Those Below (The Empty Throne #2) by Daniel Polansky

Those Below (The Empty Throne #2)

For centuries humanity has served Those Above, god-like Eternals who rule from their cloud-capped mountain-city. They built a civilization of unimagined beauty and unchecked viciousness.They thought themselves invincible.They were wrong. The story that began in Those Above comes to an explosive conclusion in this unforgettable battle for the hearts and minds of the human race.

Details Those Below (The Empty Throne #2)

TitleThose Below (The Empty Throne #2)
Release DateMar 10th, 2016
PublisherHodder & Stoughton
GenreFantasy, Fiction, Epic Fantasy, Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia

Reviews Those Below (The Empty Throne #2)

  • Christine Spoors
    I really enjoyed this book and thought that it ended The Empty Throne duology very well, it tied up all of the loose ends. However, I did think that it ended very quickly and would have liked to have had more information about the ending for each character.The plot throughout this book is full of twists and turns and is very clever. I was constantly being surprised by what happened. I really enjoyed that Polansky wasn't afraid to let awful things...
  • Tracey the Lizard Queen
    Originally reviewed here: is due back at the library today, I don't want to part with it.Disclaimer: This is supposed to be a review, not quite. It's more like me processing a mega-whopper case of book blues.I can count on one hand the books that broke me - I don't mean a little book hangover, I mean books that have made me question the point of life. Not my life in particular, existence in general. Us...
  • Joel
    FULL REVIEW ON MY BLOG, TOTAL INABILITY TO CONNECTI have a fairly up-and-down relationship with Daniel Polansky’s work – I enjoy almost all of it, and for large portions of each (most, more accurately) of his books, I’ve experienced pure joy reading. However, as I’ve pointed out in numerous reviews of Daniel’s books, I’m consistently frustrated with his novels. His prose is, for the majority of the time, stellar – among my favorite ...
  • Lancer
    Great finish. Polansky is up there with Joe Abercrombie on my all time favourites list.
  • Kate
    Powerful, dark and very grim.... Fabulous worldbuilding. 3.5 stars.
  • Mark Medina
    A slow burner, very character driven, but that is no bad thing. I enjoyed it, with the focus on the characters relationships and motivations. Bas, the old conflicted soldier, was my favourite. I know some people will complain that not a lot actually happened, and it is not one for fans of constant action/fight scenes, although these are in there. The world building was quite good, but could have been made more of, and I would be interested in ano...
  • Scott
    Polansky easily lives up to the expectations that were created with the first book. This duology was really just one long book, and I thought it was excellent. Great, real characters, interesting world, satisfying ending. There isn't a lot of joy and happiness but who needs that when the story is this good?
  • Roy
    Wasn't as good as the 1st novel however, with Polansky dont expect a suspensful plot. Its all about the slow build and the characters. Great end to the duology.
  • Gavin
    This was a satisfying and fitting conclusion to Daniel Polansky's Empty Throne duology. It confirmed Polansky as an author to watch in my opinion. This was an unusual fantasy story for a few reasons. It was slow paced, but always interesting and engaging. It lacked any characters that I could truly root for, but also made it impossible for me not to sympathize with each of the characters at various times throughout the story. The story was dark, ...
  • Susanna
    I wavered between two and three stars. For the most part, the episodic chapters seemed pointless, with little or no character development, and only two of the four main characters advancing the plot in any meaningful way, the other two merely paying witness with ends to match. The culmination of the story seemed equally pointless, war and annihilation for the sake of themselves with no hope or redemption for anyone. As a commentary on war it work...
  • Kristobelle
    Update: Full review can be found at Book Frivolity! I want to swear.. Can I swear? Expletives seem to be the only response I have right now.. One thing I can formulate in my tiny mind, is that Polansky is one of the best fantasy writers of our time.. Even if you read it just for his style, his complete mastery of word play and vocabulary, pacing, manipulation of grammar to forward his intention.. Jeez *expletives*.. As the youths say 'I can't eve...
  • Paul
    This book was on my list of to read for a long time. After the first one which was a very well written slow burning set-up novel I thought this would be an explosive conclusion. Unfortunately it was again a very slow burner and again nothing really happened until the last 30 pages or so. By the time the book came to life I didn't really care about the characters and unfortunately found it a bit predictable in the end.It is very well written but c...
  • Ryder
    The Empty Throne has the same kind of brutality and introspective characterization that makes Polansky's Low Town trilogy so entertaining, but here with the claustrophic, noir intensity and intrigue traded for more epic scope, ambition, and possibly even originality - as much as anything in epic fantasy can be called original anymore. Not quite Joe Ambercrombie in its critique of the usual power fantasy tropes of the genre, not as literary at lea...
  • Antonio Diaz
    ¡Bam! Pedazo conclusión. Polansky se ha coronado con esta duología, que empieza bien pero acaba genial. Sorprender no sorprende, ¡pero qué bien escribe el jodido!Ahora que ya he leído los dos lo tengo que meditar bien para escribir una reseña en condiciones.
  • Matthew
    Definitely the most disappointing of Polansky's books so far. Very slow, and overly convoluted in some places, but the payout was definitely worth the struggle. Full review soon on
  • Matthew
    A great follow up to Those Above... Polansky is a master of prose. Full review to come.
  • Bradley
    I was right! It is a complete story! Well, it shouldn't be that surprising with names like Those Above and Those Below. :) And the blow-out? Lots of machinations, political intrigue from Eudokia (I absolutely love her), and WAR. We knew it was coming. And it was very satisfying when it came. And the end? LOL. Not saying. But I was satisfied as hell.Still, I was slightly off. It takes up 2 years after the first novel and things have been progressi...
  • Paul Allard
    The second and concluding part of this series deals with the continued political machinations of Eudokia and Pyre, resulting inevitably with bloody confrontation with Those Above. The characters are developed further and the second part of the book is full of double-crossings and betrayals. Some of the main characters die in the conflict, other survive. It's a bit reminiscent (100 years this week) of elements of the Russian Revolution (Lenin, Tro...
  • Jaakko Mäkelä
    Twas ok. The ending was a bit lame.
  • Joey Stettnisch
    Wow really surprised after how good the first book was. There's just no content in this one.
  • Caesar (Chiyu)
    2.5 stars It was ok. Not bad but didn't really hold my interest.
  • Chip
    I enjoyed this one much more than the first. The paced picked up a bit and you could see where the inevitable conclusion was coming. Polansky's a very good writer. I hope to read more of his stuff.
  • MikeD
    4.5 Stars! Daniel Polansky is amazing. "He doesn't write fast enough"!
  • Chris
    Those Below is the second half of a duology by Daniel Polansky, the sequel to his rather good Those Above, which I talked about at length a little while ago.It seems like the focus is on the Roost this time around – the citadel of the effectively immortal, thoroughly inhuman Those Above. But where the last volume showed us the Roost as a calcified, stratified society, ruled by fear and indifference, here the roots of that society are being gnaw...
  • Gregory Mesquitta
    Good bookNot as good as the Low Town series, which was great. Would recommend both books though wish there was another coming.
  • Nikolai Tsekov
    There are some small spoilers ahead, but they won't ruin the book for you in any way.It's amuzing to have some low ratings of the book. Anything under 4.5 is begging for response. I'm posting this on the both parts of this duology, as I fail to look at them as separate books. Polansky is brilliant in both style and world building: those that enjoy epic fantasy will find the world lacking magic, as it's essentially missing in the books, but what h...
  • Douglas Owen
    This series is a fantastic learning experience for any writer. It shows how to use narrative to advance not only plot, but give insight into characters, and how to set a great pace.That being said, the novel itself is well thought out. The author must have planned everything from the first to the last book prior to writing for the flow is excellent and the characters believable.For all my friends who love Fantasy, this series is for you.Only one ...
  • Shaheen
    It was hard to let go of Those Below. So hard that I delayed reading the last ten or so pages until I was dangerously close to allowing 2016 to end before I turned the last page. I love this world, I love these characters, and I'm sad that it's over.The second book in Polansky's duology, Those Below takes up two years after Those Above ended and reunites readers with a widely varied cast at the cusp of changing the world. They have each grown and...
  • Boulder Boulderson
    Not entirely sure what to make of this novel. The ending basically tears down everything unique about the setting, which I suppose doesn't matter as it's the end of the series, but did for me make the entire exercise just a tiny bit pointless.Perhaps it's because I tend to side with the Eternals and against the Five-Fingered and other humans. The only way you can really criticise them is as uninterested in human affair, willing to simply exist on...
  • Ruth
    c2016: FWTB: slurp, Pyre, revolutionaries, handmaiden, matriarch. If I were one of Those Above, I would be looking for a new Roost at about this time. Great storytelling and some characters (Bas in particular) that will hang around for a while. I seem to recall quite liking the 'demons' in the previous book (" 'That day,' the Prime conceded. 'Though that day was only that day, and not today, and certainly not tomorrow.' but in this book they are ...