The thrilling new installment in the ambitious Acacia trilogy, praised by the Washington Post as "gripping and sophisticated."
A few years have passed since the conquering of the Mein, and Queen Corinn is firmly in control of the Known World-perhaps too firmly. With plans to expand her empire, she sends her brother, Daniel, on an exploratory mission to the Other Lands. There Daniel discovers a lush, exotic mainland ruled by an alliance of tribes that poses a grave danger to the stability of the Known World. Is Queen Corinn strong enough to face this new challenge? Readers of this bold, imaginative sequel will not be disappointed in the answer.
The power and originality of Durham's impressive fantasy debut, 2007's Acacia: The War with the Mein, isn't quite matched by this sequel, though it still features intelligent, well-crafted prose and complex characters. After a political assassination led to the overthrow of the Acacian Empire, the murdered king's children were split up and found very different destinies. The focus here is on the oldest, Corinn, now queen. She is a morally ambiguous figure, fiercely guarding her secrets of magic, willing to drug her subjects to stifle dissent and sacrifice her own siblings for power. Her depiction is the book's strength, as many of the other plot elements--betrayals, close brushes with death, terrifying monsters--are standard fare. Fans will still look for book three, but with diminished enthusiasm. (Sept.)
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September 13, 2009
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