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Marissa Lingen

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The Providence of Fire, by Brian Staveley [Jan. 5th, 2015|05:49 pm]
Marissa Lingen

Review copy provided by Tor Books.

This is the second book in a series. The first one, some of you will recall, was a bit disappointing in that it focused on the two brothers who were fairly standard fantasy novel archetypes and gave very little space to their sister who was a princess who was also Minister of Finance.

Well! You will be pleased to know that Adare, the princess in question, appears a great deal more in this book.

She is no longer Minister of Finance. She acts very little like a former Minister of Finance. I don’t really understand why Brian Staveley came up with a POV character who was Minister of Finance if he didn’t want to write about one.

Also in increased content over the previous book: torture. Lots and lots more torture. General misery, despair, and definitely torture.

Oh, and also phoneticized “peasant” dialect. You know, for the scum common people.


And yet I read this volume all the way through, so there have to be some good things about it. I was mostly invested in a handful of secondary characters, honestly, and the prose style is readable (when not doing phoneticized dialect), and I was hoping that the spoilerific means of getting from place to place would have some interesting stuff attached to it.

I’m not sure this is grimdark proper, but I suspect that people with a higher tolerance for grimdark than I have would enjoy it more.

Please consider using our link to buy Providence of Fire at Amazon.

Originally published at Novel Gazing Redux


[User Picture]From: whswhs
2015-01-06 03:40 am (UTC)
I'm afraid I have to say you've convinced me not to read it. I'm not even willing to read George R. R. Martin's fantasy series, based on what I've heard about it; grimdark is almost the polar opposite of what I want from fantasy.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2015-01-06 03:43 am (UTC)
This is part of what reviews are for. "This is really grim" is an indictment for some people and a recommendation for others, and people can usually sort themselves out.
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[User Picture]From: whswhs
2015-01-06 05:05 am (UTC)
Quite, and thank you both for the information and for the spirit in which you took my response.
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From: sheff_dogs
2015-01-06 06:32 pm (UTC)
And thank you from me too. Having read a the sample chapters of the first book on Tor I was interested in seeing what happened to the three siblings. I can not cope with anything approaching grimdark but repeated DNF's of books that sounded like my catnip but turned out to be far darker than I can stand has been putting me off trying anything newso your reviews have saved me from another mistake
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