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The Ruin of Kings: A Chorus of Dragons #1    by Jenn Lyons order for
Ruin of Kings
by Jenn Lyons
Order:  USA  Can
Tor, 2019 (2019)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The Ruin of Kings opens Jenn Lyons' fantasy epic, A Chorus of Dragons. Readers first encounter its lead, Kihrin, in dire circumstances. He was raised by blind minstrel Surdyeh in the slums of Quur, where he survived as a skilled thief. As this first episode opens, Kihrin tells how he was auctioned as a slave at age sixteen.

He's recounting events to the mysterious Talon, who is thousands of years old. It takes a while to figure this all out. Not only has Kihrin been enslaved but he's also been gaeshed - part of his soul trapped and under the control of whoever carries the gaesh charm. They can command him to do anything they desire.

The bidding goes high, a Lord Var competing with the Black Brotherhood, who win. How did Kihrin end up on the auction block? We learn that it started with a robbery, in which he stole the priceless Stone of Shackles, though he still believes that no-one knows he has it. He also acquires a necklace of star tear diamonds, stolen from the auctioneer when he is purchased.

His new owners take Kihrin out of the city by ship, heading to Zherias, and readers learn more of the back story as they travel. Of course, the ship is attacked by monsters sent by the powerful wizard, Lord Var, but a song saves the day, almost. The Goddess of Luck takes a hand and gives Kihrin a choice - his decision will save or doom the world.

This all sets the scene nicely for what's to come in future episodes, in which we expect young Kihrin to get in - and out - of even more trouble.

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