The children of a defeated terrorist witch coven called Moonset uncover more of their parents’ legacy in this sequel to Moonset (2013).
A far cry from the previous volume’s responsible, leader-type narrator, Justin, Malcolm hates magic and is uncomfortable with the bond shared by the Moonset children. His distaste for magic and the bond—things generally considered desirable—is palpable in his narration, especially his hyperawareness of sibling dynamics as they strategize and gang up against him and his anti-magic stance. He’s tired of having his destiny entwined with those he considers unstable, and he views the bond as a vulnerability. But despite his avoidance of the magical world, an Abyssal Prince who escaped from hell during the climax of Moonset seeks him out. The nameless Prince—lonely, beautiful and sad—captivates Malcolm despite his understanding of its infernal nature. The Prince requests that Malcolm help find the body of its Abyssal sister, Kore, previously killed by Moonset. The Prince also pushes Malcolm to explore more—and darker—implications of the coven bond, which inadvertently strengthens Malcolm. Should he play to the Prince’s agenda? Although the prose—plagued by awkward phrasing—could be smoother, the story is nicely built, and Malcolm is a sympathetic narrator. Moreover, despite Malcolm’s tendency toward introspection, the plot doesn’t flag.
A solid sequel. (Urban fantasy. 14-18)