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Iron Angel by Alan Campbell
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Iron Angel (2008)

by Alan Campbell

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Deepgate Codex (2)

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
While I still really like this book I feel it was a step down from the first book in the series "Scar Night". I feel that the author kind-of lost the plot a bit, characters were meandering along with the plot, sometimes I got confused who was doing what where.

In the end, I still rate these two books pretty high, there is a lot of good here and that cancels out the bad for me. ( )
  Sarah_Buckley | Sep 17, 2016 |
I spent a good part of the predecessor, [b:Scar Night|627204|Scar Night (Deepgate Codex, #1)|Alan Campbell|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1320430003s/627204.jpg|2128357], trying to decide whether the book was fantasy, or SF disguised as fantasy. There were indications of the latter, with 'angels' having fallen from 'heaven' in a technologically advanced vehicle ('the Tooth'). This book, however, steams ahead with straightforward fantasy approach, if with more engineering than usual.

Scar Night was very much about the hanging city of Deepgate, and one of my criticisms was that the city, while intriguing, was poorly described. I felt the story was intriguing despite that flaw. This second book is very much about hell/the Maze/Iril, and the politics of both hell and earth. Unfortunately, all of this is again poorly described. It's generally easy to follow what's happening in the main plotline, but hard to follow the geography of both the Maze and its connection with the earth. There's a similar problem with exactly how the whole soul mechanism works, though this is a key element of the story. The politics of the various infernal and earthly factions I found equally vague, though again it was easy enough to keep track of 'good' and 'bad'. Finally, there were a couple of jarring temporal shifts, though they were well marked with section breaks. All in all, unfortunate flaws that mar a quite interesting story.

All of the structural issues aside, Iron Angel fulfills much of the promise of Scar Night, if in unexpected ways. The focus shifts from Deepgate to Dill and some other characters, as they become enmeshed between gods (Ulcis' brothers) and darker forces. I personally found the story less interesting, not being a fan of military campaign fiction, but it was well laid out, and there's more than enough human, personal matter to keep character-oriented audiences going. It's unclear where the story will go next, which I count as a good thing, and I look forward to a lot of solved mysteries and tied ends in the last book of the trilogy.

All in all, a reasonable if not stellar steampunk fantasy, and one that gets points for an original environment and story. Worth continuing from book one, if you can put up with a little vagueness. I'd give it 2.5 stars, where Scar Night was a solid 3. ( )
  BMorrisAllen | May 14, 2013 |
This was really freaking cool. Campbell just gets it. His imagery is amazing, John Anchor should go down in history as a classic unforgettable character, the White Sword battle was also classic and hilarious. This one didn't have the big "start up" section the first book did (which is good) but it did ramble around a bit leaving some "main" characters out of the picture for 100 pages or more. I guess one other bad things is that it does end with a cliffhanger. Fortunately for anyone reading it now, the next book is already out (and I think maybe one more after that?).

Highly recommended for anyone into dark, bloody, slightly disturbing fantasy. ( )
  ragwaine | Dec 12, 2010 |
Moving the focus from the chained city removes a vital protagonist from the proceedings. Deepgate literally hung over the apocalyptic events in Scar Night; Campbell's imagination is even more baroque and noir gothic in the sequel, but the characters and setting do not convince as much. This reminded me a lot of the weirder bits of Steph Swainston. The cliff-hanger ending does not help either. ( )
  GerhardH | Mar 3, 2010 |
Last year I read Scar Night, the first in this trilogy. The main characters of Dill (the angel) and Rachel Hael (the un-tempered Spine assassin) are back. Briefly we meet up with Carnival as well. But this book expands on the world surrounding Deepgate and the whole mythology surrounding the archons (angel warriors) and the demigods. There are new characters like Hasp, who befriends Dill in Hell. And Alice Harper who regrettably finds herself acting as an agent of Menoa, Hell's de facto ruler. Other gods come into play including Cospinol, the god of brine and fog. And Cospinol's number two man, a giant named John Anchor (who is a really cool character). But the story is not as cohesive as Scar Night's story. There is much going on and much strangeness. It's a bit confusing in the first half but starts coming together more in the latter half. All in all, I'm a big fan of this trilogy so far. The story is endlessly inventive, gothic, and weird. I'm looking forward to the concluding book in the trilogy, God of Clocks, which is due this summer. ( )
  woodge | Nov 20, 2009 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
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Alan Campbellprimary authorall editionscalculated
Youll, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For my dad, who might have occaisonally scratched his head at my dreams and ambitions, but has never failed to help me achieve them
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Saltwater fog had engulfed the old galleon for as long as her crew could remember.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553589326, Mass Market Paperback)


In this stunning follow-up to his epic fantasy debut, Alan Campbell propels readers into a captivating city battling for its own survival—and that of humankind—in a world of deities and demons, fallen angels and killers.

After a destructive battle, the ancient swaying city of Deepgate has been overtaken. Most of the chains that suspend it have given way, and the temple now dangles upside down above the once-uncharted abyss. The victorious Spine have initiated martial law and are ruthlessly pursuing all who attempt to leave. But amid the turmoil, two captives are returned: the young angel Dill, now toughened by war, and traitor assassin Rachel Hael.

Incarcerated in the crumbling temple, the prisoners await their fate—while ghosts rise through the abyss from the open gates of Hell. But as the city teeters on the brink, plans for vengeance are set in motion. And in the coming battle between gods, it is the world of men that is at stake.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:18 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

The death of the god Ulcis has left open the gates of Hell, leaving the city of Deepgate teetering on the edge of the abyss, while Rachel Hael struggles to restore the soul of her friend, the young angel warrior Dill, whose body has been possessed by an evil spirit.… (more)

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