A nice, solid alternate history/parallel universe dark fantasy. This is the start to a new series, and definitely reads as such. It's a good take on the traditional "hero's quest" type of fantasy, but it does have its flaws. I spent a good portion of the book trying to figure out ages, or clothes, or landscape. It was almost as if the author was relating a movie to us, assuming we had already seen it and didn't need what he would consider to be extraneous commentary. In spite of that, it's a weird, interesting, creative book, and definitely worth your time if you like alternate history fused with magic.