This week we review the second volume of Rachel Aaron's Eli Monpress saga: The Spirit Rebellion
Rating: 4 smileys
Eli Monpress is brilliant. He's incorrigible. And he's a thief.
He's also still at large, which drives Miranda Lyonette a little crazy. But now the tables have turned, because Miranda has a new job -- and an opportunity to capture a certain thief.
Things are about to get exciting for Eli. He's picked a winner for his newest heist. His target: the Duke of Gaol. Eli knows that the Duke's famous "thief-proof" citadel is a trap, but what's life without challenges? Except the Duke is one of the wealthiest men in the world, a wizard who rules his duchy with an iron fist, and an obsessive perfectionist with only one hobby: Eli.
It seems that everyone is hunting for Eli Monpress.
This book picks up right where the first one left off. Eli and his two companions are looking to replace a magical coat that can help one of those companions live a bit longer with her demon. Miranda is returning to her home town to report to the spirit court.
As the cover blurb states, they end up dealing with the Duke of Goal; so they both end up in Gaol eventually and running into each other again. Before this however we get great character moments from the cast. Miranda having to deal with her newfound troubles in the spirit court and Eli, Josef and Nico seeking out the craftsman to make Nico's new coat. The last leaving us with some interesting insight into the future Nico has to look forward to.
Again in this book we also get more of what makes you love Eli (if you loved him at all that is). Willing to rob a place that is not only "thief-proof" but also very obviously a trap specifically for him and seeing it only as an additional challenge. What I found interesting was how the Duke controlled his city and the spirits there. It made for new challenges both from Eli and Miranda's magical points of view. We also get to meet someone from Eli's past and experience another great character moment with Josef and his magical sword later in the story.
I am loving this series and looking forward to "The Spirit Eater" next month. I think that Rachel Aaron does a perfect job of balancing the powerful aspects of things like magic, demons, great spirits, magical artifacts with limits and consequences to avoid any sort of "Dues Ex Machina" problems. And with each book you get tastes of bigger things going on with the characters and world that will eventually lead us to a grander challenge for them all.
Anyone that loves well paced, fun fantasy stories should pick this up. If you tried the first one and liked it, things only get better from there. It is available now as a paperback release and the next volume "The Spirit Eater" is coming out soon as well. I highly recommend this series.
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About the Author - Jeremy Shane
Jeremy was born in a small mountain village of a strange foreign land called Weystvurginea. Banishment for liberal views saw him spend years wondering the east coast until he decided to bike to California. When he saw how long a trip it was, he drove instead. Now he's living it up in a low humidity climate, sometimes working on his photography and when not, he writes for us covering books (by way of his blog: Reading Realms), gaming, tv, movies, comics, conventions in the SoCal area, and creates a weekly webcomic: A Journey Through Skyrim. If you look for him offline, start in the L.A. area; online start at: www.jeremyshane.info for his profile and all the social networks he's on... or just follow him on twitter, he seems to be on there a lot: @jeremyshane.
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