Kingmaker, Kingbreaker Book Review
Kingmaker, Kingbreaker review
Kingmaker, Kingbreaker is a two part fantasy series written by Karen Miller. There are audiobooks to it for those who prefer to listen over read, either is a great option. The books take place in the fantasy world of Lur, a kingdom of Doranen magic taken from the Olkin, the race who first inhabited the land. Doranen magic is intuned to the life of all in Lur as the king is also the single Weatherworker in the kingdom. Calling upon ancient magics, that drain him of his own life upon use, the Weatherworker of Lur schedules and controls the weather, aside from the small fishing villages on the outside of the weather magics influence. Aside from keeping the weather in track to keep the kingdom running smoothly for all, charting rain for crops to grow here, a lake to freeze there, the weather magics also feed the protective wall of Barl, and keep the kingdom safe from outside threats that may, or may not exist anymore.
Innocent Mage(Book One)
The Innocent Mage, the first of the two books starts the tale off fairly well. "They dreamet him, and he came" Prophecy foretells the coming of the end of days, and a innocent mage to save them all.
Asher of Restharven, a fisherman from the small Olkin fishing village Restharven outside the influence of the weather magics a young man decides to set out to the capital city of Lur to find work for a year. His plan to return after a year with the finances to escape the tortures and unfair pay from his brothers, while he and his da fish their very own boat obtained through the fruits of labor in his year away.
Gar, the prince of Lur, a Doranen unique in his own way that he is the only Doranen to be born magicless. Without magic he is removed for line to obtain the throne and the position as Lur's Weatherworker. He is tasked to deal with matters of the Olkin in place of his father as the Doranen people look down upon him for being a crippled, and a blight on the royal family, although he is very much loved by the Olkin. After he was found to not have any magic in him, the king and queen pressed the laws and got approved to birth another child, Fane a prodigy who can not see eye to eye with her crippled brother one way or another.
Asher makes his journey to the capital of Lur, with a fated chance encounter with the prince he lands a job in his royal stables after having no luck finding any work elsewhere. Gar takes a liking to Asher for he is outright with the prince, as to him the prince is just another man for he has no past relations or know how of manners demanded by royalty. After work in the stables, the prince offers him work as his assistant to Olkin administration. Through much hardship and indecision Asher takes the spot informing Gar he is only staying for one year from his arrival, and it is agreed upon when the time comes, Asher may leave unhindered with everything he had earned in the time.
They follow a religion of a ancient mage known as Barl, who led the Doranen from their ancient home to Lur, and erected the wall to escape the evils of a mage named Morgan/Morg, who she once loved. Through the laws of Barl Olkin were barred from participation or attempts of using magic. The magics belong to the Doranen. This causes much hardship with Asher and Gar, along with King Borne. Law states a Olkin found to break this law shall be killed for his actions, Asher agrees, the laws have been there for their safety. Gar feels much hardship, and although having a voice in the council of the king there is nothing he can do.
When a chance finding of the ancient library of Barl is came upon, Gar delights in being tasked to translate some of the harmless ancient text, although the Master Magician of the kingdom is out for far more prosperous text. Deemed too dangerous by the king and queen, the library is resealed. The end of Ashers days in the capital are nearing a end, and he plans to return home during the harvest festival while he accompanies Gar on his first trip down to take place of the king.
A mishap of a sick king causes havoc throughout the kingdom, almost killing his own son by unintended severe weather that reached down to the fishing villages. Gar saved by Asher now feels he owes him more then he could ever repay. Asher rejected by his brothers and banned from returning home, returns to the capital with Gar. All this time, Asher is playing his role in a prophecy unknown to him, but being played out through those he considers friends.
My rating : 6/10
Awakened Mage(Book 2)
Through actions unknown to anyone else in the kingdom, the unknown great evil outside the wall is let in, and lives in quite as he plots. Through his actions, Gar is gifted with magic, and ends up in a contested position as king, and Watherworker. Although without any real proper training, and his Master Magician unable to help, he turns to Asher to see him well through his trials of Weatherworking.
Gars magic fades, and Asher has to step in to help him remember the proper way to cast the weather magic, and to both their surprise, Asher has the ability to use the magics of the Doranen. As Gars only hope to keep the kingdom from the worst evil he knows at the time, they must keep it a secret and Asher must do the weather workings. While this goes on, the true evil finds a new host.
Asher takes over the position as Olkin administrator, while Gar takes on the role of king and Weatherworker. As both evils become one, the downfall of the kingdom is set into motion, all along Asher plays into the fates of prophecy while it still remains unknown to him. Asher is found out for his magic, and is taken in to face the same punishment as the Olkin he once agreed should die for the same actions. Gar, through promise and love of the man who's become like a brother to him promises to never let this become of their situation, but it forced behind the scene and can do nothing aside save the rest of the Olkin in exchange for the life of one.
A new king ascends the throne, Asher harbors hate for his once friend Gar. Those who know the fates of prophecy must act, before the end comes and they are unprepared. After leaving Asher in the dark about who he is for so long, the end is near and time is tight. After a long period or hardships and torture, Asher is rescued at the cost of another life, and is taken to a remote area with his wife, who he now presents, his old best friend who is the only one he can manage to speak to after all the betrayal. Gar also tends to help, but Asher wont hear his words, through tedious work the group manages to bring Asher to be trained the best they can, and he must now face the evil that threatens everyone's life.
My rating : 9/10
The books were not exactly what I imagined upon picking them up from my local bookstore. They swayed far more fantasy politics then they did fantastical fantasy. Although I did struggle at points to keep into the first book, I forced myself to continue on and quite enjoyed it. The second book was much more intense and kept me wanting to keep at it, even when I needed to put it down and sleep. The above is a very vague summary of the books, there is so much more to each of them, I try and refrain from giving away the details that make the stories what they are. The end was very heart wrenching for me. I left the books feeling sad. That is good though, it shows the author had done their job and made the characters feel real for the time I visited their story. The books are worth the read, or atleast a listen if you are more for audiobooks.
Overall rating : 8/10