Don’t They Know Who I Am: The Twisted Citadel

This is how you read The Twisted Citadel.

Go to the library.

Get out the Axis Trilogy, the Wayfarer Redemption trilogy, and The Serpent Bride.

Read them in that order.

Then, and only then, can you pick up The Twisted Citadel.

Serious. Don’t think for a second that Ms Douglass is going to humour you with the amount of back story necessary to bring you up to date – not going to happen. She’s not going to baby you. This is the second book in a trilogy which is the third trilogy to take place sequentially, so it’s essentially the eighth book in a series. No one is stupid enough to pick up the eighth book in a series and attempt to read it. Especially not fantasy. You don’t even have your own real world knowledge to help you along. What are you going to do when some guy called Axis rides out with the Icarii and a bunch of Lealfast in search of Skraelings? You going to curl up and cry? No. You’re going to man up and go read yourself into a whole new world of awesome and disembowelment. Sara Douglass loves a good disembowelment.

It’s the people who will suck you in. But it’s totally, totally important that you read the other books to get the most out of it. It really is. It multiplies the experience immeasurably.

So – 3.5 stars out of five for literary merit, and 4 stars out of five for guilty pleasure. I love me a massive thick fantasy novel, preferably where some guys can fly. Sigh.

©2009 Suzanne / Don’t They Know Who I Am. To read the full review on the Don’t They Know Who I Am blog please click on this link.


Flycon 2009: Interview with Sara Douglass

Q. Fantasy seems to be going from strength to strength while other speculative fiction genres (with the exception of supernatural romance) still ‘struggle’ – what’s the appeal of fantasy?

I have to come at this by saying I don’t read fantasy myself and haven’t for about 15 years (if I write in a genre I can’t possibly read it) but from things my readers have said, it provides a sense of adventure and romance that simply isn’t readily available in real life.

Q. Could you see yourself just giving up writing entirely? Or, at least, when you get back into writing, doing it more on your own terms?

A: Yes, I can see giving up writing – writing does not define me, so I don’t ‘need’ to actually write. But on the other hand I can just as easily see myself producing the odd book occasionally and really enjoying it. I don’t think I will ever, under any circumstances, do a trilogy or series of books again. I just don’t have it left in me, and I don’t want to commit to that level of writing (and stress) again, but I can see myself doing stand alones every so often. I am also keen to try different genres – I would love to be able to slip into historical romance at some point. But going back into writing will be more on my own terms rather than on other people’s – be they publishers or readers. I think I want to do what I want to do, now. And who knows what that will be? 🙂 Overall, however, I am going to give other areas of my life much more attention and time. Writing will take a third or fourth seat.

©2009 Gary Kemble / Flycon 2009. To read the full interview on the Gary Kemble’s personal website please click on this link..