3 Stars For The Blog of Sid Love.
Beginning exactly where Wolf’s Own left off. Malick and his merry mercenaries are in a race to save fen’s family before Asia and his hirelings can steal them away to be used as leverage for Asai’s great plan. Fen, already sick and injured leads the fight, placing him in the front line without conscious thought for self-preservation – or is he suicidal, resolute, guilt ridden or just plain crazy? It’s an examination that continues to dominate.
Once again Cummings commands with her poetic writing and cryptic lyricisms. It’s easier this time around as we know these characters and much of their world and their Gods already. The manipulations and machinations are trebled or even quadrupled when fates hand is revealed within new cryptic ramblings. Present reality becomes a precarious place to make a stand when everyone involved has an agenda of their own. Fen and Malick are forced to make impossible choices while skirting the laws of the Gods and thus, dodging the harshest punishment. Those we trust fall prey to fear and self-preservation and a bitter betrayal with shattering consequences ensues. Cummings does not hold back in this, she is as ruthless as the Gods in dealing with her darlings. You have been warned.
The plot is forever evolving and surprising and yet I find myself smothered by the machinations that are too wide and far reaching. My head hurt trying to keep up with it all, there is no reprieve and I was exhausted by the end. It’s the same thing over and over again, from everyone’s perspective; and just about everyone’s guilt or oath turns them into a wanna be martyr - it’s a macabre and trying place for me to be. I missed the sexy Malick’s quick wit and charm; I missed the strong willed and determined young Fen. This book was too long-winded, too wordy and the constant damned if you do, damned if you don’t theme was too wearing.
There are some good highs and some clever plotting but in the end I was relieved it was over. Samin and Shig where my heroes in this book; bringing it back to basics in their own unique approach - Samin in his simplicity and Shig with her all-knowing smirk and cryptic clues. I DO look forward to more adventures from all of these characters; but I do it in the hope that things will turn back to something lighter, wittier, and sexier.