Review : From Cold Ashes Risen by Rob J. Hayes

“Let me assure you, regardless of whether you give your war a fancy name like The War Eternal, it is still a war; and the people who will suffer most from it are those caught in the middle.”

  • Release date : May 26th 2020
  • Publishing house : Independant
  • Series : The War Eternal
  • Pages : 448
  • Book 4 : Sins of the Mother

Spoilers ahead

If you want to read my reviews of the first two books, head here and here

Character :

Eskara Helsene : I’ve loved Hayes’ ability to write great characters. Eskara is a tragic antihero we can’t help but love even if many of her choices are questionable. Her bond with Ssserakis is growing a lot during the book as he is constantly with her. Even if both of them lied to the other, took over the other, imprisonned the other (mostly for valid reasons), they still have each other’s back and work together to bring down their ennemies.

I read this review and I found this sentence about Ssserakis to be really interesting and fitting :  » is a metaphor for mental illness, specifically anxiety and depression – coiled around one’s soul, whispering doubts at every step. Still, one that ultimately can be lived with and even taken control over should an opportunity arise. »

“I could feel the fear, and it was delicious.”

I’ve loved the dynamics between each of the characters. All of them were more clear-headed than her but they stayed with her regardless of what may happen. Some of her decisions and reactions always seemed too rash, especially when she would vent her anger on her friends, especially Hardt.

« When drowning in pain and hardship, it becomes easy to view it only from one point. To become so insular, that you fail to realise that others are struggling in different ways with different demons.« 

Story :

The story starts off slower than the other two books but this is a bit like the calm before the storm. Quite literally considering she absorbed an Arcstorm filling her with the power of electricity !

“I would wager most tragedies could be avoided by listening to the words of those who preach pacifism. Unfortunately, they tend to preach it at a much lower volume than those who preach war.”

The worldbuilding was really well done and interesting ! For instance, the magic system was nothing short of spectacular and he added layer after layer of complexity. Reading about the process for Impomancy really disgusted me as the monsters have to get out of your body by the mouth. I’ve loved how Eskara found out about using two sources to increase her power and create new ways of using magic while it was something her old teachers would forbid.

« I have heard it said that I was at my most dangerous when I had something to die for.But I’ve always been stronger when I have something to live for. »

Eskara’s growth along the first part of the series has been wonderful : from an ignorant little girl living in the academy to one if not the most powerful characters in the world. The complexity of the world created is striking, from the different races, the magic, the gods, the parallel worlds, the creatures and so on. I’m really happy that two new books are scheduled for 2022 ! The only drawback was that some sentences were a bit repetitive.

Note : 4.5 sur 5.

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