Judgment at Verdant Court: World of Prime #3 [BOOK REVIEW]

Judgment at Verdant Court CoverAuthor: M.C. Plank
Publisher: Pyr/Prometheus Books
Genre: Fantasy
Unique Elements: A Kendo-trained engineer from Earth finds himself transported to a magical world where he must represent a god of War to get home.
Series: World of Prime #3
Release Date: December 6, 2016
Number of Page: 343 pages
MSRP: $18 Trade Paperback/$9.99 ebook
Discount Link: Click Here
Website: Click Here
Purchase Site: Click Here
Reviewed by: J.T. Hanke
Final Score: 5 Moons (out of 5)

(Read our first review in this series here or the review of the second book .)

After The mother of a dead Druid shows up at his base of operations, Christopher is forced to agree to track down an old friend who killed her daughter. With the help of her tracker son, D’Kan (that Christopher had resurrected against his people’s wishes), they mount an expedition into the darkest reaches of the wilderness.

Brilliant Moon Award

Cannan—the fugitive being sought—had been Christopher’s loyal protector until he had been gifted a Black-infused ring which preyed upon him and twisted him to the dark side. If they can track him down and keep him alive long enough to remove the ring, only the unlikely mercy of the Druidic Verdant Court can keep him from going into the Permanent Death from which there’s no resurrection.

Upon his journey, Christopher will discover new things about loyalty, find unexpected peoples from myth and legend, and find how high he must rise to once again go back home.


The story is a bit more eclectic and somewhat slower paced than in the last book. This is for the good, as it allows you to really absorb what’s going on and to see the characters grow in interesting ways.

While certain elements of the story are somewhat predictable, many parts are not and I really enjoyed that. The book concludes in a cliff hanger that makes you champ at the bit for the next one in the series.


The interpersonal dynamics between Christopher and Lalania—the tempting bard and spy—continue to simmer, while the exploration of Christopher’s military leaders is an important part of the story. The non-magical Karl continues his impressive leadership of the troops, while the reformed Torme serves as Christopher’s acolyte in the church of Marcius. Gregor’s cross-promotion into the Church of Marcius for political alliance is also a nice exploration.

However, the exploration of Cannan’s relationship with Christopher and whether redemption is possible is my favorite component of the interpersonal dynamics in this book.

The other major dynamics in this book focus on the power of Magical Rank to do good vs. Christopher’s reluctance to engage in promotion at the cost of lives. This becomes an excellent anvil on which to pound Christopher’s character upon.

Gothic fit

What is forgiveness? Are we ever too dark to come back to the light? Where is the truth found in a corrupt world? What if my good is at the expense of others? These questions and many others look to delve into the truth of existence, which is a very Gothic exploration.

Additionally, the use of unexpected explorations of new species and reimagining of those considered monsters is also very Gothic.

Final Thoughts

The World of Prime series continues to impress such that I enjoyed this book even better than the last one.

Story: 5.0 Moons (out of 5)
Dynamics: 5.0 Moons (out of 5)
Gothic Fit: 5.0 Moons (out of 5)
Final Score (not an average): 5.0 Moons (out of 5)


Author: JT Hanke

J.T. Hanke is the founder and former editor of DarkestGoth Magazine. Stepping down as editor in 2019, he currently serves as its technical adviser and a contributing writer.

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