Oh what a sequel!!!
This second installment in the Legacy of the Mercenary King is even more gripping than the first one.
Like The Kingdom of Liars the Two-Faced Queen is told by a first person narrator, who is again the main character of the book: Michael Kingman. He is the middle child of the three children of the Kingman family: Lyon, Micheal and Gwen. Their father was executed for having killed the King’s oldest son and in that progress the children were branded as traitors. At the end of the first book Michael is accused of killing the King despite him committing suicide. To escape execution he joins the Mercenary company
The world the story is set in is a cruel one, which we already see as children get punished for the sins their fathers committed. Hollow is still a feudal system with the King and his high nobles having all the power. Those nobles are the ones that can use magic or have an army of magicians. The price to be able to do magic, or as it is called here, fabrications, is the loss of memories, especially if you’re not properly trained in those skills.
The book is fully packed with different characters of different types of people of different parts of society: High nobles, low nobles, fabricators, ravens, scales, skeletons and so on. It took me a while to figure out who is who and what. There is a huge cobweb of intrigues and plots that gets slowly unravelled and left me clueless till the very end. This ending really surprised me as I didn’t expect it at all.
It took me a while to get into the world the story is set in and I am still not sure I completely understood it all but that didn’t harm the story at all. It also took me a while to get used to the use of guns in a fantasy book as I am usually reading kind of medieval fantasy. So this world is on the brink of a new technological development stage. But of course the nobles who can use magic want to keep the common people from gaining power by using advanced weapon technology, so guns are banned in the city of Hollow.
The revolution of the rebells, under the leadership of an immortal, want to abolish royalty and the nobles and they try to take over the city.
There is also a murder case which is getting solved. Despite me not normally liking murder stories I immensely enjoyed the hunt for the Heartbreaker.
In addition to the topic of friendship there is also a developing love story here.
The book is really gripping, even if I am not sure I understood everything well enough. I cannot wait to read the finally installment in the series to find all the missing pieces to the riddles that appeared here.
I did not only read the book, I once more also listened to it on audible. I enjoyed the way Joe Jameson made the characters come to life and the way he used different voices for the different characters. I can recommend both versions for book as they’re both excellent entertainment.