When I first began reading this book I was somewhat confused, as I couldn’t tell the characters’ “worlds” apart when each chapter or section changed perspective. In a universe this expansive and unique it takes some time to sketch out the bones of the world. But as I got about halfway through I finally understood and was able to really enjoy the work put into creating it.
There is solid and reasonable world crafting here. I really admire the thought Bell has put into writing this fantasy about a world that was once one, that a cataclysm has torn in two. One world has dragons and the other humans. They both have stories about the existence of the other, but they dismiss the absent species as fiction. In each, there are indifferent and destructive rulers whose oppressive policies and taxes cause their citizens grief.
In the human world, women are not respected or allowed to study or even live independently. The dragons are all forced to work for their ruler and her terrible enforcer who is violent and out of control.
These two worlds are becoming more and more unstable and something needs to happen soon or they both will crumble out of existence. This volume explains all the forces that are tearing the worlds apart and the characters whose actions will determine the outcome. I assume the next will be easier to navigate as we now have the basic premise explained and we can move on to fixing the problem. I’m looking forward to reading the second story, The Unfettered Flame.
I received this ebook in return for my unbiased review.