Champion of the Gods #4
Genre: High Fantasy, Series
Farrell’s excitement at finding his legendary ancestor Kel is tempered by the knowledge it signals the beginning of the end of the war. As he and Kel race to recover the last two Gifts of the Gods, Meglar is not quiet. Fighting erupts around the world, and new allies reveal their hand. To complicate matters, Arritisa has refused Farrell’s request for Her Gift.
Searching for answers, Farrell travels to Bowient, home to Falcron’s main temple. While there, Farrell uncovers a plot to destroy the temple and the city. The attack fails, but Farrell kills Neldin’s priestess in the fight. The death of His priestess prompts Neldin to visit Farrell. Despite Farrell’s rejection, Neldin shows Farrell that he is more like his father than he’d like to admit.
Shaken by Neldin’s visit, Farrell doubts himself and his abilities. In an attempt to prove loyalty to the Six and deny Neldin, Farrell secretly embarks on a risky mission he can’t win. Kel rushes to find Farrell, but it might be too late. The seeds Neldin planted have found fertile ground. Even if Kel saves Farrell, can even a legend stop a god from claiming the son of Meglar for His cause?
Although this story does have romantic elements and Farrell and Miceral’s relationship is an important part of the story, it is not a romance.
As it’s been a while since I read the last book in the series, I was very happy to read a summary of what has happened in the last three books. However, I wouldn’t recommend diving straight into this book and only reading the summary, as you’ll miss out on the nuances of the series, and the fabulous descriptions and dialogue. Plus all the character moments.
This story is not a fast read, but it’s a very worthwhile one, and reminds me why I enjoy high fantasy. The world building is fantastic, with lots of detail, and I felt like I’d stepped into a world with a rich history and characters where gods are real and guide—and often interfere—in the characters’ lives. The plot is very layered, and although Farrell is on a quest, it’s not an easy one, and it’s made clear on several occasions that part of that quest is not just collecting magic objects but that he has be ready to use them in the right way. I also enjoyed the politics within the plot, as there isn’t just one society in this world, but several, and they are all quite different. I thought the author did a great job in showing the frustration of ceremonies and red tape.
The magic is very inventive, and there are a few surprises in this story for Farrell, as well as the reader. The underwater scenes are very cool, and the descriptions give a very real sense of place. I like how, as the story progresses, the stakes grow with it. One of the reasons I’ve put off reading this part of the story is that with only one book to go—which releases next month—I’m not sure who is going to survive, and I want to be able to keep reading to find out. The action scenes are exciting, and kept me reading.
I love how the characters are flawed, and Farrell, who is a powerful wizard, makes mistakes, and doubts himself. His and Miceral’s relationship grounds him. I love their scenes together, and Miceral is one of my favourite characters in this series. He’s practical, not afraid to tell Farrell some home truths, and their love for each other shines as one of the highlights of the story. The scenes with the children are very sweet, and I love how they’re growing into their role as parents. I also like how Farrell, although he’s a powerful wizard, is still down to earth and doesn’t bother with airs and graces.
The supporting cast add to the rich tapestry of the story, and I particularly like Farrell and Kel’s growing relationship. I also love Aswick, Joella, and Lisle in particular who is not scared to put Farrell—and Miceral—in their place if she thinks it’s needed.
Be warned, this book ends more on a cliffhanger than a conclusion, although no one is left in immediate danger. I suspect that’s coming very soon, and I’m kind of nervous—yet really want—to read the final instalment of this series.
5 out of 5 stars.