The Rising (The Alchemy Wars Book 2) by Ian Tregillis

Jax, a rogue Clakker, wreaked havoc upon the Clockmakers’ Guild by destroying the Grand Forge. Reborn in the flames, he must begin his life as a free Clakker, but freedom proves to be its own burden.
Berenice, formerly the legendary spymaster of New France, mastermind behind her nation’s attempts to undermine the Dutch Hegemony — has been banished from her homeland and captured by the Clockmakers Guild’s draconian secret police force.
Meanwhile, Captain Hugo Longchamp is faced with rallying the beleaguered and untested defenders of Marseilles-in-the-West for the inevitable onslaught from the Brasswork Throne and its army of mechanical soldiers.
The Rising picks up almost immediately where The Mechanical leaves off. Only a few weeks have passed since the ending of book one and the beginning of book two, meaning the characters have had some time to adjust to past events but not much. Like the first book, the pace is fast and furious, moving from one story line to the next. Again, each story runs separate of the others only intertwining at the end for a dramatic finish.
One thing The Rising is missing is the gore factor. In The Mechanical, there were several scenes that were a little dark; there were numerous character deaths and none were pleasant. There weren’t nearly the same amount nor was their description as lurid in The Rising, which personally made it a more pleasant read.
Like The Mechanical, I enjoyed The Rising a great deal. Tregellis has once again done an amazing job of creating a world of characters, some to hate and some to love. He makes us question our own humanity and what it truly means to be human. Those who loved the first book definitely need to read the second. It was an excellent read.

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