The Legends of the First Empire is an epic fantasy series whose original working titles were Rhune, Dherg, Rhist, Phyre, and Fhrey. The first book (Age of Myth) was released on June 28, 2016 from Del Rey (fantasy imprint of Penguin Random House). They released the second title (Age of Swords) in July 2017 and the third book (Age of War) on July 3, 2018. The remaining titles are Age of Legend, Age of Death, and Age of Empyre. Originally, I thought the series would be a trilogy, and now it’s essentially two closely related trilogies under the same banner.
At this point (and before the first book was released) all the books were written, although the fourth book required a significant revamping. This work (as well as subsequent changes to #5 and #6 are now done and we are working on a few minor adjustments and then all three books will go to beta reading.
As mentioned, the first three books of the series have been sold to Random House’s Del Rey Imprint. Contract negotiations with Kensington Publishing (to produce the print versions of the last three books as part of their Rebel Base Select Imprint) ended with no deal brokered, so these remaining books will be self-published. The audiobooks have been sold to Recorded Books (1 – 4) and Audible Studios (5 & 6). Tim Gerard Reynolds will once more be the narrator. Several foreign language deals have been signed including German and Russian.
So, what’s this series about? Well here is the “back of the book copy” that Del Rey wrote for the first novel.
What does it mean if the gods can be killed?
Michael J. Sullivan’s trailblazing career began with the breakout success of his Riyria series: full-bodied, spellbinding fantasy adventures whose imaginative scope and sympathetic characters won a devoted readership and comparisons to fantasy masters Brandon Sanderson, Scott Lynch, and Tolkien himself. Now, Sullivan’s stunning hardcover debut, Age of Myth, inaugurates an original five-book series–and one of fantasy’s finest next-generation storytellers continues to break new ground.
Since time immemorial, humans have worshipped the gods they call Fhrey, truly a race apart: invincible in battle, masters of magic, and seemingly immortal. But when a god falls to a human blade, the balance of power between men and those they thought were gods changes forever. Now, only a few stand between humankind and annihilation: Raithe, reluctant to embrace his destiny as the God Killer. Suri, a young seer burdened by signs of impending doom. And Persephone, who must overcome personal tragedy to lead her people.
The Age of Myth is over; the time of rebellion has begun.
For those familiar with my other books, here are some things that might answer questions about where The First Empire fits into my overarching lexicon.
- Yes, it is based in the same world as Riyria but many thousands of years in the past (3,000 give or take), so while the landforms are the same, you’ll not recognize much else. The cultures, technologies, races, and characters will be unlike anything you met in Elan previously.
- Unlike much of fantasy, the setting will not be a variation on a medieval world. In this series, there are no kings or knights. Humankind starts off in a pre-bronze age where people fight with spears rather than swords.
- These books can be read completely independent of the Riyria books (both Revelations and Chronicles) but those that have read Riyria will have fun making connections between what they’ve been told about Elan’s history and what actually happened.
- My standard techniques will be employed: fast-paced, humor, interesting characters, and a good number of twists and turns. Also, like my other books, each will be a complete tale with its own conflict and resolution, but there will also be plot points that span the entire series.
- Unlike Riyria (which focuses primarily on two main protagonists), this is more of an ensemble piece where the efforts of a small group of people will each have their own parts to play.
I hope some of this sounds interesting to you. And if you want to be notified of release dates, or if you wish to receive some pre-release goodies, here is a link where you can sign up.