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Revenge loves company. Mithrid Fenn wants nothing to do with magick. Magick is a curse word, banned by the vast Arka Empire and punishable by death. Its purging has finally brought peace to war-torn Emaneska. Only a stubborn rebellion, led by the warlord Outlaw King, raids and pillages the empire’s northern fringes.   To cliff-brat Mithrid, this is an age of tranquility Revenge loves company. Mithrid Fenn wants nothing to do with magick. Magick is a curse word, banned by the vast Arka Empire and punishable by death. Its purging has finally brought peace to war-torn Emaneska. Only a stubborn rebellion, led by the warlord Outlaw King, raids and pillages the empire’s northern fringes.   To cliff-brat Mithrid, this is an age of tranquility and childhood games. That is until an illegal spellbook washes up on her shores, and she finds herself thrust into a war she never knew existed.   Now hunted by daemons and mages, she is dragged inexorably north to Scalussen and its rebels fighting doggedly to preserve a memory of freedom. Mithrid holds no such ideals. She fights for revenge and nothing nobler. If spilling blood means helping the Outlaw King, then so be it. Even if it means all-out war. ——— The Forever King is the first book in a new trilogy – The Scalussen Chronicles – set in the dark and nordic world of The Emaneska Series. A breathless and emotional tale of revenge that crisscrosses a vast world, The Forever King is an epic fantasy ideal for fans of Joe Abercrombie, Steven Erikson and Mark Lawrence.


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Revenge loves company. Mithrid Fenn wants nothing to do with magick. Magick is a curse word, banned by the vast Arka Empire and punishable by death. Its purging has finally brought peace to war-torn Emaneska. Only a stubborn rebellion, led by the warlord Outlaw King, raids and pillages the empire’s northern fringes.   To cliff-brat Mithrid, this is an age of tranquility Revenge loves company. Mithrid Fenn wants nothing to do with magick. Magick is a curse word, banned by the vast Arka Empire and punishable by death. Its purging has finally brought peace to war-torn Emaneska. Only a stubborn rebellion, led by the warlord Outlaw King, raids and pillages the empire’s northern fringes.   To cliff-brat Mithrid, this is an age of tranquility and childhood games. That is until an illegal spellbook washes up on her shores, and she finds herself thrust into a war she never knew existed.   Now hunted by daemons and mages, she is dragged inexorably north to Scalussen and its rebels fighting doggedly to preserve a memory of freedom. Mithrid holds no such ideals. She fights for revenge and nothing nobler. If spilling blood means helping the Outlaw King, then so be it. Even if it means all-out war. ——— The Forever King is the first book in a new trilogy – The Scalussen Chronicles – set in the dark and nordic world of The Emaneska Series. A breathless and emotional tale of revenge that crisscrosses a vast world, The Forever King is an epic fantasy ideal for fans of Joe Abercrombie, Steven Erikson and Mark Lawrence.

58 review for The Forever King

  1. 5 out of 5

    Nick Borrelli

    Ben Galley writes some of my favorite fantasy books that always seem to turn out incredibly fun, epic, with loads of cool magic and ideas. His books are eminently readable, so much so that no matter how high the page count, it feels like I have spent no time at all ripping through them. So I'm not surprised that my experience with his latest epic fantasy release, THE FOREVER KING, was even more of the same brilliant storytelling that I have come to expect. The story revisits Ben's Emaneska series Ben Galley writes some of my favorite fantasy books that always seem to turn out incredibly fun, epic, with loads of cool magic and ideas. His books are eminently readable, so much so that no matter how high the page count, it feels like I have spent no time at all ripping through them. So I'm not surprised that my experience with his latest epic fantasy release, THE FOREVER KING, was even more of the same brilliant storytelling that I have come to expect. The story revisits Ben's Emaneska series some years after the events that transpired at the end of the final book. Prior knowledge of that series is helpful, but by no means a deal-breaker as this is a brand new series and Ben does a great job of setting the table of where everything is in relation to the circumstances leading up to the beginning of THE FOREVER KING. There's not a lot of dallying about as the action kicks in pretty quickly from the opening pages. War is in the air and the empire is cracking down on magic whenever and wherever they see it. Yet there are still some who haven't been touched by the empire's purge and it is they who hold the hope of a return to freedom once again, led by the Outlaw King in hiding. We follow much of the storyline of the rebels through their newest member, Mithrid, who embodies everything that Emperor Malvus holds in contempt. Does this band of rebels really have what it takes to take on the emperor's well-trained and brutal forces? Can they marshal enough strength before those forces root them out the same way they have others who have dared try to stand against them? As these two factions get perilously close to all-out war, who will gain the upper hand and what will that mean for the future of Emaneska and Scalussen? I had such a blast reading this book for a variety of reasons. Obviously the big reason is the story is so darn great and takes a number of different turns that I wasn't expecting. The theme of a ruler who suppresses information about the nature and use of magic, and the twisting of that information to shape it so that the populace almost accepts that it is a crime against the empire, was chilling to say the least. We all know our recent history and how misinformation can lead to some devastating consequences. The same can be said in this fantasy world as well as Mithrid has been raised believing a certain narrative, yet is forced to question those beliefs as she gets another side of the story. It was also nice to get treated to a reunion with some of the familiar characters from the previous series, albeit much affected by their past ordeals. The world-building and magic is turned up to a high degree in this book as we see incredible sorcery (some quite dark) as well as talking dragons, and ships containing floating libraries of outlawed magic books that have been spirited away from the emperor's clutches in an effort to preserve the forbidden knowledge contained in them. The library ships were something that I found an especially cool idea given how the empire so desperately wishes to eradicate any reference to magic whatsoever in order to maintain their vicious stranglehold. All in all I thought that this was an excellent beginning to this brand new series from Ben Galley. The trademark tight writing is there throughout and I gobbled this one up in no time flat. If you enjoy entertaining fantasy that is epic in scope, filled with imaginative magic, thrilling adventure, and some evil bastard antagonists to hate on, then you should read THE FOREVER KING as soon as possible. And while you are at it, check out his other books too because he is just an amazing writer and someone who consistently hits the mark with regard to originality and quality.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kerry Smith

    How wonderful to be back in the world of Emanska again; journeying with familiar characters such as Farden, Morden, Durnus and of course those wondrous dragons; but in this latest series they are joined by some more excellent protagonists in the fight for freedom - namely a young girl Mithrid. After she loses her family to the self proclaimed Emperor Malvus she joins Farden's group of rebels, armed with her father's axe and magic that has never been seen before, the need for revenge takes our yo How wonderful to be back in the world of Emanska again; journeying with familiar characters such as Farden, Morden, Durnus and of course those wondrous dragons; but in this latest series they are joined by some more excellent protagonists in the fight for freedom - namely a young girl Mithrid. After she loses her family to the self proclaimed Emperor Malvus she joins Farden's group of rebels, armed with her father's axe and magic that has never been seen before, the need for revenge takes our young heroine to places she has never dreamed about. With not many Written left to carry Emanska to a place where mages, tribes and different can live without threat, is Mithrid the hope the Forever King has been looking for? Once again Ben Galley has given us another wondrous story from that brilliant imagination of his.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Peter

    One of the best things about fantasy series, is the possibility of returning to a world as it moves on. I did always wonder what would happen at the end of Dead Stars Part two, the last book of the Emaneska series. I now have my reward after reading The Forever King! I am going to start with characters, and one of the things I love about Ben’s writing is how he captures character and this is something he has consistently achieved throughout his many books. I loved the characters, both the old and One of the best things about fantasy series, is the possibility of returning to a world as it moves on. I did always wonder what would happen at the end of Dead Stars Part two, the last book of the Emaneska series. I now have my reward after reading The Forever King! I am going to start with characters, and one of the things I love about Ben’s writing is how he captures character and this is something he has consistently achieved throughout his many books. I loved the characters, both the old and the new, the developments that happen are wonderful. While Mithrid is the main character and her story is the main focus, the character I enjoyed meeting again and following was Modren! I loved him in the original series and seeing his new journey was something quite special for me! It was incredible to be back with Farden as well, he is one of the better characters that Ben has created Now something I have always enjoyed in books by Ben is the magic system, they are arguably some of the best and most well thought out in modern fantasy literature. The system in The Forever King is much the same as The Emaneska series, Mages have their book tattooed for want of a word ont their back and magic is random. You can be gifted with skills in one area, or in Farden’s several, but it does have it’s cost and it can be lethal to the untrained. One of the best aspects of Magick in the world is that it is alive, those trained feel it and it can almost function like a character. It can often be an ally, but sometimes it is deadly. Now the world of Emaneska is a world, if you are a returning reader, you will be familiar with. It is a dark fantasy world if you are not, and again the description will ease you into this. I actually remembered some time ago, and one of the reasons why it was so good to be back, is that this is Norse-Inpsired fantasy and some elements are wonderful. The world is shown to you through the characters and this is another fine example of character driven fantasy that I have read this year. I have seriously loved my return to Emenska! This is the start of a fantastic new series by one of my favourite authors, I cannot wait for book 2!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Blaise

    received this ARC from the other in exchange for an honest review. This is my first experience reading a novel written by the excellent Ben Galley and it certainly won’t be the last. Right from the start you are thrown into a gritty and cruel world where magic, or magick as it is told in the book, is forbidden and punishably by death. When you also throw into the mix: daemons, dragons, an all powerful evil empire, rebellion, and a revenge story you know that you are in for a kickass time. The F received this ARC from the other in exchange for an honest review. This is my first experience reading a novel written by the excellent Ben Galley and it certainly won’t be the last. Right from the start you are thrown into a gritty and cruel world where magic, or magick as it is told in the book, is forbidden and punishably by death. When you also throw into the mix: daemons, dragons, an all powerful evil empire, rebellion, and a revenge story you know that you are in for a kickass time. The Forever King is set to be released on December 1st and it should be on the radar for epic fantasy fans of all tastes and backgrounds. This story does take place in Ben Galley’s Emaneska series, taking place many years after the conclusion of those novels. Don not let this deter new readers as Mr. Galley gives us a brief introduction to the events in his previous works and it sets the stage nicely for the Forever King. I have not read any of the Emanaska books and I never once felt like I was missing anything in the story. The book is told through Multi-POV characters but we primarily follow the story of Mithrid Fenn. The Arka Empire has a strangle hold not only on magic but the population inhabiting it. Spreading rumors and horror stories regarding the viscous Outlaw King. The peace between the two kingdom’s is broken and an outright rebellion is unleashed in the northern fringes of the empire. To cliff-brat Mithrid, this is an age of tranquility and childhood games. That is until an illegal spell book washes up on her shores, and she finds herself thrust into a war she never knew existed. Now hunted by daemons and mages, she is dragged inexorably north to Scalussen and its rebels fighting doggedly to preserve a memory of freedom. Mithrid will go to any stakes to exact her revenge on the Arka empire and if she has to seek the help of the Outlaw King, then so be it. Ben Galley is a very descriptive writer, letting the world and scenery unfold naturally as if you were a traveler making your way through the countryside. This does lead the book to be a little bit of a slow burn at times, but I didn’t mind this as the story was very engaging and the payoff was well worth the wait. Mithrid is a broken character eager to prove herself every chance she gets. When she learns of all the lies, deception, and unforgivable things her empire has done to her, she seeks to bring the thing down in any way she can. One of the best female characters I have read in the fantasy genre. I am eagerly looking forward to continuing this series and even starting from the beginning with the Emanaska books to see how it all began. Ben Galley is an ambitious and skilled writer who will one day be a household name in the fantasy community. Here’s to you Ben Galley, job well done! Cheers! More reviews at undertheradarsffbooks.com

  5. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Greiner Maughan

    Received as an arc A tomb of a book full of nail biting twists and turns. Yes this is a long book but didn’t feel like to me. Kept me interested from the start. My imagination was in overdrive throughout. My heart in my throat. Great world building with plenty of action. A definite read for Farden fans.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Matt McAbee

    I was provided a copy of this ebook by the author, this in no way influences my feelings or opinions. The Forever King book one in the Scalussen Chronicles is the new release from Ben Galley, and all I can say is this book was AMAZING! Mage battles in chapter one that include daemons and dragons, all the way to an enormous final battle that will leave you salivating for more. It starts with a land that has been living under an oppressive empire for years, an empire that has forbidden magick yet I was provided a copy of this ebook by the author, this in no way influences my feelings or opinions. The Forever King book one in the Scalussen Chronicles is the new release from Ben Galley, and all I can say is this book was AMAZING! Mage battles in chapter one that include daemons and dragons, all the way to an enormous final battle that will leave you salivating for more. It starts with a land that has been living under an oppressive empire for years, an empire that has forbidden magick yet uses magick to track down offenders. Then you have Farden and his rebellion standing against the evil empire. That alone had my attention but then when you add the magic system that Ben put in the book the battles get to a scale that epic is almost not big enough to cover. The main character Mithrid Fenn was a girl living in a small seaside town away from everything until a magick book washes up on shore, then her and her friends open it and catch the attention of the rebels. And from there on it’s a wild ride to the end of the book. I loved Mithrid her character development through the story is amazing she goes from a naïve small town girl to well you will have to read it to find out. To travel with her as she deals with everything that has happened to her and how she deals with it through the story is just part of the fun to be had. Don’t worry this is not just about her development, there is plenty of action to feast on as well, the author covers about many types of fantasy creatures in this Norse inspired tale. I have already mentioned daemons and dragons, there are also minotaurs, gods, vampires, and yetis to name a few. The battle scenes are gritty but not overly gory, and there are plenty battles to read through. So with all that being said, go get the book and give it a read. This is definitely going on my top books of the year list. I give this one a solid 5 of 5 stars.

  7. 4 out of 5

    adam carlton

    “Winds have changed. The war is coming.” I was lucky enough to get an ARC of The Forever King. I could not put this book down and I didn’t want it to end. I have binged the whole Emaneska series and I’m jealous of anyone who still has this to read. It has clearly been a work of love, sweat and tears for Ben, which does not disappoint. There is plenty of action and violence, and it is emotional. The Scalussen Chronicles is a continuation to the original trilogy. Can you read the Scalussen books wi “Winds have changed. The war is coming.” I was lucky enough to get an ARC of The Forever King. I could not put this book down and I didn’t want it to end. I have binged the whole Emaneska series and I’m jealous of anyone who still has this to read. It has clearly been a work of love, sweat and tears for Ben, which does not disappoint. There is plenty of action and violence, and it is emotional. The Scalussen Chronicles is a continuation to the original trilogy. Can you read the Scalussen books without knowing the Emaneska story? Yes, but I would recommend starting with The Written and working your way though, if for nothing else than the pure enjoyment of Ben’s books. The Forever King begins with a whistle stop history lesson of Emaneska, which provides a background and/or a recap of events. The world created in the Written is extended with new characters. Having the connections to the likes of Farden, Modren and Durnus means that little bit more when new ones are introduced. You can be absorbed into the book and the approaching war. The building tension throughout the book is well worth the wait, the battle scenes are fantastic – some of the best I have had the pleasure of reading. There are plenty of nods towards the Emaneska trilogy which I really enjoyed, but it does not prevent a new reader becoming engrossed in the story. In short, this is brilliant. Anyone who follows Ben on social media can see the work that has been put into this book. Farden has the unwanted title of the Forever King yet still prefers being the lone wolf.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Connie

    Ghosts do not glow nor shriek, nor rattle their chains in abandoned ruins. They are made of memory, haunting minds instead. The Forever King is the first book in a new trilogy - The Scalussen Chronicals - set in the Emaneska world. I loved catching up with my favourite characters in this new tale from the Emaneska series. This is top notch fantasy with Daemons, magic and Dragons. What's not to love? Ghosts do not glow nor shriek, nor rattle their chains in abandoned ruins. They are made of memory, haunting minds instead. The Forever King is the first book in a new trilogy - The Scalussen Chronicals - set in the Emaneska world. I loved catching up with my favourite characters in this new tale from the Emaneska series. This is top notch fantasy with Daemons, magic and Dragons. What's not to love?

  9. 4 out of 5

    Queen Terrible Timy

    This review was originally posted on Queen's Book Asylum! I need to give a huge thanks to Ben Galley for providing me with an ARC of his latest novel, The Forever King, the first book in The Scalussen Chronicles. I will start this review by saying that: I decided to quit at 76% thus I won’t give it a rating (usually this would mean a 1*, but The Forever King is definitely not a book that deserves such a low rating). If you want to know why you totally should read it, read Nick’s much better-worded r This review was originally posted on Queen's Book Asylum! I need to give a huge thanks to Ben Galley for providing me with an ARC of his latest novel, The Forever King, the first book in The Scalussen Chronicles. I will start this review by saying that: I decided to quit at 76% thus I won’t give it a rating (usually this would mean a 1*, but The Forever King is definitely not a book that deserves such a low rating). If you want to know why you totally should read it, read Nick’s much better-worded review. Over the past 3 years, I read and enjoyed many of Ben Galley‘s books (The Written, Chasing Graves, Grim Solace, Breaking Chaos) and so when he reached out to me about his latest release I didn’t really have to think about accepting it. I admit Epic Fantasy has never been my favorite sub-genre and I’ve been reading a bit too much of it recently, which probably played into the fact that I absolutely failed to connect with The Forever King. And I feel bad because I can see why it would appeal to so many people in the community: cool dragons, battles, political machinations, magic, backstabbing, revenge, a god wreaking havoc. It pairs with Galley‘s ability of vivid world-building which we’ve witnessed in his previous books. So, what the hell is my problem?! Maybe it’s a case of the wrong book at the wrong time. Maybe it’s just how it is, sometimes you just have to accept no matter how much you’d like to love a book, it’s just not for you. And that’s okay. I’m not trying to give The Forever King a negative review, but I still would like to give it a few more thoughts on why it eventually didn’t work for me. The first sign of things not going well was that I skimmed. A lot. I rarely do that because if you start skimming then that’s a clear sign that you probably should put the book aside. Not sure if this was the writing style or because of my struggling with reading in general these days. The second sign was that I absolutely did not care about any of the characters. I’m pretty sure I was supposed to feel something toward Mithrid, our MC who gets orphaned and finds herself in the middle of a war. Reluctant as she is to be a part of it. And she is an annoyed teenager. Farden had become this brooding character who doesn’t want to be king – not that he got too many choices. Loki’s appearance surprised me though. I know this is a Nordic-inspired Fantasy, but most of the gods whose names appear are changed – except Loki’s. I was kinda thinking “oh no, another Loki the trickster god character, can I have a break from seeing Loki all over the place, please?” I realize I’m being a bit unfair here, but I’m honestly bored with him being everywhere I look… He brings a great amount of chaos into play though. All that being said, The Forever King had the misfortune of crossing my paths at the wrong time and I’m sorry I can’t give it a glowing review, but at the end of the day, I just had to walk away rather than forcing myself to enjoy it. If you are looking for a Nordic-inspired Epic Fantasy with dragons, gods, battles, magic, and don’t mind a bit of ice, I’m sure you’ll have a great time with The Forever King. Especially if you read and liked the Emaneska series. You might find a familiar face or two here.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Paul Wandless

    A tavern fight, angry mob, a mage fighting other mages in the snow covered woods, lit up by their spellcasting, a daemon and a dragon. This is just some of what happens in just the first chapter! What a great way to return to Emaneska. Ben Galley doesn’t lead us slowly back into his world, he puts two hands on the back of our shoulders and shoves us back into Emaneska. Midrith is a great new character and we're introduced to her in a way that quickly got me invested in this character. Ben does a A tavern fight, angry mob, a mage fighting other mages in the snow covered woods, lit up by their spellcasting, a daemon and a dragon. This is just some of what happens in just the first chapter! What a great way to return to Emaneska. Ben Galley doesn’t lead us slowly back into his world, he puts two hands on the back of our shoulders and shoves us back into Emaneska. Midrith is a great new character and we're introduced to her in a way that quickly got me invested in this character. Ben does a nice job introducing Midrith through using her POV to let us into what she thinks and feels about the whirlwind she’s being pulled into as her story line begins. Sticking with a single POV for a while is a great way to anchor the start of the book since there’s so much going on around her. Multiple POVs early in a book can sometimes make the start of a series feel slow. That is definitely not the case here. Ben does an excellent job, as usual, with creating and developing new characters and getting you thoroughly invested in their individual stories. But he also continued to grow and evolve the existing characters that are still with us from Dead Stars. Character development, their relationships and world building are still all hallmarks of Galley’s writing. The book is well paced with action, dialog and adventure allowing the story to unfold in a very well thought out manner. Whether by land, sea or quick doors, the length of all the travel seems appropriate and not rushed. This helped give a real sense of time passing and understand distances in Emaneska from one location to another, better. Except for the quick doors, that are supposed to be, you know…quick. The actual time spent traveling felt well paced. Not too long where you felt it was stretched out and not too short where it didn’t seem like a realistic journey. Ben did a really good job of keeping the story active when characters were on the move. The final confrontation at the end was really great. We get an extended, epic war between the forces of Malvus vs. Farden and Ben holds nothing back with story twists, surprise reveals and of course, lots of carnage and sad deaths. This is no spoiler. If you’ve read any Ben Galley’s books, you know that no one is ever safe. Since this is book one of a new series, not everything is addresses or answered, but the book does come to a nice conclusion of the immediate events of the story and sets up book 2 wonderfully. I think this is Ben’s best book so far of the Emaneska series. There is maturity to his writing now and the story has no wasted pages or stretched out story lines. There were many places where he let the story breath a little, but he never lingered too long. It was well paced and action packed, but he did wonderful world building and character development as well. Mithrid has quickly become one favorite characters now and I can’t wait to see how her arc continues.

  11. 4 out of 5

    R.B. Watkinson

    Ben kindly gave me an ARC for The Forever King in return for an honest review, and I’m really glad as I loved the book as much as I loved Ben’s first trilogy set in the world of Emaneska, where I followed the conflicted Farden through betrayals, war, death, and reluctant leadership. This trilogy begins many years after the first ends. Now I didn’t need to have read the first trilogy to enjoy the second, especially as Ben gave a brief introduction to the world and the past at the beginning of thi Ben kindly gave me an ARC for The Forever King in return for an honest review, and I’m really glad as I loved the book as much as I loved Ben’s first trilogy set in the world of Emaneska, where I followed the conflicted Farden through betrayals, war, death, and reluctant leadership. This trilogy begins many years after the first ends. Now I didn’t need to have read the first trilogy to enjoy the second, especially as Ben gave a brief introduction to the world and the past at the beginning of this book, but I’m glad I did as, for me, it gave this story more layers and depth. If you like dragons and other fantastical beasts, magic in many forms, warfare in all its gritty desperation, then this is the book for you. Ben has created great characters, be they human, dragon, werewolf, and myriad other creatures, that are well fleshed out with strong personalities and believable story arcs. They are all the way they are because the world formed them that way. Emaneska is a cruel world where peace is bought through ruthless oppression. Magic is forbidden, torture and death are inevitable for all who possess a magical artefact, book, or an ability. Daemons are free to roam the land devouring flesh and souls. The God, Loki, has also returned and meddles to stoke the flames of war – the rotten, condescending sod. He’s manipulating the despot, Emperor Malvus, and helping him create twisted versions of the Written (mages made by tattooing magic books into their skins, an agonising process for the cleric tattooist and mage alike with a high likelihood of death). Near the beginning of the book we meet Mithrid, a young girl whose world and all she loves is brutally destroyed, and is left seething with incandescent anger. She’s ends up far to the north in the snowbound mountain city of Scalussen with the last of the rebels who fight against the despotic Emperor Malvus. With help, she works out ways to manage her anger, works out how to get revenge, and works with the rebels against the hated Malvus. She’s spunky, good with an axe, but also thoughtful, once she gets past that anger. Ben is a descriptive writer, which I appreciate as I love to see and understand the world through the eyes of the protagonists. There’s plenty of action of one form or another as the story progresses, and at no time did I feel the story slacked off, in fact I was happy when a POV character stopped for a moment of contemplation so I could catch my breath, so to speak. The world building is solid, with a decent magic system, lands, races, a history that is rooted somewhat on that of Earth’s, and a multitude of fae creatures. He’s even thrown in a race of yetis with their own hulk-like abilities - awesome. It was an immersive read that I enjoyed on many levels. Thanks for writing it Ben.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Dylan

    I was given a copy of the book early to review. I was not paid or compensated in any way, however, being able to read this fantastic piece of High Fantasy by one of my favorite authors who I rank up there with JRR Tolkein, Terry Goodkind, Jim Butcher, early Terry Brooks and Stephen R. Donaldson was beyond a blessing. This is a spoiler free review of this book, you all need to read it! I was not disappointed by Ben Galley and foray back into Emaneska, the world of Dragons, Daemons, Magick, Written I was given a copy of the book early to review. I was not paid or compensated in any way, however, being able to read this fantastic piece of High Fantasy by one of my favorite authors who I rank up there with JRR Tolkein, Terry Goodkind, Jim Butcher, early Terry Brooks and Stephen R. Donaldson was beyond a blessing. This is a spoiler free review of this book, you all need to read it! I was not disappointed by Ben Galley and foray back into Emaneska, the world of Dragons, Daemons, Magick, Written Mages, Scullesean Armor, Loki !!!, and the most amazing imperfect Mage since Harry Dresden: Farden. Ben has grown even more as an author, the description of this world pulls you in like a gigantic tornado and lands you in Emaneska. The descriptions of the terrain, the characters, the creatures, the gigantic floating library and many other things in this world come to life and leap off the pages as the neurons in my brain fire rapidly making this world come to life as I read it inside of me. Not since reading Lord Foul's Bane many years ago as a teenager have I had a world come to life so vividly as I read. I will say the characters in this book are real people, with real world flaws, struggles and issues that affect the way they make their decisions. None of them are ever perfect, yet those that are the heroes in spite of their flaws overcome eventually. The story is intricate and builds upon the world he has slowly been building and I would highly recommend jumping in and partaking of this novel if you have read the first of the Emaneska Series. If you have not, what are you waiting for, go buy them and this one and get going!!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Fiona Tewson

    Welcome back to Emaneska, 20 years later. The old characters are there along with feisty new ones and the usual demons, gods, dragons and vampires. If you've not read any of Ben's books about Emaneska before, don't worry, there's a full synopsis (which was great for reminding me too) and this book works well on it's own, as the beginning of a great new saga. Ben's characters come alive and jump off the page, and you find yourself rooting for the goodies, and booing the baddies. There are lots of t Welcome back to Emaneska, 20 years later. The old characters are there along with feisty new ones and the usual demons, gods, dragons and vampires. If you've not read any of Ben's books about Emaneska before, don't worry, there's a full synopsis (which was great for reminding me too) and this book works well on it's own, as the beginning of a great new saga. Ben's characters come alive and jump off the page, and you find yourself rooting for the goodies, and booing the baddies. There are lots of twists in the tale, some seen and some surprising. The book is about magick and the fact that it's use is now banned in Emaneska, or is it? Mithrid Fenn lives in a fishing village which clings to the cliffs. When a wreck is seen, she and the other children race to be first there and to have first dabs on the spoils. What has turned up though, is a book if magick. When Mithrid reads a spell, she starts off a series of events which have you on the edge of your seat as you follow the twists and turns of the tale. A book full of battles, intrigue and treachery. Fabulous book Ben, when's the next one out??

  14. 5 out of 5

    Ade

    The latest book from Ben Galley is a continuation of the Emaneska story. ‘The Forever King’ is the next story. It can be read without reading the others in the series first. The story of Farden continues and a lot of the previous characters are in it. So if you enjoyed ‘The Written’ you’ll be amongst friends. The story follows Mithrid and her friends. Up until now the cliff edge village has escaped the battles wrought by Emperor Malvus on Emaneska. All that changes when a book washes up on the be The latest book from Ben Galley is a continuation of the Emaneska story. ‘The Forever King’ is the next story. It can be read without reading the others in the series first. The story of Farden continues and a lot of the previous characters are in it. So if you enjoyed ‘The Written’ you’ll be amongst friends. The story follows Mithrid and her friends. Up until now the cliff edge village has escaped the battles wrought by Emperor Malvus on Emaneska. All that changes when a book washes up on the beach. This book is truly enjoyable, as you read about the relationship between the new characters and the ones from the previous books. It develops into a page turning finale. We see friends divided by the paths that fate has chosen for them. It takes the reader into a fantasy world where past enemies must unite and stand together. It has more twists and turns than a Blackpool rollercoaster. Full of Magik, treachery, betrayal and loyalty.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Natasha

    This book will take you on a fantastically emotional journey. If you have read the previous Emaneska novels you will find a few things different in the 20 years that has lapsed since Dead Stars. But don't worry, if you want to start here there is a great synopsis of the previous books. Whether you are new to this world or just coming back to it you are going to be on the edge of your seat, I couldn't put it down and literally stayed up till 2:30 in the morning to find out the end. Between being This book will take you on a fantastically emotional journey. If you have read the previous Emaneska novels you will find a few things different in the 20 years that has lapsed since Dead Stars. But don't worry, if you want to start here there is a great synopsis of the previous books. Whether you are new to this world or just coming back to it you are going to be on the edge of your seat, I couldn't put it down and literally stayed up till 2:30 in the morning to find out the end. Between being able to see what has progressed since the last Emaneska book and wanting to pick up an axe and follow Mithrid on her journey I am already waiting in suspense for the next book. The magic, creatures and lore of this world will hook you in immediately!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tony Hisgett

    I should start by saying that I did actually enjoy parts of the book, but I thought it was overdone. It felt like the author just kept piling more and more things in ‘willy nilly’. Maybe if I had read the previous series it wouldn’t have felt so chaotic, but I actually groaned out loud when ‘Loki” suddenly appeared. If I had known the author was going to resort to Norse Gods I wouldn’t have started the book. He also seemed to dwell on misery and gratuitous violence a bit too much for my tastes.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Renee Norris

    I absolutely love Ben Galley's books .Started with the Emaneska series because it sounded like an interesting read ,I got hooked from the very first book .I love an author who can make you see the places and characters in the story .Exciting ,full of intrigue and magic .The Forever King was a pleasure to read .Could not put it down .Fast paced , exciting and thoroughly captivating from start to thrilling finish. I absolutely love Ben Galley's books .Started with the Emaneska series because it sounded like an interesting read ,I got hooked from the very first book .I love an author who can make you see the places and characters in the story .Exciting ,full of intrigue and magic .The Forever King was a pleasure to read .Could not put it down .Fast paced , exciting and thoroughly captivating from start to thrilling finish.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Driekie Swartz

    Ben Galley is slowly becoming one of the most popular and most exciting writers in the world of Epic fantacy writing. I have read The Forever King. Nail-biting stuff. Once I started it was very difficult to put down. I absolutely loved it. If you love fantacy, this is where you start reading.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Janis

    Great book! Mr. Galley does not disappoint. Can not wait for the next book.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Peter Hill

    I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Ben Galley has a habit of writing really awesome stories, that are unique and fresh from anything I've read before. This time we're back in Emaneska, with new characters and old. I really liked the Forever King, in case my 5 stars didn't give it away. Mithrid - the girl we follow along with most of the way - isn't a damsel in distress by any means, and isn't given an easy ride throughout the book. Farden is introduced in the most cool I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Ben Galley has a habit of writing really awesome stories, that are unique and fresh from anything I've read before. This time we're back in Emaneska, with new characters and old. I really liked the Forever King, in case my 5 stars didn't give it away. Mithrid - the girl we follow along with most of the way - isn't a damsel in distress by any means, and isn't given an easy ride throughout the book. Farden is introduced in the most coolest way possible, and has changed much despite being a bit more mature, though just as cool. There's more to explore, and some really epic character and battle moments that need to be put on the big screen. The best part about it is you don't need to have read the previous books. =) Though it does help.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Abery

    Other than some of the later HP books, it's been a while since I've read such a long book. And yet, this one doesn't disappoint. It's magical and exciting and full of twists and turns. It never feels long or drawn out - it's paced just right. Absolutely loved reading this one. Other than some of the later HP books, it's been a while since I've read such a long book. And yet, this one doesn't disappoint. It's magical and exciting and full of twists and turns. It never feels long or drawn out - it's paced just right. Absolutely loved reading this one.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Templeton

    Ben Galley has done it again. I have been hooked since my first Ben Galley book. Can't wait for the next one. They are hard to put down. You know in the back of your mind that when you have finished, you will be anxiously waiting on the next one, but you just can't slow down. Great read. Ben Galley has done it again. I have been hooked since my first Ben Galley book. Can't wait for the next one. They are hard to put down. You know in the back of your mind that when you have finished, you will be anxiously waiting on the next one, but you just can't slow down. Great read.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Mrs D Whitehead

    Head and shoulders! I read the 'Written' series in 2 weeks, on a pool holiday, and I was lost in the world Ben Galley created. I was also bereft when it finished, as it is when you finish such a quest! I have waited patiently for The Forever King's release and my patience has been richly rewarded. Ben weaves a world and it's inhabitants more richly than most other books I have read, in all genres. You feel with them, cry with them, hurt with them, rage with them and, every so often, smile with th Head and shoulders! I read the 'Written' series in 2 weeks, on a pool holiday, and I was lost in the world Ben Galley created. I was also bereft when it finished, as it is when you finish such a quest! I have waited patiently for The Forever King's release and my patience has been richly rewarded. Ben weaves a world and it's inhabitants more richly than most other books I have read, in all genres. You feel with them, cry with them, hurt with them, rage with them and, every so often, smile with them too. You are a part of their lives and struggles and breath every minute with them. I have had the privilege of reading some wonderful books by gifted authors and this series and this author stands with them, giants in a sea of mediocre, standing head and shoulders above them. Thank you Mr Galley, how you do what you do I have no idea, I am just grateful that you do! I will await the return of my 'friend's with as much patience as I can muster and look forward to their next adventures. My advice to readers considering this book is to start at the beginning, read all the Written series, delve into Farden's life story and that of his friends and companions, then read this. You really won't be disappointed at any point in your journey - it's epic!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    Loved it! Ben always does a great job! I can't wait for the next one 😁 Don't keep us hanging too long! Loved it! Ben always does a great job! I can't wait for the next one 😁 Don't keep us hanging too long!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Amie Eckelmann

    Love this book! Loved this book! Such a good addition to the series. Can't wait to read what happens in the next book! Love this book! Loved this book! Such a good addition to the series. Can't wait to read what happens in the next book!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Em

  27. 4 out of 5

    greg swanson

  28. 5 out of 5

    Johndbankston

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sam Owen

  30. 4 out of 5

    Carolynne Ford

  31. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Davis

  32. 4 out of 5

    Jaxx6166

  33. 4 out of 5

    Mat

  34. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

  35. 4 out of 5

    Mitchell

  36. 4 out of 5

    Laura Hughes

  37. 4 out of 5

    Robert Felipp Generalao

  38. 4 out of 5

    JennyReadsBooks

  39. 4 out of 5

    John Shiles

  40. 5 out of 5

    Rowena Andrews

  41. 4 out of 5

    Mikos Myers

  42. 5 out of 5

    Mark

  43. 5 out of 5

    Tara East

  44. 4 out of 5

    El Mikoe

  45. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Canam

  46. 5 out of 5

    Al Burke

  47. 5 out of 5

    Jake Cruise

  48. 4 out of 5

    Cynthia

  49. 5 out of 5

    Gari Strawn

  50. 5 out of 5

    Lisa R

  51. 4 out of 5

    Pia Zadorra

  52. 4 out of 5

    Donny Stevens

  53. 4 out of 5

    David

  54. 5 out of 5

    Sam Moore

  55. 4 out of 5

    Arun Andhavarapu

  56. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Bachmann

  57. 4 out of 5

    Tapinder

  58. 5 out of 5

    Maghie Ghali

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