.
“A fast-paced epic fantasy thrill-ride filled with action-packed battles, compelling mysteries, and unforeseen betrayals.”