Review copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Hand of Mars by Glynn Stewart
Narrator: Jeffrey Kafer
Series: Starship's Mage #2
Published by Tantor Audio on December 29, 2015
Genres: Science Fiction, Space Opera
Length: 8 hours, 47 minutes
Amazon, Audible, Audiobook, Barnes & Noble
Three years ago, as Ship’s Mage of the starship Blue Jay, Damien Montgomery was pursued to the edge of human space by both the agents and enemies of the Mage-King of Mars — before being brought in from the cold.
Now, trained in new skills by the Mage-King himself, Damien has been sent to the planet Ardennes alongside Alaura Stealey, Hand of the King. A rebel movement there has destroyed cities fighting a Governor seemingly lost to corruption.
But not all on Ardennes is as it seems. As allies becomes enemies and an entire world comes apart in chaos around him, Damien will find both his skills and integrity tested to the utter limit.
I read the first book in the Starship’s Mage series awhile ago and always wanted to get back to the series. Starship’s Mage was surprisingly good, so I was happy I had chosen it for Thrifty Thursday feature. So when I saw Tantor releasing the audio for later in the series, I was thrilled to have more.
Hand of Mars was very enjoyable. It starts three years later. In the interim, Damien has been training with the Mage-King. He is now sent as an envoy to the planet Ardennes, accompanying a Hand, to learn about the work.
Everything on Ardennes goes to hell in a handbasket. People who should be allies are enemies and enemies become allies. What an exciting mess! There is plenty of suspense and action. I loved this with its mostly science-fiction, and little bit space opera.
I felt this was an improvement in writing of plot and dialogue from the first book. There was some character development but I could have used a bit more. I had forgotten some of Damien’s history until I read back my first review. The rest of the characters were mostly new and I’ll be interested to see if they continue in the next book. At least the ones who lived.
I am very happy to be going forward in the series. I bought the next one, Voice of Mars, as an ebook. Then I got the fourth title, Alien Arcana on my Kindle Unlimited free trial. Last, I will review Judgment of Mars on audio (which brought me back to the series). The next two reviews will post tomorrow.
“You’re insane,” the Bastille controller finally replied. “You’ll never get away with this!”
“That’s tomorrow’s problem,” Amiri told him sweetly. “We’re here for our people. Any of yours who get in the way die. Your call.”
Jeffrey Kafer was a pleasure to hear. I listened at 1.25x speed and felt very comfortable in the story and characters. He handed the action well; I was able to follow the story there also. I think this was my first listen of him and I wouldn’t hesitate to hear his work again.
Listen to a clip here.
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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2018 Audiobook Challenge