Release Date: 10/10/13
The monarchies of the Royal Vispasian Union have been bound together for two hundred years by laws maintained and enforced by the powerful Sun Chamber. As a result, nations have flourished but corruption, deprivation and murder will always find a way to thrive ...Receiving news of his father's death Sun Chamber Officer Lucan Drakenfeld is recalled home to the ancient city of Tryum and rapidly embroiled in a mystifying case. The King's sister has been found brutally murdered -- her beaten and bloody body discovered in a locked temple. With rumours of dark spirits and political assassination, Drakenfeld has his work cut out for him trying to separate superstition from certainty. His determination to find the killer quickly makes him a target as the underworld gangs of Tryum focus on this new threat to their power. Embarking on the biggest and most complex investigation of his career, Drakenfeld soon realises the evidence is leading him towards a motive that could ultimately bring darkness to the whole continent. The fate of the nations is in his hands.
Mark has always been one of those authors who likes to leave the readers with questions rather than deliver a story that is a simple affair from A to B. He does so in such a way that you end up questioning what you’d have done in those circumstances which when blended with a fantasy element all round works very well.
As usual the prose is sharp, the pace ideal but for me it’s the depth of the characters that he brings to the fore that really sets this out from a fair few others, they’re believable, they have their own agenda’s and tend to see the world in shades of grey rather than a straight forward of black and white of a great many fantasy authors.
This works very well for Mark’s writing which when blended with his own unique twist and sense of wonder all round generates a tale that will stay with you long after the final page is turned, so much so that you’ll end up telling others about the book and the questions it raises. That is a sign of a great writer.