Recently, Marcher Lord Press released the second book in the Blood of Kings Trilogy, and that’s what I’d like to talk about today. The author, Jill Williamson, provided me with a copy to review, and I’m so grateful she did. As I said in May 2009, I really enjoy her writing and her fictional world of Er’Rets. The second volume is titled To Darkness Fled and is a true continuation of the first book. This is not a series you can read out of order.
The first book, By Darkness Hid is basically the story of the stray boy, Achan Cham, discovering who he is, combined with the story of Vrell Sparrow, disguised as a healer boy, hiding from the imposter prince who’s claimed her hand in marriage. At the end of this story, they, along with several knights, travel to the Dark side of Er’Rets to escape from the imposter and to create a plan for a comeback.
In this second novel, To Darkness Fled, Achan, Vrell, and their guardians make their way through Darkness with the goal of freeing the former King’s men from prison and thus raising an army to retake the land. Vrell continues to hide her identity and gender while Achan struggles to come to grip with his destiny. Not only must he, a boy raised as a stray, learn to become royalty, he must also learn to depend on the one God, Arman, plus learn to use and control the royal gift of bloodvoicing.
Then there’s the small matter that he will need to marry a suitable girl and secure an heir. Some of the most humorous bits of the novel are when Achan bumbles his way through his romantic life, but Vrell, whom Achan still thinks is just a pansy boy, is not amused as she watches. She hates to admit her jealousy, but she’s falling for Achan. Stands to reason she must escape from the growing army as it nears her family’s home duchy, thus saving her from becoming one in the list of ‘eligible females’ that Achan is making a fool of himself over.
If it wasn’t clear from the end of the first book in this trilogy, it is so by the end of the second: Achan and Vrell are meant for each other. Still, Jill Williamson has left herself a lot of room to bring this story to a close in the upcoming third and final installment. Their journey is far from over, both in a romantic sense and in a political sense. I’m very much looking forward to reading the third book–and then hoping that Jill Williamson has another world up her sleeve.
Here’s a list of this week’s other tourists: Brandon Barr, Keanan Brand, Gina Burgess, Beckie Burnham, Melissa Carswell, Karri Compton, Amy Cruson, CSFF Blog Tour, Stacey Dale, D. G. D. Davidson, Jeff Draper, Emmalyn Edwards, April Erwin, Sarah Flanagan, Andrea Graham, Tori Greene, Ryan Heart, Joleen Howell, Becky Jesse, Cris Jesse, Jason Joyner, Julie, Carol Keen, Krystine Kercher, Dawn King, Leighton, Rebecca LuElla Miller, New Authors Fellowship, John W. Otte, Crista Richey, Chawna Schroeder, Andrea Schultz, James Somers, Rachel Starr Thomson, Steve Trower, Fred Warren, Dona Watson, Phyllis Wheeler, KM Wilsher