This book is great! All good "Sword and Sorcery", pretty heavy in places, but Michael Manning's style is light, witty, and irreverent towards the more traditional S&S style. A tad to Americanised, perhaps, but I like it!
I came across the first book by chance, I just liked the title, and sought out the second. The actions of the main character and his supporters were about as henous as you could imagine, slaughter on a truly epic scale, but done with charm (I know, that sounds really crass, but it works - have a read if you don't believe me). I don't really see how the author can top the deeds in "Mageborn: The Line of Illeniel", but there is a third due out soon (the sooner the better), and I it looks to me as if this author and series are really going places.