He Who Drowned the World

Tor. (The Radiant Emperor Duology, Bk. 2). Aug. 2023. 496p. ISBN 9781250621825. $28.99. FANTASY
Zhu Yuanzhang has started her path as the Radiant King, but she faces a larger battle to become emperor. Even with the success of her forces, many others stand in the way of her path to greatness. General Zhang commands a stronger, larger army and is guided by his sharp, cunning wife, Madam Zhang. Zhu knows that to survive this hurdle, she will need to bring the eunuch General Ouyang to her side, no matter the enmity between them. Yet beyond these powerful players is one who can subvert all of their goals—the scholar Wang Baoxiang, who has placed himself in the capital to create a long game of revenge and death for everyone’s path to the throne. Paying equal attention to fierce battle scenes and deep conversations and filled with desperate decisions and brutal actions, this book is immersive and intimate.
VERDICT Parker-Chan’s sequel to She Who Became the Sun is a powerful historical fantasy filled with complex people and high stakes.
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