Legends of the Duskwalker: Three by Jay Posey – Book Review [Bane of Kings]

Three

Bane of Kings shares his thoughts on the Angry Robot published Three, written by Jay Posey.

“A fun, action packed read that serves as a solid debut – I’m on board for Book Two for certain.” ~Bane of Kings, The Founding Fields

All too often, I find myself either reading or requesting a book to review purely based on its cover, and Jay Posey’s Three is certainly no exception. I mean – just look at it. Sure, it may fill the bill of a hooded-man clichéd cover, but its design really drew me in, and I was eagerly awaiting the chance to read this book. And when I started it, at first – I was somewhat let down. It wasn’t as enthralling as I thought it would be, and it wasn’t as gripping early on. Until I got to a certain moment in the book, when the pace really got going and the book itself really got interesting. From then onwards – I couldn’t put it down. Three took me on a whirlwind ride through the Dystopian, Post Apocalyptic setting and builds to a fantastic conclusion, with an awesome climax. There are several things that I enjoyed about this novel once I got into it – but I just wish that It had been able to hook me in right from the start.

But that’s pretty much one of the few flaws that I had with Three. The rest of the book is really awesome, and very engaging – and I’m glad that this is the first part of the Legends of the Duskwalker series.

The world has collapsed, and there are no heroes any more.

But when a lone gunman reluctantly accepts the mantel of protector to a young boy and his dying mother against the forces that pursue them, a hero may yet arise.

Three’s blurb is sharp and to the point, and the same could be said about its dramatis personae. Three as a name works two ways – not only is it the name of the titular character, but also the book follows a cast of three main heroes, Wren a six year old boy with some rather unique abilities, and his mother – Cass, a fighter who depends on drugs to operate – aka a chemic. The lesser cast are mainly antagonists,  such as Asher, Dagon and more – most of them being well rounded and interesting. The smaller cast really allows for more time to be spent on establishing the dominant characters, and because we’re not introduced to a new one every other chapter, we don’t get ourselves detracted from the adventures of Wren, Cass and Three.

ThreeThe book itself, despite being set in the future, feels more like a Western at times – despite the clear elements of science fiction terminology and mechanics. Pretty much every place that the characters visit is desecrated and destroyed, really ramming home its post apocalyptic setting. Expect lots of wastelands and ruined cities here – with Three being a book that successfully avoids falling into the trap of info-dumping, allowing for the pace to move along pretty quickly once it grabs you in.

Just don’t expect the book to grab you in almost instantly though – I wasn’t enthralled in from the get go. It took a while for everything to fall into place for me, but the book certainly got more interesting later on, and as a result – I was glad that I stuck with it – for the ending certainly pays off. Another flaw that some people might have with Three is that there’s also a lack of world building – the world isn’t really fleshed out. Whilst this may bother some, I didn’t find it as that much of an issue. We don’t really know how the world came to be a post apocalyptic setting and neither do we know why there are certain people with special powers. Some people may find this more of an issue than me, however.

Jay Posey’s debut is pretty solid despite the aformentioned issues. If you’re a fan of gritty, dark, fast paced and action packed books – you’ll love Three. It moves along at a breakneck pace and doesn’t let up. Three is a badass lead character with loads of promise and undergoes interesting development over the course of the novel – and  if you’re a fan of this sort of setting and concept, I think you’ll enjoy it. It’s not perfect, but it’s pretty impressive, so I can offer my recommendation behind it. Count me in for Book Two, though – particularly if the cover’s as awesome as this one.

VERDICT: 3.5/5

 

Milo, aka Bane of Kings, is a SFF/Comic reader, and watches a lot of TV. His favourite authors are Neil Gaiman, China Mieville, Jim Butcher, Brandon Sanderson & Iain M. Banks, whilst his favourite TV shows are Battlestar Galactica (2003), Person Of Interest, Firefly, Game of Thrones, & Buffy the Vampire Slayer

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