cover image Legacy of Light

Legacy of Light

Matthew Ward. Orbit, $18.99 trade paper (704p) ISBN 978-0-316-45794-1

Ward sends out the mammoth and extremely rewarding trilogy that began with Legacy of Ash with this expertly wrought epic. The war between the Tressian Republic and the Hadari Empire has ended, but peace does not comfort Tressia’s Lord Protector Viktor Droshna, who is burdened by a supernatural shadow that drives him to create new conflict. Josiri Trelan, Viktor’s best friend and Head of the Constabulary in the city of Tressia, is slow to recognize the danger, distracted by fears for his beloved demon, Anastacia Psanneque, and by the restless, unhappy populace. Much bloodshed and intrigue ensue in the buildup to Viktor trying first to resurrect Calenne Trelan, his dead lover and Josari’s sister—then to use the power of shadow to animate an army of clay mannequins against the Republic. Meanwhile the deities who lurk behind the trilogy’s action, bargaining with ephemeral humans when it pleases them, become ever more involved in the characters’ lives, especially the Raven, God of the Dead, who is both amused and annoyed by Calenne’s refusal to stay dead. Ward breathes new life into familiar tropes while convincingly maneuvering his huge cast to universally satisfying conclusions. The result is a vigorous, bravura saga. Agent: John Jarrold, John Jarrold Literary. (Aug.)