Title: Seven Deaths of an Empire
Author: G.R. Matthews
Publisher: Solaris (Rebellion Publishing)
UK release: 24th June. Thank you to Rebellion for sending this my way!
Where do I start with how I feel about this amazing novel? I suppose by saying that it has fast become my favourite book of the year so far. I don’t want to say too much, as that might spoil a large chunk of it – but I will tell you a non-spoiler-filled, condensed version of my thoughts :-).
I tabbed so many pages of this book! I used three colours; green for information I thought might be important later on, pink for passages and character quotes I loved, and orange for the parts that hit me in the feels. I have so many green tabs scattered throughout, and I still wasn’t able to figure out who the big bad guy until very close to the end – which I loved. This is because, in most novels I read that feature a mystery of some sort, I usually figure out the “who-done-it?” within a few chapters, but although I developed a list of a number of suspects as the novel progressed, it wasn’t until very near the end that I figured out who the real villain was. This is what I was here for, because it added so much intrigue to the story that carried through until the end. Unlike the truth of the main villain of the novel, I did pick up on a link between two characters fairly quickly as the novel progressed, and was so proud of myself for it haha.
Additionally, during the first few hundred pages of the novel, I felt like it sometimes deviated from the main plot of the story into smaller subplots. However, I quickly realised that these were still linked to the central crux of the story in some way or another, which made what happened during the time I spent with the perspectives of the story, make more sense. That being said, I still got confused sometimes while reading about certain elements that connected one perspective to the other, though that might be down to me, and not the novel itself.
I fell in love with Matthews’ writing style, and have nearly as many pink tabs as I do green, scattered throughout the novel; there were so many sentences and character quotes which were just…beautifully written and phrased, and so many were really wholesome. There aren’t as many orange tabs as there are pink and green, but what I have tabbed had a significant impact on me in some way . They are the most important tabs for me – they mark the passages that really hit home for one reason or another.
I loved the politics of the world, and Matthews’ unique magic system which is fascinating in the way that it works and, – combined with his writing style – reading it being performed was, well….magical! I also found the world’s leading religion equally as fascinating, and the army and its ranking system, along with the palace positions – though confusing at times – interesting. I’d love to know what inspired these aspects.
I’m not sure whether I have a favourite character, as there are a number of characters that I became attached to; one of whom is Kyron who is the sweetest bean, I love him so much. Emlyn is fierce and such a strong young woman despite and because of what she’s been through. Other characters I fell in love with include Master Padarn, and Borus – they’re so precious!
To sum up, despite some of its small shortcomings I absolutely adored this book and its characters. It kept me hooked throughout, had such an intricate an intricate world that pulled me in from page 1, and me feel a plethora of emotions. I am so excited to read the sequels to this when they come out! Another big thank you to Rebellion for sending me an advanced copy, it was a wild ride and I loved every page. You’ve allowed me to discover a new favourite read that left me wanting more :-).
If you had the chance to read an arc of Seven Deaths of an Empire, what did you think? Please keep any comments civil and polite if you make them.
If you’re a fan of political, magical high fantasy, be sure to pick up a copy :-).
You have wings. Believe in them and yourself, and you will fly.