Title: Tribute to Hell
Author: Ian Irvine
Series: The Tainted Realm #0.5
In: Legends of Australian Fantasy (Jack Dann & Jonathan Strahan)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Australian authors, Demons, Medieval fantasy
Publisher: Harper Collins Australia
5th sentence, 74th page: ‘I’m dead either way.’
“Tribute to Hell” is set in the Elder Days of a new fantasy world explored in detail in the trilogy, The Tainted Realm. To ensure Greave pays for his crime and redeems himself, his god, K′nacka, holds hostage Greave′s little sister. And Greave has to steal the Graven Casket for the god. Greave knew he had to do it, but he was not going to survive, and neither was his little sister …
There’s one problem with reading collections of novellas and short stories – I always want to buy the greater series and read it… and A Tribute to Hell definitely made me want to do this!
I love a story that goes nowhere near where I expected. Starting with Greave’s sins, I thought that this would be a story about one man finding redemption and escaping the God’s wrath. The addition of a nun was a great (if not typical) distraction, and the best friend a fantastic way to keep the sinner on track. Seems fairly typical, right? Nope. The nun was actually a sinner, the sinner a saviour and the best friend a great way to keep the story on track. Like I said, this story went nothing like I expected, and it was so captivating that I am waiting for the next payday to buy The Tainted Realm series.
There’s not much I can say about the storyline that won’t completely give away all of the fantastic twists and turns. But, ultimately, the battle between good and evil is far more complex than it initially seems. I love when stories investigate the grey areas of life – after all, nothing is purely evil or purely good in reality, so why should it be in the stories?
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