Koli never planned to set foot outside his small village. He knew that beyond its walls lay a fearsome landscape filled with choker trees, vicious beasts and Shunned men. But when he was exiled, he had no choice but to journey out into this strange world where every moment is a fight for survival.
In short: if you loved M.R. Carey’s The Book of Koli, you will love The Trials of Koli just as much, if not more. Carey has delivered satisfactorily on the promise of the Rampart Trilogy with a second volume just as absorbing, stunning, and emotionally rich as the first ... Carey’s unusual gift for proverb grants the book gravity and significance at every turn ... The way these books imagine post-apocalyptic Britain is both inventive and bone-chillingly likely. Carey does not play at apocalypse for its higher stakes, or treat it as an empty dollhouse he can fill up as he chooses. He finds the thinnest nerve of the current world and presses, hard, forcing us to behold our way of life as impermanent and even endangered.
Both halves of the narrative are as engaging as the other ... Though this future world is a forbidding, grim place, The Trials Of Koli is anything but. The main characters have been given the chance to grow from their small seedlings in the first novel, to complex journey-mates in Trials – their personalities branching in varying directions and compelling you to invest in their fates. This is a bold, unique world ...
Carey broadens the scope of his Rampart trilogy in this solid second adventure ... Readers who were frustrated by Koli’s dialect in the first installment will continue to struggle with his voice, [...] but the broader cast brings welcome relief and diversity. Branching out from Mythen Rood was also a good choice, allowing Carey space to build a broken world that is both marvelously expansive and claustrophobically menacing. New readers will have no trouble jumping in here, and fans of postapocalyptic science fiction will find plenty to hold their attention.