War Cry by Brian McClellan
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Teado is a shapeshifting wizard who serves on the front lines of a war that has dominated his life. His platoon specializes in ambush and sneak attacks, but they are running low on supplies. In an effort to steal the needed supplies from the enemy Teado is lost behind enemy lines and struggles to find his way back.
I'm not sure exactly what I imagined War Cry would be like. It does have the feel of a more modern war with planes, motorcycles, machine guns, and other modern technology. The world features wizards such as Fire-Spitters, Smiling Toms, and Changers. Fire-Spitters name seems self explanatory in that they can spit fire. Smiling Tom's create illusions that can be made to mask an army base. Changers seem to be werewolves that don't need the full moon to transform, but they can't pass their powers on through a bite. The world and wizards have potential.
I struggled a bit with War Cry in that I didn't truly connect with any of the characters before events really got moving. The story is told exclusively from Teado's point of view and with the exception of being loyal to his platoon, I don't feel like I knew anything about him as an individual. He's a Changer as well, but that doesn't really flesh him out. The story features some other characters who show even less personality with the exception of Bellara who just wants to use her Smiling Tom powers to make people happy rather than having to be involved in a seemingly never ending war.
The story itself also didn't really draw me in as it was a largely straightforward tale of a character lost behind enemy lines with some slight differences. I felt bad for Teado's platoon as they seemed to be largely abandoned in the war effort. I also was a bit disappointed that the author never really showed the enemy. Granted they have the same types of wizards, but outside of that they were just simple soldiers.
War Cry felt like a good idea that simply wasn't developed enough yet.
3 out of 5 stars
I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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