Saturday, January 28, 2012

Review: Lord of Emperors by Guy Gavriel Kay

Emperor Valerius finally decides to use the overthrow of Queen Gisel to legitimize an attempt to retake the lost province of Batiara. Meanwhile a newly appointed court physician, Rustem, has been sent to Sarantiun to spy on the situation for the King of Bassania. The monarch believes he can use the situation to his own ends though that may be playing into Valerius' hands. Crispen is busy working on the mosaic on the sanctuary's dome but other players seek to use him in their own poltical game.

Rustem is introduced in the beginning of the book. Kay does an excellent job of establishing the character and the support characters around him in minimal time. The political game was intriguing and the characters complex and varied. Valerius and Stylaine were the standouts for me. As always with Kay's work the characters take centre stage and although extraordinary events are happening they are always related back to those characters, something a few others might benefit from doing. Kay takes a fascinating look at how history is written and how it relates to every facet of a society.

Overall another winner from Kay 9/10.

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