Author: Melissa McShane
Format: eBook, Print
Date: February 14, 2015
Publisher: Night Harbor Publishing
In a world very much like our own Victorian England, the country of Dalanine is at war. The implacable, unstoppable Despot has been pushing northward for over a year, conquering everything in his path with military and magical force, leaving nothing but destruction in his wake.
For Evon Lorantis, Dalanine’s most promising young magician, the war represents the same kind of work he’s always done, inventing and developing new spells for his country’s defense. But as good as he is, he’s still stumped by the mystery the government’s department of Home Defense brings him: a rash of spontaneously occurring fires, hotter than any natural force can produce, melting stone and vaporizing flesh wherever they strike. Home Defense believes it’s a weapon that will finally defeat the Despot. And they want Evon to harness it.
In investigating the problem, Evon discovers these fires are no accident; there’s a magician behind them, a woman using the fire to prosecute justice on her own terms. Evon sets off on a journey across Dalanine to track down this rogue magician, hoping to persuade her to turn aside from her vigilante crusade to serve her country, afraid of finding only a madwoman at the end of his quest. But the woman he does find is nothing like he expected, the mystery far greater—and older—than he’d imagined, and the secret of the fire more potent than anyone could have guessed.
As Evon attempts to untangle fact from myth, what began as an assignment becomes a challenge that will require every ounce of magical ability he has—and will irrevocably change the course of his life.
The Despot is moving closer to Dalanine, conquering and destroying as he goes. Home Defense is desperate for a way to defeat him. They hope the answer can be found in the random fires, hotter than anything known, which are occurring across the country. Evon Lorantis, a bright, young magician, is sent to find the source of the fire. His only clue: a young woman has been seen leaving the areas where the fires occur. When he finds her, nothing is as he expected, and the mystery of the fire is much more complicated than anyone imagined. Now Evon must race to find the secrets of the fire before it’s too late.
I was completely engrossed in this story, especially once they found Kerensa. I wanted to know the answers. I found the spell and the way Evon worked on figuring it out so interesting. I wish I could have seen it myself! (That might sound like strange wording, but read the book and you’ll understand.)
This new world, filled with myth and magic, was developed beautifully. The similarities with Victorian England made it easy to understand, picture and believe. That is one of my favorite time periods. Add magic and that is a world I have to visit!
I loved the mythology in the story! The author did an amazing job of weaving myth with the present problems. What is fact? What is simply story? Is it even important? It all came together in an incredible way at the end!
The characters were great! They were well developed, each with strengths and weaknesses. The friendship between Evon and Piercy was something special. It was forged over years, and I could feel the depth of it. I liked the development of Evon and Kerensa’s relationship, and the way he always defended her. Other characters really added to the story with their personalities, links to the main characters and methods for finding answers.
This is another great book by Melissa McShane! I’m looking forward to her next one!!
I received a complimentary copy of the book. I have expressed my honest opinion.