Ancient Magic brought the world to its knees. Now, Angel is bringing it back.
In the time that passed, society rebuilt, mixing machinery and magic to form something new. Great blimps took to the sky, belching steam and smoke as metal city-states sprouted like weeds below.
Angel, a daring adventurer, scours the desert endlessly in search of ancient magic. When he’s given an offer he can’t refuse, he finds out that he’s not the only one seeking lost knowledge. His opponents wield magic that the world has forgotten, and their methods leave cities razed and the innocent in their wake.
In a race against a group who has lived in the shadows since the Great War, Angel will have to determine just how far he’s willing to go to accomplish his goals.
Note: This review encompasses the entire trilogy
Book 1: Steamforged Sorcery
Book 2: Steamforged Heresy
Book 3: Steamforged Apostasy
I have not read any steampunk books in LitRPG before, so this was fresh from the get go. Having loved Actus’s previous series, I had high hopes for this and was not disappointed. Mad Max meets Indiana Jones but with magitech is how I would describe this simplistically.
The book is set in a post-magical apocalyptic world i.e. a big magical event happened which broke the world and now the survivors are slowly rebuilding. Though the knowledge of the past is mostly lost, people have scrapped remnants and mixed them with technology making “magitech” devices. The world for this book kind of reminded me of Mad Max with different settlements separated by vast desert. Typical of LitRPG, there is a overarching “system”, but again in a new take, whatever apocalyptic event happened before, broke the system leaving only broken access and parceled data. The world building is rich and descriptive enough to be immersive and easy to visualize and quite authentic. The people, the way of life, the hazards outside settlements are all woven together into an interesting backdrop.
The plot follows our MC, Angel who’s a Seeker i.e. a adventurer who explores catacombs lost in the apocalypse for lost tech and magic. The catacomb exploration would make any Indian Jones fans happy, traps, secret passages with a relic to gain if successful. He’s asked by the settlement Magistrate to escort her daughter to a different city across the desert…and this kicks off a chain of events as stakes escalate, makes them object powerful enemies as lost magic and history catches up with the present. Angel is such an easy character to follow, a nice blend of ruthlessness needed to survive in a hostile environment blended with a honor suitable for a hero. Not just Angel, but the entire supporting cast is well written. They all have their own role to play and leave their own mark throughout the series.
These books are fun. Lots of action, adventure, epic battles, daring escapes and well woven (despite being slightly predictable) plot that kept me turning pages through 3 whole books. The game elements are kept to a minimum and I was happy to not be bombarded with skill descriptions, trees and stats every few pages. Like most of Actus books, this is a light read guaranteed to leave you in a good mood at the finish.