Queen Raesinia Orboan of Vordan is shaking things up with her new appointments within the Royal Army. She is also handling the political upheaval that has followed the death of her father. Former champions of her cause are new potential enemies that may try to bring her down. The new Chairman of the Directory of National Defense, Johann Maurisk may have information that could be the end of her. It has become necessary for her to go into hiding from potential assassins. Close by her side is Sothe, who is no longer her personal maid, but the new Head of Household and much more. She also has a new champion in the form of Marcus D’Ivoire, a stalwart and trustworthy military man. Together they work to overturn the repressive elements within Vordan.
Meanwhile, Janus bet Vhalnich, is now in charge of the Royal Army, and his trusty soldier Winter Ihernglass has been promoted once again. Within their own ranks, Winter’s love, Jane along with her new regiment, the Girls’ Own are becoming a thorn in the side of the Royal Army. Vhalnich is marching the army to Elysium to confront the Priests of the Black, agents of the Elysian church. The question is, can they overcome these dark forces who want possession of The Thousand Names, the mysterious artifact that was taken by Janus in book one. They must fight the enemy each step of the way and the demon that Winter carries within may be the most necessary weapon in defeating the true enemy, The Penitent Damned.
Janus remains the ever enigmatic general he has been throughout the first two books. A strong force, he still appears to be fighting for something good but will we ever know what this guy is really up to? Wexler keeps us guessing! Anyone would be glad to have Marcus by their side, but he may be a bit out of his element when he is left behind in the midst of Vordan’s political upheaval. Although this does leave him time to iron out some of his past and develop a burgeoning relationship with Raesinia. Winter is one of the strongest female characters I’ve seen in a series. She is just plain badass and gettin’ badder! Raesinia is still growing on me as one of the characters introduced in book two and I do like her, but I’m not sure about Jane, Winter’s love interest, who was also introduced in book two.
I can’t recommend this series enough! Django Wexler has yet to disappoint. He is a very strong writer, keeping fans riveted book after book while balancing a multitude of storylines. I am enthralled with these characters and each element that Wexler has introduced along the way. As ever, Wexler’s strongest writing is on the battlefield. I have yet to run into another author that writes his battlefield scenes with such talent time after time. He also continues to adeptly build on the storylines of each of the characters, never really leaving anyone off on the sidelines. For the stalwart fantasy fans, the magical element is taken up several notches here in book three. I like it, I love it, I want some more of it!