The Olympian Affair by Jim Butcher @longshotauthor @AceRocBooks

Posted November 9, 2023 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 18 Comments

Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Olympian Affair by Jim Butcher @longshotauthor @AceRocBooks The Olympian Affair by Jim Butcher
Series: The Cinder Spires #2
Published by Ace on November 7, 2023
Genres: Science Fiction, Steampunk, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 656
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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For centuries the Cinder Spires have safeguarded humanity, rising far above the deadly surface world. Within their halls, aristocratic houses rule, developing scientific marvels and building fleets of airships for defense and trade.

Now, the Spires hover on the brink of open war.

Everyone knows it’s coming. The guns of the great airship fleets that control the skies between the last bastions of humanity will soon speak in anger, and Spire Albion stands alone against the overwhelming might of Spire Aurora’s Armada and its new secret weapon–one capable of destroying the populations of entire Spires.

A trading summit at Spire Olympia provides an opportunity for the Spirearch, Lord Albion, to secure alliances that will shape the outcomes of the war, and to that end he dispatches privateer Captain Francis Madison Grimm and the crew of the AMS Predator to bolster the Spirearch’s diplomatic agents.

The Olympian Affair is the second book in the Cinder Spires series.  It is eight years since we got The Aeronaut’s Windlass so I reread it in September to prepare for this release.  I did the reread on audio, where my initial read was in paperback.   Based on the reread, I decided to read the ebook rather than the audio here to help me capture more details. The setting is two years after the previous book.

I love a complex and layered story with a well developed world and characters.  There are many aspects here to draw my emotions.  I felt angry that the Aurora military was killing people and destroying homes for power.  I felt the romance in some developing relationships.  There was suspense in learning how the battles and attacks would happen and their results.

The military and battle strategies and missions were exciting and fun to read.  The capabilities of the different soldiers and warriorborn, along with the complex magic was more to learn.  The etherealists and their talents and oddities are something I expect we will never completely understand.

The politics of the duels and the frightening life or death realities added another layer of suspense.  I felt Lady Hinton’s worry and angst and desire to protect.  She was so talented in her own battle; it was thrilling. The rift in her relationship was heartbreaking. The characters here are easy to love,  and hate.  They are divided up more into at least two groups, tackling different missions; previously they were together as a team. Gwen in on the Predator with Captain Grimm.  Benedict and Bridget are sent on different missions.

I admit I was bored by the cats. I guess they added some humor and they do have capabilities which are often helpful but their arrogance was tiring.   For me, there was more humor in the first book; here things felt more dire.

What will happen now?  War is definitely still coming. It was fascinating to see the players on different sides, some respecting and even working with the others, whereas others were intensely hateful without regard for anything but their goals.  The ending happened at a reasonable point, not really a cliffhanger, but there are many loose ends and possibilities for the next story.


About Jim Butcher

Jim Butcher is the author of the Dresden Files, the Codex Alera, and a new steampunk series, the Cinder Spires. His resume includes a laundry list of skills which were useful a couple of centuries ago, and he plays guitar quite badly. An avid gamer, he plays tabletop games in varying systems, a variety of video games on PC and console, and LARPs whenever he can make time for it. Jim currently resides mostly inside his own head, but his head can generally be found in his home town of Independence, Missouri.

Jim goes by the moniker Longshot in a number of online locales. He came by this name in the early 1990′s when he decided he would become a published author. Usually only 3 in 1000 who make such an attempt actually manage to become published; of those, only 1 in 10 make enough money to call it a living. The sale of a second series was the breakthrough that let him beat the long odds against attaining a career as a novelist.

All the same, he refuses to change his nickname.

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Posted November 9, 2023 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 18 Comments

18 responses to “The Olympian Affair by Jim Butcher

  1. Yes, sometimes and audiobook isn’t the best format for a complicated plot. Too much going on to keep track of. There was a long time in between books. I can understand why you’d want to re-read the previous before. Sounds like a good series.

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  2. I did a quick read of your review since I’ve only just started the book. Like you, I read the first when it came out (ebook) and then got the audiobook for a re-read last month. I loved the narrator so much, I decided to get the audiobook for this one, but I also have the eARC, which helps with spelling and going over details I may have missed. I hope to have my review next week.

  3. CarrieB

    I have read the A.W. More than 100 Times. The library hates my name since im constantly listening to it (I love Euan Morton!) and lo and behold! Found out there is a 1.5 book, Warriorborn. I only discovered it 2 weeks before Olympian Affair was released (yeah, I bought the audio book this time). I signed up in Audible for 3 months for $6 and get three free books (gee-wonder what the other two will be 💖). Dresden files werent my cup of tea. I love this series. Jims preface to our critters during Covid was sweet. Just hope he doesnt wait 12 years for the next installment.