The City's Son
by Tom Pollock
Series: The Skyscraper Throne #1
Publication date: September 8, 2012
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Purchase*: Barnes and Noble/Amazon/Book Depository
Running from her traitorous best friend and her estranged
father, graffiti artist Beth Bradley is looking for sanctuary. What she finds
is Urchin, the ragged and cocky crown prince of London’s mystical underworld.
Urchin opens Beth’s eyes to the city she’s never truly seen-where vast spiders
crawl telephone wires seeking voices to steal, railwraiths escape their
tethers, and statues conceal an ancient priesthood robed in bronze.
But it all teeters on the brink of destruction. Amid rumors
that Urchin’s goddess mother will soon return from her 15-year exile, Reach, a
malign god of urban decay, wants the young prince dead. Helping Urchin raise an
alleyway army to reclaim his skyscraper throne, Beth soon forgets her old life.
But when her best friend is captured, Beth must choose between this wondrous
existence and the life she left behind.
I love urban fantasy and was excited by the synopsis for The City's Son
. When I requested it, I had no idea of the treasure I found. This urban fantasy is bloody brilliant. Pollock
took me on one heck of a ride through the streets of London along the Thames
River and I am still in awe about how truly magnificent this tale was. Pollock
is pure genius! He weaved a breathtaking fantasy, with spectacular characters and a plot
that kept me riveted.
Beth Bradley runs away after her friend betrays her and her
absentee Dad fails her. She takes to the modern day streets of London, where
she encounters a street urchin named Filius and learns of a world living side
by side with hers. She learns he is the
crown prince of this mystical world and in danger. The god of urban decay known as Reach is
returning to destroy them all. Beth decides to join forces with Filius and help
him raise an army to reclaim his throne. The tale that unfolds is dark, gritty,
brilliant, and breathtakingly beautiful. It is one of the best urban fantasies
I have had the pleasure to read.
The characters Pollock has created are friggin amazing,
unique and well fleshed-out. Beth has had a tough life, but she expresses
herself through graffiti. Not tagging,
but drawings; some angry, some beautiful and some filled with despair. She wants a place to belong, and the world
Filius shows her draws her in. I loved Beth; she is strong, fearless, brave and
compassionate. Filius is the abandoned
son of a goddess who deserted him and her kingdom after banishing Reach. He is
lonely and knows he needs to stop Reach. Beth draws out Filius and makes him a
better leader. Filius was raised on the
streets by Gutterglass his nanny. Gutterglass
is made entirely of garbage and is constantly being reassembled by an army of
ants, beetles and maggots. He has been
taught morals and rules by the Pavement Priests who reside in the cemetery. These creatures live inside the statues. They
have been cursed by the goddess and forced to dwell beneath the stone for eternity.
I absolutely loved them; they reminded me
of the Weeping Angels
from Doctor Who
. In battle they move with lightening speed. We
meet Blankeits who dwell inside street lamps and dance in the streets. The Sodiumites live inside modern buildings
and consider themselves to be noble. The
Chemical Synod, are hooded creatures with blacken teeth and faces, who will
help in return for a steep price. They are clever and must only be sought with
caution. Victor a street bum adds depth to the tale. I loved this little dude, he was funny and aided Beth. Pen, is Beth’s best friend and the one who betrayed her. I liked Pen
and understood where she was coming from. When Beth disappears she helps Beth’s
Dad search for her and ends up being caught up in the battle. There are many other creatures living in
London that we meet and I was blown away by Pollock's imagination.
Hands down one of the most amazing urban fantasy worlds I have ever visited.
Pollock brought this town and its creatures to life with his pen. I became invested and so caught up in the saga that I consumed this with total disregard for the outside world. While the basic story-line is not original:
Abandoned throne, prince who needs to step up, soldiers and countryman unsure
if they trust this would-be-king and an enemy who will unite them all. The dark gritty story line made this tale brilliant. The creatures Pollack created are fabulous and his descriptions brought them to life. My emotions were on a roller-coaster
ride as the author made me experience; loss, fear, betrayal, anger, laughter and hope. Lives are lost
and the tale is at times dark and ugly. It is a time of war and the author brings it to us in all of its devastating glory. It is also bright and has a little romance, a reunion and gives hope. This combined with well fleshed out characters made this tale come to
life. The author beautifully weaved details and
back-history with twists and turns that had my jaw dropping, emotions running
hot and kept me completely enthralled.
I highly recommend The City's Son to fans of urban fantasy and
kick-ass world building. While dark and gritty it is also beautiful and
engaging. I am foaming at the mouth for The Glass Republic book two in The Skyscrape Throne series. Pollock is an
author whose books I would read without a recommendation based solely on his work in this novel.
I want to thank Flux for providing this ARC in
exchange for my unbiased review. *Purchases made thorough buy links on this site earn a small commission and help support giveaways.
I gave this novel 5 coffee cups out 5.
Labels: Flux, London, netGalley, The Skyscraper Throne series, Tom Pollock, YA urban fantasy