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, Mystery

Reviews Those Below (The Empty Throne #2)

  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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 ...
  • 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...
  • 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.
  • Darren Hagan
    **4.75 stars**I really enjoyed this sequel and conclusion to Those Above. I went into this duology with quite low expectations because of it not really being a hyped up book series, but I've loved it to be honest.I wouldn't change anything that happened in the story, I just wanted there to be an epilogue.
  • 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.
  • Matteo
    When I finished the first book I was a little disappointed and I wrote that I would have read this final book in the Empty Throne series only because I had already bought it, but I was hoping to be surprised.Actually I admit that this book was positive surprise.Things start happening, we have some action and the plot is developed very cleverly.Honestly I still couldn't feel anything for the main characters, and after 1 week I can't even remember ...
  • Tara
    Definitely a favorite series! Dialog is great, situations are believable and the ending was very realistic, not a HEO type of story. I really enjoyed this read and will read more of Polansky's work!
  • 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...
  • Matthew
    A great follow up to Those Above... Polansky is a master of prose. Full review to come.
  • 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
  • Ruth Harwood
    I've had this in my tbr pile for quite a while (that pile consists of hundreds of books so that's not a bad thing!), but having felt a little 'should I read this? fifty pages in, no, I want something else! over and over, this seems to be the only book that could keep me reading to the end! I get that sometimes - where I start a book and change my mind, wanting a different genre/era/style, so it's no reflection on the books ending up partially rea...
  • 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...
  • Matthew
    Great ending with one of my favorite death scenes in recent memory (two of them actually). Pyre was drastically different in this book, which took some getting used to. Loved me some Thistle in Book 1, but alas, the boy is no more. The duology format really worked and I hope to see more use of it in the future. The story was sharp, included just enough worldbuilding, there was no fluff. Excellent books. Felt grounded for such relatively high stak...
  • Ofer
    Better pacing than the first book, but the ending seemed somewhat too obvious.3.5 stars rounded up to 4 because I really like Polansky's writing style, but still recommend to start reading Polansky with the Low Town series and not with this doulogy.
  • Scott Gardner
    Engrossing storyline , times you feel for the eternals , then they do something as you change your mind , The Aelerian army , like all great empire before them laying waste on the whim of one , are hard to like also , with the exception of Bas , his ending is quite sad
  • MikeD
    4.5 Stars! Daniel Polansky is amazing. "He doesn't write fast enough"!
  • 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.
  • Julie
    I liked it, but only four stars because the ending was so abrupt. I need closure in my life!!!
  • Charl van Niekerk
    Superb. How does Mr. Polansky fit so much goodness into two relatively little books?
  • Charles
    I like Bas tho. I might have misjudged the first book.Maybe this should be sold as an omnibus?
  • Jaakko Mäkelä
    Twas ok. The ending was a bit lame.