Part of the The War with the Mein series
Ruling from the island of Acacia, the emperor of the Known World has inherited an apparent peace and prosperity won by his ancestors generations ago.
He's an intelligent man, a widower who dotes on his four children and it is this devotion that obliges him to hide a terrible secret from them: that their prosperity rests on the dark realities of trafficking in drugs and human lives.
A man of integrity, he hopes that he might bring an end to this vile trade, but powerful forces stand in his way. And then an assassin strikes, a lone killer sent by the Mein, an ancient foe long ago exiled to the frozen north.
Now the Mein have returned to take revenge on their old enemy and begin a series of brutal surprise assaults on Acacia.
Mortally wounded, the emperor puts into play a plan that will allow his children to escape, to fulfil their destinies. And so begins a quest to avenge a father's death and restore an empire - this time on the basis of universal freedom...
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 688 pages, maps
- Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
- Publication Date: 26/07/2008
- Category: Fantasy
- ISBN: 9780553819670
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Review by jessicariddoch
this was a little slow to begin with but this was necessary so that the world that the author is creating is portrayed before the main portions of the story. This is not so say that nothing was happeing. I loved the portions where the old king is interacting with his children, where his thoughts on how he had not managed to change the world as he had thought to in his iealistic childhood. when it came to the later mien king you could them understand how although he wanted his rule to be different how the intertia of an old kingdom with established paths and deals.As the book maily follows the life of the children of the king you get to see them grow and change. the only character that semed to have an abrupt change was the mien king who at the beginning was all for the earthly pleasures, but seemed at the end to be no more than a kiniving king with these appitites removed. I also appreciated that the book has a background of events that happenined before this book, not in the way that their should be a prequel but that it is a world with a history, a history that I feel may be even further revealed, but was being discovered by the characters as this impacted on their lives through the book.I am glad that I have the second book in the series to dive into next as the book although having an ending has left me wanting more