Series: Pact and Pattern #1
Release Date: August 5th 2021
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars
My name is Wen Alder. My name is Foolish Cur.
All my life, I have been torn between two legacies: that of my father, whose roots trace back to the right hand of the Emperor. That of my mother’s family, who reject the oppressive Empire and embrace the resistance.
I can choose between them – between protecting my family, or protecting my people – or I can search out a better path . . . a magical path, filled with secrets, unbound by Empire or resistance, which could shake my world to its very foundation.
But my search for freedom will entangle me in a war between the gods themselves…
The Hand of the Sun King is a vivid and engrossing epic fantasy debut from J T Greathouse. The story follows Wen Alder, or Foolish Cur who is torn between the two sides of his family. There is the legacy of his father, who can trace his ancestry to the right hand of the Emperor. Then there is his mother’s family, staunch objectors to the Empire and part of the resistance. Wen finds himself torn between protecting his family or his people, but his path could lead him to something much greater – a place of magic and secrets away from the influence of the Empire or the resistance. But taking this path will entangle him in a war greater than he could possibly imagine.
The Hand of the Sun King is such a well-executed story and one I completely fell in love with. The world-building was well crafted and I was completely fascinated by the world Greathouse has created in this story. I also thought the magic system was really intriguing, particularly as the story progressed and we learned more. Greathouse has a really vivid writing style and the setting was really brought to life in the story. I raced through this book in a matter of days and I cannot wait to see where the story goes next. This coming of age tale will appeal to so many readers as it’s full to the brim with magic, action-packed battle scenes and well-crafted characters.
One of the things that really shines in The Hand of the Sun is the complex characters. Wen is a really fascinating story and there is so much character growth as the story progresses. He isn’t always the most likeable of characters as he goes on his journey, but he was certainly a compelling protagonist, dealing with conflicting loyalties and searching for his path in life. The Hand of the Sun King is a brilliant read, one with absolutely beautiful writing and an intriguing world. The book has already been getting lots of hype and it’s easy to see why. This will definitely be in my top books of the year and I cannot wait to read more from J T Greathouse.