Series: War of the Gods #1
on March 1st 2016
Genres: High Fantasy
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Her Serene Highness, Rakaia, Princess of Fardohnya, is off to Hythria, where her eldest sister is now the High Princess, to find herself a husband, and escape the inevitable bloodbath in the harem when her brother takes the throne.
Rakaia is not interested in marrying anyone, least of all some brute of a Hythrun Warlord she's never met, but she has a plan to save herself from that, too. If she can just convince her baseborn sister, Charisee, to play along, she might actually get away with it.
But there is trouble brewing across the continent. High Prince of Hythria, Damin Wolfblade, must head north to save the peace negotiated a decade ago between the Harshini, Hythria, Fardohnya, Medalon and Karien. He must leave behind an even more dangerous conflict brewing between his wife and his powerful mother, Princess Marla.
...And in far off Medalon, someone has stolen the music.
Their quest for the tiny stolen lyre containing the essence of the God of Music will eventually touch all their lives, threaten everything they hold dear and prove to be far more personal than any of them can imagine.
The Lyre Thief is the first in a new trilogy, set in Jennifer Fallon’s lands of Medalon, Hythria and Fardohnya. High-stakes political fantasy is woven together with family drama and a touch of romance, and even though I haven’t read any of Jennifer’s previous series, I really enjoyed this book.
Even though this story is set some years in the future, many characters have returned and I did feel like I was missing out on some of the back-story at times. Nevertheless, this is an entirely new chapter in this world, and I was able to pick up the missing threads. In this new story, there’s the princess who switches places with her base-born half-sister to escape marriage to an elderly lord, the royal family of Hythria and their looming negotiations with Medalon, plus the Demon Child and her quest to find her lost lover. Then there’s the young lad who steals the God of Music.
The Lyre Thief is the first part of a complicated story with many threads, but they are woven together very well and told from several points of view. It has been a while since I read such a complex political fantasy and it took me a while to get into the rhythm of it, but the story didn’t feel slow at any stage and there was plenty to keep me reading.
What I enjoyed the most was how realistic each of the characters felt. There’s enough of the everyday goings-on in each household to give a rounded picture of each person involved in the story, and I especially enjoyed reading about Adrina and Damin Wolfblade and their young family (for perhaps obvious reasons). The Demon Child R’Shiel also intrigues me – I’ll have to try to get a hold of the Demon Child trilogy to find out more about what happened with her and Brak.
The ending leaves us with a dreadful cliffhanger and I can’t wait to see what adventures book 2, Retribution, brings.
Read this book if you enjoyed Jennifer Fallon’s earlier series. Even if you haven’t read her other books, The Lyre Thief is engaging high fantasy with endearing characters and enigmatic magic.