In theory I don't try to read one genre exclusively because a good story is a good story... In practice however I find myself reading Fantasy and (more recently) Sci-fi again and again. I read for fun and to entertain myself.
I'm not happy.
I read Prince of Thorns two years ago and rated it 3 stars - meaning I kind of liked it. And I have no idea why because I remember almost nothing.
Still, I decided I would finally read the sequel when I signed up for the Read the Sequel Challenge. I mean, I gave it 3 stars - obviously I had had some issues but overall I thought it worth reading.
Now, I'm having second thoughts, because I'm so not happy with this book.
My first issue is the split into two timelines. I'm not sure but I think this already bothered me in the first book. It certainly bothers me now because it really doesn't feel necessary, However, there are even more time levels. On occasion Jorg flashes back to his early childhood, to his time with his Brothers before the first book, to the time between the two main timelines. It's all so very jumpy. I understand that it's supposed to give us insight into Jorg's character and explain how past events influenced future events, but it doesn't feel organic.
My second issue is that this story is set 1000 years into the future in Europe. Yet there are mentions of "Florentine banking clans" and "Jarls" and such. So 1000 years from now society has turned into some kind of mix of 10th to 15th century Europe? The only thing that sets this world apart from a lazily written medieval Europe are the mentions of modern technology and quotes from ancient as well as more modern authors. Seriously, I feel like the author asked himself "How can I make my medieval fantasy set in Europe more interesting?" and then set it in the future to be able to add these things without really asking himself what would survive in a post-apocalyptic world. Take the word "jarl" for example. This title was last used in the 13th century. Why the fuck would anyone use it in the future, in the same way no less? See, so lazy.
My third issue is that I don't like Jorg and it's not because he's a villain. Villains can be cool, they can be interesting and fascinating. Jorg is none of these things. He's evil because he suffered and now he just doesn't give a fuck anymore. That's him in a nutshell and that's the problem. He wants to be emperor because... well, just because. What's new now is that he starts thinking about the consequences to his actions - and then doesn't give a crap. So you read how he wants to do something, then stops, thinks about it, and does it anyway. eye-roll
My fourth issue is Jorg's age. Theoretical he's fourteen. In practice he's a grown man in his twenties or thirties because he neither looks nor acts like a 14 year old boy. So why the fuck is he supposed to be 14??? It's so ridiculous sometimes. I just read a scene where he meets some old acquaintance and they act like they haven't seen each other in ages and speak about the "good old times" which were... 2 years ago. facepalm
Between, I'm about 30% into the book at this point. So 70% more of this nonesense. (Yes, I could just not finish it, but I hate not finishing books. And as long as it isn't too boring I finish what I start.)