Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Review of Nephilim: Corruption, by Ann Margaret Lewis

If you've tuned into the live stream last week, you know everything about this book, and you have already bought it, I'm sure. 

For those of you who weren't kicking around then, let's have a review.

Ann Margaret Lewis is the author of two great Sherlock Holmes novels-- Murder in the Vatican and The Watson Chronicles. If you haven't read them, add them to your to be read pile. 

However, Ann has also written books on Star Wars. So of course she would get into space opera.

Nephilim: Corruption is book one of the Warrior of the Kizan series. If you're wondering what a Kizan is, it's a space highlander (the Scotsmen, not the immortals). The warrior in particular is Dahkar, and he's got the sword to prove it.

The premise is relatively simple: the Nephilim of the Bible were largely wiped out by the flood. Those who were Saved were taken to another planet for the safety of all concerned. The Saved were deemed Emunim. Fast forward a few thousand years, and they've grown into a flourishing society. The only real problem are the fallen among them--the Nephilim, whose whole goal is to make more Nephilim and spread their corruption. 

After a decade in military service, Dahkar's most recent mission with SpecOps has bagged the leader of the Nephilim. It's gained him a promotion to lead the palace guard.

But before Dahkar can even officially transfer to the palace, Princess Tasia is kidnapped and taken offworld. But she isn't taken to the Nephilim homeworld. She's taken to the origin point of their entire people.

The Princess has been taken to Earth.

This is the third time (and second title) I've read this book. Which makes it one of the few books I've read more than once--including Lord of the Rings, Heir to the Empire, Princess of Wands, and Proven Guilty. This isn't the best version, but definitely the second best. When it was published the first time, the editing job makes me very grateful that publisher is now out of business, because it was well and truly butchered. The current publisher, Silver Empire, has repaired it enough to bring it up to par with their rest of their output.

So yes, it's good. I'll say it's five star good, adding for my bias. I know what's missing, and what was cut out between the previous draft and when it landed on Silver Empire's doorstep.

The nice thing about Nephilim: Corruption is that it's relatively straightforward. Once the reader gets into the world (and if you're not fully settled in by the end of chapter two, I'll be surprised) it's smooth sailing all the way. The characters are all easily and quickly set up, and the plot gets underway as soon as possible. Everyone has a character arc and character development. Even the very minor bit players among the supporting cast.

The world building is smart and easy, with echoes of CS Lewis' Science Fiction Trilogy (mostly Out of the Silent Planet). 

(Why is this not a Dragon award pick? Because I didn't like the previous edit, and the eligibility had expired.)

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