Dead Stars - Part Two

Dead Stars - Part Two - Ben Galley A riveting finale to the Emaneska series, fast paced, action packed with some wonderful characters. This is a highly recommended dark fantasy series littered with magick, tattooed mages, daemons, dragons and Gods in an epic battle of good versus evil.
If you've not read any of this series the first & second novels, The Written & Pale Kings are both available on Kindle for an excellent price and its well worth following the flawed hero as he battles both himself and the insurmountable odds thrown at him.

My review for The Written is here:

If you've not read Dead Stars Part 1 then this first section of the review contains big spoilers .
The story resumes immediately after the chaotic climax to Dead Stars Part 1 of which the ending is definitely worth talking about as Samara summons 3 daemons down from the sky and they begin to wreak havoc at Modren and Elessi's wedding.
The Arkmages and the Written answer with spells of white ice shards and lightening, concentrating on one adversary they join together and throw everything they can muster at the daemon but in the end it was not the weight of spells that did for the daemon but a simple wine barrel. As he tripped over it and crashed into the spire, the screams spurred the mages on until the daemon and the spire are destroyed. Farden wreathed in utter fury and patience long gone is unable to use his magick but this major disadvantage doesn't stop him confronting one of the two remaining foes, the daemon hesitates and disappears spitting the words Godsblood at Farden and his armour.
Elessi is unconscious poisoned by the touch of the daemon, Farden is the only one who can save her and Loki gets a taste of what may come as he feels the power of a departing soul.

After escaping amid the chaos, Samara and Lilleth head North over the mountains to be met by the surviving daemons Hokus & Valfor, the North is where the magick is strongest and they must travel there to complete the spell again. Samara believes Farden to be the man who killed her father and on seeing him her determination to fulfil the prophecies and lies that Lilleth has told her increases tenfold.

Farden, Tyrfing and the surviving Written travel across the sea to the home of the Sirens seeking information on the daemon touched wound of Elessi, Farden begins to train, to recapture his fitness but his magick is still gone for the time being.

The daemons have travelled far and wide sowing their treacherous seeds with promises of power, breeding discontent amongst the rulers of Krauslung and the Sirens. The political manoeuvring is an interesting element to the plot as plans to dispose the Arkmages of Krauslung gather speed and the Sirens offer help to their fellow dragons of the Northern clan as traitors gather.

The story of Farden shows a character who is intensely stubborn, headstrong and single minded when given purpose. He blames his magic for all his problems and resorts to the drug Nevermar to banish it, he blames himself for the problems caused by the battle of the Pale Kings and the birth of his daughter and to solve this he disappears from Krauslung for 15 years. When the God Loki brings him back he finally takes responsibility for saving the daemon touched Elessi and facing the coming onslaught but he will do it his way, retrieving something long lost and travelling where only the dead may go. As with Part 1 the relationship between Loki & Farden is at times tense and fraught with potential violence, the God even learns how to cheat at cards and most of the time, just pissing Farden off seems to be his ultimate goal.

Running alongside the events in Emaneska is the story of Korrin from over 1500 years ago, now incredibly skilled in warfare, Korrin and the chosen nine receive a gift to aid them in their coming battles against tyrants and evil kings. Gifts of legend that are still sought even now. As with any series you enjoy that touches on the past to aid in the plot, I always feel there's more to tell and a bigger story or prelude novel could be produced, I guess that's testament to the skill of the writer and the self published Author Ben Galley is an extremely skilful story teller.