Date read: 06 August 2017
Published by Jo Fletcher Books, January 2016
Verdict: Go and read it!
The city of Voortyashtan was once the domain of the goddess of death, war, and destruction, but now it’s little more than a ruin. General Turyin Mulaghesh is called out of retirement and sent to this hellish place to try to find a Saypuri secret agent who’s gone missing in the middle of a mission, but the city of war offers countless threats: not only have the ghosts of her own past battles followed her here, but she soon finds herself wondering what happened to all the souls that were trapped in the afterlife when the Divinities vanished. Do the dead sleep soundly in the land of death? Or do they have plans of their own.
I am in love with the world and the mythology Robert Jackson Bennet created. I am very much in awe with its intricacy and originality. I was getting a bit disillusioned with the genre but this fantasy trilogy is making me a very happy fan. If you haven’t already: go and read it!
Set several years after the events of the first book, the world has not changed as much as Shara wanted it to. When a Ministry operative disappears in Voortyashtan (the city created by the nowdead Goddess of War), Shara manipulates Turyin Mulaghesh to go and try to find her. Mulaghes is still struggling with the awful things she has done in life and feels like she has to atone.
I adored this theme of atonement and of doing better and of trying to leave the world a better place. This book is decidedly darker than the first; Turyin is a lot more hardened and she has done some truly terrible things in the past wars. I loved spending more time with her and this book manages to make her even more badass than the first while also rendering her more human and fragile. She is a brilliantly done character – which is important to me because I always struggle when series shift to a new view point.
What makes this book stand out even more is the absolutely stunning way Robert Jackson Bennett has with words – he creates wonderful sentences and turns of phrases that lift this already brilliant book even higher. His descriptions of the otherworldy settings are a beauty to behold and I cannot wait to see what he conjures up in the next book.
First sentence: “Somewhere around mile three on the trek up the hill Pitry Suturashni decides he would not describe the Javrati sun as ‘warm and relaxing’, as the travel advertisments say.”