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Reviewed by Melinda Hills for Readers' Favorite
Lady Karian Vanador, Sword of Heavens, by Zalkar’s Grace is a top ranked demon hunter in the fascinating world of White Serpent, Black Dragon by Joe Jackson. In this second volume of the Eve of Redemption series, Kari has been resurrected and is back in Citaria after the Apocalypse, performing administrative duties to be home with her husband and young son. A surprise visit from a despised nobleman, though, draws Kari into declaring a Blood Oath and she embarks on a new adventure to find and destroy a murderer in a faraway land. After first finding Eli, a mercenary who worked for the former Avatar of Vengeance of the Demonhunter Order, to find out some important information, Kari turns to two young Paladins and their Master for help.
The hunt for this murderer turns out to be a complicated task. As new clues turn up, it is apparent that there is much more going on – a potential power play in the Demon World – that involves all sorts of demons, underworld kings, werewolves, different races and religious groups. With secrets and surprises popping up all over, Kari and Eli have to depend on each other, and Kari’s strength in her belief in Zalkar, to try to keep up with the intricately woven plot being controlled by some as yet unknown agent. The question is whether they have all the players accounted for, and what the big surprise is that awaits them as they think they have reached the end.
Joe Jackson has created a marvelous world inhabited by countless races and mixed breeds capable of any number of powers and abilities in White Serpent, Black Dragon: Eve of Redemption Book 2. Jackson admits to drawing heavily from Dungeons and Dragons world building and initially I found it difficult to get into the novel because of the variety of characters and backstories, but his Appendices provide great information and the quality of the writing and flow of the action quickly grabbed my interest. The book is well written with fantastic characters, a twisting plot, plenty of intrigue and even a bit of romance. Reading Salvation’s Dawn first would probably allow for an easier and more enjoyable read, but White Serpent, Black Dragon is certainly worth the effort for fans of the epic fantasy genre.