The Geomancer – Clay & Susan Griffith
Release date: November 3rd, 2015
Publisher: Pyr Books
Age Group: Adult
Source: Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
The uneasy stalemate between vampires and humans is over. Adele and Gareth are bringing order to a free Britain, but bloody murders in London raise the specter that Adele’s geomancy is failing and the vampires might return. A new power could tilt the balance back to the vampire clans. A deranged human called the Witchfinder has surfaced on the Continent, serving new vampire lords. This geomancer has found a way to make vampires immune to geomancy and intends to give his masters the ability to kill humans on a massive scale.
The apocalyptic event in Edinburgh weakened Adele’s geomantic abilities. If the Witchfinder can use geomancy against humanity, she may not have the power to stop him. If she can’t, there is nowhere beyond his reach and no one he cannot kill.
From a Britain struggling to rebuild to the vampire capital of Paris, from the heart of the Equatorian Empire to a vampire monastery in far-away Tibet, old friends and past enemies return. Unexpected allies and terrible new villains arise. Adele and Gareth fight side-by-side as always, but they can never be the same if they hope to survive.
This was the first book I’ve read in the Vampire Empire series and I have to say I’m completely sold. Of course I now already know all the twists and turns from the previous books but that won’t stop me buying and reading all the books in the series right away.
Clay and Susan Griffith have succeeded in taking a vampire story to the next level. It is quite atypical and refreshing.
Adele is a fantastic protagonist. She the Empress of Equatoria, she’s very wilful, a skilled fighter and she’s also a Geomancer. She can feel and walk the rifts of energy in the Earth and use them. Gareth is her perfect counterpart: vampire prince half of the time and vampire-slaying vigilante the other half. Together they make an interesting team. Not only because of their mind-set and abilities, but also because of the love they feel for each other.
The chemistry between Adele and Gareth feels wonderfully real. Their dynamic is something every person dreams of. The absolute highlight of this for me was the ice-skating scene. Though this is a novel about slaying vampires, distorted geomancy and brutal politics, this moment shone through everything. It’s one incredible moment of light where Adele and Gareth can just forget about everything and enjoy each other. It warmed my heart and made me a wee bit emotional.
Adele’s magic is not anything new, the energy of the Earth has been used on multiple occasion before in a plethora of books. Somehow though, it didn’t feel overused or overly familiar here. I loved the descriptions of her geomancy. The way she can taste and smell certain typical things depending on which particular place the rifts in the Earth go to or come from. I also really enjoyed reading how it could become corrupted by human actions and which effect this has on her. Especially at the end of the book, the geomancy plays such an important role and it was fantastic to read Adele experiencing it and really understanding it. With a magic as complex and tied to nature as this, it seems that most people who have the gift don’t fully understand what they are dealing with and how it works. It was wonderful to see this understanding dawn on Adele while she was in the middle of a precarious situation. It gave a lot of depth to her and her abilities.
This is the first time I read a book that’s written by two authors, so I was really curious to find out how the book would read. I was wondering if I would be able to tell, but there’s no sign at all of any disruption because of this, or any difference in style and narration. The book reads very smoothly and is incredibly fast-paced. They know exactly which parts are not worth including and would slow down the reading experience. It was kind of refreshing not to have to read long pages about travelling, but to just jump from starting point to destination. It made the story pick up speed, without leaving out any important information or events.
The traveling throughout the story made this an even more interesting book in my opinion. It gave us the opportunity to see more of the post-apocalyptic world, dominated by vampires, even though it’s a very desolate world most of the time. I was very delighted to read that the city I was born in, Bruges, was featured. It seemed fitting somehow for my beautiful medieval city to feature as a setting for this.
I’m a big, big fan of steampunk and the hint of steampunk in this book made me particularly happy, it really was the cherry on top for me.
I’m really glad I got the chance to read The Geomancer. I normally don’t start in a book that are a later part of a series, but I had read that this wouldn’t be a problem with The Geomancer. So I took a chance and I don’t regret it at all. Even if you don’t know anything about Vampire Empire or Adele and Gareth, previous events are clearly explained to the reader so no one gets lost. Having these bits of information like this instead of throughout several books might maybe take away some of the enjoyment of them, but it certainly didn’t diminish the enjoyment of reading this book. The Geomancer is a book full of fast-paced action, gore and fighting, but also love and hope. Hope for a better future, one where vampires and humans could live side by side.
The Geomancer was a wonderful read and if you haven’t tried any of the Vampire Empire books before, or if you are a fan of them, definitely read this one!