The Ruin Of Kings Review
Title: The Ruin Of Kings (A Chorus of Dragons, #1)
Author: Jenn Lyons
Publication Date: February 5, 2019
Publisher: Tor Books
Kihrin is a bastard orphan who grew up on storybook tales of long-lost princes and grand quests. When he is claimed against his will as the long-lost son of a treasonous prince, Kihrin finds that being a long-lost prince isn't what the storybooks promised.
Far from living the dream, Kihrin finds himself practically a prisoner, at the mercy of his new family's power plays and ambitions. He also discovers that the storybooks have lied about a lot of other things things, too: dragons, demons, gods, prophecies, true love, and how the hero always wins.
Then again, maybe he’s not the hero, for Kihrin isn’t destined to save the empire.
He’s destined to destroy it . . .
This book is going to be hard to review. The writing was fantastic. The quick whips, criss-crossing storylines, and immense detail are a testament to the dedication Lyon’s had to her story. However, no matter how many times I laughed at Kihrin’s comebacks and sarcasm it didn’t make up for the over aboundness of complex writing and details. I listened to this book on Libro.Fm because I figured out almost instantaneously I would not be able to actually read this one with my eyes. I never would have finished it. And even with listening to it, it took me almost 2 months to finish.
I saw what Lyons was trying to do- she was trying to make herself stand out in a genre that is hard to stand out in. But in trying to be so different the story became difficult to read. It would have been completely AMAZING if it had just been a little less intricate and complex. And had some romance in it!!!
The story starts out with the reader being told that the story is being transcribed/edited from the recordings of our main character, Kihrin, and a demon, Talon. Then Kihrin and Talon come into the story talking to each other about actually doing the recording. THEN Kihrin starts talking about his recent past and then Talon starts filling in the details of Kihrin’s background and childhood- but her storyline also switches POVs with other characters of that timeline. So, to clarify. Talon and Kihrin are BOTH telling Kirhirn’s story just at different points of his life with the transcriber jumping in to fill details and explain things farther. Then the storylines eventually meet and the story jumps to the very recent past and then the transcriber jumps in again and then the story is over.
Personally, I’m not a fan of past/present story telling, especially if you know that the main character is going to be fine and all the almost death scenes and Uh-Oh moments in the past lose their impact. I hated watching Arrow on the CW because of this- We all knew he was going to live on that stupid island. The flashbacks just annoyed me. And that was how I felt with this book.
Again, I understood what Lyons was doing but it just didn’t work for me. There was too much jumping and hard to follow details. Plus, a lot of the characters had similar sounding names. Which, of course, made it harder to follow. I felt like I was trying to read Game of Thrones with all the names and people and family lines that mix and jump and unravel. If this book would have been told in a little more of a conventional way, I think I would have enjoyed it more. In trying to stand out from the crowd and be unique- the story lost what would have made it great.
The Ruin of Kings had a lot of potential. And I know I will read the next book in the series. I really enjoyed Kihrin and his story- it was just a hard to immerse myself and enjoy the book. Kihrin will probably be one of my favorite characters of the year though. He was just soooo sarcastic! I do hope that next book is less tasking on my brain though…
I do suggest giving this book a chance- read it, listen to it, or do both- but give it a chance. Especially if you love the writings of George R.R. Martin and enjoy the extremely complex high fantasy genre.
P.S. Yes, I know my review have slowed down. You have this book to mostly blame…