Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Review: Forged in Blood I ( The Emperor's Edge #6 ) by Lindsay Buroker

Forged in Blood I by Lindsay Buroker
Excerpt

The sixth Emperor’s Edge book is now available! It’s the first of two novels that make up the finale to the series (you can expect the second part later this summer).

Here’s the blurb, cover art, and a Chapter 1 excerpt:

The emperor has been ousted from the throne, his bloodline in question, and war is descending on the capital. Forge, the nefarious business coalition that has been manipulating the political situation from the beginning, has the ultimate weapon at its disposal.

If it was difficult for a small team of outlaws—or, as Amaranthe has decided they should now be called, rebels—to make a difference before, it’s a monumental task now. If she’s to return idealistic young Sespian to the throne, earn the exoneration she’s sought for so long, and help her closest ally win the respect of the son who detests him, she’ll have to employ an unprecedented new scheme… preferably without destroying the city—or herself—in the process.



Genre

Steampunk

Review

Initially I'm so thrilled when Lindsay announced that in Book 6, Sicarius will get his own POV! We sure want to know what goes in the mind of our most deadly and stoic assassin. But...but... but... I never expect Lindsay to make Amaranthe and Sicarius being apart most of the time. Arg!! Maybe we should have guess. That's how her alternate POV works in previous books. But still, I'm hopeful.

This book does not works as a standalone because Lindsay does not waste time doing any recaps and she just throw you in the middle of the action. You will not have any idea what is going on and who is who unless you read the whole series.

Amaranthe, previously known as Corporal Lokdon, used to be the best female soldier of Turgonia, but after being assigned on a mission to assassinate the infamous assassin, Sicarius, her perfect life had never been the same. In the midst of finding out that the empire is being threaten by the Forge, she assemble a group of unlikely people to join in her quest to save the Turgonia Empire. She named her group, the Emperor's Edge.

The group is just fantastic. Imagine A-team during the steampunk era complete with mental science aka magic. We have Amaranthe, who is the leader of the group, she is fastidious, overly social and most of the time too chatty for her own good. Sicarius, the deadly assassin, who isn't quite human. He seems to be alert 24/7 and doesn't ever sleep. He has the most character development among the entire team. In the first book, he seldom talk and deem most questions by Amanranthe doesn't qualify for any answer from him. If he ever talk, is monosyllabic. Now, he is still stoic as ever, but he is more open to communication with Amaranthe and he learned to value human life. We also have Maldynado, an ex-male escort, who had affinity towards fashion and is the most comical character in the team that provide tons of funny moments. But most of them time you either want to smack him or strangle him. Books, as per the name, the professor and thinker of the team and a walking dictionary. Akstyr, the rebellious teenage wizard and the most uncooperative member. Last but not least, Basilard, the mute thug-like man who had a soft heart and a good cook.

In Forged in Blood, Amaranthe plan is to dig out Sicarius' heritage in order to help Sespian gain his rightful place back as the Emperor of Turgonia and to influence more soldier to support Sespian. Although she knew the chances are thin that Sicarius might have some warrior-caste blood in him. As usual, she separate the groups into different mission and this time she assigned Sicarius to be with Sespian. Sicarius was indeed delighted to have more bonding time with his son, but at the same time he is worried of Amaranthe safety. Meanwhile, our dear Amaranthe is still suffering from nightmare after her ordeal with Pike. When Sicarius offer to 'stand guard' for her during the night, cue swooon.... Finally we see Sicarius did some hand action with Amaranthe. And then..... someone had to come spoil the moment.

From Sicarius POV, we can see how hard he is trying to win his son over. It make me sad all over when his son ignore him or viewed him as some cold-blooded killer. But after their mission together, the father and son seem to reach an understanding relationship. I really hope by the end of the series, Sespian will accept Sicarius and call him 'Father' for once.

Amaranthe, Books and Akstyr were in the mission to infiltrate the Behemoth, the Forge's submarine. As usual, they can't stop themselves from blowing things up. Stealth is never Amaranthe's forte compare to Sicarius. The ending was a cliffhanger, but since August is just few months away, we don't have to wait so long. But I really need more Amaranthe and Sicarius moments. The only reason I rate it 4 stars this time is because they spent too much time apart and I'm totally not satisfied.


Rating 4/5

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