Review by Jon Clapier
Talus and the Frozen King by Graham Edwards is a novel set somewhere in the Stone Age with a strong primitive spiritual and magical influence. The main character, Talus, is a wandering bard cursed with intelligence and curiosity. His companion, Bran, is an ex-fisherman/bodyguard who accompanies Talus in the hopes that they can reach the place where the northern lights touch the earth, which they believe may be a gateway to the land of the dead. Talus seeks to find truth; Bran seeks his lost love.
On their journey to the north they reach a village where the king has been murdered, and Talus uses his skills of observation and deduction to try and reveal the killer. The king left six sons, and they all seem to have reasons to be glad that the king is gone, as well as the shaman of their village and people from other villages.
Suspicion moves from one to the other, and Mr. Edwards does a fair job of integrating a who-done-it mystery into a Stone Age/fantasy scenario. The reasoning is logical, there is an air of suspense, and he writes the story well enough to be a pleasure to read.
Those who like mystery or fantasy or even historical novels of the age should enjoy Talus and the Frozen King. There are many details of life in a pre-historic culture that are skillfully woven into the story to give a nice feel of authenticity. The main characters are likeable and unique.
I have only one complaint about the book, and that is Mr. Edwards has a tendency to shift the point of view of the characters constantly. There were times I wasn’t sure who was thinking what about whom. Some parts I had to re-read to be sure. But other than that, I enjoyed it.
While this novel would never be a replacement for Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes or Conan by Robert E. Howard, if you are looking for an entertaining read that contains elements of both those ends of the spectrum, you may enjoy Mr. Edwards Talus and the Frozen King.
- Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: Solaris (March 25, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1781081999
- ISBN-13: 978-1781081990