My perusal of the Emperor’s Edge series continues with book #3, Deadly Games. It’s been a slow process – I can’t really account for the delay between reading the second book, Dark Currents, and this one. After the break, it was nice to get back into the characters, and I found the book went much faster and flowed well. Maybe it’s just an improvement in her writing style, or maybe the focus on Basilard was more interesting to me than Books.
Amaranthe Lockdon is still trying to prove herself (and her team) are on the Emperor’s side. Constantly looking for good deeds, their self-imposed holiday is interrupted when athletes begin disappearing from the Imperial Games. Things are never as easy or as smooth as planned, of course, and members of Amaranthe’s team are secretly plotting against each other, a potential new ally tries to turn her in, and Sicarius disappears. There’s also the ever-present avoidance of the Enforcers, which adds even more spice to the story.
Bonus for fun fight scenes! Amaranthe seems to be constantly butting heads with vicious creatures, and this time a Kraken comes between her and her goal. Amaranthe just kicks butt. I love how she’s a strong character, who believes she can talk her way out of numerous situations – but she knows how to fight when she needs to.
I just love the interactions between these characters, as their relationships grow and change and strengthen. I also love that the story is not all about the developing feelings between Amaranthe and Sicarius – there’s a plot to focus on after all!
I love the slow slow thawing of Sicarius, and the slowly revealed back stories of each team member (Basilard in this one). I think I do like Basilard better than Books – I guess I have more patience for Basilard’s internal moral dilemmas than Books and his lack of confidence.
An action-packed steampunk adventure! I think I even enjoyed it better than book #1, The Emperor’s Edge.