Darien: Empire of Salt by CF Iggulden
PUBLISHED BY PENGUIN BOOKS
REVIEW BY HAYLEY ROHEAD
Based in a single kingdom, Darien: Empire of Salt is riddled with characters of special magic, difficult choices, and hard lives.
Most of this story takes place in the kingdom’s capital, Darien, where twelve noble families keep the peace for a figurehead king. The story relies on the magical ‘knacks’ of many of the key characters in a world where magic is well known and accepted, but not common.
There is much reference made to the old empire and the old magic. Many of the ruling families hold magic relics from the old days and seek to get their hands on more when the appear.
The main characters are also complexly interwoven with their path through blackmail, threats of death, money and power.
Iggulden’s portrayal of his fantasy world is largely driven by the individual character’s decisions and drivers rather than grand quests to save the world. This is a fast-paced narrative with the events of the book unfolding in only a matter of days. Darien: Empire of Salt is a good first fantasy novel from a historical fiction author, and a good foundation on which to build a complex fantasy series.
Find this novel in store at Planet Books. Ask the friendly staff for guidance too, and they’ll be more than happy to order you in a copy if it’s already sold out.