Brothers of the Knife (The Children of Bane Book 1) by Dan Rabarts (Omnium Gatherum)

You know how it is. You’re just minding your own business in the kitchen when suddenly you’re framed for the murder of an elvish prince. I mean, we’ve all been there.

That’s where we join Akmenos, a lesser member of the Hornung Empire’s ruling family at the beginning of Brothers of the Knife. Soon he’s running, flying and falling for his life as he leaves behind everything he’s ever known, crossing countries and other dimensions, pursued both by enemies and brothers – and it’s hard to tell which is the greatest threat.

Rabarts isn’t just working with the standard fantasy playing pieces here. He’s taken the whole toy box, tipped it over and rummaged through the lot. Sure, there’s elves and dwarves. But
there’s a whole lot more – hyenafolk, airships, robots. The story starts off running and doesn’t slow down often. But despite the chaos, there’s always time for a cup of tea.

Brothers of the Knife is the first book in a series of five, so if you enjoy this mix of cooking and carnage there’s plenty more on the way.

I do have one issue with this book: can you really call a story Grimdark when it’s this much fun?

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