4 out of 5
Blood of the Emperor is the final book in The Annuals of Drakis series. Having some victories under their belts the Army of the Prophecy wants more but it’s leaders are divided. Drakis just wants a peace where he can finally live his life on his terms. Jugar, Ethis, Soen, Belag and Lyric have their own agenda’s and alliances and these are what truly drives the plot line. In the end nothing is what it seems yet it all leads to a satisfying conclusion. Drakis starts out as the usual fantasy hero, someone seemingly normal who, through various events, is forced to either rise above or discover some hidden skill and become a leader. Hickman twists this usual scenario around making Drakis nothing more than a name being pulled in several different directions. The reader keeps waiting for that aha moment when Drakis steps forward and takes real control but the aha moment is not related to him and takes him as much by surprise as it does the reader. My only complaint would be I wish there had been more about Soen and his activities in Tjarlas rather than hearing it second hand. It is refreshing to read a complete story in just three novels and I look forward to more from Hickman.