Acacia by David Anthony Durham
Welcome to the land of Akaran Utopia, or at least that’s what the four Royal children of King Leodan Akaran believe. Unbeknownst to them is the fact that this lifestyle has been bought based on a lie in a world mired in corruption, deception, slavery and drug trafficking and thus begins the basic premise of our Epic story. Throughout the divided Empire this inevitably brings resentment, discontent and subterfuge. Our journey starts with the introduction of a Mein assassin, a people banished to the northern frozen lands, and the assassin’s journey to the land of Acacia to kill the king. King Leodan is portrayed as a kindly man and loving father but his conscience is at odds with the truth of his Empire, and yet is a prisoner of his land’s politics and thus powerless to change the Quota or the League.
The book quickly draws in the reader through DAD’s accomplished writing and engaging storytelling, and we are introduced to lots of characters in the early stages of the book. DAD skilfully builds the tension at the beginning and scopes out his characters in such a way, that we are able to empathise with all parties, except maybe the warlike Numrek. We see all sides and are left with the feeling that they all have a moral point to their actions. This is it’s strongest point as all characters motivations are fully explored and revealed. There are also a few surprising twists thrown in and we see DAD using his skill as an historical writer to flesh out the background to the Acacian world and neighbouring worlds to give them depth and purpose. It is a world of political intrigue, ambition and slavery as well as one of honour, strength and myth. Not all parties are what they seem and nothing is quite what you would expect as it breaks from the usual fantasy conventions. We are also made aware of the mysterious Lothan Akun and this allows exploration for the subsequent two books in the trilogy. The ending was totally unexpected, though refreshing in its boldness and direction.
Acacia is a captivating and entertaining novel for an author’s first foray into the fantasy genre and one that has me catching back up on the world of fantasy after a year or two away. The characters, while following a formulaic path do not take the routes treaded in other fantasy novels. It perhaps could have had a little more humour thrown in and a better handling of the action scenes and this would have completed the novel for me. As it is though, it is a stellar novel and whilst I have yet to discover the likes of Erikson, Abercrombie, Rothfuss and Sanderson this book was instrumental in reigniting my passion for fantasy. Ultimately, it was a book that I was unable to put down and had me ordering the sequel immediately. I urge you to try it, but please be aware of my disclaimer as I have not yet discovered many of the newer fantasy authors.
This Acacia book review was written by Allan Fisher
All reviews for: War with the Mein
War with the Mein: Book 1
Ruling from the island of Acacia, the emperor of the Known World has inherited an apparent peace and prosperity won by his ancestors generations ago. He's an intelligen...
The Other Lands
War with the Mein: Book 2
The Sacred Band
War with the Mein: Book 3
Have you read Acacia?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Acacia reader reviews
Tom from Ohio
A good mix of politics and action. Very good characters and enough twists to keep you guessing.
9.7/10 from 2 reviews
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
Red Queen's War
The Red Queen is old but the kings of the Broken Empire fear her as they fear no other. Her grandson Jalan Kendeth is a coward, a cheat and a womaniser; and tenth in line t...
A Song of Ice and Fire
George RR Martin
Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime. And the struggle for the Iron Throne has begun. As Warden of the north, Lord Eddard Stark counts it a curse when King Robe...
The Inheritance Trilogy
Yeine Darr is an outcast from the barbarian north. But when her mother dies under mysterious circumstances, she is summoned to the majestic city of Sky - a palace above the...
Before the thorns taught me their sharp lessons and bled weakness from me I had but one brother, and I loved him well. But those days are gone and what is left of them lies...
As shadows threaten to consume the kingdom of Southmarch, Barrick Eddon, heir to March throne, battles his way across the sinister Shadowlands. He must journey through this...
The Goblin Emperor
The youngest, half-goblin son of the Emperor has lived his entire life in exile, distant from the Imperial Court and the deadly intrigue that suffuses it. But when his fath...
A thousand years ago, the people of Achar drove the Forbidden from their lands. But now the northern tribes of the Ravensbund are fleeing south again, with nightmarish tale...
The Walkers of Legend
Two young men are thrown to opposite sides of a war where both will fight to prevent their homeland, the world’s last pocket of free people, from being consumed by a ...
Mark Charan Newton
The monarchies of the Royal Vispasian Union have been bound together for two hundred years by laws maintained and enforced by the powerful Sun Chamber. As a result, nations...
Brood of Bones
Cursed with endless drowsiness, Enchantress Hiresha sleeps more than she lives. Since she never has had a chance to raise a family, she sometimes feels like every woman is ...
King Rolen's Kin Series
Rowena Cory Daniells
Only seven minutes younger than Rolencia's heir, Byren has never hungered for the throne. He laughs when a seer predicts that he will kill his twin. But the royal heir ...
Scourge of the Betrayer
Many tales are told of the Syldoon Empire and its fearsome soldiers, who are known throughout the world for their treachery and atrocities. Some say that the Syldoon eat vi...
The history of the Land may remember the slaughter at Moorview or the horror of Scree's fall, but there were other casualties of the secret war against Azaer - more tal...
Kingdoms of Thorn and Bone
In the kingdom of Crotheny, two young girls play in the tangled gardens of the sacred city of the dead where they discover the crypt of a legendary ancestral queen. In the ...
The Emperor's Knife
There is a cancer at the heart of the mighty Cerani Empire: a plague that marks each victim with a fragment of a greater design. And as the geometric patterns cover the ski...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
- Recommended high fantasy books/series
- Recommended books/series featuring royalty, monarchy and empire
- Recommended epic fantasy books/series
Best of 2016
Hope and Red
In a fracturing empire spread across savage seas, two people find a common cause. Hope, the lone survivor of a village massacred by the emperor's forces, is secretly train...
The Pagan Night
Ruling with an iron hand, the Church has eliminated the ancient pagan ways. Yet demonic gheists terrorize the land, hunted by the Inquisition, while age-old hatreds rage betwe...
The Red Heir
Holden R Johnson
Long ago, when the Essence of magic gave Elemor its power, the world saw prosperity, ingenuity, and wonder. Peace can only last so long, however. The darkness always seems to ...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
When Vivian is evacuated from London in 1939, she expects to be staying in the countryside. Instead, she is whisked away to Time City – a place that exists outside time and space. It is a strange and remarkable place, where technology rules – yet important events of both past and future are marked by the appearance of mysterious Time...
The Guns of Empire
As the roar of the guns subsides and the smoke of battle clears, the country of Vordan is offered a fragile peace... After their shattering defeats at the hands of brillian...
At the Convent of Sweet Mercy young girls are raised to be killers. In a few the old bloods show, gifting talents rarely seen since the tribes beached their ships on Abeth....
Events are coming to a climax in the Banished Lands, as the war reaches new heights. King Nathair has taken control of the fortress at Drassil and three of the Seven Treasu...
For Kivrin Engle, preparing an on-site study of one of the deadliest eras in humanity's history was as simple as receiving inoculations against the diseases of the four...
The Banished Lands are engulfed in war and chaos. The cunning Queen Rhin has conquered the west and High King Nathair has the cauldron, most powerful of the seven treasures...