Hello people! I hope you all are safe and happy, and are reading some really good books. I am doing quite good with my reading and in the last couple of days the weather was manageable, so yay! Today I am back with a review for a book that I enjoyed quite a lot, so let’s start!
Thanks to NetGalley and to the Editor. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Title: The Witness For The Dead
Series: The Goblin Emperor #2
Author: Katherine Addison
Publication date: June 22nd, 2021
Katherine Addison returns to the glittering world she created for her beloved novel, The Goblin Emperor, in this stand-alone sequel.
When the young half-goblin emperor Maia sought to learn who had set the bombs that killed his father and half-brothers, he turned to an obscure resident of his father’s Court, a Prelate of Ulis and a Witness for the Dead. Thara Celehar found the truth, though it did him no good to discover it. He lost his place as a retainer of his cousin the former Empress, and made far too many enemies among the many factions vying for power in the new Court. The favor of the Emperor is a dangerous coin.
Now Celehar lives in the city of Amalo, far from the Court though not exactly in exile. He has not escaped from politics, but his position gives him the ability to serve the common people of the city, which is his preference. He lives modestly, but his decency and fundamental honestly will not permit him to live quietly. As a Witness for the Dead, he can, sometimes, speak to the recently dead: see the last thing they saw, know the last thought they had, experience the last thing they felt. It is his duty use that ability to resolve disputes, to ascertain the intent of the dead, to find the killers of the murdered.
Now Celehar’s skills lead him out of the quiet and into a morass of treachery, murder, and injustice. No matter his own background with the imperial house, Celehar will stand with the commoners, and possibly find a light in the darkness.
Katherine Addison has created a fantastic world for these books – wide and deep and true.
This is a standalone sequel, and you can read it without reading The Goblin Emperor. But you would be doing yourself a disservice because even if you don’t need the first one to understand this second one, the first book is amazing and you just have to read it. And yes, I am being bossy, sue me!
Like the first book, this one is a very quiet book, with a character that is a good person at heart, but that is, guess what? quiet. Because I really think that quiet is the keyword here. It can describe all, from the story to the characters. From the pace of the story to the atmosphere. But quiet is not boring. Far from it.
We get to follow Celehar in his new job, and it is a pleasure to see someone so devoted to his own work. He has a job to do, and he is just determined to do it and to do it properly. He does not care for praises or thanks. He cares to just do right.
And we get to see him do his job. And what a pleasure it was!
We get to see him finally doing what he is called to do, because being a Witness for the Dead is a calling, and he is deeply conscious of it, and also deeply diligent and serious about it. He is finally free and far from the court, and we get to see him trying to regain his footing. His past is dark and full of sufferance, but there is hope in the future, and even if the future is something unknown and far away, in a sense, he is slowly coming back to life, and he is trying to find his place in the world. It is not always easy, and leaving the past behind is hard. Especially when some things are like a shadow that people won’t hesitate to bring to life in the hope of gaining something. People can suck, that’s for sure, but Celehar doesn’t really care. Sure, he is not happy about it and he suffers for it, but he is a man on a mission and he won’t be stopped. And his power of will is really something to witness. Also, there is some politic because, even if he tries his best to stay well away from it, they are trying to play the power game using him as a tool. So we have also this part, but for the most part of the book, we are following Celehar witnessing for the deads.
It is a cohesive book, but it has some episodic vibes to it. He follows mainly three cases, if we can call them so, and he had some adventures in between (ghouls and ghosts, eek!), but all are somehow connected, so it is not really an episodic plot, but the vibes are there. And I have to say that I have enjoyed the story quite a lot. I was curious when I met him for the first time about his work, because it sounds like something peculiar, and this book didn’t disappoint me! I learned all I wanted to learn and more! And we get another opportunity to visit this world, which is just so full of life and wonders.
Also, the hot weather that I am experiencing at the moment helped me resist a bit, but this book would make you crave hot tea, so be warned!
I know that this is quite short, as a review, but that’s what I have to say about this book. I enjoyed it a lot. To be honest, The Goblin Emperor is something else, but this one was good and it has is merits. And I have to recommend it to you all, if you are in for something different and… guess what?? Quiet!
What about you? Have you read this book? Or are you planning to read it? And have you read other books by this author?? Let me know!