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REVIEW: 'Fall of Thanes' by Brian Ruckley

   The True Bloods are in disarray, their alliances crumbling and their armies humbled by the merciless forces of the Black Road. Their savage invasion is now guided by Aeglyss the na'kyrim, casting a shadow across all as he spirals deeper into madness. His long reach extends even to the court of the High Thane. There, Anyara faces a bitter struggle for survival against the na'kyrim's newest puppet: the Shadowhand, Chancellor to the Thane and his most trusted spy.

   Far from the intrigues of an enemy court, the embittered Kanin plots a desperate rising against the mad half-breed. As he musters his forces in the Glas Valley, he struggles against the sickness spreading in the minds and hearts of men. And Orisian, Thane of a Blood that no longer even exists, is on a journey that will bring him face-to-face with a darkly transcendent Aeglyss, and with the cruel choices required in a world slipping towards chaos.

As events mount to a climax, the world will change and no one can anticipate the twisted pattern of what lies ahead.

Please read the earlier two reviews if you wish to find out more about the magic and the fantasy world this story is set in. For the third volume, much continues as it was before except for the overall feeling that the world and magic (The Shared) itself has been tainted by Aeglyss.

Personally I think the author uses this to great effect to place the story on the edge without it seeming an impossible task for the 'evil' to be overcome. I did feel like this story probably had a bit less organized action as both sides of the war disintegrated into a bit of madness as Aeglyss tampered with power that was essentially too much for him. Though in way of combat it does offer a few smaller battles that have been in the making for the last couple books.

The emotional impact of the story was the biggest factor in this novel. In the last two volumes Ruckley already won me over with interesting characters, good writing and a well developed world. He pulls an epic story together with a fairly perfect end to it. I truly felt the struggles of all the characters, good or bad and even when something came about that I was not happy with, it still felt right. The epilogue even brought a tear to my eye.

Bottom Line:

I would highly recommend this series to anyone who likes epic fantasy books such as: GRR Martin's 'A Song of Fire and Ice' series or work from Patrick Rothfuss, Brandon Sanderson or Robert Jordan.


  1. Looks interesting.

    My library apparently has the first two books. I'll have to check the series out.

  2. Based on your review of the first book in the series, I bought it. I'm about a 3rd of the way through it, but I think I'm going to read The Heroes first and come back to it.

    Winterbirth is good so far. It's taken me a while to get used to the naming convention of the Bloods and whatnot, but the characterization has been very good. I just wish he wouldn't have used names like Lannis and focused on winter so much. It makes what is an otherwise original story come off as derivative.