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The Falcon Throne

(The Tarnished Crown Quintet #1)

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  652 ratings  ·  125 reviews
In the distant past, the Kingdom of Harcia was torn apart by royal brothers who could not accept a lesser inheritance. Now, the consequences of their actions are coming to light.

Balfre, son of Aimery, Duke of Harcia, is his father's heir. But he has dreams of a crown, not a coronet. He dreams himself the king of a Harcia re-united, but his brother Grefin, their father's fa
Hardcover, 676 pages
Published September 9th 2014 by Orbit (first published September 24th 2013)
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Mogsy (MMOGC)
Aug 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

The Falcon Throne introduces readers to a kingdom torn apart by a centuries-long feud between two neighboring duchies, Harcia and Clemen – all because of a conflict that happened long ago. In the distant past, two stubborn and power-hungry royal brothers fought for rule, and the resulting rift caused the land to split into the two dukedoms. Now Harcia and Clemen are on the brink of war again with the tensions threatening t
Jul 07, 2014 rated it it was ok
I got as far as page 386. I don't really want to read any more about lordly politics, horrible people doing stupid things, and an entirely made-up world where the author could have done anything but instead chose to have women relegated to second-class citizens because that's what medieval societies are supposed to be like. If I want that, I could just re-read Game of Thrones. I don't have the stamina to wade through another multi-volume, twisty-turny, epicly bloody, ooh-who-is-going-to-die-next ...more
Feb 20, 2015 marked it as to-read
This was recommended to me by a fan of my Riyria books. I always take such recommendations seriously so I'll move this up on my TBR list.
Jul 01, 2014 rated it it was ok
Despite enjoying myself while reading this, I got about 3/4 through and simply had no desire to pick it back up. As others have said, it's the same stuff we've seen over and over again (don't get me wrong, I still enjoy the tropey tales), but seriously: a coup resulting in the murder of a ruler, said ruler's son being spirited away to be raised by a maid, an ambitious asshole heir, war brewing, you get the picture. I guess if you're in the mood for something like it, you'll probably enjoy this, ...more
Jul 22, 2014 rated it it was ok
DNFed at around 45%

This book just wasn't going anywhere. It's a Game of Thrones wannabe, yet it lacks Martin's ability to weave countless characters seamlessly together, each one with their own distinct flavour. The characters in Falcon Throne are just tossed in there, pilling on top of each other in a totally awful way.

I was completely bored, unfortunately.
Wow. I feel breathless after reading this. This book was EPIC!
The beginning was a little slow for me, and it took at least 100 pages for this to get really interesting, probably because the first few characters introduced were horrible, but by the end I was head over heels in love with it.

This is a story of three kingdoms and its rulers, and those who want to rule them. These kingdoms are ruled by Dukes rather than Kings and each kingdom has its own problems. Balfre is the heir to Harcia and is
Setting aside at page 102, because I'm just not having any fun or feeling any burning need to know more of the story. There are a few ways in which this just isn't working at all for me.

One is the world, which I started out in the prologue thinking might be sort of Egyptian-ish possibly, but quickly and obviously settled into standard western-Euro, complete with Germanic-esque names, jousting, castles and ale and buxom wenches. Duchies, councils, the old superstitions denounced by the new severe
Tracey the Lizard Queen
Well that was epic!

Let me start by saying I had no idea what to expect with this. Having never read anything by this author and not even bothering with the blurb, I dived in head first. I was pleasantly surprised, it's a great read, maybe a little slow at times, but it is set over the course of 16 or so years!

My first impression: Ah! Shakespeare! His influence is everywhere. Being indifferent to his work, I'm not quite sure how I felt about that, at first. As I slowly ploughed my way through I
I am still on a high from this book. I'm actually avoiding reading anything else so that I can prolong the feeling The Falcon Throne has left me with.

Reading epic fantasy can get a little repetitive, especially since these things have trends. Not too many people are writing Shannara and Sword of Truth like epic fantasies with magic and swords and wizards and elves. The genre is moving towards courtly politics, the fates of bastards and kings and princesses, with magic subtly woven into it. These
Sep 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Most readers are likely to compare this book to Game of Thrones, but for me it's rather like King Lear: excellent writing, amazing characters, intricate woven plotlines, and lots and lots of blood, most of that unfortunately spurting from the wrong people. No elves or dragons, but some of the most in-depth world-building I've ever read, and the heroes (and anti-heroes) could shake themselves off the page. This book drew me in with the opening sentence and held me until the end, with 650+ pages r ...more
Jessie  (Ageless Pages Reviews)
I have loved all of Karen Miller's fantasy books before this. I expected to have the same fun and entertainment I'd come to expect when I pre-ordered The Falcon Throne.

Fast forward a year to when I finally crack the cover aaaaaand.... I am bored within three chapters. It's too much, too try-hard, too scattered, too obviously an appeal to fans of Game of Thrones or Joe Abercrombie's style. It's not that I don't like Miller experimenting with style, tone, subgenre -- I love her imagination! -- but
Steve Caldwell
Oct 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was really looking forward to this book, since I had read several of the authors other books, both under her own name and her pen name, K. E. Mills. She always struck me as an author who had a great grasp of making vivid, realistic characters you could sympathize with, even the villains. In fact, I think she writes some of the best villains in fantasy today. Anyway, I went in with high expectations. Not only were they met, they were shattered. This is an incredibly well written book, and is on ...more
Ross Hamilton
Sep 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
At over 600 pages this was a largish read but didn’t really feel like it. It was easy to get into and keep reading. There is plenty of intrigue and action. It is also a good portrait of how the path to hell can be paved with good intentions. But beyond the immediate plot there is another presence whose evil intentions appear to be gradually approaching fruition.

What I particularly enjoyed was the characterisation by dialogue. All sorts of unusual words creep in, helping create a stronger image o
Jul 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
In case there was any doubt, the cover of my ARC of this book spells it out for you:

When kingdoms clash, every crown will be tarnished by the bloody price of ambition.

This book is solidly set in the same space as Game of Thrones, and if that’s what you’re looking for, it delivers: many characters in intersecting plot-lines, evil schemers, court intrigue, bloody tyranny gone mad. I’ve been following Karen Miller’s works for some time, and she also delivers on the necessities for this kind of plot
Apr 07, 2016 rated it did not like it
I was immensely disappointed by this book. I've liked almost everything Miller has written a great deal, and she's one of the authors I will always read if I see a new book. But this... the writing is good, as one expects from Miller. It's the story itself. This is a Game of Thrones clone.

I've always enjoyed the character development and the emotional evolution of Miller's characters. I never read the Game of Thrones, because I saw the first TV series and didn't enjoy it at all. I tend to avoid
Apr 09, 2015 rated it liked it
As others have said this book is pretty obviously aiming to be game of thrones like and it would have worked had the characters been less one dimensional- mild spoilers ahead

So I don't mind reading about bad characters, good characters, or characters that are any shade of grey but I hate reading about characters who act stupidly and are one dimensional. Sadly most of the characters in this book are so predictable I was never surprised with where the story went. IT was obvious from the very begin
Apr 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
For such a huge book, The Falcon Throne tells quite a tight story. There are the rulers of Clemen and the rulers of Harcia, pitted against each other as tradition dictates, and the people of the Marches caught in the middle. In Clemen, Roric is the new duke navigating his way through power. In Harcia, the longtime duke Aimery struggles with loving his heir, Balfre, and frequently puts his son, Grefin, in a dilemma between obeying his lord and father and being loyal to his older brother. Even the ...more
Oct 13, 2014 rated it it was ok
I had high hopes for this book, it's in my wheel-house you might say. Unfortunately it felt very much same, same and not at all different from what has come before. Lordly rebellion, bastard takes the throne, heir thought dead but isn't. Big bad shadowy guy in the background pulling strings but not a lot in the way of explanation.

It is a largish book that doesn't really go anywhere. From when we start to when we finish is merely a matter of years and a lot of characters dying, but since I didn'
Jaded Internet Critic #567
The good: This book dies not mess around. No "the wind was sighing in the grass as Balfre picked his slow way up the hill, his sword was the day of the county fair!" And then three chapters later, the plot starts. No. It gets right to the point. Right into the action, and it doesn't let up. This is refreshing. There are no long, unnecessary world-building scenes, the focus is on characters and story.


The characters end up sliding into the one-dimensional. Especially the wo
Matthew Brohn
Jul 18, 2016 rated it it was ok
It was undeniably banal. All those who compare it to Game of Thrones are giving George R.R. Martin a huge insult. He writes his books with characters that are interesting. The Falcon throne was full of self interested idiots who couldn't look past their massive egos to think that their plans may go wrong. Also, the main character behind the plot is an absolute mistake. The author is undermining her own book by making it so that all the action in the book goes to waste. The few characters she doe ...more
Oct 28, 2014 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Victoria Snelling
Oct 24, 2015 rated it it was ok
I read half of it. It's a well-written book and the premise is engaging. But I couldn't continue with it because of the misogyny. It's not just that there are few female characters; it was the aggressively shaming language used about and to the female characters.
Aug 19, 2014 rated it it was ok
Good book, but one I've read many times before it feels like.
*Thea 'Wookiee'sMama' Wilson*
Wow...... I mean..... WOW!

I know some people have had problems with Karen Miller's books in the past and I'm sure there will be people who won't like The Falcon Throne either but fortunately I don't fall into either of those camps as I love Karen's books and this one is no exception to the rule. It has a much darker feel than her books have had for me before and I must say like I REALLY like it!

Here we have a book with multiple threads running simultaneously and they are all linked together in
Suzanne Berget
Mar 13, 2015 rated it did not like it
Ok, so here's what the blurbs on the cover promise: "A major new fantasy epic begins", "a writer set to rule the genre", " - packed with political intrigue, explosive action and compelling drama".

After finishing the book I have come to the conclusion that only the following things are true: "A major new...begins", "A writer", "packed with political intrigue"...

This is quite possibly the most massive fantasy book I've read, with the least impressive world-building, and the least amount of actual
Jul 12, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
As a stand-alone (which it is NOT advertised as), this book is 3.5 stars (I rounded down). I don't agree with the reviewers who say it's another Game of Thrones. It's a massive fantasy tale set around a former kingdom where everyone has their own bid for power, yes. It's ALSO never-ending (as the author still has not published the second book let alone the third as of July 2017), yes. It's not a desperate need for the reader to know what's next, no.

The ending really does leave so much unanswered
The basic premise is an interesting one, but it gets difficult to keep track of such a large cast of characters, not to mention the different factions and all their infighting. And then there's the swearing...

I don't consider myself to be someone who is easily offended, but this book has way more swearing than I would expect from a fantasy novel. I know some of it is probably intended as a way of telling us how uncouth and villainous certain characters are, but it got to a point where it seemed
Oct 14, 2017 rated it liked it
I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaway.

I want to be able to say I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and I did enjoy it every much. It's a wonderful tale of intrigue, love, hate, deception and betrayal set in the neighboring kingdoms of Clemens and Harcia. Lost in antiquity, the two kingdoms, each ruled by a Duke, were one kingdom and the heir to the Harcian thrown wants to reunite the kingdom but crunching Clemens underfoot.

I wan to be ablwe to mark this as a 5 star book and list it am
spoilery stuff below So I trudged through this, I've read books by this author before and enjoyed them but this was a bit more grimdark, GRRMy and it did not suit.  There was one character that I liked and by the end what happened to him wasn't good.
The story starts with a revolt winning and a bastard son taking over a duchy, dark magic and plots and a lot of evil people winning.
I have no urge to read further in this series.  It reads well and it's craftful but I didn't care really by the end.
Feb 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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2015 Reading Chal...: The Falcon Throne by Karen Miller 1 17 Dec 31, 2014 07:20AM  
  • The Lascar's Dagger (The Forsaken Lands, #1)
  • The Boy with the Porcelain Blade (Erebus Sequence, #1)
  • Age of Iron (Iron Age, #1)
  • The Scarlet Tides (Moontide Quartet, #2)
  • Thief's Magic (Millennium’s Rule, #1)
  • The Prince of Lies (Night's Masque, #3)
  • Arcanum
  • The King's Man (King Rolen's Kin #3.5)
  • The Knight (High Kingdom, #1)
  • When the Heavens Fall
  • Son of the Morning (Banners of Blood, #1)
  • Snakewood
  • The Waking Engine
  • To Ride Hell’s Chasm
  • Songs of the Earth (The Wild Hunt, #1)
  • The Heir of Night (The Wall of Night, #1)
  • The Romantics
  • Child of a Hidden Sea (Hidden Sea Tales, #1)
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. Please see this thread for more details.

Also writes as "K.E. Mills"

Lord, do you really want to know?

Oh, all right.

I was born in Vancouver, Canada, and came to Australia with my parents when I was 2. I think. Dad’s an Aussie, Mum’s English, go figure. Talk about Fate and Destiny. But three passports come in hand

Other books in the series

The Tarnished Crown Quintet (2 books)
  • The Prince of Glass (The Tarnished Crown, #2)