Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “King of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #2)” as Want to Read:
King of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #2)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

King of Thorns (The Broken Empire #2)

4.21 of 5 stars 4.21  ·  rating details  ·  22,970 ratings  ·  1,265 reviews
The second book in the Broken Empire series, Lawrence takes his young anti-hero one step closer to his grand ambition.

To reach greatness you must step on bodies, and many brothers lie trodden in my wake. I’ve walked from pawn to player and I’ll win this game of ours, though the cost of it may drown the world in blood…

The land burns with the fires of a hundred battles as lo
Hardcover, 449 pages
Published August 7th 2012 by Ace Books (first published August 1st 2012)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about King of Thorns, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Shima In my opinion it gets a lot better, of course I liked the first book too so I'm not sure if this applies to you. In this book we get to see a more…moreIn my opinion it gets a lot better, of course I liked the first book too so I'm not sure if this applies to you. In this book we get to see a more moral side of Jorg and it has a more interesting plot and a lot of twists, also the other characters also get a lot more developed.
Cold Days by Jim ButcherKing of Thorns by Mark  LawrenceA Perfect Blood by Kim HarrisonFair Game by Patricia BriggsTricked by Kevin Hearne
Science Fiction & Fantasy Titles for 2012!
2nd out of 652 books — 1,490 voters
Prince of Thorns by Mark  LawrenceThe Blade Itself by Joe AbercrombieA Game of Thrones by George R.R. MartinKing of Thorns by Mark  LawrenceEmperor of Thorns by Mark  Lawrence
The Grimdarks
4th out of 159 books — 471 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Khanh (Clowns, Nightmares, and Bunnies)
Jorg Ancrath, you little fucker.

My feelings towards Jorg and this book can be best described as the epitome of an abusive relationship.

Jorg is not a nice man. Actually, for most of the book, he's 14 years old, so fuck the "nice man" part because he's not even a man yet. But he'll rip your head off, quite literally, if you say that to his face.

He is a rapist. A murderer. He tortures. He kills haphazardly. He is destructive, capricious. A madman in every sense of the word. He will wound you, ph
Jeffrey Keeten
I read the small forgotten books. The ones found behind the rows on the shelves. In locked chests. In pieces to be assembled. They look old. Some are--a hundred years, three hundred, maybe five, but Orrin's are most ancient. Mine though, they look older, as if what is written in them takes its toll, even on parchment and leather. Mine were set down after the Burning, after the Builders ignited their many suns.

I first met Jorg Ancrath in the first book of The Broken Empire called Prince of Thorns
Mark Lawrence
Jun 11, 2014 Mark Lawrence added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Recommends it for: people with legs (also those without)
[STOP PRESS] Prince of Fools now in shops! If you want to spend some more time in the Broken Empire ... pick it up!

King of Thorns was a gamble on the intelligence of my readers - I bet it was pretty high - I appear to have won.

A 'king'-related interview (with myself)

Wheel-Mouse! More from the Lawrence writing dynasty! (for charity)

Sep 15, 2013 seak rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
Mark Lawrence stormed onto the scene (well, as much as you can in the publishing world) last year with his debut, Prince of Thorns, book one in The Broken Empire. This divisive book found a fan in me, despite this particular first person point of view that all notions of good and virtue tells you to hate.

I found a lot of things that I liked about Jorg even though I didn't love everything about him. Lawrence's captivating writing and smooth prose keep the pages flying and have not a little to do
Rick Riordan
I think this is my favorite book in an excellent trilogy, because the odds are so severely against our anti-hero Jorg. The stakes are high and the plot twists are perfect. Having killed his uncle and secured a small kingdom in the mountains, young Jorg now faces a powerful, charismatic enemy – the Prince of Arrow – who seems destined to unite the Broken Empire. The action jumps back in forth in time, from the siege of Jorg’s capital to several years before, showing us how Jorg traveled the empir ...more
"The warrior rides a black stallion. Smoke shrouds the castle ruins behind him and the wind gives only glimpses of the corpse-choked gap between high and broken walls. That same wind streams long dark hair across his shoulders, like a pennant, and flutters the remnants of his cloak. To his left and right more riders emerge from the fog of war, warriors all, their armour dented, torn, smeared with soot and blood."

Honourous Jorg Ancrath, the Prince of Thorns, has become a king in his own right, an
Terry Brooks
This month I am recommending both PRINCE OF THORNS and KING OF THORNS by Mark Lawrence. They are two of three, with the third not yet published. I have read the first and am halfway through the second. As a fantasy tale, Prince Jorg Ancraft's story is quite extraordinary. It begins when he is 13 and already a stone cold killer with a horrific past. This is a dangerous and risky protagonist for any author to put forth, but Lawrence does it with verve and confidence. It is like a train wreck from ...more
Originally reviewed at Bookwraiths Reviews


While I despised Jorg in Prince of Thorns, the story itself was highly entertaining and kept me turning pages as quickly as I could read them. However, I did not find this novel as engrossing, perhaps because I’ve grown somewhat use to the main character’s sociopathic behavior.

In any event, since the “shock” value of Jorg didn’t overwhelm me this go round, I found myself focusing a great deal on the story itself, which quite
With my reading time becoming increasingly precious, only the very best authors make it to my reading pile at all, and of those, I went with Lawrence to read after finally finishing edits to The Daylight War. Lawrence's poetic prose is amazing, far and away the best of the modern fantasy authors. The prose can get a little hard to follow if you're sleepy or your brain is fried after a long day, but this is hardly a quibble.

First person narrative is arguably the most difficult POV style, and Lawr
Alienor ☠ is stuck on the Jellicoe Road ☠

There was a time when Jorg was only a prince...
Book 1 : Prince of Thorns
Book 3 : Emperor of Thorns

Do you know what I love in these books? Picture the perfect hero. Kind. Skilled. Supported by all kind of prophecies. See this guy, the perfect Gary Sue of fantasy? Well, here, you root for the other guy who wants to kill him.

Because Jorg is some kind of anti Gary Sue.

"I don't play by the rules you choose."

Hello, Gary Sue : Prophecies see you rule the world because you're the One.
Craig Slater
King of Thorns (#2 Broken Empire) by Mark Lawrence.

Hmm, What to say about this Author and this series, without spoiling any of the twists or surprises. Book one, Prince of Thorns was one of the surprises of 2011. If you didn't get it on your to do list you should add it now. I'll wait while you do.

Ok? Done?

At it's essence, this series is a VERY dark and violent tale, told first person, from the point of view of Jorg the young and disturbed ringleader of a brutal band of wandering misfits (Bro
This second book in the Broken Empire series was of a similar quality to the first. Which means it was pretty good!

The Story

This story picks up 4 years after the end of the first book. An 18 year old Jorg now sits on the throne of Renar, but still dreams of being Emperor. His main competition for the role, the beloved Prince of Arrow, marches on Jorg's kingdom with an army many times that of Renar. In a fair fight there would only be one winner. Fighting fair has never been part of Honorous Jor
Will M.
I don't want to be harsh and all, but all I can say of King of Thorns would be that it was fucking boring. It's a shame compared to Prince of Thorns.

The plot's utterly full of useless shit. This novel could've been way shorter. It has 500+ pages (on my iPad) and most of the novel was full of useless conversations. It also has too much adjectives, and tends to describe things longer than it should. And where the fuck is the action? I really liked the first book because it was full of violence
The Broken Empire is a trilogy that I was absolutely afraid to even touch, due to reviews about how violent and gritty it is, and because of rape scenes that are really hard to read about.

It's been on my to-read list for a long time as I found the story quite intriguing but all these comments about rape sensitive issues put me off.

It was when I read a short story by Mark Lawrence in Unfettered and then the Sleeping Beauty. I loved the atmosphere and ML's wonderful prose in the short stories so I
Myke Cole
Prince of Thorns impressed the hell out of me. Jorg Ancrath is the best kind of protagonist: flawed, stumbling, sometimes evil. He's human, and has that greatest of human capacities: the ability to make mistakes, learn from them, and drag the world forward with him.

Jorg doesn't disappoint in the 2nd installment in the series. If anything, his sharp wit, dark perceptive humor and almost precognizant read of complex situations develops. Lawrence ups the stakes in King of Thorns, and takes a comple
In King of Thorns Jorg of Ancrath takes the next step on his path to power. Again author Mark Lawrence shows us the becoming of a villain and as Jorg matures the story does as well. First time readers beware, this review will most likely to contain spoilers for Prince of Thorns.

As in his first novel, Mark Lawrence divides the narrative into two timelines. The first timeline starts immediately after the concluding events of Prince of Thorns and shows us what Jorg and his Brothers are up to for th
Terry Simpson

I was twenty pages from the end when I had to stop to write this review before I forgot what I had to say. I have never done that before.

King of Thorns is better than the first book. It is brutally brilliant, gruesomely good, and amid the carnage offers slivers of a rainbow before snatching it away in a world and future as grim and real as any out there.

Amid the wickedness that is Jorg Ancrath, you will find wit and wisdom to match. Sometimes almost too much for a young man of eighteen
Ranting Dragon

Our favorite debut of last year was unquestionably Mark Lawrence’s Prince of Thorns, a dark, brutally captivating tale of epic fantasy—or low; opinions on that were divided. This August will bring us King of Thorns, the second volume in The Broken Empire and sequel to Prince of Thorns. What he started in his debut, Lawrence expands in King of Thorns. Again, this is a breathtaking, captivating, and violent venture into a wonderful world filled with morally
Marc Aplin
Today is a glorious day. His highness Honorous Jorg Ancrath, King of the Renar Highlands, heir to the lands of Ancrath and the protectorates thereof is getting married. He stands beside his beautiful bride, fresh and perky as the lilies on her head, in a chapel. Once they’ve said their vows and made the marriage official they leave hand in hand to the applause and hoorahs of his people, the nobility who believe that he will save them and bring peace to their domain.

Woah! Hang on one damned minut
You can see that I gave this book five stars. That's actually five trillion stars for King of Awesome, but GR is pretty stingy with its stars; it gave me a five-star limit.

Anyway, I think I should let it out that the Broken Empire series is why I hate Mark Lawrence so much. Not only was I supposed to be studying for two tests when I read this second book, but I was also supposed to be studying for an exam when I read the first book, Prince of Thorns. I had fun reading the books, but my grades di
5 Stars

King of Thorns is one of those rare exceptions that have the sequel actually being better than the first. This book has a better plot, more character development, and an incredible ending. Jorg has taken the definition of an antihero dragged it through the mud and scum, bathed it in blood and filth, and caused us readers to wonder how far can he go and how far can we follow him.

Lawrence has created a world that is simply incredible. As in the first book there are small snippets and morse
Long live the King!

It’s now been four long years since King Jorg of Renar got his revenge on his mother’s and brother’s murderer, and after consolidating his rule over the Renar Highlands, he can now turn his attention to his main goal of becoming Emperor of the Broken Empire.

“A dark time comes. My time. If it offends you. Stop me.”

That is, he could if he weren’t staring down the pointy end of the Prince of Arrow’s army, twenty thousand strong as it marched for his head. Seems the Prince of Arro
This book blew me away and answered unanswered questions I didn't know I had from the first book, Prince of Thorns.

The anti-hero, Jorg, has made himself a king -- of sorts. In book one of the series, Prince of Thorns, we meet Jorg and get introduced to his vengence against his evil uncle and father. Jorg's is a child bandit at 14 running a gang of killers and rapist. Why? Because he helped them escape his father's dungeon and he is brilliant so they let him lead. It's clear that Jorg is ruthless
Mark Lawrence is carving a bloody path to the top of my Favorite Authors list.

This book is a brilliant sequel to Prince of Thorns - read my review here King of Thorns
Where book one was a mixing bowl of madness, crazy writing with randomness thrown in for good measure, book two is a journey into mind fucking. Whilst I am spare with profanity in my reviews and in life generally, I find when I do need decide to use them, it tends to give credence to the impact statement I am trying to make.

This was a big bold move on Lawrence's part. This type of writing reminds me a little of The First Law series where the first of the trilogy is really just a character build
Jul 08, 2013 Nermin rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: The First law fans, fans of "gritty" fantasy
Recommended to Nermin by: meself
Shelves: series, fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Johann Pollard
Read it, it's damn good!
I recently read a piece of writing advice about how to properly write violence and death by always making it count. Be it the character committing the act, the victim, or the observer, violence has to have a price. Gratuitous violence is just too easy.

My thoughts went immediately to The Broken Empire series and it's antagonist, King Jorg Ancrath. Violence in his past shaped child into man by breaking him and letting the darkness we all harbour within ooze out. The article made me further appreci

There are very few constants in the world. Even the certainty of the speed of light is becoming debatable. I realized that as I got older. Growing up is the slow disrobing of ideals – at 5 not crapping your pants is an accomplishment worthy of a Nordic saga; at 15 a smile is not just an expression of happiness as you always thought before, it may be an invitation to carnal pleasures, and suddenly everything is an innuendo; at 25 your parents suddenly tumble from their pedestals and you realize t
Milo (Bane of Kings)
“Mark Lawrence follows up to Prince of Thorns with a cracking, compelling, unpredictable sequel that succeeds in almost every way. My new favourite Fantasy novel of 2012.” ~The Founding Fields

You know in my review of The Blinding Knife, I mentioned that I’d found a favourite fantasy of novel of 2012? Well, as it happens, the very next fantasy novel that I read beats a Brent Weeks novel. Something that I’d never thought possible unless the name of that author was George RR Martin, Peter V. Brett
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
A Million More Pages: 2 - King of Thorns (The Broken Empire): May 1 12 17 May 14, 2015 09:59AM  
How is "Jorg" pronounced? 13 203 Apr 24, 2015 12:44AM  
Katharine or Miana? 22 161 Nov 09, 2014 02:54AM  
King of Thorns 10 172 Apr 27, 2014 01:34AM  
Fantasy Book Club...: King of Thorns-No Spoilers 12 60 Jan 07, 2014 02:22AM  
  • Red Country
  • The Fell Sword (The Traitor Son Cycle, #2)
  • Sworn in Steel (Tales of the Kin, #2)
  • The Crimson Campaign (The Powder Mage, #2)
  • Heir of Novron (The Riyria Revelations, #5-6)
  • The Blinding Knife (Lightbringer, #2)
  • The Tyrant's Law (The Dagger and the Coin, #3)
  • The Daylight War (Demon Cycle, #3)
  • Tomorrow The Killing (Low Town, #2)
  • A Dance of Blades (Shadowdance, #2)
  • Fortress Frontier (Shadow Ops, #2)
  • Valor (The Faithful and the Fallen #2)
  • Reaper's Gale (Malazan Book of the Fallen, #7)
Blog here:

Facebook here:

[My next book The Liar's Key is out in June 2015]

Mark Lawrence is married with four children, one of whom is severely disabled. His day job is as a research scientist focused on various rather intractable problems in the field of artificial intelligence. He has held secret level clearance with b
More about Mark Lawrence...

Other Books in the Series

The Broken Empire (3 books)
  • Prince of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #1)
  • Emperor of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #3)
Prince of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #1) Emperor of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #3) Prince of Fools (The Red Queen’s War, #1) Sleeping Beauty (The Broken Empire, #2.5) Select Mode (The Broken Empire, #1.5)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“We die a little every day and by degrees we’re reborn into different men, older men in the same clothes, with the same scars.” 209 likes
“There is no sound more annoying than the chatter of a child, and none more sad than the silence they leave when they are gone.” 124 likes
More quotes…