After facing a hopeless siege, an implacable foe and an impossible escape, you would think that Minalan the Spellmonger would be able to rest - but the armies of the undead goblin shaman Shereul (known as the Dead God to his human victims) are rolling over the western reaches of the rustic Duchy of Alshar and is headed toward the heart of the Duchy of Castal. Thousands are fleeing for their lives as hordes of goblins pour out of Boval Vale and devastate the rugged fiefs of the Alshari Wilderlands. And the super-charged shamans of the Dead God are making defending the realm almost impossible for the outnumbered Alshari country knights.
While the two Dukes play feudal politics to further their own ends, the only people who seem to care about the invasion are Minalan and his outlaw warmagi friends - and they're busy dodging agents of the sinister Royal Censorate of Magic.
But if someone doesn't organize an army in northern Alshar soon, then there will be nothing to stop the armies of the divinely powerful Dead God from conquering all five Duchies in his genocidal quest for vengeance.
But things are just not that simple: he has to cope with a sexy young Shadowmage assassin who works for a mysterious spymaster, a cocky new manservant, a dysfunctional group of suddenly-powerful warmagi, the Censor General, and a bunch of whiny nobles before the Dukes will grant him the troops and money he will need - and the Dukes have plans of their own. If Minalan the Spellmonger can't lobby the courts of Alshar and Castal to work together - and quickly - the hordes of the Dead God will sweep over the frontiers of both states. Worse, the mysterious Umbra veil he has erected around Boval Vale may come to imperil all Five Duchies.
Minalan would rather just go home and let the Dukes handle it, but his conscience won't let him. Someone has to stop the Dead God...and that someone happens to be him. Beyond politics and plots, goblins and trolls, mercenaries and magic, the Soulless and the shamans, Censors and secret orders, for Minalan there is only the thought that his child is to be born in a world with such dangers, and that is something he cannot permit.
It is time for the Spellmonger to pick up his mageblade, summon his allies, and go to war again...as a Warmage!
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Thomas D. on 21-10-17
I just can't praise this series enough. The authors style is brilliant- although set in a fantasy world the characters are all so believable and human. There is loads of humour and the way the magic is intertwined in the story is brilliantly done. And lastly the narrator is a true master at his craft- this is the second series I have listened to others by John Lee and once again I am not disappointed. If you like adventure and a good tale, just get this series.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
By shadowspirit on 09-11-17
Not enthused with this one
Story is ok, but totally unbelievable. The narrator grated on my ears I am afraid. Didnt really enjoy the listen, one of those where the book would probably have been better read. Sadlly I cant do this because I cant see. Oh well, perhaps lesson learned.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Jared on 11-07-17
An amazing story, written in a frustrating format
**First off, and to make no misunderstandings, I want to say that I enjoyed this story as a great continuation of the first book. Incoming gripes aside it was still fun and kept me listening, even if at a few points I wanted to grind my teeth in annoyance.**
Ok now with that said let the rant commence.......the format that this book was written in is just damn awful. The story is split between two threads that keep swapping back and forth as both move forward. Where the first book had the occasional flashback to Min's youth to fill in bits about his story and give us something more, the two threads in this book are only about 6 months apart. Maybe this could have worked out if somehow the writer had made it less straight up and open about what happened in the opening parts of the book, and giving him the credit of the doubt perhaps he was trying to keep the political parts of this book interesting by splitting up those sections with battles from later. That is not at all how it ends up working though. If the book had just been a single continuous thread going through and picking up right after the end of the last book there would at least be some suspense or worry about things going on in the political parts. There are chapters of that thread that literally end in lines like "When the cencorate gets here he is literally going to want my head." That in and of itself would be something to worry about....if we didn't already know not a damn thing was going to come of it because he's still alive and fighting a battle in just the last chapter which is some odd months in the future. Is he going to get the courts support? Is he going to get an army to fight back the goblins? What's going to happen if they turn him down? None of these questions have any sway when the other plot thread basically just tells you all you need to know aside from "are they going to win the war". It is so damn frustrating, especially when the story is decently written and has all the right parts just in the wrong places.
So long story short, there is a great story in here, and even as I wanted to pull out my hair I did like seeing where things went in the book. But for the love of all that is holy it just feels like someone took a well planned and finished book, cut it in half then just staggered the chapters for some stupid reason that for the life of me I just don't freaking understand. If and when they roll out the third book, if its written like this again I don't think I will be following on past that though. Personally I'm just praying this was some kind of artistic experimentation that didn't pan out and gets discarded in the series.
23 of 27 people found this review helpful
By Thomas on 13-05-17
Another great one!
Enjoyed this one. Well performed and the writing keeps it interesting and moving along well. I don't think that I can wait for the next audible version and might need to just purchased the hardcopy!
13 of 16 people found this review helpful