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Book Review: A Fool’s Hope

Table of Contents

War takes everything.

From Tinnstra, it took her family and thrust her into a conflict she wanted only to avoid. Now her queen’s sole protector, she must give everything she has left to keep Zorique safe.

It has taken just as much from Jia’s revolutionaries. Dren and Jax – battered, tortured, once enemies themselves – now must hold strong against their bruised invaders, the Egril.

For the enemy intends to wipe Jia from the map. They may have lost a battle, but they are coming back. And if Tinnstra and her allies hope to survive, Jia’s heroes will need to be ready when they do.”

Title: A Fools Hope

Series: The Last War #2

Author: Mike Shackle

Page Count: 553

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 5.0/5.0

Date Read: April 19th, 2023

This turned into a bit of a mini-buddy read this month. Our group read book one together last year. It was mentioned we’d go ahead and read book two for anyone who was willing and able to this month. This is still an edge of my seat adventure as we progress through the second book!
The first thing I’d like to mention is book two literally picked up right where book one left off. At times this can be difficult for me without some sort of recap from the previous book. Luckily the first book made enough of an impression on me to fall right back into the story.
The world building I believe actually got a bit better in book two. Maybe not building so much as expanding on the world the author has already laid out for us in book one. Book two just seemed a bit grander to me than the first book as we have some more action in various regions of the world.
The character development was still wonderful in this continuation. Some of our characters that are carried over continue to evolve into who they truly are. One thing I mention frequently when discussing this book and even the first is just how hopeless so many of the characters feel. I found myself asking a couple of times can any of them just catch even the slightest break!? It really didn’t detract from the story in my opinion so I’m ok with it, others may struggle a bit more with this. The one thing I wish we had more of were scenes with Jax. He certain has some but I look forward to see what comes of him in the third book. We also have some great new characters such as Anama and Ralasis.
The pacing really worked for me. I enjoyed the flow of book two just as much as I did for the first. I will say there is a fairly big moment in the middle of the book that does kind of turn the story on its head. This is a rather jarring turn of events that may or may not work for readers. I personally had a idea this may happen. It was between this and another option. Both would have been big deals I’m sure. But the path the author chose just might surprise some readers.
All in all this is another great installment to this series and I hope to get to the third book still sometime this year.
I’d recommend this to someone looking for a good fantasy read a bit on the darker side. There are some great storylines in this series and the author does a great job in detailing key moments.

World Building 5/5
Pacing 4.5/5
Character Development 5/5

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Chad Barnard

Owner/Operator of The Hiking Reader Blog. Sharing thoughts on books and hiking trails and trying to find ways to continue to incorporate both hobbies together.

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