Divinity’s Twilight: Remnant (Divinity’s Twilight #2) by Christopher Russell
Divinity’s Twilight: Remnant is the much-anticipated sequel to the multi-award-winning epic fantasy novel, Divinity’s Twilight: Rebirth.
Power is a curse.
As Vallen and his fellow cadets flee fallen Darmatia, he is forced to confront the ghosts of his past. The friend who perished that he might live. The girl whose smile haunts his nightmares. Now, a third voice joins them—something dark, something ancient. And the more Vallen uses his magic, the stronger it becomes.
Tools exist to be used.
The flames of Sylette’s vengeance are all but quenched. With each passing day, the dominion of the Sarconian Empire grows, and her treacherous father’s throat drifts further from her reach. Sylette’s last hope is a coded message, one that promises a growing resistance against the Empire. But even if she gains the means to avenge her mother’s murder, one question remains: how many ‘tools’ is she willing to sacrifice to see her vengeance through?
What color is love?
Renar has learned to hide a great many things: his emotions, his art, and one truly devastating family secret. But when he must face the man who’s controlled his life from the shadows, will he choose the family he’s always known, or the dysfunctional crew he’s been shackled with?
For every ending, a beginning.
Embers of conspiracy flare in Nemare and Sarconia. A resurrected Sarcon plots to reclaim his imprisoned flesh. As the winds of war swirl and forgotten myths rise, the choices these cadets make could save their country . . .. . . or unleash something far, far worse.
My Review (4.25 out of 5 )
Disclaimer: I received a copy of Divinity’s Twilight: Remnant as part of this Book Tour. This hasn’t influenced either the score or the review.
Divinity’s Twilight: Remnant (for the rest of the review Remnant) is the second installment in the Divinity’s Twilight series, by Christopher Russell. I was originally pulled by this series due to the aesthetic of the cover and the steampunk elements, and remained for the characters and the world, and we will follow them as they try to deal with the aftermath after the fall of Darmatia, the end of Rebirth.
We are going to follow again our favourite cadets meanwhile they’re looking for the Resistance base to join them, while at the same time they continue their interrupted formation. Vallen will take a more prominent spot in the narrative, becoming one of the main points of view and increasing his importance in the plot. In comparison with the first book, we get a slower plot, more focused on the characters, and it feels like a way to drive the aftermath of the acts in Book 1; but it is true that it changes in the second half of the book, where action recovers part of the importance.
As shown during Rebirth, writing fighting scenes is one of the strongest abilities that Russell has. It doesn’t matter if we are seeing the cadets fighting a Drakken, if it’s a fight between two of the cadets, or a major battle scene; all of them are perfectly narrated, but with the adequate amount of chaos that you can expect during a violent scene; keeping in mind also the dimension of what we are seeing.
Worldbuilding is another aspect I loved. It’s not a secret I personally like steampunk, and that I was mainly driven into the series for the aesthetic on Rebirth’s cover; and Russell takes this strong American Civil War vibes mixed with magical elements to the next level. This shines more when we are in the Imperial scenes, following the different conspirations for power; it is true that the cadets’ plot is mainly centered around the characters, but it gives some details of this worldbuilding, and we are rewarded for waiting during the second half of Remnant.
Pace is correct throughout the book, but I feel that I would have enjoyed it more if the first half would have been shorter. Despite the characters are developed perfectly, it gives another layer of complexity to the story (the tribulations of Renar get real importance; Vallen and his inner demons); I feel that sometimes we are too much time stopped at it. The second half action recovers its importance throughout the series, but it’s true that all the foundation made in the first half gets used for enhancing the plot at this point.
An aspect I would like to comment before finishing the review is not about the craft of the story, but some details of the book which I think deserve a mention. First of all, it includes some inner illustrations of great quality, which reflects either characters or important moments of the story. It also includes a summary of what happened in Rebirth, which is so useful for refreshing your memory and preparing for Remnant; I think more fantasy series could include this. Apart from these, there’s also a glossary and a list of characters, all of them details I appreciate when the series has this big scope.
In summary, I enjoyed my journey through Remnant, being a book that I recommend to all these people who love steampunk settings, and in comparison with Rebirth, to those who prefer more character-driven stories, as the aftermath of Rebirth certainly slows the pace. I can’t wait to return to Constella with the third book of Divinity Twilight.
Prize: A Paperback Copy of Divinity’s Twilight: Remnant!
Starts: September 22, 2022 at 12:00am EST
Ends: September 28, 2022 at 11:59pm EST
Direct link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/79e197ac56/
Christopher Russell (native of Williamsburg, VA) is a 29-year-old mechanical and aerospace engineer (graduate of the University of Virginia) who has loved reading since the day he picked up a book and writing since he could scrawl his first letters. After voraciously consuming titles from every genre—ranging from Star Wars to Lord of the Rings—he decided to combine the expertise from his professional education, passions, and Christian faith into a fantasy epic bridging the gap between magic and science. He currently resides in Charlottesville, Virginia, with his loyal dog, Vallen, named after the protagonist of his first work. For behind-the-scenes information on all of Christopher Russell’s works, visit his website.