"Perfect for fans of Brent Weeks, George R. R. Martin, or David Gemmell . . . . The best traditional epic fantasy I have read in years." — Grimdark Magazine
“Epic fantasy fans listen up: This is the good stuff. Highly recommended.” — Kirkus (starred review)
FORGED IN FIRE, BOUND BY BLOOD.
From an unmissable voice in epic fantasy comes a sweeping tale of clashing guilds, magic-fueled machines, and revolution.
The nation of Torwyn is run on the power of industry, and industry is run by the Guilds. Chief among them are the Hawkspurs, whose responsibility it is to keep the gears of the empire turning. That’s exactly why matriarch Rosomon Hawkspur sends each of her heirs to the far reaches of the nation.
Conall, the eldest son, is sent to the distant frontier to earn his stripes in the military. It is here that he faces a threat he could have never seen coming: the first rumblings of revolution.
Tyreta is a sorceress with the ability to channel the power of pyrestone, the magical resource that fuels the empire’s machines. She is sent to the mines to learn more about how pyrsetone is harvested – but instead, she finds the dark horrors of industry that the empire would prefer to keep hidden.
The youngest, Fulren, is a talented artificer and finds himself acting as a guide to a mysterious foreign emissary. Soon after, he is framed for a crime he never committed. A crime that could start a war.
As the Hawkspurs grapple with the many threats that face the nation within and without, they must finally prove themselves worthy–or their empire will fall apart.
“An epic setting, and an incredible cast of characters.” – James Islington, author of The Shadow of What Was Lost
Despite a prologue a bit too reminiscent of the start of A Game of Thrones, Ford (the War of the Archons series) succeeds in building a complex fantasy world, complete with warring factions, fearsome creatures, and bloody struggles for power in his Age of Uprising series launch. The nation of Torwyn is distinguished by its focus on engineering; its Hawkspur Guild has achieved ascendancy, from its humble beginnings as couriers, by constructing a comprehensive system of rail lines traversing all of Torwyn. But Guildmaster Rosomon Hawkspur confronts multiple threats to her organization's primacy and challenges to the reign of Torwyn's emperor, Sullivar Archwind. Among them is a false accusation that her artificer son, Fulren, assassinated Assenah Neskhon, a royal emissary of a rival nation regarded as demon worshippers. Ford effectively maintains tension by toggling between Fulren's plight and the perils faced by his siblings: Conall, a military captain, and Tyreta, a webwainer able to manipulate the crystals that are Torwyn's main energy source. Their struggles build to a well-earned dramatic conclusion that sets up the next book nicely. Fans of R.A. Salvatore's DemonWars Saga will be especially hooked. John Jarrold, John Jarrold Literary.