Review: The Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence

The Prince of Thorns

Summary (from Goodreads):

When he was nine, he watched as his mother and brother were killed before him. At thirteen, he led a band of bloodthirsty thugs. By fifteen, he intends to be king…
It’s time for Prince Honorous Jorg Ancrath to return to the castle he turned his back on, to take what’s rightfully his. Since the day he hung pinned on the thorns of a briar patch and watched Count Renar’s men slaughter his mother and young brother, Jorg has been driven to vent his rage. Life and death are no more than a game to him–and he has nothing left to lose. But treachery awaits him in his father’s castle. Treachery and dark magic. No matter how fierce his will, can one young man conquer enemies with power beyond his imagining?


This book (and the series) was recommended by Terry Brooks on Goodreads. Since my favourite genre is fantasy, and am a fan of Mr. Brooks, I thought I’d give this one a try.

I have to say Prince Jorg is the least likeable protagonist I’ve come across! He’s rude, cruel, violent, dangerous, abusive … and at only age fifteen! The story is also one of the bloodiest and violent fantasy novels I’ve read, where villages are pillaged, burned, and their people killed for no reason except that some can (Jorg is not responsible all the death and devastation in the novel). Having said this, the story grew on me, and by the end, I found myself cheering for this anti-hero Prince Jorg.

Lawrence’s decision to make his hero so unlikable is interesting and rare, and that’s what made finish this book and begin the second. It’s unusual, and I have always liked the unusual.

This series (book two is already in print, but book three is yet to be released) is not for the faint of heart. You have been warned. If anyone does read it, I would love to hear your thoughts it.


2 thoughts on “Review: The Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence

  1. I like the unusual too, to have an unlikeable main character is such a risk to take for an author and if it works, it can really take off, my curiosity is now peaked. Cannot wait to read.

    1. It was really difficult to get my head wrapped around how much I disliked the main character, but it was worth it. It is bloody and violent and coarse, but so good – does that even make sense? Am going to look up more of his work. Let me know what you make of it 🙂


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