Stuck with arrows and close to death, a man is pulled from the icy waters of the Gulf of Nahl. Winter, a seemingly quiet young fisherman’s daughter, harbours a secret addiction that threatens to destroy her. A young priestess, Cinzia, must face a long journey home to protect her church from rebellion. A rebellion sparked by her sister.
Three characters on different paths will be brought together by fate on one thrilling and perilous adventure.
This dark fantasy epic really hooked me in from the beginning, particularly with it’s wide array of fascinating characters. There’s a whole host of different ones that weave seamlessly together, but the plot focuses in on three main ones: Cinzia a priestess who returns home to find her home in the midst of a rebellion, Winter a young woman who on the outside appears to be just a quiet fisherman’s daughter and Knot, a man who is pulled from the Gulf of Nahl with no memory of his past. Sometimes when you have so many characters who have different quests and adventures going on the story can get a little muddled, but it flows seamlessly in Duskfall, and you quickly become attached to the characters. Duskfall is a very character driven book, and is all the more enjoyable for that reason. Husberg really takes the time to let you get to know the characters and the three are very likeable and interesting to see develop.
World building is important in any fantasy novel, and it’s extremely well done in the Chaos Queen series. I felt that everything was explained and laid out nicely, I was never confused with what was going on and who was what and where. Husberg also lays out plenty of grounding in terms of the history and culture of the setting, and throwing this in with the mix of action, adventure and suspense, as well as plenty of magic, elves (and even a vampire) makes for a really intense and exciting mix.
For a debut novel this is a really impressive book, and the first in a long running series. The plot is well paced, and there’s never a dull moment in this story – there’s always something to keep you wanting more. I was addicted to this book from the get go, and absolutely cannot wait to see what’s in store for the rest of the series. If you love dark fantasy, this should definitely be on your wishlist.
There are rumours in Ashta – a new religion is rising, and Cinzia, one-time Cantic priestess, has escaped the Holy Crucible. Fleeing from Navone, Cinzia travels with Knot, a man of many parts, and Astrid, the child-like vampire. They are gathering followers, but the murderous Nazaniin are still on their trail. Meanwhile, Winter is losing her grip on sanity, grappling with immense powers beyond her understanding. Where she goes, chaos and death follow.
Sometimes when you read big fantasy epics you forget quite what has happened at the end of the previous book. Luckily for me I picked Dark Immolation up right after I finished Duskfall and the action picks up right where the previous book tailed off. If you read Duskfall and loved it, you’re going to enjoy Dark Immolation even more. I often feel that the second book is never as good as the first, but this one was just as intense and exciting, and I was completely drawn in again.
This instalment in the Chaos Queen series (which I have learned is to be five books in total, so plenty more to come) features the same characters as before – Winter, Knot, Astrid – as they continue on their adventures. I won’t say too much about where they have ended up, because I don’t want to spoil book one for anyone. We do get answers to some questions that have been lingering since book one though, and there’s plenty more fighting and magic to leave you desperate for more.
Dark Immolation is just as character driven as Duskfall is, and again it makes for truly wonderful reading. I loved that this gave the reader the opportunity to watch the characters grow, to see relationships form and to watch as these fantastic characters changed and adapted as the story continues. The plot is similarly well paced, allowing the reader the chance to immerse themselves in the world, but with plenty of action to keep them hooked in.
If the fantastically written characters and intriguing plot wasn’t enough to have you desperate to read this series, there’s also plenty of countries looking for a fight, some not so friendly demons running lose, and more than a bit of magic flying around. So what are you waiting for? The Chaos Queen series is magnificent, and I can only hope we don’t have to wait too long for book three to come out!