I recieved an ARC from the author in exchange for a honest review. Welcome to Minethria, a land shrouded in mist and inhabited by several different races across the land. Overseen by the Elder King in Mount Morinar and his cohort of lesser Elder beings. Minethria has gone through ten cycles to date which can span hundreds of years. With the Eleventh Cycle about to begin, a new month will be added to the calendar year, a new race will be revealed, and a new Seed is born to take up the mission of fighting a great evil. What that great evil is will not be known for quite some time but the world will soon know. A grimdark novel that will bring you to the darkest corners of your conscious. Over and over again I felt like screaming for what I had just read. Kian will sink his claws into your skin and not let go even after the shocking conclusion. This is my Top novel of 2022 and I’m sure it will be yours when it is released in 2023! Lets dive into this grim epic.
We have four first person POV’s and one third person POV from the Seed. Dalila is a farm girl looking to live the simple life with her family and the boy she loves. When walking in the forest with her friends, they stumble upon a feral Akar looking to kill them. Akar’s are giant like creatures that resemble trolls. After the ensuing struggle, Dalilia discovers that she can heal all the damaged parties with magic. Magic in all its forms is forbidden in Minethria and Dalila will be brought to the capital to face trial. Don’t blink at how broken she will become in this story. Next we have Nora, a warrior looking to prove her worth in the service of her captain Erefiel. Nora despises the Akar with a passion and is unwilling to engage in any discussion on the matter. Headstrong, smart, and reliable, Nora will see the full brutality that Minethria has to offer in battles on and off the field of combat. Nora’s story is the biggest rollercoaster ride I have ever read in one novel for a single character, so be warned! Finally we have Chroma, an Akar living in a settlement controlled by humans much like internment camps. Chroma lives with his mother and only hearing stories of his great father out in the wilds. When Chroma is betrayed by his love interest moving into the bed of another Akar, he flees the settlement for the forest. It is in this forest that all of the story plots will connect and the plot will start a fast pace moving forward. I wish I could discuss more but that wil be for the readers to discover.
Eleventh Cycle is pure grimdark novel in every sense of the word. Each and every main POV character will suffer! You will be tested, push and pulled, and in some cases shoved into dark places you never expected to go. The writing style is a little dense and confusing in the beginning as the story is being built. Just know that not every question you have is going to be answered and read the Foreword before diving in. Trust the author to deliver on his promise to suck you into this one of a kind epic and you will be fine. The story will take its time in unfolding events but the battles will provide a powerful punch. The Elders are more involved in the lives of the creatures of this world than you may think and plenty is happening behind the scenes. This eight hundred page door stopper I consider to be a gamechanger for the grimdark subgenre and the impact it had on me will not be forgotten.
The hype surrounding this novel is 100% real! Mark it on your calendar and preorder your copy now. Kian Ardalan is an author everyone will be talking about in a few months time and this series will be one to watch moving forward.