The Air War by Adrian Tchaikovsky Shadows of the Apt #8

We have come to the final three volumes in the Shadows of the Apt series and from here on out the heart racing action, pain, and turmoil will only be accelerated. The second war between the Lowlands and the Empire has begun and there is not a moments rest for us the reader to catch our breaths, since it will be held the entire time. New technology will be introduced, secret plots will be revealed, and a great deal of foreshadowing in this book will make the final 2 volumes for the series a must read. This will be a spoiler free review but I will be touching upon events from the previous books in the series.

I should mention from the start that this book switches back to Stenwold Maker and the Collegiums plans to fight back the Empire. Che, Tynisa, and Thalric are not in this book but the ramifications of their actions will be felt in The Air War. Che has banished the ghostly form of Tisamon from the mind of Tynisa, but his presence has not left the world. Tisamon finds himself in the service of the Empress Seda and honor bound to his lost blade to carry out his masters orders. Seda is rounding up her generals and eliminating those she deems a threat to her rule. Seda’s dreams are haunted by Che as the two now share the powers granted by The Masters (Slug Kinden) and the nightmares will not end while Che still lives. Seda sends her servants to look for more power in the world and particularly the Inapt magic left behind by the moth kinden. What she finds may be too powerful for her to control.

Stenwold is mustering the troops and preparing for an attack by the Empire on Collegium. Stenwold has spies in friendly cities that are now coming under attack by the Wasp Empire and he may be forced to make a great sacrifice in order to ensure victory. Taki has seen first hand the new weapons the Empire will use against the Lowlands and she is tasked with building an air fleet to repel an invasion. She has limited resources and time is running out. The assassin bug Esmail has been held in solitude since the near extinction of his race. Now he is called upon by his same oppressors’ with one simple task, kill the Empress. He will have to infiltrate the capital but his plan will not be so simple and he will get put into the crosshairs.

As I have mentioned above, The Air War is non stop action from beginning to end. Each chapter will contain several moving parts and story lines are on a collision course with only one goal in mind, destruction. The way Adrian writes these air battles is the equivalent of watching a World War II movie where the audience is always on the edge of their seats. One wrong move will mean chaos for the Lowlands and that energy for the characters and world is felt with each stroke of the pen. This book is hands down the most intense novel yet and I know the bar will be raised for the finale two volumes.

If you have made it this far in the series with me, thank you from the bottom of my heart. This series I have been screaming about for many years and to finally see it all come to fruition once again is a sight to behold. Nothing in this series is predictable and your heart will be broken ten times over. With two volumes left, you might be thinking I have seen it all. Well, YOU ARE WRONG!


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