Author / John Gwynne
Publication Date / 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2016
Genre / Fantasy
Series or standalone / 4 book series
Page no. / 646, 648, 800 and 736
Star Rating / ★★★★.5
This is a four book epic fantasy series set in the fictional world of the Banished Land. The first book, Malice, was Gwynne’s debut novel. Each book is written using multiple perspectives, although we mainly follow the events centred around one of the main characters, Corban. I will not be going into detail on the plot because I don’t want to spoil anything.
I had been aware of this series for quite a while before picking it up and now I don’t know why it took me so long to read them. I thought this series was fantastic. Once I read the first book, I picked up the other three books as fast as I could. Firstly, this series has a fantastic cast of characters. From the very beginning I was invested in these characters and their development through the four books was so well done. Gwynne has done a fantastic job at writing complex and interesting characters, which is pretty impressive when you consider how many characters there are in these books. Having said that, the large cast of characters may be an issue for some, especially if you are not a fan of multiple perspective stories. The first book alone features 6 main perspectives with more being added in the later books and there are many more characters involved in the story. While I do enjoy multiple perspective stories, it can be a little tricky at times to keep track of everything. I had such issues in the first book but after a hundred pages or so I was immersed in the story and characters and didn’t have any further issues with it. Each perspective has a distinctive voice and each chapter is compelling as the last. Yes there are a lot of characters to keep track of but Gwynne does a great job at creating distinct and complex characters which makes it easier to follow. There is also a character list to help you remember them all.
In terms of the plot, these books will keep you on your toes. There are many twists and turns that keep each book engaging and the pacing maintains the flow the story really well. The plot is compelling throughout and I loved every second of reading these books. The action scenes are another strength in this series. Moving onto the world building. The Banished Land is a wonderfully written fantasy world with interesting history and cultures. It was great to be able to see various parts of this world throughout the four books. The Faithful and the Fallen series is epic in scale and so enjoyable to read. I cannot say enough good things about these four books.
Overall this is a fantastic series and I cannot recommend it highly enough. It’s definitely one of my favourite series now. If you are looking for a new epic fantasy series to read, check these books out. A Time of Dread is the first book in a sequel series set 130 year after the events of Wrath and is also well worth a read. Seriously these books were so good. Have you guys read this series? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.