- Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: Bantam; First Edition edition (July 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0553581961
- ISBN-13: 978-0553581966
- Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 2.2 x 17.5 cm
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,266,330 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Treachery of Kings Mass Market Paperback – 1 Jul 2001
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
Our leading character is Finn of Fyxedia, a lizard maker who gets chosen by an eccentric prince to deliver one of his creations as a gift to the King in the rival country of Heldessia. Finn flies over the war zone is a balloon and crash-lands, barely escaping death at the hands of a group of dog-like thugs whose job is to assassinate the King on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Finn's lover, a Mycer woman (that means a half-mouse, half-human, product of an ancient experiment in sorcery) named Letitia Louise, follows him to Heldessia in hopes of protecting him and helping him to complete his assignment. The plot skips nimbly around, never getting bogged down in any one place or idea. I was pleased to find that the ending was the first time in quite a while where I actually cared about what happened to the characters in a fantasy novel.
But most importantly, Barrett's writing is relentlessly clever. He has a gift for perfect word choice, a talent for dialogue, and a cynical sense of humor along the same lines as Douglas Adams. Although he's never been a best-seller, Barrett has an impressive list of works, and he unquestionably deserves credit as one of the best modern fantasy authors.
This is the greatest of compliments coming from me. The Treachery of Kings is a fantasy story, but it is also a very original fantasy story, with ideas of its own.
It's main character is Finn, the Master Lizard Maker, who travels with a steel lizard called Julia Jessica Slagg ( how weird is that:) and a animal-human called Letitia Louise, and together they meet all kinds of fun characters, from the dead king, Llowenkeef-Grymm to the mad seer and many others.
This is a wonderful adventure, like nothing you have ever seen, so please read it for your own good.
This order makes no sense to Finn because Fyxedia and Heldessia have been at war for over seven hundred years. Since the matter is of some urgency, Finn leaves the next day and when he lands in Heldessia, he finds Letita Louise and Julia Jessica Slagg (his mechanical thinking and talking lizard) waiting for him. Getting into the palace is not easy but leaving is even harder because they keep stumbling into plots and making enemies everywhere they go.
THE TREACHERY OF KINGS is a very funny book especially when the author gets on the topics of the Newlies and mechanical lizards. The Newlies are a species of animals that were was changed into near humans seven hundred years ago. There is a lot of action and derring do in the exciting sword and sorcery novel but it is the eccentric and colorful cast of characters that make this fantasy a first class winner.
Amidst intrigue, death cults, evil sorcerers, foolish kings and beautiful princesses, Finn must deliver his tasteless clock and still keep body and soul together. His efforts to escape leading him only deeper into danger Finn must not only preserve himself, but his beloved Latitia Louise.
Written with style and set in a quirky magical world, The Treachery of Kings is difinitely a fun read. I look forward to the next installment.