HarperCollins Eos, Feb 2001, 25.00, 463 pp.
The King died without naming a successor. Over the next century, the two most powerful aristocratic clans, the Renne and the Wills continually argue and fight for control of Ayr. Both families will do anything including murder of one of their own or even destroy a nation to gain the throne.
Toren Renne shocks his kin when he becomes the family leader by wanting peace for the land. He can easily be sacrificed. Her clan plans to use an unwilling Elise Willis as a pawn through a forced marriage. All the Machiavellian maneuvers impact everyday people. Just ask three Valesmen who simply want to make a fortune. Instead they end up in the middle of political and otherworldly intrigue of a powerful venomous sorcerer with the only seeming winner being evil unless one or more of the trio can find a miracle or two and that seems impossible.
THE ONE KINGDOM, the first book of the “Swan's War” is a fabulous fantasy political thriller that will excite readers because everything seems genuine. The politics though nasty is intelligent and provides a mundane anchor for the paranormal elements. The characters are real, even the evil sorcerer because Sean Russell makes them complete individuals that provides the audience understanding and motives in their actions. This is a great fantasy tale that the political thriller audience would fully enjoy too.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner