Just when you thought there wasn’t going to be any really good fantasy in 2014, along comes Scarlet Tides, the second book in The Moontide Quartet. Although I find minor points to criticize when it comes to the scientific world-building, the fantasy environment and the plot are outstanding. With just two books published in America (the third has just appeared in Britain), I’m now ranking David Hair alongside Brandon Sanderson and Daniel Abraham for the highest possible quality of inventiveness and characterization.
We’ve now managed to transport most of the army and its supply columns across the bridge. Unopposed, the Crusade is formally under way. In the early stages of occupying the land, the “enemy” has either evacuated the citizens leaving little behind, or is seen to be withdrawing. Not expecting any opposition, the army advances (albeit increasingly impoverished by the giant Ponzi scheme being run by its major quartermaster unit). On the political front, we watch Gurvon Gyle try to manipulate the Dorobon clan into doing what he wants, while training in the use of magic begins to build different bridges between ill-matched pairs in readiness for future conflict. Overall, the result is a page-turner of the highest class.
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