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Review: The Skull Throne by Peter V. Brett

By / May 9, 2015 / no comments

The Skull Throne is the 4th instalment of The Demon Cycle by Peter V. Brett. One could say that it is highly anticipated but for many different reasons. There are some that just really enjoy the intricacies of the world Brett has created, the magic system and the overall story telling. Other’s like myself have thought of this series as being a bit of a train wreck.

UK Edition Cover

The first book called The Painted Man (Warded Man in the US) was just brilliant. Loved everything about the book. Magic, demons, cultural clash, victory and betrayal. Then the Desert Spear came out and I thought, what’s going on here and the wreck was completed with The Daylight War.

However, like any disaster, human nature compels us to watch and sometimes keep watching. I’m still in love with The Painted Man and the compulsion to read The Skull Throne was ‘inevera’ . 

What I really liked about the Skull Throne (and Brett) is that it is well written. Text is smooth and reads easily. Unlike some other forum members, I found that I devoured the book in very quick time (for me) and definitely wanted more. The overall ending of the book was well done. It is chaotic and makes me as the reader not quite sure what will happen. I don’t like it when I can predict everything (re: The Daylight War), and the ending here almost makes up for the rest of the book.

US Edition Cover

So that brings me to the other end of the spectrum. Nothing really happens in the book and the characters you like the most are not there. If you are A Song of Ice and Fire reader, think what GRRM did with Feast of Crows and A Dance with Dragons, and you’ll get my meaning. While characters did die only one was shocking (and well done) and the others were more like…”really?”

We did an interview with Peter V. Brett about his series a couple of weeks back and it definitely brought a different perspective of how I view his books now. However, no matter what was said in that interview, I do think that the critiques of this series from our forum and others have affected the way the Skull Throne was written. Brett has tried to make us emphasize with the characters more and toned down the provocative scenes i.e. sex.

While I think that this book hasn’t “saved” the series, I think it went in the right direction and will make me read the supposed last instalment. For any new readers, I would suggest you wait until this series is over before embarking on this journey.

About the author

Jon Snow

Believe it or not, Jon Snow really got into reading only after reading A Game of Thrones back in 2002. Previously the only fantasy he had read were Lord of the Rings and many Magic: The Gathering books.While juggling teaching life, he tries to keep up with recently published books.


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