Blood of the Mantis: Shadows of the Apt 3 by Adrian Tchaikovsky continues with the Wasp Empire's invasion of the Lowlands. The Lowlands are starting to come together while the Wasp Empire is starting to crumble. This installment focuses more on the internal workings of the insatiable Wasp magic-wielding inapt kinden. A forgotten race is introduced and the original bands of resistance fighters are pursuing their own individual goals. The story stays fast paced and highly original. This invasion story goes beyond the typical themes of good and evil while asking questions of where technological advances should go and whether one's intention justifies the means to get to the end. I love this series and highly recommend it! 5 out of 5! Need more!
This title will be featured in the Night Owl Reviews magazine. - 7/15/2010
Driven by the ghosts of the Darakyon, Achaeos has tracked the stolen Shadow Box to the marsh-town of Jerez, but he has only days before the magical box is lost to him forever. Meanwhile, the forces of the Empire are mustering over winter for their great offensive, gathering their soldiers and perfecting their new weapons. Stenwold and his followers have only a short time to gather what allies they can before the Wasp armies march again, conquering everything in their path. If they cannot throw back the Wasps this spring then the imperial black-and-gold flag will fly over every city in the Lowlands before the year's end. In Jerez begins a fierce struggle over the Shadow Box, as lake creatures, secret police and renegade magicians compete to take possession. If it falls into the hands of the Wasp Emperor, however, then no amount of fighting will suffice to save the world from his relentless ambition.