Pariah’s Lament by Richie Billing

by Hope Hanson
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When an attempt is made on the life of Ashara, Keeper of Yurr, his young, hapless advisor Edvar must uncover and stop those behind it. With enemies in the capital city and the belligerent Tesh, Keeper of neighboring kingdom Karrabar stirring trouble in the Borderlands, can Edvar hold together Ashara’s brittle reign?


The troubles ripple throughout Yurr, affecting an ancient race of people known as the Amast, who in their time of utmost need, turn to pariah Isy for salvation. Rejected by society, kith and kin, can Isy guide the Amast to safety during the greatest turmoil Yurr has known since the War of the Damned?

–from the blurb for Pariah’s Lament

I received a free eARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are unbiased and wholly my own. Many thanks to Richie Billing for the opportunity to read this!

5 star review
Rating: 4.5/5

Epic fantasy will always have a special place in my heart. There is just something so captivating about this genre! The worlds of these books are always so breathtaking. And when done correctly, the heroism and courage of the characters make for a truly excellent plot.

Richie Billing’s debut novel, Pariah’s Lament, has all the makings of classic epic fantasy. So, obviously, I loved it! But let me tell you a little bit more about what exactly made this book so enjoyable in my review for Pariah’s Lament!

Review

Before I say anything else, I must praise Billing’s talent for world-building. Seriously, it just blew me away. The attention to detail was insane; even the smallest nuances of this fictional world, down to the games popularly played by children, were fleshed out. Since, in my opinion, world-building can either make or break a book, Billing’s skill with this solidified Pariah’s Lament as great in my mind.

Following that, the politics involved in this story left me so, so satisfied. I know I say this too often, but books that involve scheming and political intrigue are my absolute favorite. And because of that, I have read many books of that nature. So, you can trust me when I say that Billing truly does have a knack in this area. Sometimes, I feel authors can make claims about the slyness and cunning of the politicians, court members, or councilors in their books, but then don’t fully show it in action. But that definitely wasn’t the case with this one!

Those definitely made up my favorite aspects of Pariah’s Lament, but I do want to say that I greatly enjoyed the characters, as well. Personally, I loved Edvar, mainly because I could relate to some of his inner struggles. And the only reason I wouldn’t say the characters were my favorite part of the novel was that I felt there could have been a little less telling in their characterizations. Don’t get me wrong; Billing is very talented at showing. But there were times when that was backed by redundant telling that I could have done without. It definitely didn’t ruin the book, but it could have been a little bit better in that area. Though, I also must say that I loved the varying perspectives; Billing used a lot of different points of view, something I always enjoy.

I can’t end this without saying anything about the plot, though! And I can happily say that I enjoyed it very much. To be honest, it didn’t follow the story arc I expected it to at the beginning, but that wasn’t a bad thing at all. The story took turns I didn’t foresee, making it everything but boring.

TL,DR Recommendation

All things considered, I fully enjoyed this book. With the stunning backdrop of Billing’s masterful world-building, top-notch political maneuvering, and all the classic elements that make epic fantasy so amazing, Pariah’s Lament left me thoroughly satisfied. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a good epic fantasy!

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