A Dark Queen Rises

An image of a warrior on a camel in a red desert. The sky is full of stars with a sun rising through golden clouds and a city in the distance. The title 'A dark queen rises' is above the man with 'the burnt empire saga book 2, ashok K. Banker, narrated by Vikas Adam' underneath.

The Saga Continues

Epic.
Intense.
Powerful.
Leaves you wanting more.

That is A Dark Queen Rises (Banker, 2021) in a nutshell. Prior to listening to Vikas Adam narrate this gem, I was unfamiliar with The Burnt Empire Saga. But I’m hooked now! Good thing the series is planned for 9 or so titles – this is a vivid world.

“They came to watch the children burn.”

With an opening line like that, Book #1 should be a wild ride also. I’m curious to see how much I missed by not listening to the first book before this one, but I was able to catch up reasonably easily. The characters and world are exceptionally well-developed. I suppose I shall just have to listen again after I get through Upon a Burning Throne. With all of the action and interwoven plots, a second read or listen would certainly not be amiss.

The tale of Queen Agreen fleeing her husband Jarsun across the desert and the ensuing chase, Tyrak’s tyranny and following journey, and Vessa’s maneuverings weave together to form a fascinating web. The queen’s daughter must learn about herself and her powers. The champion foretold to destroy Tyrak must be protected.

Enter the Desert for Yourself

There is so much to discuss and unpack that I am loathe to make any attempt to do so. I don’t think I could be clear and concise. This is one you must read or listen to for yourself. It would take a novel to dig into everything and there is no way to tell you about it all without spoilers. And everybody hates spoilers.

So I’ll just leave it at the below. Short and sweet, but all you need to know. This one is a winner. If you are into Fantasy, especially epic, political fantasy, then A Dark Queen Rises is for you!

Ashok K. Banker takes us on a thrilling ride with A Dark Queen Rises. The Burnt Empire Saga continues on, weaving an intricate tale of intrigue. It is hard to tell what is more enjoyable, the writing or the narration. Vikas Adam does a magnificent job bringing each character to life. His pacing is superbly matched to the text and kept me riveted. Then there is Adam’s skill with characters and his ability to make you forget anything else you may be trying to do while listening. Putting this down was difficult!

Check out other reviews on GoodReads and pick up your copy. 

(Thanks to NetGalley and RB Media for providing me with an advanced copy of this title. All opinions expressed are honest and my own.)

Now to dive into Upon a Burning Throne…

A drawing of a warrior riding an elephant through a stylized desert full of red snakes under a purple night sky filled with stars, some shooting. The title 'Upon a burning throne' is above the man and 'The burnt empire saga book 1, Ashok K. Banker' is underneath.