This post may contain slight spoilers for earlier books. Read my review of the first novel, The Warded Man here.
On the night of the new moon, the demons rise in force, seeking the deaths of two men both of whom have the potential to become the fabled Deliverer, the man prophesied to reunite the scattered remnants of humanity in a final push to destroy the demon corelings once and for all.
Arlen Bales was once an ordinary man, but now he has become something more—the Warded Man, tattooed with eldritch wards so powerful they make him a match for any demon. Arlen denies he is the Deliverer at every turn, but the more he tries to be one with the common folk, the more fervently they believe. Many would follow him, but Arlen’s path threatens to lead him to a dark place he alone can travel to, and from which there may be no returning.
Ahmann Jardir has forged the warlike desert tribes of Krasia into a demon-killing army and proclaimed himself Shar’Dama Ka, the Deliverer. He carries ancient weapons—a spear and a crown—that give credence to his claim, and already vast swaths of the green lands bow to his control.
Once Arlen and Jardir were as close as brothers. Now they are the bitterest of rivals. As humanity’s enemies rise, the only two men capable of defeating them are divided against each other by the most deadly demons of all—those lurking in the human heart. – source
I was admittedly sceptical of this novel, because while I absolutely loved Brett’s debut novel, The Warded Man, the sequel to it — The Desert Spear failed to live up to my expectations, and was an unsatisfying read in comparison to the first; falling short of the novel’s potential. Fortunately, my scepticism wasn’t needed as Brett’s latest novel proved to be a gripping read, and a fantastic addition to its predecessors’, with its great back story and fantastic battle scenes.
One thing that I have to mention though, was that my main issue with The Desert Spear (which continues to be an issue in this latest instalment in the Demon Cycle) was the imbalance of power.
There are characters which (for lack of a better word) are perfect. They’re strong; they can deal with anything, and do absolutely anything. Arlen is especially vexing at times due to that, especially as some of his abilities begin to manifest and gain potency.
An example of this is the Corelings — in the first book, they were invincible, impossibly strong and deadly creatures, by the end of the second book they can pretty much be killed with a look. He does remedy that a bit in this novel, reintroducing the element of fear, even from the “super-powers”.
That imbalance of power can be a bit of a stint when reading Brett’s Demon Cycle. Despite this, it’s enjoyable to follow along their adventure, and his characters are ones that are easy to care about and they’re fun to read,
The Daylight War is easily one of the top 5 novels I’ve read this past year. Readers of Brett’s Demon Cycle have a lot to look forward to in February. I can say with complete confidence that Brett has outdone himself, and this latest instalment surpasses The Desert Spear, and is perhaps even better than The Warded Man (which is one of my favourite fantasy novels).
With his breath-taking descriptions, epic battle scenes (that’ll make you say “Damn! That’d look epic on the big screen” — Rojer and his music continue to be an amazing addition.), the powers that shape the world, and of course, keeping with the theme of the series, Brett tells yet another amazing coming of age story, this time of Jardir’s wife, Inevera.
The Daylight War, Book Three of The Demon Cycle by Peter V. Brett is a fast-paced, action-packed and exhilaratingly detailed novel that will leave readers breathless and in eager anticipation for more.
The Daylight War will be released February 12th.
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
- Illustrated book trailer for The Daylight War shows how book trailers should be made (mithrilwisdom.com)
- Fiction Affliction: February Releases in Fantasy (tor.com)