Big fan of the Hangman's Daughter series, and was not disappointed by this. I understand there will be at least a sequel if not a trilogy, but the story was developed by Potzsch to tell the legend of the man who sold his soul for the gift of knowledge. Potzsch allows subtle hints at the mythic/supernatural elements of the story, making it more subtle and believable. The story is more of a historical telling (I would compare it to Bernard Cornwell's Winter King trilogy about King Arthur), de-mythologizing some of it but still keeping the supernatural there without revealing it completely. Hope that makes sense. In other words, this is more historical fiction than a fantasy.