Empire of the Saviours

Empire of the Saviours - A.J. Dalton There are certainly some interesting concepts in this novel but alot of this is standard fantasy. The story centres around a young protagonist who has recently discovered magical capabilities, he becomes hunted by the empire of religious zealots who want to drain him of his power and use it to further there own ambitions. There are gods, saviours and saints who protect the people with soldiers called the hero's. Anyone who doesn't live in a city under religious protection is deemed a pagan and an enemy of the empire.
The villains are all deliciously evil and lead by the twisted Saint Azual. He has been a living Saint for hundreds of years and dreams of becoming a god in his own right. Over the course of the novel, his tenuous grip on sanity slips away and his acts become increasingly violent and unpredictable. Azual's rage knows no bounds and he will destroy anything that gets in his way. Unpleasant and brutal, he truly is a nasty piece of work.
By far the best character is a god named The Peculiar. He features in some of the novel's best moments. Mysterious and every so slightly smug about it you can't help but like him. Although you can't decide if The Peculiar is evil or good as he is the god of chaos. A couple of times you think he has been met his demise but every action has an ulterior motive and his are the destabilising of the empire.
All in all an excellent first novel.