Opening: “Eight chants past Midsong: twilight. In the plaza around the Maidenstairs a crowd began to gather: men and women in brightly colored work clothes; here and there the sapphire or silver flutter of Circle robes.”
I read Agent of Change in June and enjoyed it, but I wanted to read the whole series. Unfortunately, my library system doesn’t own the whole series. This is the third book. I hate reading series out of order; it makes me feel like I’m missing something. I think in this case I am–I suspect a lot of the groundwork worldbuilding was done in the first two books. The characters and plot are both strong and independent enough that I didn’t feel confused, but I could also tell that there were gaps in my knowledge. References that slipped past me, characters I didn’t have any prior history with.
Despite all of that, I liked the book a lot. It feels solid, though it’s not particularly thought provoking or emotionally challenging. The main characters were sympathetic, the world was nicely drawn, and the plot certainly provided dramatic tension. The story was fairly self-sufficient, though I could see a couple of potential plots being hinted at.
All in all, while I didn’t fall in gushy love with this, I did like and appreciate it a lot. And I want to read the first books! I guess it’s ILL for me.
Book source: public library
Book information: Ace, 2002; adult scifi (it is fairly adult)