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Storms of Lazarus (Shadows of Asphodel #2) by Karen Kincy

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Historical, Steampunk, Romance

Sometimes escape is impossible. Sometimes love isn't enough. 1913. Christmas Eve. Ardis hardly expects a quiet holiday with Wendel, between fleeing Constantinople and hiding from an ancient society of assassins. And they owe a debt to a certain archmage. In Königsberg, Prussia, they work with Konstantin on the next evolution of Project Lazarus. Wendel once called Königsberg home, the city now besieged by the Russians and their clockwork engines of war. This may be Wendel’s last chance to save his family and find redemption, but he's tormented by nightmares and tempted by laudanum. Ardis fears her love isn’t enough to save Wendel. Her hands are full piloting the automatons, and she's terrified to tell him a secret of her own. Will they—and their love—survive the storms of war?

4 out of 5 (very good)

Independent Reviewer for Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

Ardis and Wendel are on the run, but they get caught up in the war between Russia and Prussia. Wendel returns to the home he was removed as a child. He doesn't want to be there, but he will, for Ardis. Ardis is carrying a secret, one that might mean she loses Wendel forever. An excellent follow up to the firt book. I would recommend that you read that first, to get the full Ardis/Wendel experience. Because it is a brilliant experience! Ardis and Wendel are amazing, together and apart. Their story moves at speed in places, and slowly in others. Its bloody and deadly in places, and full of passion and love in others. It has more steampunk than book one, but that's not a bad thing. Clockwork wasps and dragons, containing something akin to a soul. Giant machines powered by a pilot that can crush a man flat. I loved it! Wendel is (reluctantly) reunited with his family, and Ardis makes plans to visit hers. Their story is still not finished and there is a third book. But that book is Konstantin, the Archmage and Himmel, the airship captain. Book three is THEIR story, so whether Arids and Wendel remains to be seen. But I will read that too! The only thing that stopped it from getting 5 stars is that Wendel didn't have a say. Not a one. Not a single peep! Now, I can't say whether book one was the same because 1- I either didn't notice the single POV, or 2- it was dual POV, but either way, I can't remember. BUT here, it was all Ardis. I would love to have heard from Wendel, of course I would, but especially when he remembers falling, when he succumbs to his trip to the opium den, and when Ardis reveals her secret. So because of that... 4.5 stars Keep 'em coming Ms Kincy, keep these coming!

**same worded review will appear elsewhere**

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and the comments here are my honest opinion. *

Karen Kincy (Kirkland, Washington) can be found lurking in her writing cave, though sunshine will lure her outside. When not writing, she stays busy gardening, tinkering with aquariums, or running just one more mile. Karen has a BA in Linguistics and Literature from The Evergreen State College.

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