"A magical fantasy"
Though a war hero and perhaps the key to King Urdo's
victory over the rival kingdoms and the Jarnish invaders,
Sulien ap Gwien only wants to leave behind as memories her
soldiering days and just peacefully manage her land.
However, Urdo's dream of equal justice under the law for
all worries some of the leaders of Tir Tanagari that the
King is establishing a dictatorship. Sulien learns first
hand that the country is split when visiting her sister
Aurien who tries to kill her with poison. The quick
reaction of two of Sulien's loyal men saves her life.
As Sulien recovers at her home, she wonders why her
sibling wants her dead. When she learns what is happening
in her country, she joins the king's side of the civil
war. As the final confrontation begins, Sulien knows the
cost of infighting to herself, her family, and her country
as brother and sister take arms against one another.
The sequel to the fantastic KING'S PEACE is more than
just one of the best military science fiction tales of the
year. Though sub-genre fans will delight in the taut plot
that makes anyone susceptible to doing evil deeds, readers
of military fiction will also find THE KING'S NAME a
triumph. Jo Walton goes into extreme depth explaining the
why and the psychological and economical damage of a civil
war so rarely seen in a novel. She deftly interweaves the
motives and the effect for killing one's family into the
plot. Ms. Walton needs to keep her mantle clear for all
the awards this book will garner.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted November 24, 2001