Chasing the Darkness

Cassie Sanchez. Morgan James, $17.95 trade paper (294p) ISBN 978-1-63195-609-6
Sanchez debuts with an entertaining but slightly stilted fantasy that finds magicless Naturals at war with magic-wielding Spectrals. Ever since King Valeri of Pandaren was allegedly assassinated by an Air Spectral, a group of human assassins called Hunters have been killing unregistered Spectrals with impunity. For Azrael, aka the Angel of Death, this mission is personal; he seeks to avenge his own dead family. But then an Amplifier serum intended to make him stronger leads to unexpected side effects: he feels the emotions of the Spectrals he was taught to loathe from childhood, experiencing their fear and pain. This doesn’t sit well with Commander Drexus Zoldac, the Hunters’ leader, who ousts Azrael from its ranks. Now Azrael’s vengeance has a new target: his former colleagues. There’s palpable tension and intrigue as Azrael plots his revenge and gains knowledge about both his world and his own identity. The writing, however, feels stiff and formal, and tends to dull the action scenes. Luckily, the colorful cast helps to counterbalance the flat prose. Fantasy readers willing to put in some work will find this worthwhile. (Feb.)
Reviewed on : 11/24/2021
Release date: 02/01/2022
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror
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