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- Language: English
- ASIN: B075W6139N
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Preludes to War (Eve of Redemption Book 6) Kindle Edition
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Despite that fundamental shift in the meta-plot's condition, *Preludes* isn't radically different than the previous entries -- at least any more than it is normal for its author -- and as such, the regular sections in this review are going to end up on the short side. Rest assured, though, as this is another excellent installment, one that fully deserves its five star rating.
Now that the introduction is over, we'll go over the
The plot of *Preludes to War* is one about military rebellion - more or less. It's about Kari going to the world of Mehr'Durillia to settle her debt to King Morduri, who wants her to perform a singular task, which quickly develops into organizing a full-scale uprising. It has more below its surface, of course, since the series has already gathered a considerable momentum in both worldbuilding and meta-plot; but if we examine the story out of context, it is simply the fantasy counterpart of Che Guevara's revolution -- an uprising led at the front by a (seemingly) single charismatic individual. In *Preludes*'s case, this individual is Kari, and the way she handles it showcases her natural leadership, and I do mean leadership -- the ability to lead by example, and to never put duties to others that one is unwilling to do themselves. This has always been one of Kari's most defining traits and here it shines through whenever she uses it to inspire others -- be they commoners, fellow comrades, or even *demon* kings.
But the important part here is how the story is presented, not how original it is. There are plenty of funny and heartwarming moments, and there also the important plot development of Kari being shapeshifted for the majority of the novel. Suffice to say everything is top-notch.
Again, Kari here is the front and center protagonist. However, since the focus again is on the world of Mehr'Durillia, most of the supporting cast are native people from that place. Some of them, like Seanada, the silent and taciturn half-syrinthian/half-succubus, or King Morduri, the open-minded and informal demon king, make a repeat appearance, while others, like King Emanitar and the mallasti vulkinastra Mastriana, are new to audience. The Wraith, the enigmatic leader of the Ashen Fangs, who we first saw in the second book, also appears in the story, playing a much larger role, and consequently receives a solid character development in the sense of being more clearly defined.
Despite the change in the cast, there are plenty of fight scenes. This makes character development more tricky overall, but the author has tested his mettle in the series' earlier installments, and his learned experience starts to show as both character growth and action scenes are handled expertly, without either one suffering from neglect. This brings the quality of the narrative even higher, and definitely rewards readers who had persisted in following the series.
Writing - on par. Tempo - excellent. Factology - consistent. Results? All clear!
As I said in my previous review, I won't harp continuously on how great this fantasy series is; either you're a fan by now, or you aren't, and the chances of reading this in the latter case are fairly minimal.
*Preludes to War* has the Seal of Approval, the Autograph of Awesome, and the Table of Power. 'Nuff said.
With Grakin gone, Kari's working her way through her feelings again. She doesn't want to stay stuck in grief, but she doesn't know if she's ready for a new relationship. I'm curious to see more of Kris, as the little bit we do see show he's a very different person than Grakin was, and one perhaps better matched to Kari's hunter lifestyle. Especially if she does end up with a war against the demon kings (which, given the ending, looks entirely possible to be far sooner than she thought).
Kari's actual fulfillment of her bargain is one of my favorite parts of the whole series. Not just the act itself, but everything that built up to it---the disguise she uses to infiltrate Sekassus's territory, the way she interacts with the locals, and all of the little bonuses she scored for Morduri. She's planning for the long-term. And it's her compassion, as well as her martial skills, that draw so many others to follow her lead.
Also Kari is learning bad words in other languages, and putting them to excellent use. *evil grin*
I like how she's forging relationships between the worlds. Person by person, both the powerful and the ordinary, she's fighting for people who often don't know how to fight for themselves. She's stirring them to want freedom. This is most personal with Seanada, who has grown to be a friend, and who Kari wants to find happiness in places where Seanada is too cautious to try.
Seanada smiled at her mother, and the two chuckled. “Not every problem can be solved with a knife, but I try that first anyway,” the assassin said.
The demonhunter shrugged. “Well, you know what they say: if at first you don’t succeed…” Seanada’s expression remained blank. “Try, try again.”
“Corpses rarely put in a second effort,” the half-syrinthian countered, but then she let out one of those rare but heartwarming laughs.
All in all, given what this book did and where it left off, I absolutely can't wait for the next installment. These are funny, exciting, and full of so much heart. I rate this book Highly Recommended.