Cels Reviews: Helen Lowe's - "The Gathering of the Lost"
It’s been five years since the Darkswarm attacked the Keep of the Winds, leaving a trail of blood and destruction in their wake and irrevocably changing Malian, the Heir of Night’s, life forever. Now thought to be dead in the wilds of Jaransor, Malian has been anything but idle in her exile. Not only has she developed her own powers into something the Swarm should respect (if not fear), she’s been hunting down every rumour of the presence of the Derai magic workers. Malian is more determined than ever that her people will not fall victim to the twisted dark tide of magic heading their way.
But not all accept tales of Malian’s death. Her enemies are on the hunt once more. Suspicion falls on the two heralds so instrumental in her survival, Tarathan and Jehane, who find themselves caught up in a web of intrigue and murder at the Ijiri Festival of Masks. Fleeing to save their own lives, they bring word of death on the wall and a call of duty and honour that Malian must answer.
Yet, despite five years of searching, the legendary weapons of the Derai’s greatest hero remain lost. Without them a return to the wall promises only defeat and death. Does Malian really stand a chance?
This Gathering of the Lost not only easily matches the brilliance of its predecessor but in many ways it surpasses it. Like all good epic fantasy sequels it’s bigger and better than ever and with another killer ending.
Lowe has taken the world to a whole new height that will leave you utterly addicted to the series. The action has been amped up another octane, the magic is more compelling than ever and the political intrigue perfectly woven throughout the plot.
I was staggered by the complex characterisation in the first book – but this time I was left breathless. Lowe has done a magnificent job of shaping and changing her characters, especially Malina and Kalan, by the events that have befallen them without losing that essential spark that had the reader so invested in their journey in the first place. The five year gap between adventures not only feels real when it comes to the characters, but for the reader as well.
Lowe has achieved a balance of light and dark throughout and the well-placed twists and turn will have the pages simply flying by. This is the series all lovers of fantasy young and old simply must have on their bookshelves. Lowe looks set to become a household name of the genre. I certainly can’t wait to see what new twists and turn she brings us next with “Daughter of Blood”.
The Gathering of the Lost-Helen Lowe
Released: April 2012