6 May 2022

Science Fiction and Fantasy Fridays: FEVERED STAR by Rebecca Roanhorse (Between Earth and Sky #2)

Science Fiction and Fantasy Fridays introduces readers who are unfamiliar with the Adult SF/F genre to books, authors, and discussions all about the vast expanse of the world of Adult SF/F!


Author: Rebecca Roanhorse
Series: Between Earth and Sky #2
Source: Audiobook from Audible
Publisher: Saga Press
Publication Date: April 19, 2022


Return to The Meridian with New York Times bestselling author Rebecca Roanhorse’s sequel to the most critically hailed epic fantasy of 2020 Black Sun—finalist for the Hugo, Nebula, Lambda, and Locus awards.

There are no tides more treacherous than those of the heart. —Teek saying

The great city of Tova is shattered. The sun is held within the smothering grip of the Crow God’s eclipse, but a comet that marks the death of a ruler and heralds the rise of a new order is imminent.

The Meridian: a land where magic has been codified and the worship of gods suppressed. How do you live when legends come to life, and the faith you had is rewarded?

As sea captain Xiala is swept up in the chaos and currents of change, she finds an unexpected ally in the former Priest of Knives. For the Clan Matriarchs of Tova, tense alliances form as far-flung enemies gather and the war in the heavens is reflected upon the earth.

And for Serapio and Naranpa, both now living avatars, the struggle for free will and personhood in the face of destiny rages. How will Serapio stay human when he is steeped in prophecy and surrounded by those who desire only his power? Is there a future for Naranpa in a transformed Tova without her total destruction?

Welcome back to the fantasy series of the decade in Fevered Star—book two of Between Earth and Sky.

I thought this one could have started out with more action - since we ended on such a cliffhanger and high note in the last book, I just wanted more from page one! But it was a little bit of a drag to get started, recentre on the main characters, and get everyone back to where they were after the events of BLACK SUN.

I wish that the beginning parts of Fevered Star were the end of Black Sun. Fevered Star really is just moving characters into place for book 3. Lines are being drawn, alliances formed, and people traveling to different places.

The publishing industry's obsession with The Trilogy™ needs to die already. There are countless series I've read over the years that were done a disservice for being structured this way and I'm convinced the world would know true peace (and by the world, I mean me) if we could just embrace the narrative flow of a tightly woven duology or, better yet, an expanded four book saga. Fevered Star perfectly illustrates what I'm talking about.

In a nutshell my biggest issue with this book, and most second books, is events just don't unfold as organically as they do in the first one. We spend the bulk of Fevered Star treading water and just kind of meandering through Meridian as Roanhorse forcibly moves all her chess pieces into place in preparation for the final installment. Things often happen here just because without obeying any kind of discernible logic because the writer is sticking to her script. And while that's not necessarily a bad thing (okay outliner look at you) it makes me feel like character was often sacrificed for plot. For Example: Why the hell was Xiala compelled to follow Iktan... at all? They'd literally just met and this stranger being secretive was really none of her concern. Why did she care? And why would the assasin on a top secret mission let her live after being followed? And are any of these choices even in character for either of them? No, not really... but both Iktan and Xiala needed to be moved to Hokaia for plot reasons. This kind of thing happens over and over.

Another issue for me is nothing happens here for roughly 70% of the damn book. Which I wouldn't mind...except there wasn't a lot of introspective character work happening either. And worse, by the time we time we get to the truly interesting parts of this story...it's abruptly over. You're killing me. How are we sacrificing character for plot when the plot is barely there.

I will continue reading but I am a bit disappointed!

Have you read this one? What was your favourite part?

1 comment:

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