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A Fool's Hope

(The Last War #2)

4.57  ·  Rating details ·  102 ratings  ·  28 reviews

War takes everything.

From Tinnstra, it took her family and thrust her into a conflict she wanted only to avoid. Now her queen's sole protector, she must give everything she has left to keep Zorique safe.

It has taken just as much from Jia's revolutionaries. Dren and Jax - battered, tortured, once enemies themselves - now must hold strong against their bruised in

Paperback, 594 pages
Published December 3rd 2020 by Gollancz
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ARC provided by the publisher—Gollancz—in exchange for an honest review.

A Fool’s Hope wonderfully surprised me; it is one of the finest middle installment I’ve ever read.

Alright, it is frankly unbelievable and ridiculous that many fantasy readers haven’t started reading this trilogy yet. I finished reading We Are the Dead earlier this year, and I was amazed by it already. A Fool’s Hope, the second book in The Last Wa
James Tivendale
Dec 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, freecopy
I received a review copy of A Fool's Hope in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to Mike Shackle and Gollancz.

A Fool's Hope picks up events about a minute after the conclusion of We Are the Dead. Tinnstra and four-year-old Queen Zorique are on the deck of a ship in the Golden Channel seeking to escape to the shores of Meigore. Having been wracked with fear, with death and destruction seeming to follow the pair, they are at last hoping to receive refuge with Zorique's uncle - the King of Me
Nick Borrelli
Jan 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Mike Shackle's first book in his The Last War series, We Are the Dead, was my favorite read of 2019 and turned me into an instant fan. It somehow managed to convey the violence and heartbreak of war while also showing how a determined few can tenaciously grasp onto hope even in the darkest of times. I found myself going through so many emotions while reading it and although exhausted and somewhat broken, I knew that I had read a special book that would fast track the sequel to the top of my must ...more
S A M | The Book in Hand
This review was originally posted on my blog, The Book in Hand
Good Afternoon Bookish Folk!

It is Monday, and thankfully I am not in work until tomorrow so I can write up my review of Mike Shackle’s second book to The Last War series: A Fool’s Hope!

I am absolutely thrilled to be able To read and review this book, it is a dark and sensational follow up to the first book: We Are The Dead!

Here are a few things you can expect from :

Epic battles filled with bloody desperation;
An excellently written
Sep 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A Fool’s Hope is the second instalment in the The Last War series by Mike Shakle.

Many People say that the second book is often the weakest and the hardest to write book in a trilogy. I completely disagree with that statement. Some of my most favorite books of trilogies are the second tomes. My two most favorite examples are The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers and the Nevernight Chronicles, Darkdawn. And like those two I have to admit I enjoyed reading A Fool’s Hope even more than its predecess
The Chronicler
Oct 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Through NetGalley, I was very lucky to receive an early copy of A Fool’s Hope by Mike Shackle, the second book in his The Last War series. The book itself is released on December 3rd and I strongly recommend you buy it. Here is an Amazon link!/

Read on for my review! There are spoilers for We Are the Dead, but I think I manage to avoid spoilers for A Fool's Hope.


I’ll start by saying We Are the Dead, book one in the series, was one of my favourite books of the year and, in a time of pandemi
Kate~Bibliophile Book Club
Nov 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Couldn’t have loved this harder. Excellent follow up to We Are The Dead. Brutal, emotional and utterly engaging, an absolute belter!
Queen Terrible Timy
This review was originally posted on RockStarlit BookAsylum!

“War’s orchestra played its merry tune in the distance: explosions, screams, steel beating steel and the Gods only knew what else. Yas barely noticed it. Death and destruction had become as commonplace as birdsong.”

It’s not much of a secret that I first got interested in The Last War series by Mike Shackle, when I saw Jen’s updates while reading We Are the Dead and Shackle’s reactions to it. Then I got a copy myself thanks to Shackle’s
Dec 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
More reviews at

My expectations for Mike Shackle were set sky high upon the completion of We are the Dead. I was left wondering, how on earth could he possible top this and where would the story go. These questions were answered in spades as I have come to learn that Mike Shackle is not one to shy away from curveballs, blood, and betrayals. The story ended up going in a completely different direction than I thought entering book 2 and upon finishing the novel, I am ready
Dec 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
For the past week or so, I have been living in Mike Shakle's apocalyptic world, and I have to say it has been a harrowing experience.

Both Fool's Hope and We Are The Dead, are a tale of War. However, this is not epic fantasy battles where everyone puffs out their chest and prepares for combat. This is war in its most brutal and basest form. And guess what, it ain't pretty!

If you have read the first book in Mike Shakle's 'The Last War' series you know what to expect, right? Wrong!

Yep, you got it f
Benny Books
Oct 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
ARC received in exchange for an honest review.

We are the dead was easily in my top five reads of 2019 which considering the wealth of amazing fantasy content being released is no mean feat. A Fools Hope had been top of my TBR list ever since so when I was able to get my hands on an early release ARC I was extremely excited but also very nervous.

I find many second books in trilogies often suffer from fatigue and often meander on, not quite living up to the buzz of the first but not quite moving
Nina The Fussy Reader
Thank you to Netgalley, Gollancz, and to the author for letting me have an early copy of one of my most anticipated books. It didn't disappoint.

This is such a strong second book. Oftentimes, sequels fall short, but if anything, this book is more exciting than its predecessor.


Immediately Tinnstra puts to good use her character development from book one and shows us what a badass she's become, whilst still maintaining her very real, very human fears of death.

Same goes for Dren. Boy's g
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Will O Mullane, Gollancz and Mike Shackle for allowing me to participate in this blog tour!

A Fool’s Hope is a resounding success and tops what was created on the base foundation of We are the Dead. It surpasses We are the Dead, and I am pleasantly pleased to see more hope and less grimdark! Wars, intrigues, plots surround character arcs like a never-ending destiny of fate that spins the fates of women and men’s lives. Many characters evolve during the seeming mass of bloodshed and c
Fabienne Schwizer
Dec 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
A Fool’s Hope starts off right where book one leaves off, minutes after the devastating end of We Are the Dead. It features many of the same excellent characters and stellar writing, and no less pain for its protagonists. I love those disaster kids with my whole heart and they suffer so badly – Mike, please be kind to them for a little bit! Tinnstra is one of my favourite characters in fantasy – she is a coward who ends up rising to the challenges placed before her and Zorique needs to be protec ...more
Feb 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This is FUCKING brilliant

Feb 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2021-faves, 2021-read
Duncan Murray
Apr 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Mike Shackle was my breakout author last year with his first book "we are the dead".

The second, "a fools hope" was my most anticipated book for 2020 and oh boy did it live up to its expectations and then some!

The book kicks off right where the first started. It continues with the element of no hero is safe and you are continuously worried for the main characters knowing that none are safe.

Shackle has worked out the book perfectly. Introducing new places and characters without over burdening an
Jan 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Warning: This review may contain spoilers for the previous book in the series, We Are The Dead.

A Fool’s Hope by Mike Shackle is the superb sequel to We Are The Dead. It takes all that was great about that opening book of The Last War trilogy and runs with it in a story that, as the name kind of suggests, is themed around hope. The hope gets a bit of kicking though as the book lives up to its place in the ‘Grimdark’ genre.

The plot picks up almost immediately where We Are The Dead left off. The Eg
Feb 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved We Are the Dead and I loved A Fool's Hope.
This is the second installment in an exciting and well written fantasy series.
It's gritty, fast paced, action packed and highly entertaining.
The author is an excellent story teller, the world building is amazing and the characters are fascinating.
The tightly knitted plot kept me hooked and it's full of twists and turns.
I can't wait to read the next book, this one is highly recommended.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all o
Sebastien Rault
Jan 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing
What a fucking sequel... it’s 1am here I’ll write more tomorrow. But read it guys. Just READ IT
Feb 25, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Can't wait for the next one, loved the writing style see it before but very well executed ...more
Mark Redman
Nov 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
‘A Fool’s Hope,’ is the second book in the Last War series, which continues where ‘We Are the Dead,’ left off. We get chapters from established characters, Tinnstra whose family has been thrust into a conflict she wanted to avoid. Jax and Dren are Jia revolutionaries, once enemies now battered and tortured, they must hold strong against the shock of being conquered by the Egril invaders. We also get an insight into the Egril army. We are introduced to some new characters, Mateon, a lowly soldier ...more
Unseen Library
Sep 09, 2020 marked it as to-read
In my latest Waiting on Wednesday article I take a look at A Fool’s Hope by Mike Shackle, an intriguing upcoming fantasy novel that serves as a sequel to one of 2019’s best debuts.

Last year Mike Shackle burst onto the scene with the dark and exciting first entry in his The Last War fantasy series, We are the Dead, an outstanding read which followed a group of resistance fighters in a feudal Japan inspired fantasy nation that had been brutally conquered by its neighbours. I did not get a chance t
Nov 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If I could could give this more stars then I would! It was incredible! An amazing second book in a trilogy and brilliant to be back with some amazing characters! Mike Shackle I take my hat of to you! I cannot wait for book 3 and a full review of this will be on my blog.
Ann Anderson
Dec 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books I have read this year, loved that it started just where the previous book finished. Great story, had me completely engaged with all the characters even the ‘bad guys’, may have to read it again. It is no great surprise that I have enjoyed these books because I have loved books he has written under a pseudonym and eagerly await the sequels to them and this book.
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