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Title: The Servants of the Storm
Series: Pillars of Reality #5
Author: Jack Campbell
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Format: Kindle digital edition
The Great Guilds are trying harder than ever to get rid of Mari and have joined hands with the Empire, even though that will probably spell their demise. Guilds and Empire both realize that Mari has a source of hidden tech and they all want it for themselves. Mari, Alain and 3 others must make a daring journey back to Marandur to rescue the texts.
Mari must also balance her presence in Tiea by making it her base of operations but without taking over the monarchy. It doesn't help that another Heir to the Throne shows up and starts taking over.
But in the end, all roads will lead back to Dorcastle and Alain's visions.
My least favorite of the books so far. Not to say this was bad in any way, it just didn't keep me riveted like the previous books. I'd find myself putting the book down and checking my feed or something.
Part of that was the continued reiteration of Alain's "mage'ness". I get it, he doesn't show emotion. Or, he sees emotions in others that isn't easily visible to non-mages. There were a couple of other things as well that Campbell has repeated since book 1 that just started to bother me. I'm guessing part of it is that I've read this much closer to book 4 than book 4 was to book 3, etc. You follow me there?
The final "meh" was the cover. They changed the format. It used to be all brown with a square of the characters in the center. It was very striking. With this one, while keeping the same cover artist/style, they've added that big blue swathe and "Jack Campbell" that just overpowers the other stuff. Phracking publishers!
Ok, on to the good stuff.
The action continues strong. There is a fantastic submarine/gun/ship/crossbow/magic/river battle as they escape from Marandur that is as good as any of the battle scenes so far. There was also a memorable one on one fight scene between the royal siblings that really showed off their different upbringings since the fall of Tiea.
Overall, a good penultimate book in the series. Nothing here dissuaded me from wanting to read the final book or from highly recommending this to any lovers of SFF.