Oh, this series just keeps going from strength to strength. I was lucky enough to receive both volumes in the post for review so got to lose myself in Anderson's worldbuilding for twice the length of time.
When we start The Lost War the war, as the title suggests, is over and has been lost, there are bandits, demons and disease running riot across the land. For Aranok though there is no time to rest, as King's Envoy it is his mission to restore a deposed Queen and for that he needs to assemble a 'gang' to help him, and as you would expect they all come with their own skills, attitudes and issues. Reminded me of a Grimdark version of The Belgariad - and there's no way I'm not gonna love it. As the twist comes at the end I wondered if I should leave it a while before starting The Bitter Crown but I couldn't stay away.
So, The Bitter Crown . . . Our heroes have learned the truth they (and everyone else) and to say they are reeling is possibly an understatement. But there is no time to rest, the game may have changed but it still needs to be won. For all the pieces to be in place the gang needs to be split up again and heading in different directions. We get to see deeper into the characters and more of the land and I'm up for that 100%. Throw into the mix battles, magic, politics and a whole heap of "how the hell are they going to get out of it this time" and what you have, in my opinion, is up there on a level with Game of Thrones.
Justin Lee Anderson has gone from self-published author (The Lost War) to an author who was picked up, professionally published and deserves his place at the High Table.
7/5* (It's my blog so I can do what I want) and one of the best series I've read this year
Thanks to Black Crow PR for inviting me onto the tour and providing me with the review copies (which did not influence my opinions at all - these are all my own.) Please have a look at the posts by the other bloggers on the tour (below) and with a week to go as I write this it's not too late to drop hints to Santa.