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Treason Keep
The Demon Child Trilogy, No. 2

By Jennifer Fallon

     With R'Shiel at death's door and in the hands of the Harshini, the mantle of leading character (and leading lady) switches to Princess Adrina, the spoilt and wayward eldest daughter of King Hablet of Fardohnya. Incensed at her latest escapade, Hablet arranges a marriage between Adrina and Prince Cratyn, the heir of the Kariens. But it is soon obvious that the pair is wildly incompatible, and when war brings tragedy it is time for Adrina to flee. Elsewhere, R'Shiel has a lot to learn about being the Demon Child, and the world is plunged into war.

     First published back in 2002 in her native Australia, this mighty trilogy is going to establish Jennifer Fallon's name as a fine fantasy writer in the US. In too many middle volumes of trilogies the story treads water and the reader is given "more of the same". Not so here - R'Shiel and Tarja are still the main players, but this is very much Adrina's book and we see her progressing from pouting princess to plucky player in the game of war. There is a lot of well plotted statecraft here, and political machinations that keep the reader on their toes as well as an exciting story full of action and human interest. The religious fanaticism of the joyless Kariens adds a topical flavor, and shows what a horror this sort of tyranny is in no uncertain terms. As with the first book there are many exhilarating escapes, revelations and lots of absorbing details about a well-delineated world - there is even a little room for a much-needed dash of David Eddings style humor. Great stuff!

The Book

Orbit (Time Warner)
January 2005
More at US || UK


NOTE: Some violence

The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2005
© 2005