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King of Thorns - Mark  Lawrence Surely, in coming to this volume, you will have already read the first and your fascination with Jorg's character has overcome your distaste. Weeded out already are those who were not prepared to read about a protagonist they wouldn't want to be best buddies with and the generally squeamish. Those who read this volume should already know what they are letting themselves in for. If you couldn't abide the first book, you wont want to read this.

In this volume, the character of Jorg continues to ripen, to blossom into the thistle that he is. We continue to see him triumph against all odds, carry himself through almost by sheer determination and force of will, a willingness to do whatever needs to be done, make any sacrifice asked of him. But perhaps we're also starting to see a maturation as he finds himself with regrets and starting to care about the poor and defenceless.

This is a more complex novel than it's predecessor, again with a split narrative structure between the past and present, but further complicated by mysterious gaps in his recollections as hard and dangerous memories are locked away only to resurface later. We also find out a little more about the world and its past, and how it came to be. But what one most wants to know is what lies ahead in its future and for that we will have to wait for the final part of the trilogy.