I really enjoyed this book. It has a gripping plot and fascinating characters. I loved the fact that characters like Adare and Kaden were faced with decisions where there wasn't really a right or wrong answer, and that major characters could legitimately disagree about the right course of action. The conflict between Valyn and Adare's conflict is as heart-breaking as it is inevitable, as the siblings struggle to understand and trust one another. But if they don't unite, how can they defeat the powerful enemies that surround them all? Their enemies, Longfist and Ran il Tornja, are as fully realized as his main characters, yet they remain mysterious and unknowable, their ultimate motivations as elusive as the unhewn throne itself. Staveley's prose is at once spare and evocative, making his world feel viscerally real even in its more fantastical moments.
Overal, I'd recommend this book to anyone interested in epic fantasy. The tight plot and well-drawn characters make it such a pleasurable read I actually find read the whole book (476 pages) in less than a week. I'm definitely going to read the other books in the series, the Chronicles of the Unhewn Throne, too!