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Publisher's Summary

The epic story of Thomas Cale - introduced so memorably in The Left Hand of God - continues as the Redeemers use his prodigious gifts to further their sacred goal: the extinction of humankind and the end of the world. To the warrior-monks known as the Redeemers, who rule over massive armies of child slaves, "the last four things" represent the culmination of a faithful life. Death. Judgement. Heaven. Hell. The last four things represent eternal bliss - or endless destruction, permanent chaos, and infinite pain.
Perhaps nowhere are the competing ideas of heaven and hell exhibited more clearly than in the dark and tormented soul of Thomas Cale. Betrayed by his beloved but still marked by a child's innocence, possessed of a remarkable aptitude for violence but capable of extreme tenderness, Cale will lead the Redeemers into a battle for nothing less than the fate of the human race. And though his broken heart foretells the bloody trail he will leave in pursuit of a personal peace he can never achieve, a glimmer of hope remains. The question even Cale can't answer: When it comes time to decide the fate of the world, to ensure the extermination of humankind or spare it, what will he choose? To express God's will on the edge of his sword, or to forgive his fellow man - and himself?
©2011 Paul Hoffman (P)2011 Penguin Audio
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Amazon Customer on 08-14-11

Worth the wait

Enjoyed Hoffman's second installment. Great pacing, nice character development and a plot that truly evolves in a second novel rather than just being a transitional book setting up a conclusive third. Steve West's narration was as enjoyable as the first. This rating fell short of 5 stars due to some irritating inconsistencies with the protagonist's abilities ( ex: his mentor reaches out and connects with a surprising backhand....this sort of martial blow is supposed to be impossible to land according to the first book) and some illogical blindness of the characters. But all in all, I'm looking forward to the next book. Enjoy

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful


By JPaladin on 04-17-13

Same author?

Ok, it wasn't that different from writing from the first book--but it took a very different tact and had a very different feel.

It reminded me of Herodotus. And I don't mean 'creating an entirely new genre or field of study,' but rather a 'somewhat droll account of the military and political conflict of a multitude of small nations.' It felt very different from the first book that invested you more in the main characters and made you care and root for them. I didn't care much about the characters during this book.

In fact, I lost interest and I nearly gave up before half way through. Then Hoffman introduced a couple of interesting nuggets (I'll obfuscate to avoid spoilers): mostly about the Redeemers' religion, hinting at a logical reason for why it both resembles yet differs from Christianity, and later describing a gender related scandal (which isn't very interesting in this book, but I'm guessing will tie into a larger and more interesting theme or event in the third book).

All in all I will probably read the third book if it comes out anytime soon. So I guess I'd recommend reading this one--if you liked the first one as much as I did--if only to bridge the gap between the first and third books.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed Hoffman will go someplace interesting with the hints he dropped and get us reinvested in the characters.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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