"I’ve read some pretty good fantasy recently but it feels like a long time since I’ve been so engrossed by a book and just torn through it to see how it ends. It doesn’t feel like a big book (although it will be four hundred and ninety six pages in mass market paperback) but Paul Kearney has managed to cram it full of intricate world building, sympathetic characters and a plot that reminded me of Erikson’s ‘Chain of Dogs’ but took on a life all of it’s own. Refreshingly, Kearney also displays a real knowledge of when to focus in on something and when to hold back and let the reader fill in the gaps. This meant that I wasn’t bogged down in needless ‘info-dumps’ and free to enjoy the story. What a story it is! Fans of military fantasy are going to find a lot to enjoy here with detailed accounts of life on the road and bone crunching conflict between massed ranks of spearmen. When I say ‘bone crunching’ that’s precisely what I mean, Kearney’s descriptions leave the reader in no doubt as to what is happening and there were times when I almost felt myself being carried along by spearmen who were behind a certain character on the page. I was left feeling like I’d read some great stuff but I’m glad I wasn’t there!"