As you all know (if you read the review I posted a few days ago), I absolutely adored the first entry into the Founders Trilogy, Foundryside. It is a immensely satisfying read, with an enormously unique magic system and world. Well, Robert Jackson Bennett takes all of those components from the first book and puts them to work in Shorefall.
While not as tightly plotted as the first book, Shorefall is still a wonderwork of fantasy writing. The stakes are upped just the right amount in comparison to the first book. The main villain of the series so far, the first of the heirophants, is bone-chillingly terrifying in the best ways. You really are scared of him while you read — there’s no second guessing, no well-maybe-he’s-right in this book. He’s just flat out terrifying, and you hope-hope-hope that our heroes save the day. The author did an amazing job of showing just enough to prove that this villain is not someone to underestimate.
The reason I docked a star is something that happens towards the middle-end of the book. Hover to read bc it’s a spoiler but it’s regarding Sancia and Berenice and something they do together.
I’m still not sure how I feel about the twinned-mind thing. It was supposed to be temporary but it seems fairly permanent by the end of the novel. Then again, it isn’t all that clear on how much time actually passes between them twinning and the end of the book. First read through of this book, it didn’t bother me. Second read through, it’s sort of…hm. It feels convenient? Like I get what the author is going for, and where it will probably end up, but. IDK. Let me know if you feel the same way!
The best part of Shorefall, though, is the reveal of who the villain actually is. I will not spoil this because it is so chef’s-kiss perfect that I don’t want to ruin it for anyone. But you really don’t see it coming until it’s right on top of you, and then everything sort of clicks into place.
I’m now hurrying onto my ARC of the last book in this trilogy, Locklands. Let’s hope it’s just as good as the first two books.