Review by The Mole
(Angelus Trilogy book 3)
After the cliff hanger ending of book 2 (Angel City), the story reopens as the dust has settled - but not how we expected it to settle. The pace of the opening chapters is much slower than we had left, more sombre, more hopeless - I was left desperately wanting the hope-levels and mood to lift. The action soon resumes as frenetic as any part of the earlier books and gradually the story comes to it's hiatus in Jerusalem with death, mayhem and blood and gore letting more proliferous than at any previous point.
I have to admit that so much happens so fast in this book that I feel I need to go back some time and reread it.
Entirely in keeping with books 1 and 2 it very much relies you having read book 2 but please do make sure you start at book 1 - you will understand the characters so much better.
In The Watchers we meet all the characters in violent clashes as Katharine Taylor, a high class prostitute, is drawn in as a pawn by Komarovsky in a plot to end all life on earth. As the story progresses we learn that she is not a pawn in Komarovsky's plans, but in fact the lynch pin. By the end of book 1 we got to feel that maybe Harper, an angel in the body of a man, had in fact defeated Komarovsky.
Angel City is not an add on but very much a continuance where loose ends are picked up again and shaken off. Komarovsky is very much alive as are Taylor and Harper but loose ends we didn't know existed are also shown to us and Taylor gives birth to a child - but who is the father? Komarovsky? One of the dark shadows that raped her in The Watchers?
The Way Of Sorrows opens with the child, Max, missing and Taylor not knowing who or where she is and although there is evidence of a child having been there she has no idea whose the child might have been. Harper is unwell, unsure and in the dark as to his involvement in events of the past but Krinkle, another angel in human form, is there to guide, awaken and chauffeur him around the world to a showdown with Komarovsky that may herald the end of mankind as we know it. But prophecy has it that Harper cannot and will not defeat Komarovsky as he sacrifices Max to bring about the final defeat of everything that is good on the earth.
The characters truly came to life for me throughout this series and the final ending, as I'm sure you will guess, is not as bleak as it sounds although Steele does set about killing off most of the characters I had grown attached to.
An excellent climax to an excellent series - a story that is so definitely fantasy but tries to win you over as philosophical sci-fi. Once you've read it you'll understand what I mean - but I won't be swayed. Enjoy this one because fantasy doesn't get closer to sci-fi than this.
Publisher -Blue Rider Press
Genre - Adult Fantasy