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The Fall of Dragons by Miles Cameron

The Fall of Dragons

by Miles Cameron

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An effectively crafted payoff to an already very good four-volume setup.

As always, the military aspects have the ring of realism, the characters are three-dimensional and clearly distinguished, and the world-building is effective.

Multi-viewpoint novels often run the risk of dissipating focus, shifting away from a thread of attention just as it was getting interesting. By setting this volume up so that every thread is critical -- failure in any one battle, delay in any one march, would be a problem -- and by having already established a grounding in the core viewpoint characters, the effect Cameron achieves here is one of heightening tension whenever he shifts from viewpoint to viewpoint. And this works, in turn, because it's believable that such a tightly-connected plan would be in place, because it's a desperate roll of the dice against an overwhelmingly superior foe, so that the usual caveat against creating frangible plans in military (or, for that matter, any other) matters cedes place to sheer desperate necessity.

It's also helped by Cameron's willingness to sacrifice viewpoint characters, so even the degree of "happiness" of the ending can't be clearly anticipated -- and by the way in which his narrative also highlights one important theme about good and evil -- the Red Knight's side, with independently cooperating leaders and motivated soldiers, can respond effectively and with initiative when small things go wrong, whereas Ash's side's overwhelming of wills and individuality (displayed also in a somewhat different ways for the Odine) sets up conditions where setbacks can happen more easily and unravel more when they happen. ( )
  jsburbidge | Nov 9, 2017 |
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"In the climax of the Traitor Son Cycle, the allied armies of the Wild and the Kingdoms of men and women must face Ash for control of the gates to the hermetical universe, and for control of their own destinies. But exhaustion, treachery and time may all prove deadlier enemies. In Alba, Queen Desiderata struggles to rebuild her kingdom wrecked by a year of civil war, even as the Autumn battles are fought in the west. In the Terra Antica, The Red Knight attempts to force his unwilling allies to finish the Necromancer instead of each other. But as the last battle nears, The Red Knight makes a horrifying discovery...all of this fighting may have happened before"--… (more)

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