The weeks since Jewel Markess ATerafin has been acclaimed ruler of her House have not been peaceful; four assassination attempts have been made on her life, and one of the most important members of her House Council has been forced to retire, leaving a seat empty at a time when she requires trusted allies.
The war in the distant South has ended; the armies, victorious, have returned to Averalaan. During the victory parade of the Kings' armies, the fifth assassination attempt occurs - in full view of the Ten, the Kings, and thousands of spectators. To survive, Jewel takes to the sky on the back of a winged cat; she returns to the Terafin Manse, leaving demonic destruction in her wake, the demon itself in pursuit. In the forest behind her manse, she has the power - barely - to stand against the demon; she does not have the power to destroy it.
In the aftermath of the Terafin's funeral, the Kings have demanded an audience with the newest ruler of House Terafin. A single, careless command given to the elemental earth on the day of the funeral has caused unexplained and disturbing changes to the palace itself. But before Jewel can answer the summons, she falls prey to the strange sleeping plague that has felled citizens across the city of Averalaan - from the poorest of holdings to the wealthiest of mansions across the Isle.
It is there - in the uneasy land of dreams - that Jewel discovers the reason for the sickness, and there that she begins to understand the forces arrayed against both her House and the Empire; if she can survive the traps set by the Warden of Dreams and by her deadly, former allies, she will wake to a changed world - if she wakes at all.
©2013 Michelle Sagara (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
Battle is a book that will delight dedicated Michelle West fans. She is back in top form with this book and the story really starts to move forward. My only very minor complaint is that Avandar is a mostly missing in action from this story. I, for one, would have read the extra 100 or so pages it would have taken to weave in a larger more balanced part for him, but that's simply a small complaint. On balance, Battle pushes the story arc forward at a satisfactory rate and sets up the next book perfectly.
If you are not already addicted to the work of Michelle West I recommend starting the series with Hunter's Oath and Hunter's Death. They are small books by West standard and they are where most of us first became life long followers of the adventures of Jewel Markess. Follow those with the 6 books of the sun sword series and then read Skirmish and Battle. I'm assuming of course that Audible will finish up the series now that the books are available on Kindle. Michelle West has written such a rich and colorful world that it would be impossible to not want to hear these stories over and over again.
"Most disappointing follow on series ever"
I loved the Sun Sword series of books so much and was so excited for this series. Disappointed by the first book, missed several out until series caught up with events at end of Sun Sword, then tried again. Nothing happens. Jewel whinges on and gets dressed endlessly. Won't be reading or listening to any more of these. Don't know how editors let this go so wrong. Rant because I'm so disappointed. To make matters worse found the narrator intensely annoying.
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