I’ve been catching up with a few short reads these past few days, which does wonders for the tbr list. There’s not enough to say about these to justify a review each, so I’ve gathered them into a compilation.
Shadows Over Innocence (Emperor’s Edge 0.5)
A nice little short story giving a glimpse into the background of Sicarius the emotionless assassin and Sespian the future Emperor as a child. One for the fans, and best read after some of the Emperor's Edge series to fully appreciate the nuances. Two stars.
Ice Cracker II and other stories (Emperor’s Edge 1.5)
The Frozen Water Trade, Through Fire Distilled, Ice Cracker II
These are fun, light-hearted reads which follow a similar formula: Amaranthe is going about her business when she stumbles across a dead body or an exploded machine, leading her to investigate, whereupon things get much, much worse. Two stories feature Sicarius, and one has Books in it (but sadly there’s no sign of Maldynado). Three stars.
The Assassin’s Curse (Emperor’s Edge 2.5)
A nice spooky haunted island is the star attraction here. Amaranthe and Sicarius are training in the lake when they spot something odd going on. Can Amaranthe resist investigating? Of course not. This leads to an encounter with another of the author’s ingenious steam-powered machines, and the usual implausible but entertaining fight scene. Three stars.
All of these are recommended for fans of the Emperor’s Edge series, although there isn’t a whole lot of backstory revealed. They’re also a pretty good introduction to the author’s steampunk world and mayhem-and-explosion-rich style of adventure.