The Sworn by Gail Z. Martin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
As plague and famine scourge the winter kingdoms, a vast invasion force is mustering from beyond the northern seas. And at its heart, a dark spirit mage wields the blood magic of ancient, vanquished gods.
Summoner-King Martris Drayke must attempt to meet this great threat, gathering an army from a country ravaged by civil war. Neighboring lands reel toward anarchy while plague decimates their leaders. Drayke must seek new allies from among the living – and the dead –- as an untested generation of rulers face their first battle.
Then someone disturbs the legendary Dread as they rest in a millennia-long slumber beneath sacred barrows. Their warrior guardians, the Sworn, know the Dread could be pivotal as a force for great good or evil. But if it’s the latter, could even the Summoner-King’s sorcery prevail?
The Sworn is Book One of The Fallen Kings Cycle, and it picks up the adventures of Tris, Jonmarc and the Winter Kingdoms gang six months after the end of Dark Lady’s Chosen. There are all new challenges, lots of dark magic and the biggest threat Margolan has faced in 400 years. Summary from Goodreads.
I didn't realize that this book followed another series of books. I had not read the previous series and it took me a bit to figure out the established relationships between the characters. I did it, so it can be done, but I would highly recommend reading the first series before this one. I have put "The Summoner" (Chronicles of the Necromancer) on my TBR list and look forward to getting to know more about the characters and social structure.
This book is filled with paranormal creatures that so many of us love to read (Yes, when I say us, I mean ME.) There are they vyrkin (shape shifting wolves), the vayash moru (vampires), ashtenerath (zombies), loads of different levels of magicians, and ghosts. I would say something for everyone.
The story follows about four story lines. Each story line is uncovering information that all lead to the same conclusion. War is coming. Not just any war, but a war of unmaking. Basically a war to end it all. They begin to come together toward the end, all working to save the world as they know it.
I enjoyed the story. It took me longer to read than I anticipated, but well worth the time.
I received a copy from Netgalley to review.