Cover Image: The Ruin of Kings

The Ruin of Kings

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

This was an epic fantasy that I really enjoyed. It captured me from page one and never let me go. It was a thrilling ride that I’m still thinking about long after I finished the last page.
Was this review helpful?
Very much enjoyed reading this, so much so I bought a copy and look forward to reading again in the near future, when time and backlogs permit. As well as picking up the next book in the series.

Took me a while to get into the writing style but once I did it was a very enjoyable read.
Was this review helpful?
I enjoy epic fantasy and this was definitely a start of an epic series.   I look forward to reading more titles in this series and being even more invested in the world Lyons created.
Was this review helpful?
This book made me dream with fantasy! I extremely liked it, and cannot wait to continue with this saga. I like how the story is settled and how is told.
Was this review helpful?
Ruin of the Kings by Jenn Lyons, I read this book in December 2018, sorry for posting a late review.

I was looking forward to this book which had so much advace publicity, I became disappointed after reading The Ruin of Kings. This debut novel from Jenn Lyons was the first of a series of world building novels that would center around dragons, magicians, princes and demons. Kihrin, is the thief raised in the slums of Quur, Lyon's seems to change Kihrin backstory in every chapter. Instead of the complex world building, for me the plot and character became a tangled web as I tryed to keep the plot line straight from chapter to chapter. There were to many confusing plots, characters with similar names. I finshed this book but I would not read the next of the series to The Ruin of Kings.
I have read may books published by Tor and have enjoy their fantasy fiction. I have high school readers who have grown to be fantasy fiction readers, who also love dystopian fiction.
Thank you NetGallery and to Tor Pulishing for providing this free copy for my opinion, I rate this book 3 stars.
Was this review helpful?
The protagonist is Kihrin, the son of a minstrel who spends more time getting into mischief for his thievery and fighting than practicing his harp. After one of his heists, it looks as if Kihrin is about to profit from his work, when a demon manifests in the city and chases him through the streets of Quur. After being saved by the city watch, it is revealed to him—because of his physical attributes—that he is the lost heir of House D’Mon, one of the 12 Royal Houses of the Quur Empire. Claimed against his will into a life he doesn’t want, Kihrin learns quickly that being a noble is not as worthwhile as the tales and other people make it out to be. At the same time, Kihrin suspects that a few members of his new family might be up to no good. However, before he can escape, Kihrin is kidnapped and sold to the Black Brotherhood as a slave. Yet, this organization isn’t interested in keeping him as a slave, but wants to train him to be an assassin in order to fulfill his destiny in the war to come. Kihrin’s story is a twisted bildungsroman about a 15-year-old boy who is forced to grow up under arduous conditions in a hostile environment with people who refuse to reveal his identity to him. Kihrin develops into an adult whose complexity leaves him with more questions than answers; but, the other characters he meets and interacts with along the way give him hints to his (true) identity.

The Ruin of Kings is an ambitious start to a new epic fantasy series, which present the harsh realities surrounding royalty, magic and prophecies. Within these twisted tropes is a story about a young man who had all of his choices taken away from him, yet he strives to protect everything he cares about, even if destiny says otherwise. Jenn Lyon’s story contains complex characters and a world whose history and culture is as complex yet constant as ours. This novel is like the story it tells, simple at first, and then drops you into the story “in media res.”
Was this review helpful?
"The Ruin of Kings" is a mostly good story but can be confusing at points. I think the story could have used a few changes in order for the reader to be able to make sense of everything.

Overall rating is closer to 3.5 than a 4.
Was this review helpful?
I loved this book! My review is not based on this NetGalley excerpt, but from the FC I purchased for myself. 

The Ruin of Kings is a long and multilayered book that you probably need a spreadsheet to keep track of all the things and layers and historical tidbits and characters in it. The story has quite a few layers. The first is that the entire thing is a transcript of the event sent to the ruler collected by a mage. The second is the mage's own comments as he goes through and gathers this information (lots of Nevernight reminiscent footnotes). The third layer is Talon and Kihrin sitting in prison, recounting Kihrin's story. The fourth and fifth layer is their recountings, Talon's from a third party POV about how Kihrin got to this point, Kihrin's a first person POV a little bit after Talon's about how he got to this point. The sixth layer happens after the retellings, once they are caught up to modern day. Kihrin's and Talon's story are told in alternating chapters, and it can get confusing switching from first person to third person but still being a story about the same person (Kihrin). Confusing? It happens.

In addition, the story is filled with layers of historical bits of all the characters, races, and gods that is hard to keep track of in between the switching of POVs and actual events in the book. AND there is the main plot of the book and a smaller one (but one that seems much more important) that we are given information for (but in bits and pieces. Things will be briefly mentioned in one chapter and then so much will happen and then they will come back to it many chapters later and expect you to remember everything). Honestly, it was a little bit of torture. But there is so much world-building and so many awesome characters, that I forgave this book its flaws. I really adore this series.
Was this review helpful?
Unfortunately, this was not the book for me. I tried very hard to read it, but I had to DNF it. 

I don't feel like I can accurately review this book as I did not finish it. 

Thank you for allowing me the chance to read it.
Was this review helpful?
A different take on fantasy. Dark and brutal. Love the multiple pov's and scope of the story. Not your average read.
Was this review helpful?
I recommend you try The Ruin of Kings by Jenn Lyons. You'll laugh, you'll cry, be mad, be happy, and even take in sudden breaths out of shock. This book has everything including cute notes at the end of each chapter explaining things almost as a citation or defining who monsters or gods are. The notes at the end threw me off to begin with, but I got used to them and even looked forward to these little tidbits.

In addition to Kihrin, we also get to know a boy named Talon. He is a performer, but is owned; he's basically a slave but has a really great owner. He is trying to buy both his father and himself out of ownership. To do this, he also goes at night and steals. On one of his outings he steals something he really shouldn't have, and it ends up causing him more trouble than he could have guessed it ever would.

How these two stories come together I don't know yet, but am excited for the next book to find out.
Was this review helpful?
The Ruin of Kings had the potential to be a great book but it didn't live up to the great premises. The whole story was interesting but the continuing change of POVs, as well as the two different timelines, confused me and I didn't fully enjoy the reading. There were also a lot of characters and it was difficult to remember them all. If it was less messy, maybe it could have been a very good book.
Was this review helpful?
This was my first book by this author, It was pretty enjoyable. I would give this book a 3.5 star rating! It was a pretty Quick and easy read!
Was this review helpful?
4.5 stars. If you can deal with the unconventional writing style, you will be in for a treat! The story follows Kihrin, a well-adjusted boy who discovers secrets about himself, his family and the gods that changes everything he thought he knew. I think this story is best going in blind so I won’t say anything more. 

Ruin of Kings seems to upend a lot of tropes that you encounter with fantasy. Not saying that there aren’t any, just that they are dealt with in a way that felt fresh for the genre. The story moved quickly and the world building was top notch without the requisite clunky info dumping. 

The only reason I didn’t give this 5 stars is because there is a confusion factor in the way this story is told. The story is told in dual POVs but there is also body switching, name switching, footnotes etc so at times I found myself having to circle back to make sure I had everything squared away. When it worked, it worked - it helped enrich the world immeasurably. And when it didn’t, it came off convoluted and unnecessary. But, I will say this - the way the story ended I don’t think the subsequent books will be written in this style. So no need to fear this will be ongoing. I would highly advise you listen to the audiobook (fantastic narrators) and strap in for a truly impressive story.
Was this review helpful?
For a preview, this has me incredibly excited to read the full novel, though I will only be able to give a review for this preview and not the book in general until I do so as endings can make or break a story. The footnotes were extremely distracting and did not add to the story, only working to seemingly convince readers that the world is super developed.
Was this review helpful?
This was a very fun read, though it did take a bit to get used to the story being told from 2 different perspectives of events that happened at the same time. But once that clicked it really added another dimension to the story, and reinforced that what you see is only one perspective and someone else could very well see things differently.

The story will capture you very quickly, if you love fantasy books you will enjoy this one. I look forward to reading the next one in the series too.
Was this review helpful?
I ended up feeling a little confused throughout this book with the back and forth between perspectives, but overall I enjoyed it.  I'm hoping that the next will add some clarity and tie up some of the loose ends!
Was this review helpful?
This was an interesting story, told from one perspective but on two different concurrent timelines.  I didn't really like the way it jumped back and forth with the same character, I think that works better with two different characters as it seemed hard to follow at times.

The main character and character development in general was good.  I got into them and was rooting for and against particular characters throughout.

The pacing was pretty good and the story kept pulling you along with entwined pieces of action and plot development.  However, I was very disappointed with the ending.  I felt that it was not really an ending at all.  It didn't feel like much of anything from the main plot was reversed, developed fully, or brought to a conclusion.  It's like this book just reveals the main plot, runs you through some subplot, which is fun reading mostly, but you don't get anywhere.  

The prose and readability of the writing was good.  

This is a 3.5 star book for me.  The series has potential and may turn out to be great, but the lack of any type of closure hurt my opinion.
Was this review helpful?
The Ruin of Kings puts the epic into the Epic Fantasy genre. I haven't read an epic fantasy in years and I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed this because of its difference. It is one huge novel and I was ready to immerse myself in Lyons world. 

I am truly deeply in love with Kihrin and his disaster self. the key aspect I loved about this novel was its slow burn with a certain dark-haired Vane which I truly hope is the end game for Kihrin. I do wish we had seen more of Kihrin's bisexuality in The Ruin of Kings and although the boy doth protest too much I would have liked something slightly more concrete. 

I am also worried about The Name of things (Book 2) as it seems we are being introduced to a whole new set of characters, and I believe I just want more of Kihrin so it is yet to be decided whether I delve into book 2 or not. 

Overall a wonderful epic fantasy to break back into the genre. And I will hold out judgement for book 2
Was this review helpful?
*** I received this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review, thank you so much to NetGalley and Tor Books for allowing me to read and review The Ruin of Kings. *** 

 First I would like to apologize for writing this review so late since I finished reading The Ruin of Kings last February but I was really busy in life in general after February. But I cannot describe you on how amazingly fantastic was The Ruin of Kings for me I just love everything about it. Now I won't go into any details about this amazing book without being to spoiler plus I think readers should check this book out and see if they enjoy this book as much as I did. The fantasy world-building was really amazing and complex that I can just picture everything in my mind, I was so worried that I was not going to understand or be confuse about the complex world-building in The Ruin of Kings that I am really happy to say that it was really easy for me to understand the world in The Ruin of Kings. The plotline and aspects of this book were also complex and diverse in every way as well and I couldn't get enough of reading about the characters and the plotline in this amazing book. Now there is if I remember correctly only two different pov's in The Ruin of Kings which I didn't mind reading two different pov's in this book. I just love reading the minds of these two characters which I won't say who the characters are because that is a spoiler but it was amazing reading the two different pov's of these two characters. Now the writing style flowed well and always on the point plus the writing style was very easy to understand and follow. Now I wanted to read this book because the book cover had a dragon on the front cover and before you ask yes there is a dragon in The Ruin of Kings. Now I have read fantasy books with dragons before and the dragon in this book is not any different from the other dragons that I have read in other fantasy books which I was ok with it. All and all I utterly and thoroughly loved and enjoyed reading The Ruin of Kings that I want to continue reading the second book The Name of All Things when it comes out in October. Hopefully, I can read The Name of All Things when it comes out in October.
Was this review helpful?