The City is an original novel with various aspects of fantasy and reality pulled together to create a story that keeps the reader interested from beginning to end. With realistic battle scenes artistically mixed with the lives of children and old men fighting for their lives in the dangerous City, the reader is never bored. Gemmell reveals another surprise just when the reader attempts to guess what will happen next. Every chapter ends in another question, making it nearly impossible to put the book down. In addition, the characters’ complexities are a marvel, making them relatable and believable.
Emly and Elija, brother and sister living dangerous lives in the Sewers of the City, are forced suddenly to resume a more dangerous life above ground, and they are forced to do it without each other. Emly’s rescuer, former General Bartellus, tries to keep his and Emly’s lives secret to ensure their safety, while Indaro, rescuer of both Bartellus and Emly, rejoins the City’s army to continue fighting the seemingly eternal war that is slowly ruining the City. It seems that these formerly deeply intertwined people will never again cross paths until a carefully planned enemy plot draws Bartellus, Emily, Indaro and her commander, Fell Aron Lee, together to assassinate the Immortal emperor, a man many people believe is truly immortal. (ACE, Jun., 528 pp. $26.95)