Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Fantasy Review: The Endless Hills (Water Road Trilogy #2) by J.D. Byrne

The Endless Hills (The Water Road #2)
by J.D. Byrne

The Second Great Neldathi Uprising has begun, setting the world of the Water Road on fire.

United by Antrey Ranbren, the Neldathi clans have attacked across the great river, laying waste to the metropolis of Innisport. Now they hunt the Triumvirate army in the Endless Hills of Telebria. Antrey knows a crushing victory in pitched battle is what they need to win this war. The Neldathi have swept aside everything in their path, but time is not on their side. That’s why she’s sent Naath and Goshen on desperate missions to find help.

Trapped in Oberton by the negative reaction to her book exposing the Triumvirate’s treatment of the Neldathi, Strefer wonders how the Neldathi have been so successful on the battlefield. She leaves the safety of the city in the trees to find the truth. Along with Rurek, she traces the evidence back to the last place she ever expected.

A world torn apart by war and a dwindling sense of hope for the future - the next chapter in the epic saga of The Water Road.

My review:
A continuation of The Water Road, The Endless Hills takes on both sides of the new uprising. Antrey and Strefer still play important parts, but we also meet a new Ranger captain, who’s pretty interesting, and an ex-prisoner pressed into service on the Triumvirate side.

One of the things I love about this book, and the series so far, is how it draws you in emotionally. I want Antrey to win, but I also care about the characters introduced on the other side of the conflict. Both sides of the story are put out there in a relatable way. Good people on both sides. Old wrongs needing to be made right, but a new generation that isn’t at fault. Complex themes that really get you thinking.

Then, add the action and you have quite a fun and engaging read. Battles, strategy, personal conflict and favorite characters put in the line of danger make it all worth reading. The suspense in places had me on edge, and some of the outcomes are shocking. In the final chapters, one in particular left me reeling. That emotional connection to the characters is really what tipped this over for me.

So, overall, I loved this book. I’d highly recommend it to fans of epic fantasy. It’s just a good, solid read with a lot of meat to it. Fun and emotionally engaging. A great escape.

I received the review copy of this book from the author.

Book Links:
The Water Road
The Endless Hills

Learn more about The Water Road trilogy from the Water Road Wednesday posts on J.D. Byrne's blog.

About the Author:

J.D. Byrne
JD Byrne was born and raised around Charleston, West Virginia, before spending seven years in Morgantown getting degrees in history and law from West Virginia University. He's practiced law for more than 15 years, writing briefs where he has to stick to real facts and real law. In his fiction, he gets to make up the facts, take or leave the law, and let his imagination run wild. He lives outside Charleston with his wife, one-eyed dog, and black cat.

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Web: jdbyrne.net