Review of The King's Hand by Anna Thayer

Leah Courtney
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The King's Hand is the second in a fantasy trilogy- The Knight of Eldaran. It's a powerful and moving story, and, while excited to see the action move along, I was very sad to reach the conclusion. And I cannot wait to read the third book in the series- The Broken Blade.

I read the first book in this series- The Traitor's Heir- last year. And while I really enjoyed that one as well, The King's Hand topped it. The series of books features Eamon. He's trained as an officer in the forces of the one known throughout the land as The Master. But Eamon soon finds out that The Master isn't truly the rightful leader of the land. Throughout the books, he struggles with loyalty for the true king he discovered and the master he pledged his allegiance to.

From The King's Hand description:

Every man has a destiny. His is to betray.
Like many from his village, young Eamon Goodhand dreamed of joining the Gauntlet, the army of the overlord Eldered. Now he is about to complete his training and swear his loyalty to Eldered and his commanders, the Hands, who uphold Eldered s tight control of the land.

Entering into the service of the Gauntlet, Eamon s gifts, particularly his potent Sight, quickly become valuable to his superiors and he advances to the command rank at a speed that arouses the suspicions of fellow officers.

However, Eldered s bloody rule, and Eamon s personal friendships, start to challenge the young soldier s assumptions about what might be true, and worthy of service. And soon Eamon must conceal a fatal secret: he is sworn to both Eldered and to Hughan, the rightful king of the land. Yet he may not forswear the vows he has uttered in all good faith so however he serves, his name will be traitor.

As tensions and military skirmishes increase, Eamon finds himself trusted by both his masters. How can he possibly maintain his integrity, act justly to his fellow officers of the Gauntlet, and act on behalf of all the warring people of the land?

The characters in these books are excellently developed. There is a perfect balance of getting to know the characters and moving action. There is suspense and drama. There is victory and joy. Although the books are published by Kregel- a Christian publisher- there is no mention of God. But it is very easy to catch glimpses of a Christian worldview throughout. And, even though this isn't a true allegory (as far as I know) there are definitely comparisons that can be made between Eamon's story and the struggles we face as Christians in a fallen world.

Great fantasy can strengthen and empower your worldview. It can give the reader courage and inspiration. The King's Hand is great fantasy. And I look forward to finishing out the series and seeing the conclusion soon.

I give this one 5 stars and a PG-13 rating (for violence). You can find The King's Hand on Amazon here.

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Leah Courtney / Author & Editor

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