Sleeping Beauty by Mark Lawrence

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April 8, 2015 by McDowski

"Beauty" is a stretch...

“Beauty” is a stretch…

Jorg Ancrath needs shelter from what looks to be a hell of a storm, and he and his traveling companion stumble upon a cave. A ghost, or memory, of a woman warns them to turn back. But Jorg isn’t one to respond to warnings or threats, is he? He goes right in, and al most immediately runs into trouble. There is another ghost in the caves, and her plan involves a lot more than warnings. Perhaps Jorg should have listened this time…

If you enjoyed Jorg and the world of The Broken Empire trilogy, then you will enjoy this short story. According to Mark Lawrence, “It’s really a bit of fun, prompted by a challenge from a reader to warp the tale of Sleeping Beauty around that of young Jorg Ancrath.”

Like its fairy tale namesake, Jorg wakes up with a kiss. But this is no fairy tale. Not surprisingly, Jorg ends up in a hairy situation. He has the worst luck, doesn’t he? But then, through a combination of cunning, foresight, and good fortune, he escapes. Jorg has the best luck, doesn’t he?

This short story is by no means critical to the trilogy, and you won’t miss anything if you pass over it, but it adds a little more to the character of Jorg by reinforcing his willpower, stubbornness, and refusal to bow down to fear. Plus, it’s just fun as hell. I’d give it a 4 / 5.

During the DanceI also read During the Dance, a very short story by Lawrence. It’s only about 2,000 words, and has nothing at all to do with The Broken Empire. Hard to describe. It’s about a boy who lost his little sister, but regains hope many years later. Very brief, but touching. It’s completely free on Kindle, so go ahead and pick it up.


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