This one’s a worthy successor to Rusalka.  More that’s familiar Cherryh style, including characters worrying over their choices and not knowing which characters to trust.


I thought the climax seemed more hasty than Rusalka’s.  Sasha & company show up, confused stuff with Draga and Eveshka happens, Draga and Chernevog end up battling it out at a distance, and it’s over.  I felt more of a sense of completeness at the end of Rusalka than I had from this book.  Still, the writing throughout the thing was good enough that I’m happy to have read it.

Other stuff I liked.  The exploration of the difference between wizardry and sorcery, though I would have liked to see more definite results from Sasha’s claimed better understanding of wizardry.  I was rather expecting to see a Sasha/Draga showdown, with Sasha defending himself by cooperating with the natural things that Draga was trying to change.

The characterization was, not too surprisingly, well done.  It was nice to see more of Chernevog and get a plausible, “He’s wrong, but understandable and isn’t completely evil.”

I need to see if I can get a copy of the last boog in the series, Yvgenie.  Interestingly, that name doesn’t appear anywhere in the first two books, so my guess is that it’s Peytr’s and Eveshka’s daughter.