Wednesday, 23 October 2013

The Rats and the Ruling Sea - Robert V. S. Redick


The Nilstone still hasn't been destroyed and the evil sorcerer Arunis has his eyes fixed on it as a prize. Before he can claim it as his own, however, and use its mysterious power to unleash the ageless Swarm unto the world, he must work out who the spell keeper is to restore the Shaggat Ness to flesh and blood.

The revered mage Ramachni, Pazel Pathkendle, the young lady Thasha Isiq and the rest of their companions are determined that this will not happen. Even as life becomes more dangerous for them aboard the Chathrand, they are becoming ever more determined to stop Arunis and the sinister spymaster Sandor Ott. Their lives are threatened, mutiny is whispered, but the conspirers know that much more is at stake than their own existence - they cannot lose and allow the Chathrand to navigate the Ruling Sea...

The Good
As in The Red Wolf Conspiracy, I was extremely impressed by the enthusiasm of Robert V. S. Redick’s writing. He has a knack of really being able to immerse me in both his story and the lives of his characters. His vivid descriptions do have a slightly ‘old’ feel to their style, but it really works with the sailing theme of the book. I could really tell that he had as much fun in writing it as I did in reading it!

Redick has also managed to keep the creative flair going from the first book of the series. And, once again, he has managed to keep the story interesting throughout the book, despite much of it being set on the Chathrand. Other than this rather epic ship, The Rats and the Ruling Sea whirls through a whole host of lavish locations; ranging from dark, forgotten dungeons that are filled with death and horror to forbidding rainforests that teem with life. He has continued to invent his own monsters, staying away from those authors’ typically use, which really gives the book a fresh, vibrant feel throughout.

The Bad
Once again, I don't really have anything to fault with Redick's book. He has clearly invested a great deal of time in its writing and planning, and this was really evident to me as I read it. The Rats and the Ruling Sea is exciting, well described and has a balanced pace - if Redick didn't invest a significant amount of thought into this book, he is either an accidental master or has a fantastic editor.

My Thoughts
I have to say that there is definitely something special about The Red Wolf Conspiracy and The Rats and the Ruling Sea. Both books read more like fairy tales for adults than typical fantasy novels and I am extremely excited about reading the third book in The Chathrand Voyage series in the near future. But don’t take my word for it – start the series and see for yourself!

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