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The Black Prism January 24, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 3 stars, Fantasy.
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The Black Prism

by Brent Weeks

Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that preserves a tenuous peace. But Prisms never last, and Guile knows exactly how long he has left to live: Five years to achieve five impossible goals. But when Guile discovers he has a son, born in a far kingdom after the war that put him in power, he must decide how much he’s willing to pay to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.

Since I read the Night Angel Trilogy first and I loved it, I eagerly delved into Weeks’ next book. I ended up comparing the two more often then not and not often too favorably.

I thought that The Black Prism’s plot was a bit too complicated. I found myself plodding through the first 60% of the book and I was forcing myself to get through it. Trying to navigate through the plots twists and turns was like trying to play a mental game of Twister with myself.

The characters weren’t as fully developed as the characters were in the Night Angel trilogy either. I thought that many of them lacked depth and I wanted more out of them by the middle of the book. In fact, I was so dizzy with the way Weeks switched from character to character without fully fleshing them out I nearly cried out with frustration.

The magical system in the book is interesting yet at the same time it gets overly complex. There are so many things to keep up with in this book, it was hard to really keep pace with where the elaborate plot and the sub-plots were actually going.

Around the 60-70% mark I started to get into the book. The characters seemed to stop diverging into sub-plots and I could finally see a culmination of sorts.

I did like the twist in the book. It was surprising and unique. I also think I’ll read the rest of the series since the end of the book really grabbed me. I’m just very unhappy with the first half of the book.

3 of 5 stars

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