Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Book Review: The Battlemage (Summoner #3)

Release Date: May 2, 2017
Author: Taran Matharu
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Length: 352 pages
Source: eGalley from NetGalley

One boy's ability to summon demons will change the fate of an empire ... The epic conclusion to the fantasy trilogy described as 'Harry Potter meets Lord of the Rings meets Pokemon'.

After the thrilling cliffhanger at the end of book two, we rejoin Fletcher and his friends in the ether, where they must undertake a mortally dangerous quest, all the while avoiding capture by enemies and facing foes more terrifying than anything they have yet encountered.

But this is nothing compared to what truly lies ahead for Fletcher, as his nemesis, albino orc Khan, is on a mission to destroy Hominum and everything and everyone that Fletcher loves.

Epic battles, dramatic revelations, and breathtaking drama await in the third and final book in the New York Times bestselling Summoner series.



Protagonist: At the end of The Inquisition, Fletcher's world got rocked when the prisoner he and his team were sent to recover wasn't Lady Cavendish as they thought, but Fletcher's own mother, long thought to be dead. However, before he could even let that twist faze him, they all had to jump straight into the ether, a place believed to be poisonous to humans. Fletcher's journey in this story is a pretty interesting one. His team looks to him as a leader and even when all seems hopeless he needs to think of something to get them through their ordeals in the ether. This isn't a role that Fletcher particularly likes as he hates the fate of others being in his hands. Over the course of this journey though that's not a feeling he can afford to have and he'll need to take action and lead his team if they're going to see their way out of the ether and protect the people of Hominum.

World Building: We finally get to see the ether! I mean, we technically saw a bit of it in the previous books, but not to this extent. This story definitely deals heavily with the world of the ether and the demons that dwell within it. Of course, there is the matter of the albino orc, Khan, and his plans for the world, that's a story that is woven throughout Fletcher's journey, both in the ether and after they've escaped. (If you think the fact that they eventually escape the ether is a spoiler than I'm sorry but it really shouldn't be.) Anyway, I did really enjoy what we get to see from this story. There is another major element to this world building that takes up a rather large chunk of the story, but I feel if I talk about it I really WOULD spoil something pretty awesome. There isn't a whole lot of new stuff that we get to see of this world, at least not in quantity, but the quality and in-depth look at what more we get to learn and see are pretty exciting and incredible.

Predictability: I'm looking back at the story and there wasn't all that much that I was able to predict. I mean, larger, more vague moments of the story such as the basic outcome for the main characters, sure, though even then there were a few things I couldn't predict. However, there was one thing, one thing that I was able to predict before ever even cracking open this story, and while I wish the author had taken this particular twist a bit further, it was still a pretty spectacular twist. As for the twists I was unable to call, there were some pretty intense things that go down in this story. This is an author that wants to show harsh realities over idyllic dreams and that means that things aren't always going to go the main characters' way, and well, that makes for some tension filled twists and revelations.

Ending: So I'm reading this story and noticing that I'm getting conspicuously close to the end. I mean, extremely close and while I can definitely see the potential for a final climax coming, it wouldn't be THE final climax of the series. As the end gets nearer and nearer I feel as though I've been lied to. I had heard about a "fourth" book in this series but was assured by the author that it was a prequel and that there would be a conclusion to the main arc in this book. As the end gets ever closer I begin to wonder if I wasn't given the full story and instead, like, ten chapters or so were missing from the final version. No, instead the ending is very rushed. There is closure, and THE final climax to this series does happen, but it all felt too rushed. There were so many things left to solve that are more or less addressed by the end, but honestly, as much as I hate this author's cliffhangers I kind of wish the "fourth" book would have been an extension of this story and given this story the ending that it deserved to fully flesh things out.


I seriously debated whether or not to give this book 4 or 4.5 stars. In the end, as much as I loved the bulk of this story, I needed a more fleshed out and epic ending instead of the rushed one that we get. Either way, it's a thoroughly enjoyable read and I can't wait to see what the prequel will cover in this world.


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