Antiagon Fire (Imager Portfolio)
by L.E. Modesitt
Edited by David Hartwell
Cover Artist: Donato Giancola
Review by Bill Lawhorn
Tor Books Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9780765334572
Date: 28 May 2013 List Price $27.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
One war is done but a whole new struggle begins. Quaeryt brought Bovaria to its knees and killed Rex Kharst and most of the leading nobles. Vaelora joins Quaeryt to help him recover. Together they must face new challenges.
Lord Bhayar agrees to create a space for Imagers if Quaeryt and Vaelora can bring Khel into the fold without a fight. In order to make this happen, they journey to meet the Pharsi. Although they learn more about the Pharsi and earn respect, Khel won't come meekly to the fold.
If the difficult Pharsi aren't enough of a challenge, the Antiagons are stirring. This leaves Quaeryt in a difficult position as his friends are now on the border near Antiagon trying to bring the reluctant High Holders in the South into the new realm. The more they learn, the more the realize how little control Rex Kharst really had over his lands. This is not a situation that Lord Bhayar plans to allow to continue.
The invasion of Antiagon was only a matter of time. Based on the title alone, readers know that a showdown is coming. The mysterious land will slowly yield its secrets. This is the first land that they face that trains Imagers. The Southern Army may have met its match. Without a true system, to train its Imagers, Telaryn is now facing the skilled Imagers that have created fear for generations.
The final confrontation will bring a major change to the storyline. One that will have a deep influence on Quaeryt. It will be interesting to see how he goes on from the losses that he will face. He still has a mission to complete and a place to build for Imagers to give them a place in society without being a destabilizing element.
I truly enjoy how the past is slowly being revealed. In each novel a little more of the puzzle that is imaging is revealed. The mystery of the Unnamer and the Naedarans are interesting. Each had a role in creating the present and are cautionary tales on overreaching. Quaeryt must balance his knowledge with the demands of his king. I hope that there will be future tales in this world set further in the past. I also enjoy the system that the Antiagons use to train their Imagers. It is very different from the system that is developed by Quaeryt, but should be familiar to fans of a certain famous movie franchise.
This is a later book in a long running series and is not the best starting point. The whole series is worth reading, so go back to the beginning and see how it all develops. Rex Regis is coming later this year and will bring an end to this segment of the series. It should be filled with the same high quality action that is a trademark of Modesitt’s fantasy series.