Over five centuries ago the Northern King, his army, and
the wizards traveled to the Kingdom of the South for a
marriage that would bind the two lands into one union.
Over time the king and the wizards fell out of favor with
their nobles and were killed. The Council of Lords became
rulers of the land and any talk of wizards or magic is
considered treason. For two hundred years the nobles ruled
without any serious threat to their authority but now
rumors come to their attention of the restoration of the
The council sends spies to the University to see if anyone
has done anything that could be considered heresy. Two
names keep cropping up in the investigation. History
Professor Basis St. Cloud who thinks that magic once
actually existed and Theron Campion, heir to the Duchy of
Tremontaine. These two men are fated to play a prominent
role in events that will usher in a new age of thought.
Ellen Kushner and Della Sherman combine their talents to
create a work that is sublimely rich in characterizations
and a perspective similar to medieval Europe. The
political infighting at the university adds a sense of the
ridiculous to this very serious epic drama. The
characters, fully developed and complex creations, are
prisoners of their place in society, which makes them all
the more interesting when they step out of their station in
life. THE FALL OF KINGS is an experience not to be missed.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted October 1, 2002
This stunning follow-up to Ellen Kushner's cult-classic
novel, Swordspoint, is set in the same world of
labyrinthine intrigue, where sharp swords and even sharper
wits rule. Against a rich tapestry of artists and
aristocrats, students, strumpets, and spies, a gentleman
and a scholar will find themselves playing out an ancient
drama destined to explode their society's smug view of
itself--and reveal that sometimes the best price of
uncovering history is being forced to repeat it....
The Fall of the Kings
Generations ago the last king fell, taking with him the
final truths about a race of wizards who ruled at his side.
But the blood of the kings runs deep in the land and its
people, waiting for the coming together of two unusual men,
Theron Campion, a young nobleman of royal lineage, is heir
to an ancient house and a modern scandal. Tormented by his
twin duties to his family and his own bright spirit, he
seeks solace in the University. There he meets Basil St.
Cloud, a brilliant and charismatic teacher ruled by a
passion for knowledge--and a passion for the ancient kings.
Of course, everyone now knows that the wizards were
charlatans and the kings their dupes and puppets. Only
Basil ins not convinced--nor is he convinced that the city
has seen its last king...