Thursday, December 28, 2017

The Last Sacrifice

The Last Sacrifice (The Tides Of War #1)The Last Sacrifice by James A. Moore
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Petty gods. Hungry gods. Angry gods.

For as long as the world can remember the Undying go from place to place town to town looking for sacrifices for their gods. Each month they select four who are ritually sacrificed. This time they selected all from one family, Brogan McTyre's entire family. Brogan and his friends rush off to try to save them only to arrive in time to see Brogan's wife die and realize his children were murdered first. The gods aren't pleased that Brogan and his men attempted to interfere with the sacrifices and now the gods have demanded their lives for atonement or they'll destroy the world.

The Last Sacrifice is such a hopeless story yet it centered itself around topics anyone could relate to in anger, love, and injustice. A man had his entire family stolen away to be sacrificed, but he loved his family so dearly he chose to defy the gods because of the injustice. When he failed and learned his family was slaughtered he reacted in anger like anyone would.

"Tell me you would have done differently! Tell me man to man, husband to husband, and father to father that you would do anything differently to save your family!

I called in every debt I had in this world, every favor owed, every coin owed, and asked that those who call me brother help me in my time of need. I still lost them. I saw them slaughtered. I failed!"

Would you let your family be killed if it meant saving the world? I could fool myself and say the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, but those who normally say that are among the many not the few. I'd probably doom the world to save my family or avenge them just like Brogan.

The ending to The Last Sacrifice was unsatisfying, but at least the series continues on. The beginning was strong and heart wrenching as Brogan loses his family and avenges them as best he can, but things quickly devolve into fleeing and planning. The gods want Brogan and his friends as their next sacrifice so Brogan plans to kill them all. It was a bit too drawn out for my tastes. It would have been more enjoyable to see the beginning increased for greater emotional effect and then condense what happened afterward.

I also feel as though the story has provided hints that the gods are far from all powerful. On more than one occasion someone recalled a story that the current gods killed the god's who created the world and stole it for themselves. Also if these gods were as powerful as everyone thinks then why would anyone be able to defy them and live. These gods are likely vulnerable.

The Last Sacrifice tells an emotional story in a bleak world and I look forward to the sequel.

3.5 out of 5 stars

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