This is the first book from a new epic fantasy series. It is epic, have no doubt about it. Unlike a series similar to Wheel of Time which starts with just one point of view and gradually expands this one has at least six POVs right from the beginning. For this reason it is hard to give any kind of plot description. A bad guy called The Pale Man (the best and very close analogy would be Darth Vader) who is actually a demigod starts trouble everywhere. This trouble affected a humble village in the middle of nowhere where a young guy named Calvraign as well as his girlfriend Callagh live. The capital of humans and the king's court feel these troubles first-hand. A mercenary is trying to avoid a certain doom as The Pale Man took upon himself to end his life prematurely. The prophecies are abounding. The dark army is gathering.The good.
The plot itself is quite interesting; it takes a running start right away and almost never slows down during the book's 600+ pages. The characters - at least some of them - are good; they never act illogically for no reason, or out of characters. Considering this is the first published book of the author, it is really impressive.The bad.
I was able to see the main plot twist which was revealed during the last pages before I hit the first third of the book; it could have been hidden better. While the book does not end with a cliffhanger per se, it is still unclear who lived on and who died after all the dust settled; the ending was somewhat abrupt. I really dislike the cover, but I understand that this is a matter of taste.The ugly.
This book, while not winning an award for the most unpronounceable names in the history of literature, is still a very strong contender in this category. I actually only encountered one book with the worse names, but that one was a parody. Practically every single name of everything was long and impossible to pronounce aloud; do not even try to do it, and if you still want to, do not say I did not warn you. There are very familiar races and classes from fantasy in any form: elves, half-elves, dwarves, orcs, lizardmen, druids, rangers, etc. They are exactly what every fantasy fans would expect from them, but all the names are different and long with the only exceptions of dwarves. The latter are called simply the Kin and I literally cried from joy when they appear as this was my first successful attempt for a proper noun pronunciation. For this simple reason I would not be able to recall and write any name from the book even if my life depended on it.
The ugly part aside, this was a very good effort from a new author. If the ugly part of my review is a real show stopper for you, avoid it, otherwise the rating is 4 almost solid stars.
This review is a copy/paste of my BookLikes one: http://gene.booklikes.com/post/953043/the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-from-a-new-author