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The Emperor's Blades

The circle is closing. The stakes are high. And old truths will live again . . . The Emperor has been murdered, leaving the Annurian Empire in turmoil. Now his progeny must bury their grief and prepare to unmask a conspiracy. His son Valyn, training for the empire's deadliest fighting force, hears the news an ocean away. He expected a challenge, but after several 'accidents' and a dying soldier's warning, he realizes his life is also in danger. Yet before Valyn can take action, he must survive the mercenaries' brutal final initiation. Meanwhile, the Emperor's daughter, Minister Adare, hunts her father's murderer in the capital itself. Court politics can be fatal, but she needs justice. And Kaden, heir to an empire, studies in a remote monastery. Here, the Blank God's disciples teach their harsh ways - which Kaden must master to unlock their ancient powers. When an imperial delegation arrives, he's learnt enough to perceive evil intent. But will this keep him alive, as long-hidden powers make their move? PRAISE FOR THE SERIES "A vividly imagined story of conspiracy and empire" Col Buchanan "Following in the footsteps of George R. R. Martin, Joe Abercrombie and the like . . . Brutal, intriguing and continuing to head toward exciting events and places unknown" Kirkus "I loved every second of it ... As more and more people discover what a talent Staveley has for creating a full, immerseive, magical and exciting world, with characters to match, his popularity will soar." "A complex and fast-moving fantasy set in a world where treachery and intrigue are everywhere" L. E. Modesitt, Jr
Product Details

Promotional Information

Book one in an epic fantasy of intrigue and empire, for fans of George R. R. Martin and Douglas Hulick.

About the Author

After more than a decade teaching history, religion, and philosophy, Brian Staveley decided to write books. He now lives on a steep dirt road in the hills of southern Vermont, where he divides his time between fathering, writing, husbanding, splitting wood, skiing, and exploring old trails. Stiff knees permitting, Brian also still competes in multi-day adventure races. While he hopes that participating in these gruelling events will give him insight into the physical and psychological suffering faced by his characters, it's possible that he's just too dumb to quit. To the dismay of his family, he also sometimes tries to play the banjo.


Filled to the brim with history, lore and potential...a modern epic fantasy mixed in with a nice dose of Lovecraftian weirdness * Io9 * I cannot wait to read the sequel . . . Fans of epic fantasy novels featuring conspiracies and fighting for the throne will enjoy reading it * * A well-imagined tale rife with violence and Machiavellian scheming that hits all the right notes * Fantasy Smorgasbord blog * This book made my heart happy. If you like fantasy it will probably make yours happy as well * Between the Pages blog * This was a book that reminded me, in different ways, of my first encounters with the likes of Brandon Sanderson and Patrick Rothfuss. It managed to feel fresh and original, yet familiar at the same time . . . This is epic fantasy for a new generation, gritty and grim at times, but never losing sight of the awe and the wonder * Beauty In Ruins blog * Really great writing, tight world building, and complex characters. Truly, the author is on to something special with this series and I can't wait for it to continue * Ageless Pages Reviews * An amazing debut . . . Highly recommended * Speculative Book Review * A fun read . . . It was engaging, it was fun to read and the series has serious potential * * Very readable, hard to put down, and flat-out entertaining * Nethspace blog * A blistering narrative and keen sense of both action and wonder . . . Brian Stavely is one to watch and if you enjoy epic fantasy I think that The Emperor's Blades is definitely worth checking out * King of the Nerds blog * An interesting and enjoyable start to the Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne and if this is only Staveley's first novel I'm excited to see how he'll grow into his craft. If you love traditional epic fantasy, but would like to see a more updated version, then The Emperor's Blades is a book you'll want to read * A Fantastical Librarian * Brian Staveley does true justice to the term Fantasy with his The Emperor's Blades and the Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, this is what I seek in reading fantasy, authors that go the distance to deliver you a brilliant story . . . It has everything that you seek when you read an epic fantasy story, from great, relatable characters all throughout the solid storyline, interesting environments and a lot of pretty darn cool action! * The Bookplank * He's constructed a fantastic and compelling fantasy world and has started an interesting story that rests on the strengths of its characters. He's proven to be an excellent author, and he's set up a compelling narrative * * Well-written and fat with promise, and we look forward to book two * SFX * An enchanting union of old and new, Staveley's debut will keep you turning pages late into the night * Pierce Brown * A complex and fast-moving fantasy set in a world where treachery and intrigue are everywhere, accomplished through ferocious brutality, subtle intrigues, and everything in between * L. E. Modesitt, Jr. * A richly imagined world and vibrant characters . . . an exhilarating adventure * Elspeth Cooper * A vividly imagined story of conspiracy and empire * Col Buchanan *

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