Book Review: A Throne of Bones by Vox Day: 5/5 Stars

A review of A Throne of Bones by Vox Day. (Also available from Smashwords: A Throne of Bones by Vox Day)

A epic fantasy novel with not-Roman legions fighting goblins, not-French mages, giant eagle riding elves, dwarfs robbing dragons, and lots of other fun.

This book is quite large---I believe it would come to around 600 pages in paper-back---but I still finished it within 24 hours of starting.

It's got a bunch of different plots all running together, the big ones are the politics of Amorran Empire (the not-Romans from above), the various adventures one of their junior nobles/officers gets involved in as their command and control falls apart, and the relationship between the Iles de Loup (not-Vikings) and Savondir (not-French).

While some of these plots are resolved, at least somewhat, the book, despite its length, does come across as just the prologue to a far more extensive story, which I believe is the author's intention.

One of the possibly controversial elements of this series is that the main religion of the humans isn't some weird mixture of pseudo-Christianity and pseudo-paganism. The main human factions are medieval Catholic tweaked to adjust for the magic of the world, and the not-Vikings are straight forward pagans as you'd expect. Some people might find this problematic, but I rather appreciate it, it's nice to see an author willing to portray positive Christian characters and societies, and also to explore how such societies would be different in a world of common magic like your typical fantasy novel.

Obviously this might be an issue for some people who are less accepting of Christianity (and some Christians might think it's insulting), but in general the Christianity is treated similarly to the pseudo-paganism of typical fantasy worlds; it has power, but non-religious characters are portrayed sympathetically, and there's no authorial voice directly stating that Christianity is the right religion.

Overall I give it five out of five stars, or strongly recommend it.

Strengths:

  • Lots of reading.
  • Plenty of likable characters. (even the villains are often sympathetic)
  • It's portrayal of the not-Christianity.

Weaknesses:

  • Comes across as just the prologue to the rest of the planned series.
Categories: Books, Reviews
Date: 2014-08-06 23:03:53, 3 years and 80 days ago

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