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The Autumn Republic (The Powder Mage…
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The Autumn Republic (The Powder Mage Trilogy) (edition 2015)

by Brian McClellan (Author)

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3711749,911 (4.16)18
"IN A RICH, DISTINCTIVE WORLD THAT MIXES MAGIC WITH TECHNOLOGY, WHO COULD STAND AGAINST MAGES THAT CONTROL GUNPOWDER AND BULLETS? The capital has fallen... Field Marshal Tamas returns to his beloved country to find that for the first time in history, the capital city of Adro lies in the hands of a foreign invader. His son is missing, his allies are indistinguishable from his foes, and reinforcements are several weeks away. An army divided... With the Kez still bearing down upon them and without clear leadership, the Adran army has turned against itself. Inspector Adamat is drawn into the very heart of this new mutiny with promises of finding his kidnapped son. All hope rests with one... And Taniel Two-shot, hunted by men he once thought his friends, must safeguard the only chance Adro has of getting through this war without being destroyed... THE AUTUMN REPUBLIC is the epic conclusion that began with Promise of Blood and The Crimson Campaign"--… (more)
Member:poeticfantasy
Title:The Autumn Republic (The Powder Mage Trilogy)
Authors:Brian McClellan (Author)
Info:Orbit (2015), 592 pages
Collections:Your library
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Tags:to-read

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The Autumn Republic by Brian McClellan

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English (15)  German (1)  All languages (16)
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
I have very few bad things to say about the conclusion to this epic Flintlock Fantasy. There's tons of action, tons of characters to develop and enjoy, and plenty of interesting reveals.

Specifically, however, is how much I've been enjoying Bo and Nila. Don't get me wrong, I'm head over heels for Taniel's storyline and enjoyed it from start to finish, but Bo's understatements and Nila's growing power from a washerwoman into a firestorm was easily my favorite bit.

The Adamant storyline felt like a bit of a letdown, honestly, after all the mystery in the first two books, but that's okay when I consider that all the main players finally converge and either work together or are at least working toward the same somethings in this book. The reveals about the gods were a plain delight for me, as good as in the first book as in the third.

The fact that all these poor mortals have to deal with them or kick their butts or, now, need to deal without their cooking, is probably the best thing to happen to these folks. I'm sure some would disagree with me, but having these immortals around is definitely a bad thing, not that they're inherently evil... they're simply too much like us. :)

As for the ending, I may have enjoyed it a bit too much, wanting to see the wrap up very dearly. I'm not saying I didn't enjoy the books, but there were some parts that did go on too long and it's a very specific complaint of my own. A lot of people like the drawn-out war stuff. I generally don't. Fortunately, McClellan's a good writer and makes everything pretty exciting and obviously very clear. Flintlock Fantasy is a very fun genre. :)
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  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
The Autumn Republic is the highly satisfying ending to a truly enjoyable trilogy. Events pick up shortly after where two leaves off and doesn't waste any time getting us back in the action. Adro's capital has been taken over, the army is divided, the Kez continue to advance and Taniel has gone missing. Field Marshal Tamas has his hands full!

I can't say enough good things about how much I enjoyed this final installment. Well written action scenes, great character development, answers about how Privileged magic works, an understated romance, betrayals, brilliant battle plans. As much as I enjoyed the arcs Taniel, Tamas and Adamat went on it was Bo and Nila who stole the show for me. I loved Nila's discovery and mentorship as she learns her new skills and role in society. Bo would be a frustrating and fun teacher. I couldn't wait for the story to come back to these two each time the POV shifted to someone else.

The grand finale does a great job of tying the story threads together and cleaning up a lot of loose ends yet leaving things open enough that more could be written for these characters and world. Which McClellan already has done. I'm looking forward starting the next trilogy. ( )
  Narilka | Nov 27, 2019 |
My long and meandering way through this series has come to an end, and it was a very satisfying one, both story- and emotion-wise. I used the words ‘long and meandering’ because I read the first volume Promise of Blood not long after it was published, and although I did like it, I did not feel strongly compelled to move forward with the series, since I had some slight issues with the book, mostly concerning the pacing and some characterizations. Then some time ago I had the lucky opportunity of reading the ARC for the first volume of the sequel trilogy, Gods of Blood and Power, and I found there a more mature, more masterful control of story and characters, so that I decided to go back to… the origins so to speak, and discovered that hindsight helped me through the little ‘hiccups’ of the first book, so that once I reached the second, The Crimson Campaign, and this third installment, I could enjoy the tighter narrative and far more engaging storytelling. By now, Brian McClellan has become one of my favorite fantasy authors, one whose books I can always look forward to.

This final segment of the trilogy brings to a conclusion many of the threads that have been developing until now, bringing to a cusp the aftermath of Tamas’ revolution, the renewed conflict with the Kez and the resurgence of the ancient gods, and it does so with a sustained pace that never knows a moment of dullness. As enthralling as the events are, I would prefer to focus my review on the characters that move through them, because in The Autumn Republic they are explored in greater depth, and from new angles. The only one I’m still unable, after three books, to really warm up to is Inspector Adamat: if I can sympathize with his past and present troubles and his ardent desire to keep his family safe, his segments are the ones that elicit the least interest in me as a reader, since I have been constantly incapable of forming any kind of attachment to this character.

It’s quite a different song for all the others, some of which we get to know better in this book, particularly Nila, the young laundress who recently discovered her Privileged powers: if at the beginning I wondered what part she was destined to play in the overall arc, here she fits wonderfully as the foil for Borbador, the only surviving member of the Adran cabal and Taniel’s long-time friend. Bo’s sometimes cavalier attitude toward his Privileged status and abilities might be tempered by what is basically a good nature and his affection for Taniel, but in the end he comes across as something of a spoiled child, and it falls on Nila, who he has taken on as an apprentice, to remind him of his duties as a human being and to cut him down to size when necessary. I enjoyed quite a bit the interactions between the two of them and the way they end up supporting each other: what becomes clear at some point is Bo’s loneliness, and his yearning for the carefree days when he was part of Tamas’ family, so that I want to see this developing relationship between Bo and Nila as a way to re-create that sense of family he so clearly misses.

Vlora’s character enjoys some defining scenes in The Autumn Republic, and knowing the direction of her narrative arc in the following trilogy made me appreciate the hints of the more assertive personality she will develop later: here she is still trying to make amends for her past mistakes, and not for the first time I wondered at some of the comments I read about her not coming across as a very likable person, since I felt great sympathy for her since day one. Granted, she acted improperly and caused a great deal of grief, but almost no one (either readers or other characters) seemed to take into account her sense of loneliness and neglect that others manipulated for their own purposes, and that’s the reason I always felt more inclined to forgive her lapse. Here she is able to mend her fences with both Tamas and Taniel, and at the same time starts on the road toward becoming her own woman instead of someone else’s protégée or betrothed, the beginning of a newfound independence that I can only approve of.

Taniel, for his part, looks far more human than in previous instances: maybe being separated from Ka-poel (whose absence through most of the book is my only real complaint concerning this third volume) and his final admission about his feelings for her managed to shed a better light on him from my perspective. The whiny boy seems to be gone at last, and even though I still see some shadows in his character, he looks like a more grounded person, one who can recognize his failings and start to work on them. This becomes clear in his exchanges with Tamas, where for the first time in the series they actually speak to each other like father and son and not like two estranged acquaintances: their reciprocal admission of love, and the unspoken forgiveness for their past mistakes, is one of the more emotional passages in The Autumn Republic, one I realize I had been waiting for since book 1 and one that the author was able to convey with admirable deftness, down to a wonderful shared laugh that melts all the old misunderstandings and brings them together more than any words could.

Which finally brings me to Tamas, who has remained my favorite character throughout the story – faults included. Here he sees his years-long planning nearing its conclusion, even though he’s aware that this does not mark the end of the struggle or that things did not turn out exactly as he envisioned them. There is a definite sense of needing to finally pass the reins to someone else, to give in to the weight of the years and the big and small injuries sustained during a long, hard career and the tight focus on his goal. Tamas started taking stock of his past since the previous book, where he was assailed by some doubts about his ability to lead, so now that he sees himself at a crossroads and understands he left many things unsaid and undone, he feels compelled to correct any mistake he made along the way. Much as I enjoyed reading about his brilliant military strategy and his unwavering faith in the mission he set for himself, this softer side of Tamas complements wonderfully what was shown of the man until now, making him a more rounded and even more likable character – the true star of the narrative arc.

If I had read this trilogy when it came out, I would now be feeling quite bereft because I developed a deep fondness for this new fantasy genre and even more for the world Brian McClellan created, but as luck would have it, there is now more to be discovered in the next trio of books – and hopefully in many more that could follow. The conclusion to the Powder Mage trilogy felt perfect in its promise for what is yet to come, but even more in the deeply touching feelings it engendered, even though they were tinged with sorrow: unfortunately this end is a bittersweet one, and if I understand the need for some of the author’s choices, I’m still in mourning for some of them – Brian McClellan has shown time and again he never pulls his punches, but when he sacrifices his characters he does so in a way that’s so balanced, in description and emotions, that I can forgive him for the pain we have to deal with…

The Powder Mage trilogy has now taken its place among my favorite stories, and it’s a world I will always enjoy visiting, in any form the author chooses.


Originally posted at SPACE and SORCERY BLOG

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  SpaceandSorcery | Dec 25, 2018 |
What a ride! I've devoured the books in this series and tears at the end.

I have to admit this last book in the trilogy was not as tight as the first two, and that's why I'm *only* giving it 4 stars.

The story is nicely wrapped up, but also leaves enough open threads for the author to comes back to Ador in the future(and i hope he eventually does)

This series is a must read for any fantasy fans. ( )
  kinwolf | Nov 27, 2018 |
The conclusion to The Powder Mage Trilogy reveals the fate of Tamas' revolution and his country Adro. After a failed strategy left Tamas and his men stranded in enemy territory, the Field Marshal returns to find the capital held by a new player, and the Kez pushing further into Adro.

This one felt a little rushed in some parts, but was still an enjoyable read. Taniel and Tamas both get opportunities to shine, while Adamat is much less prominent though he is still key to finding out what is really going on. Nila gets more time in the spotlight, although I would have like more answers regarding her power. Everything Tamas and his council have been planning is coming to fruition but there remains another threat to the new republic. ( )
  High_Enginseer | Jul 12, 2018 |
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Brian McClellanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Rodska, ChristianNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Mum, For pushing me in the right direction and making all of this possible.
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Field Marshall Tamas stood in the ruins of the Kresim Cathedral in Adopest
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"IN A RICH, DISTINCTIVE WORLD THAT MIXES MAGIC WITH TECHNOLOGY, WHO COULD STAND AGAINST MAGES THAT CONTROL GUNPOWDER AND BULLETS? The capital has fallen... Field Marshal Tamas returns to his beloved country to find that for the first time in history, the capital city of Adro lies in the hands of a foreign invader. His son is missing, his allies are indistinguishable from his foes, and reinforcements are several weeks away. An army divided... With the Kez still bearing down upon them and without clear leadership, the Adran army has turned against itself. Inspector Adamat is drawn into the very heart of this new mutiny with promises of finding his kidnapped son. All hope rests with one... And Taniel Two-shot, hunted by men he once thought his friends, must safeguard the only chance Adro has of getting through this war without being destroyed... THE AUTUMN REPUBLIC is the epic conclusion that began with Promise of Blood and The Crimson Campaign"--

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