Mark Lawrence

Mark Lawrence works as a novelist and a research scientist in the field of artificial intelligence. He has held secret level clearance with both US and UK governments.

Lawrence’s first work, Prince of Thorns, was published by Ace / Voyager in August 2011 and was a finalist in the Goodreads Choice Award for "Best Fantasy 2011", a David Gemmell Morningstar Award Finalist in 2012 and short listed for the Prix Imaginales in 2013. His second book, King of Thorns was published by Ace / Voyager in August 2012 and was again a finalist in the Goodreads Choice Award for "Best Fantasy 2012." King of Thorns was also one of Barnes & Noble's "Best Fantasy Releases of 2012" and a David Gemmell Legend Award Finalist in 2013. The final book in the Broken Empire trilogy, Emperor of Thorns, was published by Ace / Voyager in August 2013. Sales in the first week got the book positioned on the Sunday Times Bestseller list. It also made the final of the Goodreads Choice Award (2013) and won the David Gemmell Legend Award (2014).

His work is currently translated into 20 languages.

"I was inspired to start typing Prince of Thorns by memories of Burgess’ A Clockwork Orange. Jorg is 14 for all but the first day or two of the book, and that was around the age I recalled Burgess’ protagonist (actually he was 15 as it turns out). Burgess’ book certainly was a commentary on modern society, although set at some small remove into the future. Mine really isn’t. If pushed to explain what’s going on underneath the story, what the deeper themes are, then I’d have to go with anger, hurt, and those curious years where what we are starts to crystallise out of the chaotic murk of being young. Burgess held a mirror up to society, but also to the experience of youth, of how good and evil dance around depending on where you look from, and to the business of choices, guilt, and responsibility. If there’s any depth to Prince of Thorns then it’s those latter issues that are swimming in it – the ones concerning what being human is all about."
Mark Lawrence, when we interviewed him in 2011

... for The Broken Kingdom trilogy ...

"Dark and relentless, Prince of Thorns will pull you under and drown you in story. A two-in-the-morning page turner. Absolutely stunning… jaw-dropping" Robin Hobb

"Excellent – on a par with George R.R. Martin" Conn Iggulden

"Lawrence’s poetic prose is amazing, far and away the best of the modern fantasy authors" Peter V. Brett

"A hard-edged tale of survival and conquest in a brutal medieval world, well told and very compelling" Terry Brooks

November 25th 2011 interview with Mark Lawrence

Earlier this year, debut author Mark Lawrence brought us a gripping new fantasy tale in the form of Prince of Thorns. Dark, detailed and thoroughly engrossing, Lawrence's penchant for [...]

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January 4th 2019 interview with Mark Lawrence

Interview by Timy Takacs and James TivendaleWhat is your favorite fantasy creature and why?I’m far f [...]

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Mark Lawrence reviews

Red Sister

Book of the Ancestor #1 written by Mark Lawrence

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. [...]

Published: 2017

Our rating: 9.5 | 3 positive reader reviews

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Grey Sister

Book of the Ancestor #2 written by Mark Lawrence

In Mystic Class Nona Grey begins to learn the secrets of the universe. But so often even the deepest truths just make our choices harder. Before she leaves the Convent of S [...]

Published: 2018

Our rating: 9.5 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Bound

Book of the Ancestor #2.5 written by Mark Lawrence

This is a 16,000 word short story, primarily featuring Nona, Ara, Kettle, Regol. It should be read between Grey Sister and Holy Sister. [...]

Published: 2018

Our rating: 8.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Holy Sister

Book of the Ancestor #3 written by Mark Lawrence

Nona Grey’s story reaches its shattering conclusion in the third instalment of Book of the Ancestor.THEY CAME AGAINST HER AS A CHILD. NOW THEY FACE THE WOMAN. [...]

Published: 2019

Our rating: 9.6 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Prince of Thorns

Broken Empire: Book 1 written by Mark Lawrence

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 [...]

Published: 2011

Our rating: 9.0 | 7 positive reader reviews

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King of Thorns

Broken Empire: Book 2 written by Mark Lawrence

To reach greatness you must step on bodies, and many brothers lie trodden in my wake. I’ve walked from pawn to player and I’ll win this game of ours, though the [...]

Published: 2012

Our rating: 9.7 | 1 positive reader reviews

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Emperor of Thorns

Broken Empire: Book 3 written by Mark Lawrence

The path to the throne is broken – only the broken can walk it. The world is cracked and time has run through, leaving us clutching at the end days. These are the day [...]

Published: 2013

Our rating: 9.8 | 0 positive reader reviews

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One Word Kill

Impossible Times #1 written by Mark Lawrence

In January 1986, fifteen-year-old boy-genius Nick Hayes discovers he’s dying. And it isn’t even the strangest thing to happen to him that week.Nick [...]

Published: 2019

Our rating: 9.2 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Limited Wish

Impossible Times #2 written by Mark Lawrence

One choice. Two possible timelines. And a world hanging in the balance.It’s the summer of 1986 and reluctant prodigy Nick Hayes is a student at Cambridge Unive [...]

Published: 2019

Our rating: 8.3 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Dispel Illusion

Impossible Times #3 written by Mark Lawrence

Sometimes being wrong is the right answer.Nick Hayes’s genius is in wringing out the universe’s secrets. It’s a talent that’s allowed him to [...]

Published: 2019

Our rating: 9.1 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Prince of Fools

Red Queen\'s War #1 written by Mark Lawrence

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 [...]

Published: 2014

Our rating: 9.4 | 0 positive reader reviews

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The Liar's Key

Red Queen\'s War #2 written by Mark Lawrence

The Red Queen has set her players on the board… Winter is keeping Prince Jalan Kendeth far from the luxuries of his southern palace. And although the North may be ho [...]

Published: 2015

Our rating: 9.5 | 0 positive reader reviews

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The Wheel of Osheim

Red Queen\'s War #3 written by Mark Lawrence

All the horrors of Hell stand between Snorri Ver Snagason and the rescue of his family, if indeed the dead can be rescued. For Jalan Kendeth getting back out alive and with [...]

Published: 2016

Our rating: 9.9 | 1 positive reader reviews

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The Girl and the Stars

The Book of the Ice #1 written by Mark Lawrence

Only when it's darkest can you see the stars.East of the Black Rock, out on the ice, lies a hole down which broken children are thrownOn the vastness of t [...]

Published: 2020

Our rating: 9.5 | 0 positive reader reviews

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