I picked up The Crown Tower at the local library because I was getting tired of reading math and computer science textbooks. I chose it completely on a whim.
The first four chapters were rough. I don't know if it's Sullivan's tone, his voice, or just the way he arranges words on the page, but I got the distinct impression that this was an amateur bit of work. By the end of chapter 5, however, I was hooked and couldn't put this one down.
Beginnings are hard, especially when you're getting to know a new author. I fear that without The Hobbit, I never would have made it through the first third of Fellowship of the Ring. I'm glad I gave Sullivan a chance on this one, because the world he's created is believable and alluring.
The Crown Tower isn't a groundbreaking work of fiction, but it was an entertaining read. The dynamic between Royce and Hadrian was enough to keep me interested, and the brief glimpses into the rest of the setting — I'll admit I kept flipping back to the front of the book to see that gorgeous map — picked up the slack.
tl;dr: Recommend, if you want a distraction and enjoy a good fantasy, but don't want to think too hard.