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Should've been named "Rook",
on 9 October 2005
In the darkest and most complex Edge Chronicle ever, Vox Verlix plots away in his crumbling tower, seeing all, watching all, and waiting for his chance for revenge against those that betrayed him. Possessor of the title of Most High Academe by methods not quite orthodox, Vox is now a prisoner of his own machinations, his greatest triumphs usurped by those he once trusted.
The hero of this book is again young Rook, the librarian-knight from book five. Captured after losing his precious Stormhornet sky-craft while on patrol, he is sold into slavery and ends up in Vox's palace, as an assistant to Hestera Spikesap, an exciting new character with a lot going on in her kitchen and heart. He meets the other minions of Vox - Speegspeel the goblin servant, Amberfuce the ghost-waif, and Flambusia, Amberfuce's nurse, and manages to get himself in the middle of most of the action which springs up in every chapter.
Judging from the signs in the sky, a huge storm is brewing, which the Guardians of the Night believe will cure the stone sickness which has devastated New Sanctaphrax. The natives are restless also, and it doesn't take much prompting to set Shrikes and Goblins against each other in a huge battle in the sewers beneath Undertown.
There's more violence than usual in this one, and several mentions of the smell of unwashed bodies of various species. It's also not as well thought out as the others, as major plot points happen too often by either chance or carelessness. There are stories running concurrently that are sometimes hard to tie together, and lots of loose ends. There's even romance in the air along with the usual imaginative cast of creatures, but as usual, the illustrations truly bring the book to life.
Not the best in the series, but packed with action and well worth reading.