The Ninth Rain - Jen Williams

I really enjoyed this author's previous trilogy (which starts with The Copper Promise) and so was looking forward to seeing what she could do with a completely new setting and set of characters in The Ninth Rain. If anything, I think this book is even better than the previous ones and I can't wait to see what happens in the rest of the story...

 

The Ninth Rain is set in the time after a series of invasions, all of which have been pushed back at great cost. The Eborans, the main adversaries of the invaders, have now been all but destroyed with a terrible disease decimating their population and their tree-god silent. Yes, there is a giant sentient tree involved, bear with me. One of the last of the Eborans is sure that this can be rectified, while meanwhile her brother Tormalin goes out in search of adventure, booze and sex (mostly booze and sex, to be honest).

 

He ends up working for Vintage, a woman who has spent her life studying the invaders and the things they left behind and, along the way, they also pick up an escaped prisoner as part of their ragtag group. Noon is a fell-witch, taking life from the living things around her, who had been imprisoned as part of the Winnowry, all the while claiming it was for everyone's good.

 

There were a couple of places in The Ninth Rain where there's a bit of a revelation and I really don't want to spoil them for anyone who's going to read this. I kind of saw the first one coming, at least partially (on the basis that it was all a little too good to be true) but they both provide excellent twists to the storyline. I look forward immensely to seeing where this goes, with the next book in the series (The Bitter Twins) due out in March 2018.