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Before the Fall (Rojan Dizon, #2)
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Before the Fall

(Rojan Dizon #2)

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  296 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Rojan Dizon just wants to keep his head down. But his worst nightmare is around the corner.

With the destruction of their power source, his city is in crisis: riots are breaking out, mages are being murdered, and the city is divided. But Rojan's hunt for the killers will make him responsible for all-out anarch
Paperback, 384 pages
Published June 18th 2013 by Orbit (first published January 1st 2013)
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Average rating 3.75  · 
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Dark Faerie Tales
Mar 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: All power comes at a price, and with the city falling apart and mages being murdered, Rojan will pay that price to find out who is killing them.

Opening Sentence: “No-Hope-Shitty: the name says it all really.”

The Review:

Rojan and company are back in this great follow up to Fade to Black. Rojan has destroyed the order and now magic flows freely throughout the city. Rojan is using his magic more and more to find more mages like him. This of course
Jun 16, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-read-2015
Having just survived his last set of escapades, Rojan Dizon is aiming to keep his head down, stay out of trouble, and hope that the citizens of Mahala will forget about him. Using his magic he is wearing a disguise so he won’t be recognised.

But things are about to get worse. Much worse.

With the power source gone, the city is spiralling into disaster. The divisions of the two populations in the city are becoming more apparent; disturbances and disorder in the populace are becoming riots, and some
Jennifer Wheeler
Really digging this storyline. Love the characters, and the dark/gritty atmosphere is fascinating to visualize. The city of Mahala would be amazing to see on the big screen....
Adam Whitehead
Mar 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Mahala teeters on the brink of chaos. Private investigator and secret pain mage Rojan Dizon has halted a great evil that was being undertaken in the bowels of the city, but in the process has put the way of life for hundreds of thousands of people in jeopardy. The neighbouring kingdoms are threatening war, the city is weeks away from losing all power and the new Archdeacon finds his position under threat. Dizon, now wearing a different face and name, finds his work cut out for him if he wants to ...more
Annabelle Heath
After destroying Mahala's source of power, Rojan and his friends fight to keep the city from plummeting into chaos. Two armies are sat outside their doors, and there are enemies inside the city as well. Can Rojan pull the crumbling city back together?

This is much the same as the first instalment - high stakes action, roguish but ultimately likeable main character, high concept fantasy world. A really enjoyable sequel that deals well with the fallout of the previous book without stalling in the p
May 11, 2017 rated it did not like it
This is the second in the series and even after listening for 10 minutes I could not follow what was going on.
Caleb Hill
May 13, 2013 rated it it was ok
“No-Hope-Shitty: the name says it all really.”

Francis Knight's debut earlier last year, Fade to Black, was one of those heavily anticipated novels for me. Besides labeling it as Fantasy Noir and boasting a painful magic system, the cover and general pleasantness of the author is what really hyped the novel for me. I found it leaving much to be desired, but the dark, grimy city left a layer of hope for future installments. Unfortunately, Before the Fall, the second in Francis Knight's Pain Mage t
Dimana Atanassova
Aug 17, 2015 rated it liked it
I liked "Fade to Black". In fact, I loved it - it fell one star short of being in my "favorites" list. The premise behind the pain mage and the city of Mahala was fascinating, the book was wonderfully written, especially for a debut, and the sarcastic comments of Rojan Dizon fitted the story perfectly.

So, naturally, I thought the sequel would be even better, especially as it promised to expand the story beyond just Mahala. I didn't like "Before the Fall" - I didn't hate, either, but it just felt
JJ DeBenedictis
May 08, 2016 rated it liked it
This is the second book in a series, and I hadn't read the first, but this held up very well as a standalone. It was a fun, fast-paced story with an anti-hero at its heart. In fact, I'm mentally classifying it as urban fantasy, even though it's set on another world and in a city unlike anything on Earth.

I felt a bit under-educated regarding the world-building, probably due to the fact I hadn't read the first book, but this series is set in a pillar of a city -- a completely-enclosed cylinder wit
Richard Bray
Mar 23, 2014 rated it it was ok
BEFORE THE FALL by Francis Knight and CONTROL POINT by Myke Cole are very different fantasy books — BEFORE THE FALL is an urban noir fantasy, while CONTROL POINT is a military fantasy — but in reading BEFORE THE FALL, I’m reminded of the way I felt after reading CONTROL POINT.

In Cole’s first SHADOW OPS book, I wasn’t a fan of the protagonist, Oscar Britton, but saw a lot of promise in the world and the storytelling. In Knight’s series, the protagonist, Rojan, is also problematic. Rojan is descri
Rusty's Ghost Engine (also known as.......... Jinky Spring)
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 17, 2015 rated it liked it
I felt the writing of this second book of the Rojan Dizon series definitely improved over the first; I want to give it 3 1/2 stars but GR only lets me give it three. The plot was a little more intricate and the pacing better; that is to say I felt that things moved along rather quickly enough without getting too bogged down in exposition (too much of that in the first book), and that overall the plot was a lot tighter. Some of the "reveals" as the main character unfolds the mystery weren't reall ...more
Aug 06, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: spec-fic
c2013. FWFTB: Mahala, power, vertical, killers, anarchy. The theme of 'all power comes at a price' is well developed throughout the story and not in a particularly subtle way. I was expecting a tad more character development in this second outing but I did not finish the book feeling that I knew much more about Rojan than I did in the first book. His brother, Perak, was a bit more fleshed out. The bacon-loving main character is still as snarky as ever and the humour remains evident. I think that ...more
Aug 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I love this book. Francis Knight has created an amazing world. A city hemmed in by mountains, built up as high as it can go, creating a true under and upper class system. The hero, Rojan Dizon is an hilarious, capable, and flawed character. The dialogue rings true and the plot never slows down. I love Ms. Knight's language and the way she mixes philosophically charged ideas and still manages to not sound pedantic. Her pain-mage magic is very believable and a new take on old ideas. I devoured bot ...more
Michelle Smith
Dec 10, 2013 rated it liked it
Knight is true to the character of Rojan on this second installment, keeping firmly in the voice and soul. She delves more into the political side of things. (Just a personal observation, but it seems to be a fairly common thing for sequels to do so.)
I don't have a problem with the dry voice of Dizon and all his "womanising" (compared to Lynch's Lamora, he's a bit of a lightweight in this department), but it does wear a bit thin when there are so many metaphors. It kind of detracts from the stor
Timothy Pecoraro
Jun 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
I must say that I really loved this book. Not all of it mind you. But most of it. The way that Francis Knight weaves her characters around her main character is absolutely mind blowing. I love it. The world, while still not used to it's potential in my opinion. Is still interesting and exciting. I love her takes on Religion and Politics. I also love the pain mages, also not used to their potential. But still incredible. I cannot wait to read Last to Rise. This book trumps Fade to Black so I can ...more
Jul 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Second in this amazing series that I stumbled across earlier in the year, I think this one was just as good, if not better than the first. Rojan, a reluctant hero tries to lay low but finds himself compelled by love and guilt to try and find a killer, though it will very likely cost him his sanity if not his life. This novel climbs upwards through the layers to the very top of Knight's Malhalla where the last took us to the very depths. I am anxiously awaiting the next book, and the conclusion t ...more
Stefan Fergus
Jan 25, 2013 rated it liked it
This didn't grab me nearly as much as the first book. Can't really figure out WHY, though. Atmospherics were good, Knight's prose is as stripped down as before (which I like). But. There was some weird repetition of minutiae. Rojan's character felt forced, sometimes - his caddishness, his flirting, etc. The plot plodded a wee bit, too (at least, it felt like it did, but I still managed to read it pretty quickly). Nevetheless, some nice bits sprinkled throughout, so I'll still be reading book thr ...more
Meg Laverick
Jul 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I love Rojan. Something about the hero whose first impulse is not to be heroic before he goes on to do the heroic thing anyways gives me happy tinglies every time.

Also still loving the dark, gritty feel of Mahala as a city.

We are, however, flirting dangerously with the 'all religion is evil because it is religion' line that a lot of fantasy novels skip merrily over with gay abandon. This worries me. but nowhere near enough for me to not go weak at the knees whenever I'm trying to explain how gre
Jan 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book was recommended for me via Flipboard.

I personally loved this entire trilogy. The dystopian world is gritty and detailed, the storyline is entertaining (while somewhat predictable in places) and the main characters are beautifully flawed and interesting.

While several reviews have hinted at misogyny and potential religious slander, there are plenty of little gems about this book that I loved. An awesome femme fatal, a brilliant bromance between the two main characters and an unexpected
Dean Simons
Apr 17, 2016 rated it it was ok
Started this book (the middle of a trilogy) over a year since I read the previous instalment. I remembered very little but played detective to recall what came before.

50% of the book little happens in terms of plot progression. Most of the story happens in the last third.

Main character feels shallowly written. He is a shallow character but he feels really two dimensional and grated.

The world also felt under explored.

The last third deserves 3* but the trawl of reading this book to get there leave
Nikki Albert
Nov 05, 2014 rated it it was ok
The plot was fairly predictable and you knew where it was going before it got there most of the time. I can say that the ending was good, but even there I saw some of it coming. I enjoy the writing and the characters. They stay true to their natures and are well done. Took me a bit to get through it though simply because of the fact you just knew what was going down. I didn't enjoy this one as much as the first book unfortunately.
Kathryn Swan
Sep 21, 2015 rated it liked it
It was ok. The constant battle with the 'black' was irritating. I felt like it didn't really go anywhere, and the threat from outside the city didn't really concern me at all so I found it hard to believe the urgency. Didn't care that people were being killed. Didn't really follow the ending very well, and I can't remember now how it ended. I can't see what the third book could be about, and I'm not compelled to read it.
Good writing, though, and the characterisation was good.
Martin Owton
Jun 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
This is the second book of the Rojan Dizon series and follows straight on from book 1. If you enjoyed the first book then buy this because everything you enjoyed in book 1 is here; the dark humour, the innovative world building etc. At least Rojan gets laid in this book, just before his new girlfriend tries to kill him.
Aaron Advani
An average follow up to a very very good debut novel.
This time round the author spent far too much time to get the story going, back tracking to things that happened in the first book way too much.
Will give the third book a go when its published to see if this can move forward enough to over come this books short comings.
Lutfu Gonenc
Sep 18, 2013 rated it liked it
I will keep it simple. I have read/suffered through two of the books.

What I liked and kept me reading:
The city.
Pain magic.
The whole concept really.

What made me want to gouge my eyes out:
The writing style.
All the characters suffer from multiple personality disorder.
The problems could have been solved in the first 50 pages.
The story.
Erica Wagner
May 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy-noir
A great continuation of the story started in Fade to Black. Rojan is still being Rojan, but there are signs of growth as well. Well written and paced, and Erlat is an intriguing character and a welcome addition to the cast. It definitely left me wanting to see how everything ends up.
Aug 14, 2016 rated it liked it
When I started reading this book, I thought it had the potential to be a dystopic thriller a là "Blade Runner". Unfortunately, my expectations were far from being fulfilled. Then again, the writing of Phillip K. Dick sets a very high bar, so I am cutting the author some slack.
Arthur Zhang
Mar 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
Not as epic or as driven as the first, but definitely a great sequel.
Jul 14, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-ebook
The second book in this series is a tremendous improvement on the first. I look forward to the next. I only hope that Rpjan doesn't get religion.
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