I think the most important thing to say about these books is that they’re not The Winter Prince. They certainly build off of that story, and I would most definitely read it first. But The Winter Prince is one of those books that I don’t think you could write a real sequel to. Nonetheles, A Coalition of Lions and The Sunbird are both fascinating and well-written. Telemakos is a wonderful character who’s reminding me more and more of Megan Whalen Turner’s Gen. I’ve got the next one ordered and I can’t wait till it gets here!
The main focus switches from Goewin to Telemakos in this book. And I love Telemakos. I love this book too, in a way I think I didn’t the first time I read it. The political tensions, the relationship between the plague and salt, the characters. There are so many echoes back to the first book, which made me think about the characters in such a new way. Probably my favorite of these is when Telemakos tells Medraut that the salt looks like snow–the brief description there had such a vivid ties to the description of the snow in The Winter Prince, and it provides a glimpse into Medraut’s mind that we’re lacking at that point in the story. [Jan. 2011]