Books of the Shaper volume 1
a review by Lauren Schroder
Seven Princes is the first of the Books of the Shaper, a high fantasy epic.
D’zan, a youth of 16 is the only son of King Trimesqua of Yaskatha. Tragedy strikes for the young Prince when his father is brutally murdered by Elhathym, who is a highly powerful sorcerer and necromancer. In a cruel twist of fate the ancestors of Yaskatha are brought back to life by this evil necromancer and wreck havoc on the citizens of Yaskatha. Through the murder and pillage in Yaskatha D’zan managers to escape the undead hoards and thus begins his journey over land and sea to reclaim his rightful place as King of Yaskatha.
After this horrid attack on his city, D’zan is constantly plagued by the dark sorcery of Elhathym and must escape numerous threat on his life as he ventures from the warm south all the way to the frozen northlands to make alliances with 4 separate kingdoms on his quest to re-establish the true Yaskatha.
The characters and plot are well established in this book and the writing style is easy to understand. Occasionally the writer uses complicated words however this happens rarely. Unfortunately the book is very dark and uses disturbing themes. Most of the time these disturbing themes such as exsanguination for demonic sorcery are triggers for the movement of the plot however the underage sexual violence perpetrated early on in the book is discussed for reasons of character development.
This book is primarily a sword-and-sorcery fantasy novel written for adults only. As the reviewer I considered not finishing the book due to its brutal murder scenes, drug use and excessively dark sorcery elements. It is therefore not appropriate for younger audiences. Individuals with strong sensitivities are not recommended to read this however if a person can understand and persist through the dark themes of the book the journey that the young princes take to re-establish D’zan’s throne is interesting, the fantasy universe the writer has created is quite vivid and well constructed and the book sets up quite nicely for a series.