Forged in Blood is the finale of the Emperor’s Edge series featuring Amaranthe and her gang of outlaws who are fighting to free the Emperor from the people who would overthrow him. The assassin Sicarius is one of the gang, and as said before, he is seriously hot. Buroker states in the introduction that the final book got too long, so she made it into two. I bought them both anyway, and started the second the day after finishing the first, since it ends on a cliffhanger. But they’re worth every penny.
Forged in Blood
by Lindsay Buroker
The emperor has been ousted from the throne, his bloodline in question, and war is descending on the capital. Forge, the nefarious business coalition that has been manipulating the political situation from the beginning, has the ultimate weapon at its disposal.
If it was difficult for a small team of outlaws—or, as Amaranthe has decided they should now be called, rebels—to make a difference before, it’s a monumental task now. If she’s to return idealistic young Sespian to the throne, earn the exoneration she’s sought for so long, and help her closest ally win the respect of the son who detests him, she’ll have to employ an unprecedented new scheme…preferably without destroying the city—or herself—in the process.
Amaranthe Lokdon survives her reckless plan to destroy the enemy’s weapon-filled super aircraft only to learn that thousands of people perished when it crash landed. Half of her team is missing…or dead. Meanwhile, the fighting in the capital has escalated, the Imperial Barracks have been taken by a pretender, and a deadly new danger threatens the populace. Amaranthe’s hopes of returning Emperor Sespian to the throne and bringing peace to the empire are dwindling by the hour.
To make matters worse, her strongest ally—and closest friend—has been captured and is under a powerful wizard’s control. If she can’t figure out a way to free Sicarius, he may kill them all when next they meet…
This isn’t much of a review. After the first five Emperor’s Edge books, I’m wholly biased. I love the world-building, the characters, the diversity of the characters and the populations of the world Buroker has made. I love the ‘steampunk meets advanced science and eschews magic, or does it?’ genre of the science within the fiction. Or is it fantasy?
Buroker’s action writing is as graphic as ever. I occasionally stopped to admire it. I also admired the descriptions of the dank tunnels, eased into the writing so smoothly you hardly recognise it. This is writing I aspire to. Footprints in the snow. Breath crusting on his chin hair “somewhere between beard, goatee, and flower gone to seed.”
The story has plenty of complicated lines that I never, or at least very rarely, got lost in. Even when I was forced to put it down for essential business interruptions. I resented those interruptions. The Emperor’s Edge series may be addictive.
Forged in Blood is a great finish to a series that I’ve forced myself to take three years to read. I’m very satisfied with the outcome. Any reader would be. Start at the first book, The Emperor’s Edge, and get on board for the ride.
The series definitely ends here. But the demand for more Amaranthe & Sicarius stories led to two further books, officially taking the series to nine, plus at least four other mid-point and prequels books. Even so, I’m adding the seven-book series to my Finishing the Series Challenge as completed. I’ll read all the other books in this world later – at leisure. I’m looking forward to it!