Book Review: Canticle, By Ken Scholes

How do you top a stunning debut novel? If you’re Ken Scholes, you release a sequel, titled Canticle. Canticle is the second installment in Ken’s The Pslams of Isaak series, the first being Lamentation. If you haven’t read Lamentation, I would strongly suggest you do. Not only does Canticle surpass Lamentation in every possible way, but, in my opinion, cements Mr. Scholes as one of the best Fantasy authors walking the planet today.

CanticleFrom the publisher:

Come back to the Named Lands in this compelling sequel to Ken Scholes amazing novel Lamentation.

It is nine months after the end of the previous book.  Many noble allies have come to the Ninefold Forest for a Feast in honor of General Rudolfo’s  first-born child.  Jin Li Tam, his wife and mother of his heir, lies in childbed.

As the feast begins, the doors of the hall fly open and invisible assassins begin attacking.   All of Rudolfo’s noble guests are slain, including Hanric, the Marsh Queen’s Shadow.  And on the Keeper’s Gate, which guards the Named Lands from the Churning Waste, a strange figure appears, with a message for Petronus, the Hidden Pope.

Thus begins the second movement of The Psalms of Isaak, Canticle.

Canticle picks up several months after Lamentation with characters we have come to know and love. There are also some new POV characters who really add interesting layers to this series. Having read the first three books, my favorite has become Winters. Mr. Scholes has managed to write a strong, if not real feeling character with her. What I especially like about this book is how what readers thought they knew from the first book is turned on its head…in a good way. We thought we knew what was going on but it turns out there was a much bigger picture to behold. I loved the fact that I was constantly on my toes as I read trying to piece together who was pulling each character’s strings. Even at the end of this book readers will still have plenty of questions, which I believe is a good thing. It sets the tone for the third book, Antiphon.

I’m not going to ramble on here because I don’t think I could do this book justice. I tried to find something I didn’t like but in all honestly, I couldn’t. The only minor gripe I had was at times our POV characters never really felt like they were in danger. Other than that, this is definitely one of the best books I’ve ever read. My hat goes off to Ken for creating such a fantastic read.

Overall: I’m giving Canticle ALL THE STARS! Seriously, if you love books, then you’ll probably love this one too. It doesn’t matter what genre you prefer. The Psalms of Isaak series will appeal to any reader. If I had to pick my favorite book of the past few years, it would be Canticle hands down. I can’t recommend it enough. Let me say that I read the first three books in this series back to back to back, something I normally don’t do. The Psalms of Isaak has quickly become my favorite Fantasy series. Get them. Read them. Love them.

You can find Ken Scholes official website by following this link.


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