Nolyn by Michael J. Sullivan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Nolyn, the son of Nyphron and Persephone and heir to the Empyre has been reassigned after 500 years of exile. Nolyn has been sent to the front lines in war and is certain he's being sent to his death. Fortunately for him he's been assigned to the Seventh Sikaria Auxillary Squadron, an already noteworthy squadron who has a legendary warrior among it's ranks. New legends are beginning in the midst of deception and tragedy.
Nolyn is supposed to be one of three bridge books between Legends of the First Empire and the Riyria Chronicles / Revelations. For those familiar with the mentioned series, there is a lot of familiar occurrences happening. The story revolves largely around the first two half human and half Fhrey people in existence, Nolyn son of Nyphron and Persephone and Sephryn daughter of Tekchin and Moya. The story is largely told from their perspective though there are additional point of view shifts to other characters.
It seems to me that one of the largest themes throughout all the books in this world is history repeats itself, history is forgotten, and history is rediscovered. Nyphron or someone serving him has largely forgotten the contributions of the humans to help him become the Emperor. Humans are second class citizens while the Instarya largely behave like the Miralyth before them. Nyphron has outlawed magic and many have forgotten about its very existence. There are still embers of the past, of a better way, waiting to be rediscovered by all and rekindled.
I enjoyed Nolyn overall, but I largely feel as though I know too much of the world at this point for these books to have the same emotional impact for me. We've seen the beginning in The Legends of the First Empire and the conclusion of events in Riyria Revelations. Seeing the specific events that put things into place is enjoyable, but not quite as rewarding. The events I'd truly love to see more of is Turin/Malcolm/Rex Uberlin vs Trilos. That's the unknown tale in the midst of the familiar and what I'm most curious about at this point. I also realize their battle largely occurs in the shadows and goes unseen. Bringing it to the forefront may not be likely. I want to find out if Trilos is still the thorn in Turin's side in Riyria Revelations or if he's been dealt with before then.
Nolyn is an interesting history lesson and I'm curious to see what happens next.
3.5 out of 5 stars
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