Two Serpents rise by Max Gladstone

Craft Sequence, Book 2

Synopsis: Shadow demons plague the city reservoir, and Red King Consolidated has sent in Caleb Altemoc — casual gambler and professional risk manager — to cleanse the water for the sixteen million people of Dresediel Lex. At the scene of the crime, Caleb finds an alluring and clever cliff runner, crazy Mal, who easily outpaces him.

But Caleb has more than the demon infestation, Mal, or job security to worry about when he discovers that his father — the last priest of the old gods and leader of the True Quechal terrorists — has broken into his home and is wanted in connection to the attacks on the water supply.

From the beginning, Caleb and Mal are bound by lust, Craft, and chance, as both play a dangerous game where gods and people are pawns. They sleep on water, they dance in fire… and all the while the Twin Serpents slumbering beneath the earth are stirring, and they are hungry.

Review: Oh what can I say about this novel? First of all I think Max Gladstone has a wonderful talent to build his worlds and intrigues. It’s pretty impressive to see the mix he manages to present us, all that with a fantasy and urban fantasy genre in stories which are very complex and searched. I also loved the first novel for this reason and I was so curious to find out what the second would introduce us.

I know I do not read a lot of fantasy novels but I always find it interesting to read one from time to time and I think this series is really worth it for those who want to try it. But back to the story, we discover Caleb, a young man who takes his work to heart. But when one day someone tries to wake snakes living in the depths of the water in the city, our hero must find the responsible! But the only person he discovers there is none other than a young woman who appears to be unrelated to these events. However, this meeting will change his life, and while he does not know her, Caleb will do everything to find her and put at the same time his job in Jeopardy. I admit that I was immediately intrigued by Mal, she is so different from the other girls and at the same time the complexity of her character attracts us and makes us want to discover more about her. But I confess that I did not expect all the revelations we learn in the novel and I was more than surprised all along the chapters. However, I found that the relationship between Mal and Caleb throughout the story was touching, as they take their time and they support each other carefully. But this is not all and while the two are forced to work together to save the city, the Caleb’s father is also wanted for terrorism, living a life completely opposite of his son. It is true that I also had a lot of questions about him. It is very difficult I think to know if what he says is the truth or not. He always seems to want to prove his innocence to his son and to explain what is happening.

The quest for our two heroes is very interesting and I was really curious about the identity of the culprit behind the poisoning of water and once again I did not expect this person. When we believe that the plot is finally resolved, we realize that it is only the beginning of something bigger between those people who hope to return to a life filled with gods and those who are happy with the result of the war. And like for the first volume, it was very interesting to discover a little more about this world so different from others and to learn about his organization. We discover some new characters here and I’m curious to find out what the author has in store for the future. If you are looking for something different, this book is perfect!




8 thoughts on “Two Serpents rise by Max Gladstone

  1. This is worth checking out. I love male authors writing fantasy series like this, it’s very much their element and the texture is different from when a female writes…. Assuming this Max dude is a guy and not short for Maxine

  2. I haven’t read a fantasy novel in AGES. I’ve gone all contemporary and murder mysteries ever since the holidays began for me o.o But this one sounds great! I’m glad that you were surprised with the culprit in the end–it’s no fun when you’re just sitting there waiting for the main character/s to discover it as well.

    Lovely review as always, Melliane! <33

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