“They were not good people.” “No, they were not. Are any of us? Am I? Are you?”
A satisfying fantasy revolving around a prophesied supernatural climax as an eclipse coincides with the winter solstice. Multiple point-of-view characters and a timeline folded like origami challenges readers who don’t have the luxury of reading the book through. Stick with it; Roanhouse delivers the goods.
“We are, after all, a society of laws that apply equally to all, noble and common.”
Don’t read this expecting a fantasy twist on Meso-American historical cultures. Instead Roanhouse set this series in a quasi-Gulf of Mexico universe which draws some elements form older American cultures, but just as often the tropes and memes of contemporary SF/F.
Quibbles: Old world references knock discerning readers out of the spell of the story. Lavender? Gratuitous profanity. Misunderstood navigation by the sun.
“Sometimes it is better to let one live with their misdeeds than to free them through death. A dead priest cannot atone. A live one… well, there is always the choice.”
Fitting close to this series opener with plenty of hooks to the next story. Nice cover art by John Picacio.
“A man with a destiny is a man who fears nothing.”
(2021 Hugo Award novel finalist)