Ahoy there me mateys! I have always wanted to read Myke Cole’s work and just never seemed to get around to it. So when I saw this fantasy with a cool concept, I decided it was time.
The story follows a girl named Heloise in a medieval-like town. Very strict laws govern the world especially as it relates to magic. All magic is forbidden. It is said that over 1000 years ago, magicians opened a portal to hell and demons infested the world. After the war that ensued and the demons banished, the Order was founded to stop magic users at all costs. Heloise isn’t sure what to believe. All she witnesses is the Order abusing their power and common folk living in fear. Is magic really so bad?
So in terms of writing style and world building, I thought this was beautifully written. I loved the entire concept behind magic use and the manner in which the author keeps the reader guessing until the very end. I also loved the subplot of sexuality. There is some lovely language in that regard. There are cool things like war machines. The plot of this epic feeling story happens in one tiny village. That was cool. I thought the characters were interestingly written. I particularly loved the mysterious ranger, the magical mouse, and Heloise’s best friend, Basina.
Unfortunately I be in the minority when it comes to Heloise herself. She is young, feels like she is seeing the world better and clearer then everyone else, and acts like a spoiled brat. In general much of the plot was driven by her selfishness and stupidity. She made horrible decisions over and over again even when she knew she was in the wrong. So many people went out of the way to protect her and she did what she wanted – consequences be damned. And goodness there were consequences.
I did enjoy reading the story despite me major dislike of Heloise. I wanted to know the answer to the nature of magic. I thought the author’s choices in that regard were stellar and gripping. I did want to see what the results of Heloise’s actions would be. I even enjoyed the crazy ending though I felt Heloise’s part to be unrealistic. It certainly wasn’t what I was expecting. The world is fascinating and I do think I will read the next in the series. Arrr!
Goodreads has this to say about the novel:
In a world where any act of magic could open a portal to hell, the Order insures that no wizard will live to summon devils, and will kill as many innocent people as they must to prevent that greater horror. After witnessing a horrendous slaughter, the village girl Heloise opposes the Order, and risks bringing their wrath down on herself, her family, and her village.
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