Title: A Vanishing Glow
Series: The Mystech Arcanum
Author: Alexis Radcliff
Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Steampunk
Release Date: September 15th, 2015
Source: Given in exchange for a review
It is an Age of Revolution, an Age of Industrialism. Constructs, living men who are as much brass and steel as they are flesh, man the factories and wage the wars of a ruling elite who gorge themselves on the fruits of the common man’s labor. Mystech, a brilliant fusion of magic and machine, gives rise to a new class of privileged inventors and merchants even as the country festers with wounds from decades of internal strife.
Only one man holds the promise of a brighter future: Nole Ryon, the crown prince. When his childhood friend Jason Tern answers his call for aid, the two of them set out to fight for the change their country needs in order to survive, even as shadowy foes frustrate their efforts. But soon, Jason and Nole’s idealistic mission of hope becomes a furious manhunt for a political murderer as the nation balances on the precipice of a country-wide civil war. Can they cut through the threads of intrigue to discover their true enemy before everything is lost?
Sweeping from the ancient cities at the heart of the nation to the dusty edges of the war-torn frontier, A Vanishing Glow tells a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and assassins, friends and lovers, who come together in a time of epic struggle. Here a brave officer risks everything to win back his estranged father’s respect; a brilliant young engineer attempts to atone for her sins; a war-weary commander tries to pick up the pieces of the life he lost; and a man touched by the gods struggles to prepare a nation for the coming of an ancient evil which only he can see. In the dying light of a once-prosperous society, amid twisting plots, suffering and betrayal, lost love and shattered dreams, all must fight for what they hold dear. Who will taste the fruits of victory and who will lie bloodied on the ground in the light of a vanishing glow?
A Vanishing Glow has an industrial-style setting with both constructs and humans, not to mention two different story lines. On one hand you have the main character Jason Tern who is fighting to change his country and win his father’s respect and on the other you have Nilya who is trying to run from her past while becoming a great engineer. Both characters are well thought out with strong personalities — you get a sense for the type of character they are right off the get go. The supporting characters have equally unique personalities and do a great job helping move the story line forward. There is backstabbing, plot twists, and more. However, what impresses me most is Radcliff’s story building skills and vivid descriptions. I was easily able to paint a picture in my head while reading and get completely immersed in the story. If you like steampunk type novels with action this is a great book for you!