The Dockland Kingslayer: A Review
The Dockland Kingslayer is about the tale of a young boy’s struggles in the Victorian nation of Thorton. After witnessing the wrongful execution of his parents, Alistair Métis seeks his king for answers to a never-ending list of questions. However, a lowborn child cannot escape the shackles of poverty to scour cobbled streets while on the run from the law. Alistair, too, was sentenced to die for his father’s crimes. The young boy’s journey spans the unforgiving West. His tale brims with airships, cutthroats, war, mischief and wonder.
After just reading the blurb I knew that this was a book unlike any other. The plot description seemed very original in itself but with every page I turned the story seemed to become even more unique. There was not one predictable moment, no literary stereotypes and no obvious source of inspiration. It was interesting from the first page to the last.
A Unique and Unpredictable Tale
The Dockland Kingslayer, written by V. C. Remus, is a steampunk novel and the first book in a series set in the fictional kingdom of Thorton, which combines elements from the Victorian era and the middle ages.
The story follows Alistair Métis who is forced to witness the execution of both his parents before running away from death, himself. He gets taken in by a generous baker and finds himself at home with a new mother, father and little brother, before he finds himself in the royal army.
I can't say any more about the plot because what fun would it be if I just gave it all away? Life in Thorton certainly is no bed of roses and you'll come to appreciate your own society much more after reading this book.
There are many different kinds of stories out there but they all share a lot of similarities as well. A lot of the plots out there are the same but with the author's own interpretation of it and some of them turn out to be quite unique in their own way. But there is always something predictable in the mix, something which you have seen so many times before. But this book is an exception. Every time I thought I had predicted what was going to happen next I was surprised by the unusual turn of events and I came to the conclusion that there really was nothing predictable about The Dockland Kingslayer. It kept going in directions I could have never predicted.
With that said the political matters in this novel were a little too difficult for me to understand and the same goes for Alistair's character, which I found to be well written and extremely complex. He does have a good sense of humor though, which I found very enjoyable. However I find the supporting characters such as the Esmond, D'Lorenz and Captain Drako much more entertaining than the protagonist. I thought there were a little too much description, which could sometimes take the focus off the story itself but at the same time it painted a perfectly clear picture of all the locations in my head so I have some mixed feelings about that.
The cherry on top of the ice cream was the way it was written, as a grandfather telling a story to his grandson. It added a little more mystery to the whole story. It was certainly very well written from the very first page to the last and if one has trouble understanding something there is a section in the back of the book dedicated to explaining everything about Cyrus's fictional world.
About V. C. Remus
V.C. Remus holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Northern Illinois University. He is an economist, chess instructor, runner, RPG enthusiast, musician, songwriter, and an avid reader of all genres. He hails from Chicago, Illinois and owns three bunnies. To escape studying for his Series 7 and 63 examinations, he writes fantasy novels. His “Steamworks in the Bylea” was imagined on a late night in June of 2013 and completed on an early February morning in 2015. Stay tuned for the sequel in 2016.
The Dockland Kingslayer is available on Amazon for 0,99 for the kindle ebook and 10,99 for the paperback version. It is definitely worth the money and recommended for everyone who is tired of cliché stories and wants to read something unique.
Check out my review of the prequel to The Dockland Kingslayer, My King My All here.