fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsfantasy book review Dan Chernenko Scepter of Mercy: The Bastard King, The Chernagor Pirates, The Scepter's ReturnTHE SCEPTER OF MERCY by Dan Chernenko

Okay, this trilogy is fantasy lite. These books have really good covers, and the blurbs on the back read pretty good, but by the time I was halfway through the first one, I was feeling guilty, and it was the kind of guilt you have for skipping Masterpiece Theatre because you want to watch Desperate Housewives (that has not happened to me, but it was the best analogy I could come up with). I would note that the cover of The Scepter’s Return bears a striking similarity to Steven Erikson’s Deadhouse Gates’ cover. But, there couldn’t be two more different books.fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews

Chernenko has created an Eddings-like setting with good gods and one bad god, and the story of the Scepter of Mercy which protects humans from the bad god. The story centers around Lanius, the bastard king, and Grus, and how the tribulations of the kingdom draw these men together. However, it is horribly predictable. The two men are very different, and you just know that they will end up working together, as each has very different strengths.

I have not yet finished the entire series, as I lost The Scepter’s Return, but I don’t need to read the story to know what happens. In fact, the title tells me, and the mechanism that Chernenko uses to tell us the result in advance doesn’t really work, because the plot does become sopredictable. The writing is very simple, and really easy and fast to read. This is an adult book, as there is a fair bit of sex, though not as graphic as in some fantasies. There is a bit too much of the family feud stuff happening between Grus, Lanius, and their respective wives. It got a bit tiresome, so I skipped several chunks of dialogue.fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews

Even though I did not finish the series yet, I probably will when I find my copy of The Scepter’s Return. This is not a bad story, but don’t pass up the next Gaiman or Rothfuss book for reading this stuff. This is strictly pulp fiction, and just barely deserves the 2 stars that it gets. Not bad for the beach, because if you lose it or damage your copy, you won’t care much.

ANGUS BICKERTON practises law in a small town in Eastern Ontario. He lives with his wife, their two youngest children, and their black lab in a 160 year-old stone home, which also holds his law office. He has become, through inadvertence bordering on negligence, an expert in money-pit properties, and in do-it-yourself repair and construction. He has always dreamed of writing novels, but so far he has only self-published a play about the crucifixion of Jesus Christ entitled The Gate.




The Scepter of Mercy — (2003-2005) Publisher: Since the Scepter of Mercy was lost from Avornis, the kingdom has been at risk from its magic-using neighbors. King Lanius and King Grus retrieved the Scepter in a tale of great triumph and adventure. But the true story of their dual reign has never been told. Until now…

Dan Chernenko Scepter of Mercy, The Bastard King, The Chernagor Pirates, The Scepter's ReturnDan Chernenko Scepter of Mercy, The Bastard King, The Chernagor Pirates, The Scepter's ReturnDan Chernenko Scepter of Mercy, The Bastard King, The Chernagor Pirates, The Scepter's Return