What A (Cliffhanger) Ending

5 out of 5 stars

 

It’s getting to the hard point of the story to write reviews without spoiling things. So, I guess I’ll just caveat it at the opening; if you haven’t read the other three books, I would advise you to avoid reading this review. I may spoil other parts of the first three books, but I’ll still try not to.

How far would you go to save your friends (and potentially the world)? Would you be willing to go somewhere you couldn’t use magic and may never return? That’s what Blackwell and Swift are thrown into in Honorless. And wow, is it an intense final few chapters.

I have to commend Steele and Foxe for writing characters that jump off the page. Also, for the growth that these characters have shown. This also may be a spoiler, but I feel it’s imperative to the themes that Steele and Foxe are going for in Honorless. There’s something that happens more than halfway through the book (that ends up being a major catalyst to the end of the story) where something happens, and there is the threat of Blackwell and Swift no longer being partners. This is met by a “blunt” statement about how much Blackwell likes to work alone and how much he hates partners. It was obviously done on purpose to show Blackwell’s growth, but it was so much more than that. I think Steele and Foxe were trying to prove that Blackwell not just likes her as a partner but has come to trust her, maybe even more than he trusts himself. Blackwell isn’t the most open person but hearing him upset about this decision was such a turning point in his character to me. I knew up until this point from the other books that they were an unlikely duo and that things weren’t always going to be easy (that tension is one of the main stories in the first book and a half). But showing not only his professional growth but personal growth as well.

The story in Honorless is excellent. The things they have to take care of, the power grabs, and the final battle(s) were all… chef’s kiss good. The ending, while an obvious cliffhanger was needed, and honestly, I have NO idea how the next book is going to start (or continue). I have some guesses, and I can’t wait to dive in and figure that out. Judging by the title and the cover for the 5th (and last?) book… It’s going to be a doozy.

It’s hard to write an audiobook review and not talk about the performances given. I think that this series might be some of Campbell’s best. He doesn’t have to stretch to make up hundreds of voices but gets to play around with some when new characters are introduced. Before these books, I hadn’t listened to Deva Marie Gregory, but after, I’ll be on the lookout. In the Chaos Mages series, she’s been an excellent embodiment of the female characters adding life to many of them. And the combination of the two of them is excellent. Especially when Blackwell or Swift are particularly worked up. The way they’re able to feed off of each other’s performances, and energy makes these books stand out.

Book Description:

Fate or free will?

After the devastating attack on Moira, the magical community is in crisis. They were supposed to be safe. Untouchable. But the impossible happened. The Mage’s Guild is using the tragedy as an insidious opportunity to gain more power, and there may be no one left to stand in their way. At least, no one Blackwell is willing to trust.

With a new case, scant information on Chief Bradley’s trial, increasingly strange incidents with his mayhem magic, and a fanatical cult that knows way more about them than they should, the detectives have their hands full.

As the corruption threatens more and more people Blackwell and Swift care about, they are faced with a hard decision. The enemy of their enemy may be their friend…but trust is another matter. Everyone wants something. They have to find out the truth before it’s too late.

One by one the pieces fall. Who will be left standing in the end?

If you like Orlando Sanchez, MD Massey, Shayne Silvers, Jim Butcher, Steve McHugh, Brad Magnarella, or Nazri Noor, then you will devour the Chaos Mages.

Honorless (The Chaos Mages #4) by Alex Steele, Stephanie Foxe
Narrator: Steve Campbell, Deva Marie Gregory
Length: 7 hrs and 18 mins
Series: The Chaos Mages #4
Published by Self Published Genres: Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
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Also by this author: Stolen Trinkets (The Chaos Mages #1), Blood of the Covenant, Valhalla Beckons, To Hell and Back
Also in this series: Stolen Trinkets (The Chaos Mages #1), Blood of the Covenant, Valhalla Beckons, To Hell and Back

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