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The Trials of Empire

On sale

8th February 2024

Price: £22

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Selected: Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9780356516479

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The Trials of Empire is the epic conclusion to the bestselling Empire of the Wolf series, where Sir Konrad Vonvalt – the most powerful and feared of the Emperor’s Justices – must finally face the dark powers that seek to detroy the Empire.

THE TIME OF JUDGEMENT IS AT HAND

The Empire of the Wolf is on its knees, but there’s life in the great beast yet.

To save it, Sir Konrad Vonvalt and Helena must look beyond its borders for allies – to the wolfmen of the southern plains, and the pagan clans in the north. But old grievances run deep, and both factions would benefit from the fall of Sova.

Even these allies might not be enough. Their enemy, the zealot Bartholomew Claver, wields infernal powers bestowed on him by a mysterious demonic patron. If Vonvalt and Helena are to stand against him, they will need friends on both sides of the mortal plane – but such allegiances carry a heavy price.

As the battlelines are drawn in both Sova and the afterlife, the final reckoning draws close. Here, at the beating heart of the Empire, the two-headed wolf will be reborn in a blaze of justice . . . or crushed beneath the shadow of tyranny.

Praise for the Empire of the Wolf series

‘A stunning piece of modern fantasy writing’ RJ Barker

‘Utterly compelling, thoroughly engrossing and written with such skilful assurance I could barely put it down’ Nicholas Eames

‘A fantastic debut’ Peter McLean

‘Equal parts heroic fantasy and murder mystery . . . Richard Swan’s sophisticated take on the fantasy genre will leave readers hungry for more’ Sebastien de Castell

‘Great characters, compelling and wonderfully written. A brilliant debut and fantastic start to the series’ James Islington

‘Totally addictive’ Novel Notions

‘A brilliant book, with intrigue, excellent character arcs, a brutal magic system and a story I just could not put down’ Grimdark Magazine

‘An absorbing fantasy murder mystery . . . I have been thoroughly hooked by this series and cannot wait for the next helping of political upheaval’ Fantasy Book Critic

‘Fantasy, mystery, drama, intrigue, action – The Justice of Kings has it all’ Bibliosanctum

‘One of those utterly compelling and believable books that begs to be read in one sitting. This is going to be one of the standouts of the year’ British Fantasy Society

‘Swan’s debut is a thrilling epic fantasy with a murder mystery and supernatural twist that will delight fans of Sherlock Holmes. It certainly delighted me’ Fantasy Hive

‘Swan has built a dark and gritty world, filled it with beautifully written characters and lays out a master-crafted story to create an incredible book that you can’t put down’ FanFiAddict

The Empire of the Wolf trilogy
The Justice of Kings
The Tyranny of Faith
The Trials of Empire

What's Inside

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Reviews

FanFiAddict
The Justice of Kings is a sensational fantasy debut. It is The Witcher meets Judge Dredd with a little bit of Ned Stark thrown in for good measure . . . it is a fantastic read
H. M. Long
The Justice of Kings instantly claimed a place as one of my favourite reads of the year. With vivid characters, impeccable storytelling, and an eloquent voice, it combines so many elements I love - mystery, brooding war, necromancy and a cast of characters who felt so real, I was loathe to turn the final page. It was absolutely riveting, and I can't wait to continue the series
Kirkus (starred review)
An intriguingly dark deconstruction of a beloved mystery trope
FanFiAddict
Swan has built a dark and gritty world, filled it with beautifully written characters and lays out a master-crafted story to create an incredible book that you can't put down
Fantasy Hive
Swan's debut is a thrilling epic-fantasy with a murder mystery and supernatural twist that will delight fans of Sherlock Holmes. It certainly delighted me
Grimdark Magazine
Swan's trilogy can take its place next to the Broken Empire and the First Law
Jeremy Szal
A riveting, explosive book with a hugely compelling study of justice and revenge and law. Highly recommended!
James Islington
A fascinating look at justice, vengeance and the law - great characters, compelling and wonderfully written. A brilliant debut and fantastic start to the series
SciFiNow
Addictive . . . A broadsword-brandishing, magically powerful debut that knows what makes fantasy fun
Dave Wragg
An invigorating mix of the visceral and cerebral, set in a complex, grimy world, it asks questions about the nature of law and justice which have never been more timely
Grimdark Magazine
A brilliant book, with intrigue, excellent character arcs, a brutal magic system and a story I just could not put down
RJ Barker
A stunning piece of modern fantasy writing
Fantasy Book Critic
An absorbing fantasy murder mystery . . . I have been thoroughly hooked by this series and cannot wait for the next helping of political upheaval
British Fantasy Society
One of those utterly compelling and believable books that begs to be read in one sitting. This is going to be one of the standouts of the year
Publishers Weekly
Riveting . . . Swan crafts a strong, dynamic character in Vonvalt, and the whodunit twists will keep readers turning the pages
Bibliosanctum
Fantasy, mystery, drama, intrigue, action - The Justice of Kings has it all
Christopher Buehlman
The Justice of Kings is a smart, highly engaging read with an immersive world and 3D characters - think The Name of the Rose meets Imperium in an alternate German-flavoured 12th century empire with magic. Just trust me, you want this
K.S. Villoso, author of The Wolf of Oren-Yaro
A marvellously detailed world with an engrossing adventure from a unique perspective
Sebastien de Castell
The Justice of Kings is equal parts heroic fantasy and Sherlock Holmes mystery. Sir Konrad Vonvalt's fierce intellect and arcane powers will make you long to follow in his footsteps, but it's his young clerk, Helena who brings heart and dazzle to the story. Together they're a formidable team, and Richard Swan's sophisticated take on the fantasy genre will leave readers hungry for more
Nicholas Eames
The Justice of Kings is utterly compelling, thoroughly engrossing, and written with such skillful assurance I could barely put it down. The characters feel so real I swear I suffered every horror and hangover alongside them, and their world-though we see just the smallest portion of it here-feels vastly complex, poised on the brink of a disaster I can't wait to watch unfold
Peter McLean
A fantastic debut
Powder & Page
An absolute banger of a book . . . This is definitely going on my list of best books of the year
Novel Notions
Totally addictive. A truly riveting tale about law, war, morality and justice