Note: The review refers to the edition included in Sword, Steam and Sky: Four Book Fantasy Bundle.
Still like the writing style, the author really is a storyteller, though she’s also still in bad need of another pair of eyes to look over the text and do something about the many typos and even less easily explainable mistakes left in it, which is something I’m not sure how I forgot to mention in the quick review for the previous book in the series. But speaking of that previous book, the first half of this one can be described as largely more of the same in the good way, if anything perhaps even with less of the issues found there. The setting is still intriguing and the postapocalyptic aspect can still pretty much be ignored, the characters and their interactions remain interesting, believable, with layers and at least moments of depth, and you’ll probably care and cheer for them without even the possible exceptions which may have existed before.
But all of that applies to the first half… The second starts with the postapocalyptic aspect of the setting being explained and becoming impossible to ignore. Still far less problematic than what you’d normally expect when you see the term, but I assume it’ll only get worse in the following books and it was quite an issue even in this one, seeing as I dislike the genre. In addition, the story and the characters get pushed too hard, stretched too thin. Actions and events don’t quite add up, things are happening too fast without getting explained, or with the provided explanations being far from sufficient or, in some cases, even reasonable. And that’s worse, since missing explanations may be provided later, but explanations and motivations that don’t add up will continue to not add up. And it’s probably not a case of lack of skill or ideas, and it may not even be due to rushing to finish, but possibly due to this infuriating drive to make books shorter and cut out anything deemed unessential, even though in plenty of cases, definitely including this one if this is what happened, those “unessential” elements are actually anything but.