November 21, 2010

Review : The Riven Kingdom by Karen Miller

Title : The Riven Kingdom
Author : Karen Miller
Reading Dates : 25 Oct - 30 Oct 2010
The Riven Kingdom (The Godspeaker Trilogy)
Godspeaker Trilogy.
The Riven Kingdom is the second book in the Godspeaker trilogy. Other books in the series are
From Amazon :
The King of Ethrea is dying. His only surviving heir is the Princess Rhian. But if her enemies have their way, Ethrea will not be ruled by a woman.

Dexterity Jones is a toymaker. To protect Princess Rhian and his country, he must place his trust in an exile from Mijak. Yet, as Ethrea comes ever closer to civil war, a greater danger awaits.

Across the sea, an Empress has already slaughtered millions in the name of her god. And the war will not end -until the world kneels before her.

Book Review of The Riven Kingdom.
I enjoyed The Riven Kingdom immensely.

However before I start talking about The Riven Kingdom, I must go back to Empress, the first book in the Godspeaker trilogy again. My brother calls the first book a prologue and after reading The Riven Kingdom, I find I have to agree. Without Empress I wouldn't have understood the significance and urgency of Rhian's destiny as neither she nor most of her supporters know it themselves. Still, I do think that Empress was unnecessarily long. It might have done better with a trimming, especially of the earlier parts of the book.

As for The Riven Kingdom, while some parts of it started rather slowly, I still liked it. So much so that I had a hard time putting it down. Overall, the strength of this particular entry lies in its characterisations. It is the thoughts and motivations of the characters in this tale which kept me enthralled and wishing for more. Regardless whether I liked or despised the characters in The Riven Kingdom, I found myself wanting to find out their next move and how it would all end for each of them. And this is why, I wouldn't miss the final book, Hammer of God, for the world.

Besides this it was also interesting to compare and see the similarities between Hekat and Prolate Marlan. It is amazing how blind and stupid supposedly intelligent people can be by ambition. Whether it is Hekat not noticing that her God cares no more for her than as another useful tool or Marlan not realizing the many mistakes he made by disregarding women. But more interesting is trying to consider who would be the greater evil. In the end, I would say it is Marlan. Hekat for all her killing is misguided and delusional. At least she believes in her God whereas Marlan does not. He sees God merely as a tool he can use to control the masses and gain what he wants. In any case, a world ruled by either would be a terrifying place.

The only complain I have against the book is the attempts at describing the surroundings and settings. It always seems rather pointless and colourless to me. There is simply no context or impact to my imaginations. Thankfully these are rare and easily ignored.

My conclusion : Definitely worth a read. But I would recommend reading Empress first to understand the importance of the events in The Riven Kingdom.

  • Read an extract from the book on the author's website.


  1. This book does sound like a rich, complex fantasy. I have a couple of other books by Karen Miller in my TBR stack but they haven't floated to the top yet. I may have to go digging.

    Here from the CEP

  2. It can be frustrating when novels rely too much on their predecessors but then again, I guess that's why they are there. This story sounds interesting though with it being a fantasy, it isn't good that the world felt colorless. Often, for me, going to fantasy worlds is one of the best aspects of a fantasy novel. Thanks for the review!

    Here from the CEP


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