GAME OF CAGES
In this second entry of the Twenty Palaces series, the action is fast and furious as Ray confronts a slew of trigger-happy, nasty people, some armed with magic, some with guns. Despite the slam-bam action, the plot crawls along initially, developing so slowly that the book begins to feel claustrophobic and repetitive before finally bursting free. Connolly handles the noir aspects well, and Ray is an interesting anti-hero, conflicted about his role in society and the choices it forces on him. Readers unfamiliar with Ray’s previous adventure, however, will possibly struggle with this book, as Connolly provides little in the way of backstory for new readers.