Upcoming: THE LIAR’S KEY by Mark Lawrence (Ace/Voyager)


I’m a big fan of Mark Lawrence‘s novels. His debut, Prince of Thorns (published in 2011) blew me away, and I blitzed through it in just two sittings. King of Thorns, the sequel, was a heftier beast, but no less good. I haven’t managed to get around to Emperor of Thorns, just yet, but I do intend to do so ASAP. He has since completed his first trilogy and begun a second, parallel trilogy set in the same world and at the same time. The cover for the second novel in this new trilogy, The Liar’s Key now has UK (below) and US (above) covers.

After harrowing adventure and near-death, Prince Jalan Kendeth and the Viking Snorri ver Snagason find themselves in possession of Loki’s Key, an artefact capable of opening any door, and sought by the most dangerous beings in the Broken Empire — including The Dead King.

Jal wants only to return home to his wine, women, and song, but Snorri has his own purpose for the key: to find the very door into death, throw it wide, and bring his family back into the land of the living.

And as Snorri prepares for his quest to find death’s door, Jal’s grandmother, the Red Queen continues to manipulate kings and pawns towards an endgame of her own design…

The Broken Empire trilogy includes Prince of ThornsKing of Thorns and Emperor of Thorns.

The Red Queen’s War trilogy includes Prince of FoolsThe Liar’s Key and The Wheel of Osheim (2016).

The Liar’s Key is published in the US by Ace Books, on June 2nd, 2015; and in the UK by Voyager, on June 18th, 2015.

Also on CR: Interview with Mark Lawrence


Review: PRINCE OF FOOLS by Mark Lawrence (Voyager/Ace Books)

LawrenceM-RQW1-PrinceOfFoolsUKA new trilogy and hero, and still just as good…

The Red Queen is old but the kings of the Broken Empire fear her as they fear no other.

Her grandson Jalan Kendeth is a coward, a cheat and a womaniser; and tenth in line to the throne. While his grandmother shapes the destiny of millions, Prince Jalan pursues his debauched pleasures. Until he gets entangled with Snorri ver Snagason, a huge Norse axe man, and dragged against his will to the icy north.

In a journey across half the Broken Empire, Jalan flees minions of the Dead King, agrees to duel an upstart prince named Jorg Ancrath, and meets the ice witch, Skilfar, all the time seeking a way to part company with Snorri before the Norseman’s quest leads them to face his enemies in the black fort on the edge of the Bitter Ice.

Experience does not lend Jalan wisdom; but here and there he unearths a corner of the truth. He discovers that they are all pieces on a board, pieces that may be being played in the long, secret war the Red Queen has waged throughout her reign, against the powers that stand behind thrones and nations, and for higher stakes than land or gold.

Mark Lawrence returns with the first in a great new trilogy set in the same world as his critically-acclaimed Broken Empire trilogy. As long-time readers of the blog will know, I really enjoyed Lawrence’s debut, Prince of Thorns. He is without doubt one of the best new fantasy authors, and if you like your fantasy dark, twisty, and very well-written, then you really do need to give his work a try. Prince of Fools introduces us to a new pair of heroes – Prince Jalan and his Viking companion, Snorri. I really enjoyed this novel. Continue reading