Lord of Secrets (The Empty Gods #1) by Breanna Teintze

LordofSecretsLord of Secrets was a fun fantasy read with some interesting concepts particularly around the magic system usef.  I thought this was an entertaining debut, I wouldn’t call it a deep think or particularly detailed in the area of world building but after a slightly slow start it was an enjoyable read with a self contained ending.

As the story begins we meet Corcoran Gray, a young wizard who is on the run, desperately trying to avoid capture at the same time as relentlessly searching for his missing grandfather.  Both Gray and his grandfather have been living outside the law, practising magic without being a part of the Guild that regulates such usage.  Gray’s grandfather has been taken, and being quite a powerful mage, is being held at a secret location, Gray has been trying to find him, whilst on the run, for almost six months when he accidentally bumps into a runaway slave called Brix, who he discovers might be just the answer to some of his prayers.

The two of them are forced into an unlikely union of sorts, on the run but both with a purpose of their own.

Lord of Secrets feels almost like a YA read to me – but, I’m not an expert on this and sometimes miss things that would perhaps be unsuitable for a slightly younger audience so that comment should be taken with a pinch of salt.  I think what I’m primarily going off with that remark is the age of the two main characters, plus, and I don’t mean this in a bad way, but the world building doesn’t feel as thorough as it can be in some fantasy books, there’s a more upbeat/hopeful style than in some of the grimdark reads that are very popular and there is also a love interest element going on.

What I really liked about this, after a slightly slow start, was the magic and the fact that wielding magic comes with consequences – dire consequences for some in fact.  Gray is a young but highly inventive mage but he knows firsthand the toll that using magic can take and this makes him hesitate to throw magic at everything willy nilly.  I like magic with consequences which mean the characters have to think first.  I also really liked the story when it got into full swing with the characters entering underground tunnels to try and find an artefact.  As it happens they find much more, the result of which is we are introduced to a very interesting character indeed.

In terms of criticisms.  I hate to labour the point but there is a slightly sluggish start to the story and a feeling of the author not quite being fully settled into the piece, once that happens however the story flows much better with snappy dialogue and more adventure – it just takes a little patience.  I never quite fell in love with Gray or Brix.  I liked them but I just felt like I held myself back for some reason that I haven’t quite put my finger on, in fact I found that my favourite character was not really the one that you’re supposed to like – he was just very interesting and much easier to picture.  Which leads to my final little issue.   The ending.  Yes, this is a self contained story and I have a great deal of respect for that just by itself, but, I couldn’t help feeling like the ending, and the romance were a little rushed, abrupt almost.

Issues aside, this was an enjoyable read that once it got into its stride kept the pages turning at a great pace.

I received a copy through Netgalley, courtesy of the publisher, for which my thanks.  The above is my own opinion.

I would rate this 7/10 or 3.5 of 5 stars on Goodreads.

WeeklyWrap Up : 11th August 2019

Why do I make reading plans?  I don’t know why – foolish inconsistency perhaps.  Anyway, August is racing by like a man on a mission and the best laid plans of mine are going to hell in a handcart.  Never mind, I will press on undeterred.  Last week I read two books –  reviews to follow very soon.

My books:

  1. Lord of Secrets by Breanna Teintze
  2. The Truants by Kate Weinberg

I’m also now about two thirds into The House of Sacrifice and I’m hoping to complete that and the following books over the next week:

Next scheduled reads:

  1. The House of Sacrifice by Anna Smith Spark
  2. Storm Cursed by Patricia Briggs
  3. Turning Darkness Into Light by Marie Brennan

Upcoming reviews

  1. King of the Road by RS Belcher
  2. Queenslayer by Sebastien DeCastell
  3. A Little Hatred by Joe Abercrombie
  4. Cry Havoc by Mike Morris
  5. Lord of Secrets by Breanna Teintze
  6. The Truants by Kate Weinberg

I’d love to know what you’re reading this week.