Before the Fall by Francis Knight
|Before the Fall by Francis Knight|
|Reviewer: Loralei Haylock|
|Summary: An excellent follow up to a stunning first novel, with engaging characters, an inventive and incredibly realised world and a fast paced roller-coaster of a plot that keeps the pages turning. Brilliant stuff.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 400||Date: June 2013|
|External links: Author's website|
After destroying Mahala's power source, Rojan really, really wants to keep his head down. The Ministry thinks he's dead - which helps - but with the last scraps of power fast fading, people are starving and the danger of riots and chaos looms.
Not to mention that dead bodies keep turning up, and Rojan's sneaking suspicion that what connects them all is their pain magic. Being a pain mage himself, Rojan is keen to find the murderer before he becomes the next victim. Well, keen would be pushing it a little, but Rojan knows that if he doesn't find out who is responsible, then the fragile peace that's holding will quickly be overwhelmed and a free-for-all will ensue. And as the man responsible for destroying the power source, Rojan couldn't have a bigger target painted on his back...
The distinctive city of Mahala is once again brought to life in this sequel, which cunningly explores the consequences of Rojan's undoubtedly noble actions at the end of the last book and the fact that nobility is not always received well. The drudgery and despair of the lives of Downsiders is made even worse, and the tension of a city teetering on the edge of total meltdown makes the pace of the story urgent.
Rojan continues to be a snarky, sarcastic, occasionally completely chauvinistic and horrible character, though his character development is definitely pushing him towards 'not such a bad guy after all' status. Many other characters make a return, and Knight isn't averse to putting a few of them in mortal peril, which just makes the stakes even higher.
This is an excellent follow up to a stunning first novel, with engaging characters, an inventive and incredibly realised world and a fast-paced roller-coaster of a plot that keeps the pages turning. Brilliant stuff.
My thanks to the publishers for sending a copy. We also have a review of Last to Rise by Francis Knight.
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