Malice by John Gwynne – Review

Genre: Adult Epic Fantasy
Publication Date: December 6th 2012 
Pages: 672
My Rating:

The world is broken. . .and it can never be made whole again.

Corban wants nothing more than to be a warrior under King Brenin’s rule — to protect and serve. But that day will come all too soon. And the price he pays will be in blood.

Evnis has sacrificed — too much it seems. But what he wants — the power to rule — will soon be in his grasp. And nothing will stop him once he has started on his path.

Veradis is the newest member of the warband for the High Prince, Nathair. He is one of the most skilled swordsman to come out of his homeland, yet he is always under the shadow of his older brother.

Nathair has ideas — and a lot of plans. Many of them don’t involve his father, the High King Aquilus. Nor does he agree with his father’s idea to summon his fellow kings to council.

The Banished Lands has a violent past where armies of men and giants clashed in battle, the earth running dark with their heartsblood. Now, the stones weep red and giant wyrms stir, and those who can still read the signs see a danger far worse than all that has come before. . .


This was a build up first book but it kept me on my toes the hole time that for sure. I was promised epic fast paced and heartbreaking story and I wasn’t disappointed! Here are my thoughts.

Things I liked:

  • The writing was simple, to the point without confusing, flowery writing and I do like this.
  • I was never bored. The story is very fast-paced there is always something happening that keeps you on the edge of your seat.
  • There is a very large cast of characters that give us different personalities and different perspective on the story. You can see the story unfold from all the points of view which makes it so interesting.
  • I saw someone comparing the end of the first book to the “red wedding” of GOT and oh boy do I agree with that. The end with incredibly intense, emotional and overall very well executed!
  • As a mentioned before this was and felt more like a build up, get to know the characters and the world first book, and now the ground has been laid and you can feel that there is an epic story coming!

Things I didn’t like:

  • Before I get to my first point I want to say that I do understand that this is a 600 pages book. The world is huge, so many characters, so many stories and so much to build. And to accomplish that in 600 instead of 1000 pages I felt like the first half of the book as a little jumpy and too much to the point. Many pages were – Character A woke up, eat breakfast, the went for training, some dialogue, paragraph break. Then Character A went home, had diner, dialogue, paragraph break. Nothing to connect and transition nicely between events. Again this is a minor detail as I understand that to get the story to fit in 600 without boring the reader with 1000 pages of exposition and filler chapter this had to be done this way.
  • Throughout the book, bullying and childhood grudges are used many times to advance the plot. In my opinion, it was used one too many and I personally did like that.
  • From the start of the book you are introduced to so many characters that it took me a good 100 – 150 pages to get a hold of how is how and what’s their role and be able to fully immerse myself into the story.

There you have it! This was an amazing first book that will definitely turn into an amazing epic story!


Here is my review of Malice by John Gwynne! Have you read it? What were your thoughts?

2 thoughts on “Malice by John Gwynne – Review

Add yours

  1. I’ve been really interested in this but wasn’t sure about it. With your likes and dislikes I think I’m looking forward to going into it but know a bit more of what I’m getting into. Thanks for your review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so happy to hear that you find my review helpful and that you want to to give a try šŸ™‚ Hope you’ll enjoy it and I would love to hear what you thought about it. Thank you so much for leaving a comment! Means a lot to me!

      Liked by 1 person

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