Thursday, 20 March 2014

The boy with the porcelain blade - Den Patrick

Lucien de Fontein has grown up different. One of the mysterious and misshapen Orfano who appear around the Kingdom of Landfall, he is a talented fighter yet constantly lonely, tormented by his deformity, and well aware that he is a mere pawn in a political game. Ruled by an insane King and the venomous Majordomo, it is a world where corruption and decay are deeply rooted - but to a degree Lucien never dreams possible when he first discovers the plight of the 'insane' women kept in the haunting Sanatoria.

Told in a continuous narrative interspersed with flashbacks we see Lucien grow up under the care of his tutors. We watch him forced through rigorous Testings, and fall in love, set against his yearning to discover where he comes from, and how his fate is tied to that of every one of the deformed Orfano in the Kingdom, and of the eerie Sanatoria itself.

My thoughts:
Now what to call this one? Most of the action takes place in a castle, like 95% of the book (makes me think of Mervyn Peake). There is somewhat of a Gothic Darkness over the whole castles area. A king who no one sees and who seems to be immortal. People going missing and of course the Orfanos. The king has ordered that they should be treated well so they are all in "school". Some of these Orfanos are very deformed while some like Lucien got lucky, he has no ears, but it ends there. They, the nobles, and everyone really have their own intrigues and lots of backstabbing going on here.

The whole fantasy feel is also different. The world is Italian of a sort, but then some names and myths are mentioned. It made me think that a bunch if Italians got on a ship and got ship wrecked on a mythical island. And there they are stuck, for all time and we can't find them. And island of their own horror.

The book is told through flashbacks of his life growing up and the tests he had to take. And present time when he gets into trouble because of something I will not mention. The end is open in a way, it has a conclusion for him, but I do wonder about what happens next.

I liked it. At first I was not sure about the flashbacks cos I really wanted to know what would happen to Lucien, and not see what happened before. I do hate waiting. But I can live with that ;) A different sort of fantasy when it's not easy to really stick out.

Cover
Ok

Paperback, 336 pages
Published March 20th 2014 by Gollancz

Fantasy
For review


45 comments:

  1. Hmm, not really a big "fantasy" fan, but sounds kind of neat! :)

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  2. This one does sound very interesting. It seems to have a lot going on and an interesting world that I've never really heard of before. Does this mean there will be more books to come?

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  3. Just kidding...I just read the review and saw that he's working on book two right now. :-P Oops, I'll look forward to reading your review on that book to see if you enjoy it as much, if not more. :-D

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    1. Lol, yes I interviewed him yesterday :)
      I do wonder about that next book

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  4. This sounds like something I would enjoy.

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  5. oooh castles!! i actually like the cover a lot!

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  6. I'm usually not a fan of books that take place all in one location. They can be repetitive. This sounds like it has potential though.

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    1. I know the feeling and I do feel the same. But this one..maybe cos there was just so much ground to cover there

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  7. I want this book! Too bad for me US release date might not be for a while though.

    ~Mogsy

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  8. I kind of like the idea of the setting being all in the castle.

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  9. I'm not a huge fan of fantasy but this sounds so unique. I enjoyed your interview with the author as well.

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    1. Thank you :D And yes it was very unique

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  10. I've been curious about this one. I am glad the flashbacks work. Might have to really check this one out.

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  11. This one is sitting on my wishlist, I am glad the flashbacks worked even though you weren't sure at first.

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    1. I am never sure about flashbacks, they can truly kill a story if not done right, or just be confusing

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  12. Adding this to my wishlist too! I do love Italians on the historical front and to couple that with mystery sounds very unique. Where are you finding these goodies?!

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    1. I have been lucky with strange books lately. Lol

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  13. Sounds . . . interesting :) You keep finding these really bizarre fantasies, I like it!

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    1. Haha I know! I am reading an even more bizarre at the moment

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  14. This sounds different, and I like the name Lucien de Fontein right off the bat.

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  15. The gothic but fantasy feel sounds intersting

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  16. You read this one too!?! *sigh* I just learned about it this week. Actually, maybe two days ago. But I don't remember why, I think from something on twitter about the book and I followed the link. But it sounds good. Glad you ended up enjoying.

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    1. Lol, well I do not know where you learned of it. It was brought to my attention early this year cos of twitter too :)

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  17. I was hoping for a shot to review this one early, but alas not picked. Looks fun, I shall wait for the release I suppose.

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    1. :/ I know the feeling, what I would do to read Words of radiance

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  18. oh it's nice to have something different, whatever it's about the myths, the world or other things and I confess it makes me curious.

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    1. I have stumbled upon a great deal of different books this year, very cool

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  19. Hmm, I live right next to Italy so I'm very curious about the Italian aspects of this story/world.

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  20. I like when a book has me wondering what happens next.

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  21. I've been trying to read a couple non-mysteries this year, but this one isn't grabbing my attention. I love the title though.

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  22. I oddly really like the cover. Huh. But this sounds pretty good.

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    1. I know I like heads, but yes it works

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  23. I like fantasy too but haven't read much this year ... *sigh* wish I didn't need to sleep ;)

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    1. :/ Sad, but it happens some years for me too

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