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The Sleeping King is the first in an epic fantasy series, featuring the best of the genre: near immortal imperial overlords, a prophecy of a sleeping elven king who’s said to be the savior of the races . . . and two young people who are set on a path to save the day.
Yeaah…as you guys know, I’m always looking to try new things, or give things a second (and n-th) chance. So I wanted to give high fantasy another chance. I was really optimistic about The Sleeping King, but unfortunately it didn’t work out.
I stopped reading about the 25% point, and this is a good length novel, so it was more than my first-30-pages rule. The story felt slow to start, and when it did it still felt slow to me, though I’m not generally a rabid action fan. But the story felt just too slow to me, for some reason.
Maybe it was the writing style. The third person, past tense, multiple POV had that epic fantasy style flair, which is obviously adequate and fitting. But it didn’t do it for me, despite not having anything wrong with it. To be fair, third person multiple POV tends to have that effect on me, detachment from all characters rather than connecting with more than one MC.
The characters were kind of interesting, but not exciting for me personally; and with great appeal to young adults (or even middle graders) imo – another note I tend not to resonate with. Maybe further along the novel (or series!) the tone becomes more adult-oriented, though I honestly doubt it. I feel confident it’s gonna be a YA-ish sort of read, all in all. But if any of you read it and feel it’s better described as addressed to an adult audience, do let me know, so I can re-categorize it properly.
The fantasy world was diverse, with lots of elements – prophecies, wizards and mages, fantastic creatures, but without a connection with the characters or a particular crush on the writing style, it didn’t have the chance to shine for me.
All in all, The Sleeping King will most likely provide a very different reading experience for epic/high fantasy bildungsroman kind of fans. It was a bad fit for me, though.
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