In an attempt to give the undead the magical power of the warlocks the Ebon Cities have created the Witches Eye, the plan being the end of the Southern Claw resistance and finally the end of human existence. The Witches Eye doesn't quite work as the vampires envisioned, the Witchborn created from this experiment turn on their own, they need to kill and guided by a yet unseen force, they will kill anything and everything.
Two major plus points in this novel, the first is Cross finally back from the Whisperlands and in the land of the living, and the undead of course. He is drawn to the Witches eye as he searches for his lost comrades, picking up some travelling companions on the way one of which is not who she seems, a new power against the Ebon Cities and she might just be the difference between survival and the end of everything.
The second point is the introduction of Ronan as a major POV character, a seemingly cold blooded killer and his more prominent role in the Witches Eye is a masterstroke by the author. We learn more of Ronan's history and how he became the skilled warrior who is almost indestructible with a pair of swords in his hands but more compelling is his return to humanity as he strives to save his friends and reunite them, possibly the only people in this world that he cares for. Definitely a frightening individual.
Danica is also back with a central role to the plot, twisted and used but for one purpose she has no memories of her past life and is being utilized by the vampires to kill the Witchborn, drugged and bought out when danger threatens. A deeply flawed character with a turbulent past and its certainly interesting to see her develop further.
With a single objective everyone searches for the Witches Eye and the story seems more defined while still remaining action packed, tense and fraught with violent danger.
Reading this series so far and taking into consideration the authors dire penchant for killing off major characters, or more truthfully anyone who spends time with our chief protagonist Eric Cross, I spent most of the book trying to guess who's dying thought would be I wish I'd never met Cross and was genuinely surprised at the outcome. I won't ruin it but if you read this then you to can attempt to second guess the author and see who's next.
Looking forward to Chain of Shadows the sixth Blood Skies novel, highly recommend this series its fast paced, wonderfully descriptive and thankfully not fleshed out to lessen the impact of a desolate, destructive world.