After having read a number of rave reviews about this book, I expected great things. It failed to deliver. It delivered murder, mayhem, and magic, but it lacked heart.
I just couldn't relate to the main character. In the opening scene, we see young Jorg at the helm of murderous gang in the midst of raping and murdering the inhabitants of a small farming village. We soon discover that Jorg witnessed the murder of his mother and little brother and was soon thereafter cast out of his house and disinherited by his cold father. I suspect this backstory was meant to explain Jorg's personality. But frankly, nothing could explain Jorg.
Jorg is not that protagonist who appears to be evil on the outside, before you discover that he has a soft spot that allows you to root for him. Jorg is full of anger, bloodlust, and thoughts of vengeance. Unfortunately for the story, Jorg fails to be a sympathetic character even after the revelation of his backstory. He fails to be sympathetic because he's a heartless bastard with absolutely zero redeeming characteristics.
Jorg's story is fascinating, yes. Stories of bloody vengeance often are. I kept turning the pages because I was curious about what shock-worthy deed Jorg would commit next--not because I cared a hoot about Jorg. Shock value alone kept my interest.
Now that it's over, I'll be in no hurry to pick up the upcoming sequel. Maybe I'll read it out of sheer curiosity. But in the sequel, I hope Jorg dies.