Author: Jim Butcher
ZOMG. SO MUCH AWESOME.
Tavi. :) :)
Max. :) :) :)
I think you get the picture.
But just in case….. Ehren. :) :) :) :)
It is pretty obvious how we feel about this book, but I guess you are expecting an actual review, huh?
Tavi is operating as a Cursor now and gets an assignment as a low ranking officer in a newly formed Legion. By a strange series of events, Tavi does end up as Captain of the First Aleran Legion. The way he ends up taking control sounds like a serious case of dues ex machina when you really think about it or try to describe it to someone else, but Butcher does such a fantastic job of setting it up that it is barely noticeable as you are reading it. The causes for it go waaaay back and it plays out fairly naturally.
He really takes off as a leader here. He stumbles quite a bit in the beginning, as he is learning what makes the Legions function, what makes them effective. But we get to see his genius at understanding people, at what inspires them to follow him.
Tavi met the First Spear’s eyes and thought furiously…the First Spear was a man of principle. If he genuinely thought Tavi was going to do something uselessly idiotic…Marcus would take command. If that happened, he would not be prepared to face the threat that was coming…All of which meant that the next battle Tavi had to fight was right here, right now, in the mind and heart of the veteran First Spear. If he had Marcus’s support, most of the rest of the centurions would follow. Tavi had to convince Valiar Marcus so thoroughly that he actively supported Tavi’s course of action instead of merely accepting it as one more distasteful order he had to obey.”
Characters that we did not get to see much of in Academ’s Fury get more of a spotlight here, namely Ehren. He was kind of a third wheel in book 2 but he is much bigger here and we get to know him better. His smart-assery makes him a very likable character.
”Us,” said Ehren. “And one cohort.” He stared down the bridge. “Against the next best thing to sixty thousand Canim.”
“No,” Kitai put in quietly. “Us against one.”
Tavi nodded. “Sarl.”
Ehren said, “Ah.” he glanced back as the Battlecrows filed into place around them. “You don’t think there’s a chance he might bring a friend or two?”
There is also a lot of Max’s backstory and his family that puts a lot into perspective about why he is the way he is. We also get to see him in his element, in the Legions, so naturally there is a not more taking up his “rights” as a soldier. Namely, complaining. Gotta love that man.
I can’t say this is my favorite of the series since I haven’t finished the series but this one is definitely fighting for it. The reason that the Canim are in Alera is a good example on how to make a mutli-sided bad guy. Same thing with Lady Aquitaine; she is a lot more than she appears and Amara and Bernard have to work with her, even though they don’t want to. There is no question in my mind what my rating will be. Tavi is great, the story is great, OMG BRING ME MORE BUTCHER!!
….where is Fidelius? ;)