E-ARC, 550 Pages
By: G.R. Matthews
Rating: 🌟🌟🌟 1/2
“The hardest truth is the realisation that sometimes there is nothing you can do,”
Seven Deaths of an Empire is a novel anticipated by many readers and it is one of Solaris’ biggest publications this year, I mean the title is catchy, the cover is awesome and it has a cool synopsis! I think the book will be successful indeed. My problem is that I have read my fair share of adult novels and found this to be repetitive!
The writing is good, I did not feel like I was reading such a big book and I finished it quickly. The format used is smart because it is a double POV narrative, jumping between General Bordan who has given his life to the empire and is loyal to the throne as someone can be. On the other side we have the magician apprentice Kyron who is returning the late Emperor’s body to the capital. In addition to that, every chapter starts by a small flashback from 10 years ago and with each chapter it advances till we reach the current time. There are good quotes here and there so the writing overall was good.
The main characters themselves are well balanced between the two narratives, I think I cared about them and that they were fleshed out equally good. I did find out the connection between them before it was revealed but I think it took me more than it should have because it was well foreshadowed! The rest of the characters are good but I don’t think they are very memorable to me. The Emperor line was a bit lunatic and his son is kind of similar to Joffrey from GoT and we all know how lovable he was! Also there is death all over the place which is not strange given the title!
“It isn’t where someone comes from, lad. It is what they do that judges their worth.”
The world-building is average, I mean we get to know the world and some of the history but I wanted more from the magic and something different and more exciting which I felt was lacking here.
I found myself invested mainly in the first part of the book and the last one, in the middle things got a little stagnant and I was starting to feel bored when things got interesting again and I was reading fast once more. The chapters are kind of short to medium, like 10 pages in average so it kind of keeps things going which I enjoyed. I think the problem is that I saw where things where going from early on, there is a mystery part to the story that is a huge part of the narrative and plot but for me and from my experience reading this kind of books, it was obvious because it is always “that person” and that kind of affected my experience because I hoped for more. Toward the end there was a plot twist that I didn’t see but it was not really a plot twist because it only lead to something I expected!
I also did not know if this was supposed to be a standalone or a series but a good friend from GR provided us with the author’s answer is that it is a complete story but there will be a sequel (probably two) depending on how much success this one has. And that brings me to the last point which was that if it is a complete story then I am not a huge fan of the ending although it does make sense one way or another!
“The moment we no longer seek new knowledge, we stop living and contributing to our communities,”
Summary: I think I am a bit harsh with this one just because I had high expectations that were never met. The writing and characters are good but my main problem was with the plot which I found predictable and similar to many books of the genre that I read before. I know this will be successful though and I hope it sells enough copies to get a sequel!