Wolfsbane by Gillian Philip

Just finished reading Wolfsbane, the third instalment of Gillian Philip’s rebel angels series.  In case you haven’t read the other bookss pay a visit to Firebrand and Bloodstone and be aware that this review may contain spoilers.

Firebrand brought to us a new sithe world.  Much harsher than we’d seen before. A world separated from ours by a veil.  A world of strained loyalties and clans and uncompromising warriors.  The sithe world is threatened however by the ambitions of the Queen.

In this latest edition life seems to actually be going well for Seth’s clan.  Everything appears calm, apart from his son Rory who is starting to rebel himself against the level of restrictions placed upon him and the careful scrutiny he is constantly under.  But this is just the calm before the storm.

The Queen is still plotting, she hasn’t forgotten Seth or the Bloodstone but she’s playing the long game.  Meticulous planning and the careful planting of seeds of discontent in the fertile soil of a few bitter minds are about to cause havoc to the lives of Seth and his clan.  Things are about to get messy.

I don’t want to over elaborate on the plot so lets focus on other things.

The characters – have moved on again.  Rory is now a teenager with a mind of his own who doesn’t realise in what danger he is in and how his life is constantly under threat.  He desperately wants to impress Seth but more than that he wants a friend, a distraction, and he’s about to find one in Hannah.  Hannah is a new edition to the series.  I like her.  She’s not all fearless and kick ass – she’s somewhat more realistic.  She doesn’t like heights, she’s afraid of the dark, but she’s part sithe and she’s about to come over and spend some time with Seth’s clan.

Finn has returned – much to the displeasure of some of the Sithe – not everybody is willing to forgive and forget after all.  And then we have Seth who after hundreds of years seems to finally have grown up – or at least he’s found a whole new sense of responsibility in terms of his son and what comes with that is a whole new world of fear, one that he isn’t used to.

I thought this was a great instalment to the series.  We get to spend time in both worlds as the Sithe play hide and seek with each other.  We have the new edition of a really great, bloodthirsty and lacking in any sort of sympathy baddie and on top of that we have Seth.  I can’t deny that Seth is a guilty indulgent pleasure.  Written personally for me!   Like Hannah, I’m no lover of heights but I think I would also scale down a cliff also if he was watching out for me (or more to the point catch me when I fall).

This was a great third book – no third book syndrome.  Plenty of action, although – tiny criticism – it does take a little time to kick in – but come on, give Seth’s clan a break after all.  They can’t always be killing baddies and suffering all out war (otherwise there’d be very few of them left).

And, yes, this book is also not without casualties.  The drama escalates to a thrilling hunt topped off with a bloody battle.  And, the end…. another long wait while we see what Seth can do now.  It’s no longer just about the clan – Seth has to protect his son after all.

Firebrand by Gillian Philip

Posted On 1 January 2011

Filed under Book Reviews
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This is my last book for 2010 – even though I’m writing it on the 1st day of January 2011 – I finished reading the book yesterday but didn’t have chance to put anything down.

Quite simply this book took my breath away.  I started it yesterday and I finished it yesterday – and in between time I did nothing but read – that’s how captivating this was.

This is a story about Seth and his brother Conal who are Sithe warriors.  The Sithe people are faeries who live behind a veil.  They are predominantly warriors who have a range of abilities such as healer or witch.  They are ultimately ruled by a Queen – Kate – who they all swear fealty to.  Seth and Conal are half brothers – Seth being the illegitimate son of a Sithe nobleman.  Seth spent his early years living with his mother at court but he was unwelcome there and equally as unwelcome at his father’s fortress where he is sent to live.

Seth is an excellent character – he’s cocky and cheeky, angry, brave and completely devoted to his brother Conal – the relationship between the two brothers is really well written.  When Conal is banished to live among the full mortals Seth chooses to go with him and there they try to survive amongst people who are deeply superstitious and brutal and where to be deemed ‘different’ can be fatal – particularly at a time when witch hunts are common place.

There is such a lot packed into this book and it is so well written that the characters and the world just come alive.  There is adventure, romance, intrigue, greed, jealousy – oh, everything – not to mention two gorgeous characters in Seth and Conal.

If you don’t read any other book this year make sure you read this one.

Strongly recommend this book and can’t imagine anybody not enjoying the story and the way it’s written.

Rating A+++

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