King Breaker

King Breaker by Rowena Cory Daniells, King Rolen's Kin #4

The story of Byron, Fyn and Piro picks up immediately where the cliff-hanging ending of The Usurper let off! 

When Cobalt stole the Rolencian throne, Byren, Fyn and Piro were lucky to escape with their lives, now they’ve rallied and set out to avenge their parents' murder.

Byren is driven to defeat Cobalt and reclaim the crown, but at what cost? Fyn has sworn to serve Byren’s interests but his loyalty is tested when he realises he loves Byren’s betrothed. And Piro never wanted to win a throne, now she holds the fate of a people in her hands.

Yes! The conclusion to King Rolen's Kin! King Breaker is the fourth and final book in the Epic Fantasy series King Rolen's Kin, I originally thought that the series would have been summed as a trilogy, but Rowena Cory Daniells decided to write one last story to connect all the dots. The first thing that falls to note to King Breaker is the length of the story, the earlier books all were inbetween 300-500 pages but King Breaker clocks in with a massive 774 pages. And yes I am going to give a praise to how the story was written, this is definitely a forte to her writing style, it's addictive and makes the pages seem only a third of the number above. The story is written in an easy going and catchy way, full of developments that leave you wanting reading more. 

Writing a conclusion to a series must be a daunting task, and what I have come to expect with the earlier books is that when Rowena Cory Daniells writes Epic Fantasy it is Epic Fantasy. This reflects well in King Breaker. Even though the goal for Byren has been set, it isn't simply barging in to the confront Cobalt, instead there is a lot of time invested in the whole surrounding and several other events that take King Breaker and the whole series of King Rolen's Kin to a new level, it's a satisfying story but again it doesn't quite leave the story closed! The story itself is divided into a few major points of view that of Piro, Byren and Fyn, the three remaining sons and daughter of King Rolen. But when Cobalt took the throne of Rolencia all three just narrowly got away with their lives, and they are now all determined to take back what is theirs!

The story doesn't focus mainly on one character in particular but the focus is most in bringing all the several POV's to one conclusion. The first is Byren, his character is one that I have come to enjoy along the series, his best friend Orrade is a lover of men and has gone through a lot of aversion from his parents and others. But Byren sticks with his friend. That is what friends are. Byren, in his quest to get the Rolencian throne back, is accompanied by Orrade and I can safely say that their journey is not the easiest they have undertaken. The live and times on sea proof to be just a perilous and full of intrigue as they are in court! Byren has always said that he didn't want to be King but it is slowly dawning on him that he must claim the throne and lead everything into better and steadier waters.

Fyn's story is when looking back on it one of the most interesting stories. I always thought Fyn as a younger brother just doing everything that was being to told to him. But in King Breaker he really starts to shine and Rowena Cory Daniells completely transforms his character. Fyn was protecting Isolt, Byren queen to be. However Fyn is growing up and developing feelings for Isolt, firstly he tries to discard them and stays true to his cause but as the story continues you see that it starting to falter and it is getting harder and harder for him to not give in. And finally in the ending of the book there is an interesting development on his side; that perhaps leads to another story! A great addition to Fyn's storyline was Isolt, and this in turn led to exploring an exisiting subject. Affinity. But I will get to that. We were already earlier introduced to Isolt, but in King Breaker she is a complete character, going her own way and doing what she wants, and this taken together with Fyn makes this a satisfying part of the book. 

Lastly there is Piro, the only remaining daughter. I have to admit that I am a bit torn with her character. She shone earlier on in the series and from that point onwards I have been rooting for her, but it seems that in King Breaker this shining moment is just missing a bit. Now I am not saying that her storyline is bad it's totally the opposite but with what we have come to see of Piro I had expected just that little step extra. What you do see by Piro's storyline is that she is now one confident young princes, she has come to a full development in the end and knows what she has to even though Byren plans to overthrow several laws. Her character is always great to read about, she is inventive, determined and quick on her feet and with her words. 

There is one final addition that I do want to mention and that is Cobalt. Besides the stories of Byren, Fyn and Piro, Cobalt also gets a bit of a highlights in King Breaker. Showing how the bad guy behaves and reacts and plots certain things in the storyline against the good guys always adds this something extra for me. It shows a better interplay between the different storyline that are going on and you as a reader get the full picture but the characters are reacting in their natural ways. Take for example what Cobalt planned with Piro, this is perceived in many different ways by the different storyline and by this way of writing the story it just comes to show that Rowena Cory Daniells knows what she is doing.

Above I mentioned something with Affinity. From the first introduction to this magical aspect in the series I knew it would be good stuff. In this last book in the series, a lot of things come again to show that this is something quite unique. In King Breaker, this whole aspect is explored further including more animals and how they act around their handlers, I especially liked the "retinue" that Isolt had with the wyverns, how they bonded and acted, this showed that these dangerous animals are much more that I first assumed. What you also see more and more is real magic being done. This was something that I was hoping to see more and more. It's really cool to read about Affinity and all that is possible with it. 

King Breaker is definitely a book that you should pick up if you have read the first three books in the series, and if not, go start in it! King Breaker shows everything that you have wanted to read in the adventures and hardships of Byren, Fyn and Piro. Rowena Cory Daniells has a great way in making the characters feel and act natural and that it is not all a jolly good time that they are having. This is also quite the contrary, if you think that things cant go any worse, they still can and this is a bit of what Byren, Fyn and Piro had to endure all along the way. Take this together with the whole world that is created within the King Rolen's Kin series, Rowena Cory Daniells shows that she is on top of her game. The book ends partially with a closed ending but also leaves enough room for continuation. I for one am more eager, after reading King Breaker, to see what will be next! 

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