Brian Staveley’s debut novel, The Emperor’s Blades, was one of the best fantasy debuts I’d read in a long while: an engaging new world, some great characters, and superb writing, I started the follow-up immediately after finishing the first (something I haven’t done very often, when it comes to fantasy series). This year, readers will finally get to read Staveley’s new novel, The Empire’s Ruin. The first in a new series, Ashes of the Unhewn Throne, it picks up the story after the end of The Last Mortal Bond. I’m really looking forward to reading this. Here’s the synopsis:
The Annurian Empire is disintegrating. The advantages it used for millennia have fallen to ruin. The ranks of the Kettral have been decimated from within, and the kenta gates, granting instantaneous travel across the vast lands of the empire, can no longer be used.
In order to save the empire, one of the surviving Kettral must voyage beyond the edge of the known world through a land that warps and poisons all living things to find the nesting ground of the giant war hawks. Meanwhile, a monk turned con-artist may hold the secret to the kenta gates.
But time is running out. Deep within the southern reaches of the empire and ancient god-like race has begun to stir.
What they discover will change them and the Annurian Empire forever. If they can survive.
Brian Staveley’s The Empire’s Ruin is due to be published by Tor Books in North America, on July 6th, 2021. (I couldn’t find any details about a UK edition, but the author’s Chronicles of the Unhewn Throne trilogy was published by Tor UK, so I assume it’ll be them again.)