It’s been a while since I last read any of the Sembia series, like a couple years at least, so I can’t really compare this with the others as I don’t remember really what the other ones were like.  I’ll have to treat this one as a stand alone and see how it goes.

For the most part I enjoyed it.  It did get a little confusing at the end when they were trying to explain how everything tied in together, but otherwise it was good.

We are introduced once more to the Sembian noble family the Uskevrens: Patriarch Thamalon, matriarch Shamur, eldest Tamlin, second son Talbot, only legitimate daughter Tazi, half elf bastard children and good old Erevis Cale.  Everyone is still kinda reeling in one way or another from the events of the first six books so there is a bit of catch up for the reader as there are brief recaps, but as soon as things seem like they’re about to get back to normal, Thamalon, Shamur, and Cale are drawn into a magical painting intended to kill Thamalon.  But instead of killing him or anyone eles, long dormant magics in the foundation of the family home Stormweather Towers transports the three to a world between worlds, where an evil scorcerer rules with an iron fist.

A sorcerer that looks like Tamlin and is actually Thamalon’s long-thought-deceased father.

Apparently when Thamalon’s father passed, this same magic trapped his soul in a nexus world, from which he found or was able to create the lands that the younger Uskevrens found him in.  But for the longest time he was essentially trapped in nexus world, until young Tamlin and his aptitude for magic was born.

Seeing a chance, the elder Uskevren sapped the magic and appearance of his grandson and eventually made his way to his new world where he ruled it with stolen magic.  When Thamalon, Shamur, and Cale are trapped in his world, Tamlin and siblings never give up the search for their family, a quest that eventually leads them to the right place and to a fantastical duel between grandfather and grandson.

Then back to Stormweather Towers to face yet another magical spellduel, a gibbering mouther, and the death of the patriarch.

Overall, I did enjoy this book.  My heart broke a little bit for Cale as he is in love with the Uskevren daughter and I know where that love will lead him.  But as I said when they were trying to explain all the magics as to how the nexus world existed and the grandfather was able to do what he did, it was hard to make sense of it all, but thankfully that did not detract any from my enjoyment of the overall story.

Ploughing along with the Realms (I am determined to read them all by the end of the year), we have book 3 of the Sundering series with The Adversary next.

As the chaos of the Sundering rages around her, young warlock Farideh faces a more personal turmoil wrought by a deal she made with a devil years ago. Hoping to protect her twin sister, she leaves everything she holds dear to assist a wizard in a scheme that pits the devils of the Nine Hells against the gods above.

But when Farideh casts the spell to enter the wizard’s remote mountaintop fortress, she picks up a stowaway &mdahs; a Harper agent named Dahl who isn’t so inclined to follow devilish demands. Dahl attempts to escape only to run into a village of odd people, lurking behind an impenetrable wall.

Forced to gaze into the villagers’ souls, Farideh points out the ones who seem different, only to watch as the wizard’s guard carts them off to fates unknown. Are these villagers or prisoners? Are they blessed or doomed by the gods? As the wizard’s guessing game proves more and more diabolical, Farideh resolves to unravel his secrets — even if it means she’ll lose her own soul to the Nine Hells.

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