The River Kings' Road: A Novel of Ithelas

The River Kings' Road - Liane Merciel Set in a feudal world not unlike Europe after the breakup of the Roman Empire, The River Kings' Road begins with the massacre of a village and a visiting lord from a neighboring country, along with his family, who were the targets. One knight and the lord's infant child survive, however, and along with a village girl and her child, they make their way across dangerous country seeking safety and attempting to avoid the killers, who know that they have not succeeded in wiping out the entire family. I liked this book because, despite being a first novel, it is well-written and the world, with its history, religion and magic, appears to have been well-planned and well thought out beforehand. Also, the characters are complex - the man behind the killings, for example, is not pure evil and even suffers some remorse - nor do people behave in stereotypical ways. The ending, to, was a twist on the tried-and-true old standby that I expected to find. I look forward to future installments in this series.