The Other Lands: Book Two of the Acacia Trilogy

David Anthony Durham, Author . Doubleday $28 (464p) ISBN 978-0-385-52332-5

The power and originality of Durham's impressive fantasy debut, 2007's Acacia: The War with the Mein , isn't quite matched by this sequel, though it still features intelligent, well-crafted prose and complex characters. After a political assassination led to the overthrow of the Acacian Empire, the murdered king's children were split up and found very different destinies. The focus here is on the oldest, Corinn, now queen. She is a morally ambiguous figure, fiercely guarding her secrets of magic, willing to drug her subjects to stifle dissent and sacrifice her own siblings for power. Her depiction is the book's strength, as many of the other plot elements—betrayals, close brushes with death, terrifying monsters—are standard fare. Fans will still look for book three, but with diminished enthusiasm. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 07/13/2009
Release date: 09/01/2009
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 640 pages - 978-0-307-94714-7
Mass Market Paperbound - 599 pages - 978-0-307-38676-2
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