The Oathbreaker's Shadow

Publisher: Doubleday

Review

Fifteen-year-old aspiring warrior Raim lives in a world in which people tie a knot for every promise they make. Anyone who breaks an oath is scarred for life, shunned and forced to live as an outcast in the desert.

Raim has worn a knot around his wrist for as long as he can remember. No one knows what it came from or what promise it symbolises, but he doesn't worry about it - promises are only binding to those who have reached their Honour Age. In any case, his attention is entirely focused upon training to take up a place amongst the elite Yun guard. But on the day he is set to join the Yun and dedicate himself to protect his best friend and future king Khareh, the knot suddenly bursts into flame, searing a burn into his skin. Marked as an oath-breaker, Raim must go on the run - but what will become of him in the desert, and what is the mysterious promise he has unwittingly broken?

This exciting, action-packed fantasy adventure is the first in a projected duology. Debut author Amy McCulloch skilfully conjours up an evocative and richly-detailed fantasy world, and readers will be drawn to Raim, sympathising with the frustration he feels as he battles against the extraordinary circumstances he finds himself in. Incorporating some intriguing ideas, this is a promising debut that will appeal to fans of epic fantasy such as Game of Thrones.

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