‘The Copper Promise’ – Jen Williams

I know that in my last post I said I wouldn’t be writing on fantasy any more, I read it a lot more than SF after all and it will mean more reviews and more time. But I honestly can’t help myself, fantasy is such a big part of my life and my reading habits and I cannot stop thinking about Jen Williams’ The Copper Promise. So here goes.

img_2248The Copper Promise follows Wydrin of Crosshaven, Sir Sebastian, and Lord Frith as they delve into the forbidden citadel, a prison of the old gods. Of course this ends in them releasing an old god and eventually having to try and fix their mistake. All this happens whilst Sebastian struggles with his allegiance, Frith fights to regain his father’s seat of power, and whilst Wydrin gets up to some wild shenanigans. You will learn as this review goes on that I absolutely adore Wydrin as a character.

Though this book was a sort of sword and sorcery book there wasn’t the usual linear quest narrative which I quite liked. The quest the characters embark on ends in the first few chapters and the rest of the book is them dealing with the fallout (the fallout takes the form of an all-powerful dragon goddess and her army of her lizard children who mercilessly kill anyone they come across), which I found way more interesting.

The only thing I found a bit strange was the fact that the characters all split off for part of the book. Now the book itself is actually four novellas joined together, so the narrative isn’t entirely cohesive, but it seemed to tangent off and follow the individual characters in their own strange stories. Frith and Sebastian’s stories eventually related to the entire arc but Wydrin’s wasn’t really looked at again so I’m hoping her backstory is explored a little more in the second book; The Iron Ghost. 

I don’t really want to give much away but there is a subplot that involves an LGBTQ character and it’s so much more realistic and so much more satisfying than the usual LGBTQ fantasy story line. There’s not much more to say without giving anything away and though I usually post spoiler free reviews I would be really disappointed if I’d known all the twists and turns before I read this book.

This book honestly reminded me why I love fantasy so much, it’s the same feeling as slipping on a warm, worn jumper and drinking your favourite tea. This book was like coming home, and any fantasy fan would love it as much as I did I guarantee.



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