Thursday, March 28, 2013
A Confusion of Princes
I don't know how this gem escaped my notice for so long, but alas I have found it AND read it! HUZZAH!
An amazon summary, "Garth Nix, bestselling author of the Keys to the Kingdom series and Shade’s Children, combines space opera with a coming-of-age story in his YA novel A Confusion of Princes.
Superhuman. Immortal. Prince in a Galactic Empire. There has to be a catch…. Khemri learns the minute he becomes a Prince that princes need to be hard to kill—for they are always in danger. Their greatest threat? Other Princes. Every Prince wants to become Emperor and the surest way to do so is to kill, dishonor, or sideline any potential competitor. There are rules, but as Khemri discovers, rules can be bent and even broken. There are also mysteries. Khemri is drawn into the hidden workings of the Empire and is dispatched on a secret mission. In the ruins of space battle, he meets a young woman, called Raine, who challenges his view of the Empire, of Princes, and of himself. But Khemri is a Prince, and even if he wanted to leave the Empire behind, there are forces there that have very definite plans for his future." AMAZON LINK OF JUSTICE
I'm just going to ignore that. Refer to my previous complaints about book summaries. I truly wonder if the authors even get to see the book summaries before the books are published. OY VEY.
So this is a super science fiction book. I mean, I had to ignore some of the more intricate technology jargon so I could get to the meat of the book. Don't get me wrong, it was easy to understand in context once I really replaced 'long fancy name' with 'device that enables things'. Sometimes, I should be smacked. I know.
It's like I haven't written a blog in a week. Whoops.
ANYWAYS. BRAIN FOCUS.
So Prince Khemri is raised in isolation and basically given this AWESOME SUPER IDEAL to expect once he's connected to the imperial mind (Imperial Mind = ruling body of princes; do not make angry) and the first chapter or so of the book is a huge explosion of world building, the technical details of everything, and if the book is going to make sense at all, PAY ATTENTION TO THE FIRST CHAPTER.
Basically, Khemri starts to explore the real world vs. his illusionary world and it's full of surprises. Refer to the book summary from amazon.
I want to talk about the meat of the book.
The book reads as this crazy curious exploratory thing but at the heart of it, it's a story of how Khemri discovers humanity. I feel like it's kind of a play on 'if we let technology do too much for us, we lose focus of what matters - OTHER PEOPLE'. I know, CRAZY RIGHT?
But I love it.
While at times I had to get my brain to really process what the heck was which fancy device doing what, it was definitely action packed and filled with wonder. It wasn't an easy book to put down.
I will say that the summary makes it sound like 'Raine' was the big catalyst in him questioning the empire, but the more Khemri learns about the empire, he has already begun to question it well before Raine came into the picture. Raine was just the catalyst that really tipped one of his many decisions.
I don't really want to say too much else about the book because I think I'll end up putting the entire book out here.
Although I will say that I hope there is NOT a sequel. It would be neat to see a companion book about a different character, same world, but I do think this book is quite a stand-alone book; any sequels would just degrade the story.
Yeah, I'm good with this.