Chachic's Reviews > The Lion Hunter

The Lion Hunter by Elizabeth Wein
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's review
Feb 15, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: favorites, would-love-to-reread
Recommended for: Megan Whalen Turner fans
Read from December 18 to 20, 2013

Reread this for EWein Special Ops:

EWein Special Ops


2011 Review for The Mark of Solomon duology: The Lion Hunter and The Empty Kingdom, originally posted here.

I think we've safely established that I'm a book pusher and there's nothing I enjoy promoting more than under-the-radar books. I am constantly amazed that so many excellent books don't get the attention that they deserve. I reviewed The Sunbird by Elizabeth E. Wein last year, hoping that more people would read her books but I haven't been that successful because I haven't seen reviews of that book in the past year. Also, it makes me sad that The Sunbird is now out of print. So now I feel like I need to talk about The Mark of Solomon, the duology that comes after The Sunbird, because the blogosphere seriously needs to show more Elizabeth E. Wein love.

I've already dubbed Telemakos as Gen-in-Africa so that should serve as enough encouragement for all Megan Whalen Turner fans out there. I originally found out about these books from Sounis, back when I didn't have a blog and I got most of my recommendations from that community. If you have no idea what I'm talking about (shame on you!), Gen is the main character in the Queen's Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner and he's all kinds of awesome. Telemakos is young but he's wise beyond his years. His upbringing as a half-British, half-Aksumite noble and his innate curiosity has landed him right smack in the middle of political intrigue involving several countries. I find it ironic that he has such a striking physical appearance - cinnamon-colored skin, bright blue eyes and pale hair - and yet he excels in subtlety. A line from page 11 reads: "Oh, the wealth of intrigue you heard when no one imagined you were listening."

Elizabeth E. Wein is not afraid of letting her characters suffer and even though I've known from the start that Telemakos is as brave as they come, my heart goes out to him whenever something terrible happens. *huggles Telemakos* He also kept surprising me with how intelligent his strategies were. Sorry for being vague but he kept being thrown into situations where he had to make the most out of his wits if he wanted to keep himself and everyone he cares for out of harm. Also, the secondary characters in these books? They're all so smart and complex and they keep readers guessing. You never know who's really trustworthy. Which also paves the way for complicated relationships between the characters. I love that you can feel the love and respect that the characters have for each other but their interactions are never simple.

The Lion Hunter and The Empty Kingdom should be read together because the first book ends on a major cliffhanger. I heard that they're actually just one book that was split by the publisher, I have no idea why. The Sunbird is the first book about Telemakos and The Mark of Solomon duology continues with his journey. They're historical fiction books set in Aksum (ancient Ethiopia), Africa but there's a hint of Arthurian legend in them as well. Telemakos is actually the son of Medraut (Mordred) and the grandson of Artos (Arthur). So if you're a fan of historical fiction or Arthurian tales or you just want to read books with excellent worldbuilding, multi-faceted characters and plots riddled with conspiracies then you should pick these up as soon as you can. And spread the word about them when you're done reading.

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Reading Progress

12/18/2013 marked as: currently-reading
12/18/2013 page 4
1.0% ""In his delight and excitement, Telemakos made the mistake of his life." Ahhh, Telemakos!"
12/19/2013 page 14
6.0% ""Telemakos's mind went suddenly keen, clutching at this distraction. Even only half-conscious, he was fascinated as always by the complicated adult world of power and influence that surrounded him.""
12/19/2013 page 138
66.0% ""You are good at keeping yourself inconspicuous," she said. "But your veins run with the blood of kings, and your mind is filled with the secrets of an empire. You are like a lamp burning quietly by itself in a dark room. Sooner or later someone is going to exploit your radiance...""
12/20/2013 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by Flannery (new) - added it

Flannery I don't know how interesting this sounds to me but I'll at it to my list solely because you love it so much.

Chachic Yay, thank you, Flannery! :) Maybe you can borrow it from the library so you don't have to buy a copy just to read it? Start with The Sunbird though.

Terry (Ter05 TwiMoms/ MundieMoms) I've looked around and located all the books thanks to your recommendation! Just finished this one and on to the next. Not my usual kind of read and I can't put them down. Too bad they are "undiscovered" by the world.

Chachic I'm hoping that more readers will discover the series not that Code Name Verity is getting a lot of attention. I want another Telemakos book!

Terry (Ter05 TwiMoms/ MundieMoms) I just put Code Name Verity on my TBR list although it really doesn't sound like my thing. This author's writing is rather intriguing and can't put my finger on why.

Chachic I'm usually not a fan of war novels either but I gave Code Name Verity a try because I loved EWein's Lion Hunters series. I ended up loving Code Name Verity, it was one of my favorite reads last year.

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