Five royal houses will hear the call to compete in the Trial for the dragon throne. A liar, a soldier, a servant, a thief, and a murderer will answer it. Who will win?
When the Emperor dies, the five royal houses of Etrusia attend the Call, where one of their own will be selected to compete for the throne. It is always the oldest child, the one who has been preparing for years to compete in the Trial. But this year is different. This year, these five outcasts will answer the call….
THE LIAR: Emilia must hide her dark magic or be put to death.
THE SOLDIER: Lucian is a warrior who has sworn to never lift a sword again.
THE SERVANT: Vespir is a dragon trainer whose skills alone will keep her in the game.
THE THIEF: Ajax knows that nothing is free – he must take what he wants.
THE MURDERER: Hyperia was born to rule and will stop at nothing to take her throne.
This was such a good book. It wasn’t perfect, it was definitely messy and the Narnia / Game Of Thrones mash up at the end was utterly bizarre but it worked. The story is completely character driven, with five (five!) POVs and dragons. I think I fell in love with the story the moment when everyone was waiting for the first born to be called up for potential Emperor-ing and the Great Dragon was like, ‘actually, I’ll have all the weirdos instead. Sounds good.’
There’s a lot I could compare this to. Any Game Of Thrones fan will know immediately which final scene I’m referencing. Then the Narnia moment. I’d be tempted on comparing the 5 with The Breakfast Club, but they’re more like Umbrella Academy – going though deep personal trauma and mad about it. Plus I could really compare Emilia’s chaos magic that she struggles to control with a major UA character. But the story felt completely unique to me.
The story gave us so much to look forward to in the next book and I’m already predicting that it won’t get Second Book Syndrome. There will be too much going on with a Kingdom to run, Dragons, magic and whatever the hell just happened in the final few pages. I would really love to see some character growth, particularly from Ajax, who is very childish and annoying in this book.