Read my reviews of previous books in the Immortals Descending series:
The latest book in this fantastic series gives off some pretty distinct horror vibes at the start, but only to evoke the proper mood for what haunts Cillian throughout the rest of the book. He is an unwitting victim in the drama between the gods that circles back to a thread in book 1 I was already invested in. This adventure is more than a follow-up, however, as Cillian eventually encounters Astra, the god of dreams, so that together they might save the world from nightmares.
Not those nightmares – Astra is firmly in control of his realm, thank you. He’s a delight, actually, and I adore him as both a character in his own right, learning how to human (shoes! hair! spicy food!), and as a foil and romantic interest to Cillian. In this world where power exchange is biologically determined, I enjoyed how the authors once again upended their own rules by creating a character without a natural alignment. This makes his dynamic with Astra both unexpected and exciting, though I already knew I’d enjoy their connection just from the entertaining interplay between them from the first time they meet.
Combat between gods could easily devolve into all-out war, but with the god of war still indisposed, our heroes once again find unique ways to fight their battles. The initial horror elements of this story transition to a sort of dreamlike dark fantasy, featuring stylized combat methods that are perfectly in line with Astra and Cillian’s individual and combined strengths. And though this book made me shed fewer tears than I’m used to with this series, that certainly doesn’t mean the dark moments weren’t as intense and exciting as in previous installments.
Even better, Astra and Cillian are never necessarily on their own for any of it. Not only do we get exciting cameos from heroes in previous series set in this world, but these main characters are also surrounded by a dynamic cast of the secondary characters who make up Cillian’s performance troupe. There are quite a few of them, but each is so distinct that it never gets overwhelming, along with never devolving into stereotype. Found family has long been a theme in this world, but here it’s brought to the forefront in a way that fits the storyline without overshadowing it.
Overall, I love that this world never gets stagnant. This author team adds unexpected layers with each new book, and the love and investment they have for their creation shows with each word. Since I follow them on social media, I have a few ideas of what’s coming up, and I’m more than ready for it.
Disclaimer: I received a digital review copy of this book from the authors.