Published: 26 August 2010 by Orbit Books
Format: Paperback, 640 pages
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Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that preserves a tenuous peace. But Prisms never last, and Guile knows exactly how long he has left to live: Five years to achieve five impossible goals.
But when Guile discovers he has a son, born in a far kingdom after the war that put him in power, he must decide how much he’s willing to pay to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.
Sometimes, but rarely, novels come along with amazing new ideas that sweep readers away. The Black Prism is one such book. It features a great plot, intricate with great detail but still easy to follow; masterful world building (with one of the coolest magic systems I’ve ever read about) and believable, deep characters that I loved. Brent Weeks has created a vivid world with a colour/light spectrum based magic system which rocks my socks! He explains his elaborate magic system well and I never felt confused about it despite all the details.
The characters are amazing in this book. One of the best things about Brent Weeks’ writing is that his female characters are always as relevant, as strong and as vital as his male characters. I developed a soft spot for the Prism and his son Kip, and cheered for Kariss and Liv. The depths of the relationships between the characters amazes me, the secrets that they keep from one another and their motivations for doing so are so real that I completely sympathise with them.
The story is told from many perspectives and this lends depth to the narrative and balances it out. Sometimes this can be confusing for readers, but in this book it is perfect. Every time I thought I had figured out what was happening in the story, Brent Weeks pulled out a twist that left me reeling. This isn’t a predictable book – it’s epic in its scope and wonderfully crafted.
It was great for me to finally read The Black Prism after buying it the day it came out and then putting it off because I KNEW I would want the other books in the trilogy right after I finished this one. Then I caved in! I was right though – I finished this book and I really wanted The Blinding Knife in my hands, at that moment! If you love fantasy and you haven’t read any of Brent’s books, then you are seriously missing out on something awesome.