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The Justice of Kings by Richard Swan — Book Review & Summary

Cover Illustration: Martina Fačková

AUTHOR: Richard Swan

PUBLISHED ON: 22 February 2022

GENRE: Fantasy & Mystery



“Beware the idiot, the zealot and the tyrant; each clothes himself in the armour of ignorance.”


The Justice of Kings by Richard Swan is the first book in the Empire of Wolf trilogy. This debut book is a stunning story of a band of 3/4 people. (No, I did read the book. And yes, I know I wrote 3/4. Read it so you understand why). We are travelling the kingdom with Justice Sir Konrad Vonvalt, his taskman, his clerk, a priest. The journey takes us to a village where we see how quick, swift and yet compassionate justice Vonvalt deals with.

But as we progress through the kingdom and come across the death of a Lady, things begin to go southhill. In their try to solve the murder, they somehow go deep and deep into the matters that are hidden and come across more than a murder to solve. While they are busy with this, the capital is unrest and others are slowly gaining advantage.

The ever-golden justice and religion slowly clash and Vonvalt and his team is stuck right in the middle.

Will they be able to solve the murder and come out untouched or like always, someone will have to be sacrificed?

“Faith, that is quite a power.”


I have had a difficult reading month. I read a couple of books here and there but actually sitting and reading some quality books was difficult. And then I was on a vacation and The Justice of Kings was the perfect book I could have asked for. There are two things I would like to highlight before anything else. While the writing is what you expect from epic Fantasy stories, there are punches of some lines, sentences and quotes that I loved. And while generally books that I read are from the rebel point of view, people trying to change the government altogether. This one is something different. And these two points have already made my reading experience something to cherish.

“No one is above the law.”

The Justice of Kings by Richard Swan is in my humble opinion a smashing debut that not only blends Fantasy and Mystery perfectly but the clashes with religion and dead talking, taking it all to new heights. There was an era of my life where I read nothing but mysteries. I have passed that era and now I read mostly Fantasy. And so, reading The Justice of Kings was a pleasant reminder of everything I love.

I would say while the book took me a while to fully be invested, the scenes even in the beginning kept me hooked nonetheless. I started to admire the wit and banter within our protagonists. I think what I would’ve loved more is to see Vonvalt flutter a little. But with how the story is progressing, I do not doubt that there will be more chances for that.

“The law serves the vigilant.”

Needless to say, Helena was my favourite amongst them. But I am sure that with the next two books, they will slowly be in my top characters. I am going to be reading the next two books and hopefully, in this month. At this moment, I am more invested in the story rather than the characters. I really enjoyed the writing. There were some words used and I had to use a dictionary to find the correct meanings and I really appreciate it. Especially, when it is used to be part of the sentence and not just to flaunt big words.

I would recommend The Justice of Kings to anyone who enjoys a good mystery, some playing with the dead and the afterlife and some empire vs religious conflicts.

“Grief does strange things to a person.”

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