For fans of the world of Azeroth and its lore, for fans of high fantasy, for an epic tale of a hero / villain and villain / hero, for a really intense and intricately woven story
When a plague of undeath threatened all that he loved, Arthas was driven to pursue an ill-fated quest for a runeblade powerful enough to save his homeland. Yet the object of his search would exact a heavy price from its new master, beginning a horrifying descent into damnation. Arthas’s path would lead him through the arctic northern wastes toward the Frozen Throne, where he would face, at long last, the darkest of destinies. The Lich King is an entity of incalculable power and unparalleled malice — his icy soul utterly consumed by his plans to destroy all life on the World of Warcraft.
Oh man. I had a craving for some epic high fantasy, and naturally I thought “nothing gets the job done better than WoW books.” Picked this up thinking it would be great to learn more about the Lich King prior to Shadowlands later this year.
WOW. This was so good it actually made my craving WORSE. The incredible span of the book was far more than I expected. I always love getting the perspective from the character who maybe isn’t the hero, and Arthas was extraordinarily complex and fascinating. There were so many other characters and events woven in that I’ve read about. I was delighted every time someone popped up, and loved adding the new thread of Arthas to the tapestry of each event.
Sylvanas showing up blew me away, as I haven’t seen much of her pre-Horde-leader yet, so seeing some of her transformation was powerful and made me feel oddly prescient since I know where she’s heading in a while. It actually took me a chapter or two of seeing her to realize she wasn’t trying to kill anyone besides the Scourge.
The length of the story in terms of the timeline it covers was entirely unexpected and entirely impressive. From boy Arthas to the fully embraced power of the Lich King, I feel like I know him intimately. Serving as another delicately balanced moral gray area, you’ll find yourself sympathizing with someone you would expect to condemn. That more than anything is a highlight for me in pretty much any book.
While my knowledge of the characters and the lore lent this some extra impact when references to other events or people were made, it’s presented in a way that someone coming into it would have no issue understanding and enjoying all that’s going on. Hopefully it would make them just want to read more to understand those other intriguing snippets! Definitely my favorite of the WoW series that I’ve read so far.