Lena Corazon's Reviews > Ice Cracker II

Ice Cracker II by Lindsay Buroker
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's review
Sep 05, 11

bookshelves: steampunk
Read from September 02 to 05, 2011

Ice Cracker II is a collection of three short vignettes taken from the world of Buroker's novel, The Emperor's Edge. I really enjoyed these shorts. Buroker has a smooth writing style, the dialogue between her characters is realistic and snappy, and offers just enough detail to paint a picture of the world without drowning her readers in it. The setting is fascinating - a cold, snowy, northern clime, an Empire where magic is illegal (even though the official teaching is that magic doesn't exist) - and the characters are also interesting.

Amaranthe, the central character, is strong and courageous, with the tendency to go off and save people, even when the stakes are against her. She's a fugitive with a price on her head, having been framed by a former associate. Her hope is to perform enough good works to come to the Emperor's attention and to hopefully be cleared of any wrong-doing. She is handy with her repeating crossbow and a sword, and pretty kickass, even though she does occasionally doubt her effectiveness as a leader of a band of men.

The other two characters are Sicarius and Books, fellow fugitives. Sicarius, the taciturn, grim, forbidding former assassin with a highly checkered past, and Books is a former professor, mild-mannered and a bit damaged from past tragedies, though he has a sense of humor that I really enjoyed. Each character's voice comes across clearly, even Sicarius, who rarely speaks.

All in all, I really enjoyed these tales. They're intriguing enough that I plan on downloading The Emperor's Edge so I can get a fuller picture of this fascinating universe.

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Reading Progress

38.0% "I love the character of Amaranthe so far, and the curious blend of machinery and banned magic. Buroker's writing is clean, flows well, and she sprinkles in just enough details about the world to pique my interest. It's clear that the backstory is complex, but I don't feel overwhelmed by it."

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