Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

nations crash or rise as battle lines are redrawn - Hidden Empire (Saga of the East, #1) by Matthew Cerra

"I loved this book and couldn't put it down! [...] 
The characters are vivid and interesting. The history is intriguing and overlapping.
I can't wait to read the rest of the series!" Lexa, Goodreads


Published: July 1st, 2018

Tyrnor lies surrounded in storms. Its lands have been protected from the outside world for centuries by an ocean churned by winds, rain, and surf that no ship has crossed. Except Timothy has been sent to find exactly that, a ship never before seen from a land he didn’t know still existed beyond the wall. Accompanied by his faithful friend Telnor, their search for the vessel quickly turns into a fight for their lives. What they know of their people and their land is challenged, leaving them questioning what their loyalty to the emperor will cost them in the end.

The world is in chaos, the old order is no longer secure. Who will live and die, which nations crash or rise as battle lines are redrawn is not yet decided. A saga consuming all of Theron has begun.


Trellax thought on his work as the sunlight dipped further. This was only a small farm, mostly women and children. His orders were to kill everyone, and at times he pondered why. All these creatures looked similar to the dark and soft skin of his master, but none had such strength as she. He was very curious what they possessed that caused so much hatred from his master to be manifested in such a cruel way. Though his troops enjoyed the slaughter as any Larathi would, Trellax was allowed to have thoughts on why they killed the hewmons – so long as he kept them to himself. 

The line of Larathi on either side of him had become anxious and were growling and snapping their jaws. The sun had fallen. Trellax knew he would have to let their bloodlust be sated soon. 

Trellax took his place in front of the troops and turned to face the small force. His voice bellowed across the open field, “Take no prisoners. Allow none to escape!” 

The clearing was filled with the roars and growls of the Larathi warriors. The colors of the rainbow flowed from the jungle and ran across the field, thrashing plants and fencing out of their path. 

Trellax stayed behind, slowly walking across the field, watching as panic struck the house. Two hewmon males came out and a few of his warriors fell. Apparently the hewmons carried crossbows. Some of the Larathi charging the house broke away from the pack to check the stables and see if any other ambushes awaited them. 

Trellax continued to march forward, watching his forces fight at the doorway to the small home. Two long spears held them off from entering. A couple of Kanji hissed and spat as they attempted to fire into the home at those holding the spears, but the closer warriors had lost themselves trying to get in. 

Counting the bodies, Trellax noticed he had lost six of the twenty he sent after the small farm. A grim bellow from the house caught his attention as he saw that a Milshan had thrown the body of a fallen Vestai into the spears and charged into the home. Trellax heard the shouts and screams from inside, and as he watched it looked as though a horse drawn cart was leaving at the back of the home. Waving his sword towards the stables he bellowed orders to the Larathi inside. 

“After the cart, allow none to escape!” Trellax saw a few sprint off, quickly cutting the distance to their prey. One jumped on the horse drawing the cart and tossed it to its side, which pulled the cart over with it. The trunks and people inside spilled out onto the trail leading from the farmhouse. Trellax watched as the children scrambled, and a pale blond haired child made a mad dash for the road, his white linen clothes a glaring marker of his path. 

Trellax observed two of the Larathi start to follow him, only to stop in their tracks. Small flashes of light opened up in the darkness and he saw the struggling Larathi bodies fall to the ground lifeless. The lights stayed hanging in the air for just a moment, before he saw them split and charge the nearest of his warriors. 

Feeling the terror and the surprise of his men, Trellax paused to gauge the scene before coming any closer. The orbs of light were striking at the remaining three of his men that had attacked the cart, two of whom were already struggling with the strange, formless foe. The third was bounding back to the others in the farmhouse, growling and spitting in rage and fear. 

Trellax watched as the struggling of his men ceased and the lights holding their forms faded like a mist caught in a breeze. The hewmons that were in the cart were gone, fled into the forest for the moment. 

Trellax knew he could send more men after the women and children later but for now he had to return to camp after the burning of this farm. He had some questions for Malakia about these lights and what they meant for the Larathi advance on the Brodesian capital. 

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