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Prince of Fools: The Red Queen's War, Book 1 | [Mark Lawrence]

Prince of Fools: The Red Queen's War, Book 1

The Red Queen is old but the kings of the Broken Empire dread her like no other. For all her reign, she has fought the long war, contested in secret, against the powers that stand behind nations, for higher stakes than land or gold. Her greatest weapon is The Silent Sister - unseen by most and unspoken of by all. The Red Queen's grandson, Prince Jalan Kendeth - drinker, gambler, seducer of women - is one who can see The Silent Sister.
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Publisher's Summary

Hailed as "epic fantasy on a George R. R. Martin scale, but on speed" (Fixed on Fantasy), the Broken Empire trilogy introduced a bold new world of dark fantasy with the story of Jorg Ancrath' s devastating rise to power. Now, Mark Lawrence returns to the Broken Empire with the tale of a less ambitious prince.

The Red Queen is old but the kings of the Broken Empire dread her like no other. For all her reign, she has fought the long war, contested in secret, against the powers that stand behind nations, for higher stakes than land or gold. Her greatest weapon is The Silent Sister - unseen by most and unspoken of by all.

The Red Queen's grandson, Prince Jalan Kendeth - drinker, gambler, seducer of women - is one who can see The Silent Sister. Tenth in line for the throne and content with his role as a minor royal, he pretends that the hideous crone is not there. But war is coming. Witnesses claim an undead army is on the march, and the Red Queen has called on her family to defend the realm. Jal thinks it' s all a rumor - nothing that will affect him - but he is wrong. After escaping a death trap set by the Silent Sister, Jal finds his fate magically intertwined with a fierce Norse warrior. As the two undertake a journey across the Empire to undo the spell, encountering grave dangers, willing women, and an upstart prince named Jorg Ancrath along the way, Jalan gradually catches a glimmer of the truth: He and the Norseman are but pieces in a game, part of a series of moves in the long war - and the Red Queen controls the board.

©2014 Bobalinga, Ltd. (P)2014 Recorded Books

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (428 )
5 star
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4.5 (396 )
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  •  
    Ron 06-09-14
    Ron 06-09-14 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    78
    ratings
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    Story
    "M. Lawrence does it again, but differently."
    Any additional comments?

    In the Prince of Thorn's (POT) series, readers (whether you liked the book or not) were fascinated by a protagonist that most people did not really feel ok about liking. The character drove that book and the same happens in this book, but with an exception. The characteristics of this protagonist drives this book, but the writer did not try to make him another POT, but rather created a totally different personality that made me laugh many times throughout the book. I actually liked this book better than the POT.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Ashaway, RI USA 06-04-14
    Amazon Customer Ashaway, RI USA 06-04-14 Listener Since 2009

    Sneak past the dragon and slay the princess!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "He Does it Again!"
    If you could sum up Prince of Fools in three words, what would they be?

    Refreshing. An understatement.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Prince Jalan and the viking Snorri, unlikely companions, become entangled through sorcery. In their quest to rid themselves of one another, a remarkable thing happens. A friendship blossoms. Oh, and there's also a great fantasy plot to boot.

    Not quite as "grim-dark" as "Prince of Thorns", "Prince of Fools" was still edgy and perhaps more humorous than its predecessor - at least that was my take. Both series are redirecting the genre into less explored regions. To say they are "refreshing" is an understatement.

    Buy these audiobooks! The narrations are superb and even if they aren't your cup of tea, they will leave a lasting impression.


    Which character – as performed by Tim Gerard Reynolds – was your favorite?

    Jalan, of course. Though Snorri was quite fantastic as well.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I laughed a lot. Our anti-hero is not as dark as the Prince of Thorns, though he still has his edges.


    Any additional comments?

    Wow! Awesome! Well done Mark Lawrence! You did it again!

    Jalan. Jorg. Both stand firm in their own characters. One a coward the other callous. Both heroes? Or something else.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joe Chad Ohio 06-06-14
    Joe Chad Ohio 06-06-14 Member Since 2015

    I am a lover of fantasy novels with exciting action, complex plots, and unforgettable characters.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very good book but,"
    Any additional comments?

    Prince of Fools by Mark Lawrence is a very interesting and exciting read. Unfortunately, I read the Broken Empire trilogy before i read this book. The problem is that The broken Empire trilogy is in my opinion one of the best fantasy series I have ever read. This book is very good and is by all means worth reading. It contains Lawrence's usual deep and well thought out characters and his magnificent story telling abilities. The simple problem is it is very difficult to make another character as good as Jorg from the previous trilogy. I really like the new main character Jalin, but he just doesn't fascinate and horrify you at the same time like Jorg did. Despite this problem the overall story was interesting and enjoyable to read. The narrator in my opinion did a fairly good job with the story, although all the vikings seemed to sound the same to me. As a whole, i liked the story very much and fully intend to buy the next book, but don't be too disappointed if it isn't as good as Prince of Thorns. i give it 4 of 5 stars.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chad Kelso, WA, United States 08-12-14
    Chad Kelso, WA, United States 08-12-14 Member Since 2012

    This mountain of books isn't going to listen to itself.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Jalan, you have permission to be my wingman."
    What was one of the most memorable moments of Prince of Fools?

    I would have to say when the Prince Jalan came to the realization that Snory was his friend. It was nice moment in a action packed book.


    What does Tim Gerard Reynolds bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Royce Melborn and Hadrian Blackwater lol. It takes a chapter or two or three to get used to his voice as a new character if you have heard Tim before. The Narrator is most excellent. "dude"I read normal books but its never as much fun. Reading takes all my attention. And granted some audible books do require almost all my attention most do not.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I choose to treat my self to a book when doing mundane tasks. But I could see someone listing to the book in one sitting.


    Any additional comments?

    Nice solid book. It was missing some figurative magic somewhere. I cant really place it. So I don't feel right giving it a 5 star. I almost want to say parts of the book felt slow and others felt to fast. The other thing is, I really liked the Prince and Snory, but I wanted to love them.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO, United States 06-13-15
    Christine CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO, United States 06-13-15 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Fun"
    If you could sum up Prince of Fools in three words, what would they be?

    The interplay between the two characters and their two inner spirits made this surprising fun and a unique read


    Which character – as performed by Tim Gerard Reynolds – was your favorite?

    He did a marvelous job with all of them!


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert ROSWELL, NM, United States 06-11-15
    Robert ROSWELL, NM, United States 06-11-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fools Journey"

    Good story with some laugh out loud moments. The author avoids the usual cliches and writes a thoroughly enjoyable book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer Tucson, AZ, United States 03-04-15
    Kindle Customer Tucson, AZ, United States 03-04-15 Member Since 2011

    Its like some is telling me story. Better than TV or Movies.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Adventures off a wimpy Prince"

    Good story well written, well read. Funny and entertaining. I will no doubt read the other books as well.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sailfish 01-28-15
    Sailfish 01-28-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A wonderful novel and a great narrator"

    One of the most entertaining novels I've experienced in a very long time. The protagonist, Prince Jalan, is everything a reader would hope for in a cad. He's a coward, liar, womanizer, drinker and seemingly a fool. Unbeknownst to him, he is about to be thrust into quest with a Viking that is his polar opposite and is unable to weasel his way out of it. While there are a number of dark moments, some of them sadly poignant, I couldn't help chuckling at Jalan's reaction to anything that would require him to take responsibility or, gods forbid, place himself in danger.

    Excellent writing by Mark Lawrence and superb narration by Tim Gerard Reynolds.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kazren www.ohjohnny.net 01-25-15
    Kazren www.ohjohnny.net 01-25-15 Member Since 2012

    Kazren

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    "Incredibly entertaining"
    If you could sum up Prince of Fools in three words, what would they be?

    It caught me from the first with it's sense of humor, and kept me going with a delicious lead character and his un-looked-for side-kick. I wish there were more in this series.


    What other book might you compare Prince of Fools to and why?

    Flashman, very tongue-in-cheek, clever, witty, with a strong plot and interesting settings.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    There were too many to single one out.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, and I did listen very quickly, and wished there was a volume II.


    Any additional comments?

    Very unlike his Prince of Thorns.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kymatha Canberra 01-20-15
    Kymatha Canberra 01-20-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Story telling magic"
    If you could sum up Prince of Fools in three words, what would they be?

    Engaging Entertaining Enthralling


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Prince Jalan. Never has a shallow, self involved, character been so entertaining! Of course, if Prince Jalan had never escaped his limited existence - as he was first revealed to us, I would have probably found him tedious.


    Which character – as performed by Tim Gerard Reynolds – was your favorite?

    The central character Prince Jalan. Tim Gerard Reynold's performance conveyed the nuances of this well written individual, to praise worthy heights; he breathed life into Prince Jalan, & the rest of the book, that I think would only have been matched by my vivid imagination feeding directly from the words themselves.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I think the book as a whole is very well written - the story is of a level where no one point stands out, leaving the rest to have been "lacking". Wherever I was up to, I was engaged; neither wanting to go back or impatient to rush ahead.
    Like waking from a vivid dream; remembering the details, is almost secondary, to the tantalising feelings you are left with, as the images dissipate.


    Any additional comments?

    An excellent audiobook, which I will happily listen to again! I am definitely investing in the other books by this author - Mark Lawrence, & investigating other books narrated by Tim Gerrard Reynolds.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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