Title: The Weight of the World | Series: The Amaranthine Spectrum #2 | Author: Tom Toner | Publisher: Gollancz | Publication date: January 24th 2017 | Num. Pages: 432 | Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy | How I owned it: ARC copy kindly provided by the publisher via Netgalley
5 stars – An outstanding sequel to a debut series from a new author
Many thanks to Gollancz and Netgalley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
It is the 147th century; the turning of the Amaranthine new year.
In the provinces of the Old World, the giant Elatine’s war of liberation has come to an impasse, leaving the wicked monarchy of the First in possession of the throne.
In the Vaulted Lands of the Firmament, acolytes have risen up to execute their immortal masters. The opportunistic races of the Prism, intoxicated with greed, have arrived inside every Solar Satrapy to scavenge what’s left.
In the wild Investiture, on a forgotten water moon, a crew of shipwrecked Privateers come face to face with their greatest terror, and with it the most valuable treasure in all the galaxy.
Jatropha, legendary Immortal, must escort his precious charge through the exotic Westerly Provinces, knowing all the world would steal her if they could.
Sotiris, his mind fading fast, must set out to find his dear, drowned sister in a land previously unglimpsed by anyone but the dead.
Lycaste, now far from home, must journey in strange company to the edge of a tempestuous sea, to the lair of someone so dangerous that even the legendary Amaranthine fear his name.
The Weight of the World starts roughly where the previous book ended, I say roughly because it starts with a few historical stories from different points of view – Daniell and Ghaldezuel- before jumping to the present with Lycaste, Huerepo and Maneker in the thick of things.
Now originally I had this stupid idea that I’d be able to drop right in the deep end of this story and know what was going to happen – my expectations were that it was to be a lot like the first book The Promise of the Child and I’ve never been so happy to say otherwise. The Weight of the World is so full of surprises there was no way I could correctly guess what was going to happen in the next chapter.
We’re still following the tale told from Lycaste’s view more often than not and although there are several other secondary main characters (makes no sense I’m aware of this) the book doesn’t feel quite so wholesome until it’s told from Lycaste’s view but then on the flip side it’s have a new character that I love – Perception or Percy – a millenia old AI/soul that was imprisoned on a planet.
Perception – as his name suggests – is wickedly perceptive and incredibly smart; imprisoned as a five year old soul and left to linger and eventually ‘die’ he has all these ideas of how things should be done and takes a great joy in proving Hugo Maneker wrong once he has been freed.
In my review for the first book (which you can check out above) I made mention of a child that wasn’t heard from since the beginning of the book – what I didn’t realise until reading this book that he actually was and it was greatly done by Tom Toner on how he fed this information into the story and still kept the plot on point.
I learned a lot about each of the characters particularly Lycaste, Pentas and Jatropha (who I’d like to point out I didn’t realise was an specific character until now *facepalm*).
- Lycaste has grown up considerably
- Pentas, although she’s gone through a pretty tough time is an selfish, manipulative and all and round horrible person
- Jatropha has fingers in many many pies.
The break down between the Vulgar and the Lacaille was stellar and Huerepo is the perfect character to put this across – a stark contrast to his Lacaille equivalent Ghaldezuel whom has a lovely traitorous streak in him, something that I wholly did not expect.
There were fights in space and an abundance of alien species once again and a firm understanding of Old World history versus present; a humourous trip in space with Huerepo’s cousin who is like a mini version of a sarcastic, cockney-esque Butler.
You can tell in this book that Tom Toner has settled into his author boots with aplomb and I can only imagine that he will continue to grow from strength to strength and I can’t wait to see where he takes the Amaranthine Spectrum next.