Tales of Kingshold follows Kingshold in The Wildfire Cycle. You should read the review of Kingshold first.
tl;dr – Tales of Kingshold fleshes out characters (old and new) as well as the lore in the Wildfire Cycle series and is a must read if you liked Kingshold.
Tales of Kingshold is a pleasant surprise in a couple of ways. The first is in its importance to the series and the second in how it makes the world of the Wildfire Cycle richer.
Tales of Kingshold happens to weigh in at approximately 320 pages (not the 50-60 I was expecting) and consists of multiple short stories as well as generally lore related chapters.
The series numbering in Goodreads is misleading (it is currently 1.5) since fractions are generally used to indicate novellas, short stories or stories adjunct to the main story-line. Tales of Kingshold is anything but.
The reason why it is important to read this book is because it introduces new characters who might play a part in the series in the future, and adds quite a bit of detail to the back-stories of familiar and well-loved characters. In general, happens to move the main storyline forward since it fills in some details between Kingshold and Ioth, City of Lights.
Enriching the Lore
For one, the stories add details to the histories of some main as well as peripheral characters. For example – I would never have expected to read so much about Captain Kolsen since he comes only for a few pages in Kingshold. But having read his ‘origin’ story, he has become yet another character that I want to know more about in the series. In another case, there is an excellent story introducing a new assassin (and again, I want to see this character in future books). In this way, the author expands a cast of already great characters with new ones.
We also get to see what happens after the events of Kingshold with specific characters and so this book is a good bridge (haha) to Ioth.
Interspersed within the stories are short notes about magic and how it is used/viewed in the world of Kingshold. I found these to be less enthralling since I found that they broke up my story reading momentum. It may have been better to combine all of this stuff into one chapter. And that is my only gripe about this book.
Tales of Kingshold takes everything you liked about Kingshold – the great characters, pacing and world building – and adds on to it.
If you liked Kingshold, you should read this book. Also, don’t skip this and go to Ioth, City of Lights.
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