Posted on June 19, 2019


Ken Scholes’s debut novel, Lamentation, was an event in fantasy. Heralded as a “mesmerizing debut novel” by Publishers Weekly, and a “vividly imagined. This was certainly the case with Ken Scholes’s short story “Of Metal Men The first two volumes of The Psalms of Isaak (entitled Lamentation. Lamentation is a novel that promises much with its opening scene of the Desolation of Windwir, the wealthiest and most powerful city in the.

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Unfortunately, you can’t mourn the pain of a non-character—and Scholes will ask us to do this twice before Lamentation grinds to a halt. So what are your thoughts? There was once a world, yes might just be Earth but it was destroyed. There’s a particular poignancy in the figure of Lamntation and of his insane counterpart, Charles—two machines who seem more frail and vulnerable than any of the human characters.

To ask other readers questions about Lamentationplease sign up. Added to that is the premise of a great and powerful city destroyed by an ancient artifact long thought to be nothing but a myth. The themes of destruction and rebirth in Lamentation take on a more weight in Canticle ; the novel opens with a rash of assassinations and a very important birth.

Psalms of Isaak Readthrough – Lamentation – Ken Scholes

No, or Gregoric, a general in Rudolfo’s gypsy army, who exists solely to provide Rudolfo with someone to feel bad about when tragedy strikes mid-novel. No wasted words, no filler garbage, just go-go-go without feeling overwhelming or exhausting.

This book was just about perfect summer reading: I felt instant empathy and protectiveness for the character, the only principal character who doesn’t get point-of-view chapters. I look forward to reading the next book in this series, due to appear sometime this fall.


As far as the story itself is concerned. As with any book, there’s almost certainly lmaentation audience out there to whom Lamentation speaks or for whom a character takes on a special life but it’s not me.

However, the characters soon reveal themselves as shallow, flat, and stereotyped, with a consistent flawlessness to their respective personalities.


Oh, and lest I forget to mention it again, it has ideas that made me think against the backdrop of an awesome story with great writing. The writing and story are pretty pedestrian and uninspiring; and there’re far too many instances where Scholes tells you how clever his characters are keen you’re left wondering “In what way?

Review: Lamentation (Psalms of Issak) by Ken Scholes | Best Fantasy Books Blog

Gradually, Scholes uses a smaller plot to establish a much bigger plot—a plot that never comes to fruition in this book. A good story, set in an interesting world, peopled with characters I didn’t give a damn about. Girls hiding behind big strong men, women being commanded by their father to bear heirs in an arranged, strategic marriage. His world contains walking talking robots and labyrinthine religious orders, flamboyant gypsy kings and post-apocalyptic landscapes.

I will say this. He certainly does this with graceful skill, feeding his readers subtle—and not-so-subtle—foreshadowing and creating a world where every character, good or bad, is seemingly manipulated by a greater force at work. The character that had my heart from the first was Isaak, the mecho-servitor.


Ken Scholes

If you want us to believe a character’s grief, show us a relationship that is grief-worthy. If the entire book had been as good as the “what’s next” ending I would probably have liked it better. At its core, about a king who ,amentation a weeping robot in a fantasy-ish setting.

April 22, at 4: By using this site, you ksn to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Dig the treasure out of their soul and hold it to the light. Sharakhai, the great city of the desert, center of commerce and culture, has been ruled from time immemorial by twelve kings — cruel, ruthless, powerful, and immortal. I really enjoyed this novel.

In such breathless moments, Scholes takes you there. Two of Vlad Lee Tam’s children figure prominently in Canticle —yet as only one of them is even mentioned by name in Lamentationand as Scholes continues to cram in a point-of-view change every five pages, it’s hard to accept that they’re now front-and-center players in the tale, initiating earth-shattering betrayals or acts of heroism. His act amounts not only to genocide—home to thousands of Androfrancine priests, Windwir is one of the most populous and influential communities in the Known Lands—but to a profound erasure of knowledge: The “war” that results from the destruction of Windwir is barely engaged in by main characters like Rudolfo and is literally viewed from the sidelines by characters like Neb and Petronus—a young orphan boy and an old priest, respectively, who, in some of the most effective passages in Lamentationbegin a campaign to bury the city’s dead.


Look, working in the back-story of a mythical realm with thousands of years of pre-history is never easy—but this sounds more like a grocery list than a tangible reality. Then, without an outline and with only the vaguest sense of a war over Windwir erupting and culminating in a war crimes trial, I started writing.

It has a lot of potential, and I may actually read the next book I believe there are 5 installments projected at least it’s not another trilogybut I just didn’t feel satisfied after reading it. Notify me of follow-up comments by email.

I think the worldbuilding itself has the combination of backstory, myth, history, religion, art all referenced to give a sense of being real. Since everyone’s motives and thoughts are entirely obvious except to the villains, who are oblivious to pretty much everythingit doesn’t really matter.

Lamentation is a novel that promises much with its opening scene of the Desolation of Windwir, the wealthiest and most powerful city in the world.

There is something so powerful about that idea, and Ken Scholes executed it masterfully. The synopsis calls it an epic fantasy. There is magic here but is not really explored and is otherwise quite dull. For me, this was a wonderful mix and I look forward to reading more by Mr. And it really doesn’t hurt that one of the main characters is Natasha Romanov The Black Widow ‘s much taller sister: Twelve Kings kdn Sharakhai Bradley P.