Draw of Kings (Staff and the Sword book #3) by Patrick Carr Reviewed by: Lori Twichell Genre: Fantasy Publisher: Bethany House Publishers Publication Date: January 28, 2014
Errol Stone would like little more than to disappear from the kingdom’s knowledge. Having grown up in a small village, virtually ignored for most of his life, he’s not adapting to the spotlight well. However, all casts that have been made by the Secundus of the Kingdom have shown that it’s likely either he or Liam will be the King. And certainly, one of these two men will give up his life. But which one? The cast doesn’t show that much information.
So as Errol and his small band of loyal followers fight for the kingdom’s safety, he presses his love for the royal Adora aside. After all, it would be unfair for him to love her and marry her if he’s only going to die.
As the tension ramps up within the kingdom, no one comes out unscathed. Dangerous creatures are heading toward the kingdom, the precious book of knowledge isn’t in the hands of the ‘good guys’ and no one is quite sure that any of their strategies are going to work.
It’s hard to sum up this third book in the series because the plotlines intersect heavily and even the B and C storylines are rife with implication. But even with this intricately plotted story that begs for your full attention while reading, Carr has achieved fantasy masterpiece. With every paragraph, every plot turn and each new chapter, I was pulled even deeper into the story. And I was in over my head before I started! Having read and reviewed both previous books in the series, (A Cast of Stones and Hero’s Lot) I was more than ready to dive in when I got this book in the mail. Both of those were incredibly well crafted adventures and this one did not break that trend.
Errol’s character and his growing relationship with not only Adora, but with the others around him in the kingdom, was fascinating to watch. As he’s gone on this journey it feels like he’s come more than 180 degrees. Two lifetimes could not have held all that Errol has faced since he delivered that first message.
There are moments in this story when you aren’t sure how Carr is going to write himself out of the ‘corners’ that he’s backed the characters into. Even as we got to the very end, I was nearly on the edge of my seat wondering about one specific plot twist. I even, at one point, got very angry with Carr and nearly tossed the book across the room. But it’s a guarantee that if I’d done that, I would have been crawling across the floor seconds later so I didn’t miss what happened next! We’ll just say that was the equivalent of covering my eyes in the theater while watching a movie.
This series is stunning in its beauty and begs to be read, savored, shared, and read again. These books will hold a special place on my heart and my shelves. Since this is Carr’s first adventure, I cannot wait to see what he has up his sleeve next time around. I am proud to be counted officially amongst Carr’s fans.