Saturday, 26 January 2013

Review - Death Sentence (Last City on Earth, Book 1), Rhiannon Paille

"May today be the day she dies," Jonathan said.

Fable Ketterling is the only immortal in the last city on earth. Thirteen hundred and five years of captivity, fame, and death.

Temperance Day is the only day Fable sees the sun, and each year, she hopes it’s her last.


Let me just start by saying that Death Sentence wasn't what I was expecting at all. Although I knew it was a short story, more of an introduction to the series rather than an entire novel, I was blown away by the intensity Paille fit into such a short piece of writing.

We're thrown straight into the world of earth as it is in 3325CE/1305TE and introduced to a handful of characters that will obviously be playing pivotal roles within the rest of the series, or at least in the next book.

The short story revolves around Fable Ketterling and her annual performance as the last immortal on earth. I won't give away much of the story, partly because its still only just touched upon in Death Sentence, and partly because I want you to go and read the book for yourself.

Paille is one of my favourite writers when it comes to descriptive language, and given that the vast majority of Death Sentence is an epic battle scene, you can guess why I was so captivated by this book. There's flame throwers, zombies, bears, zombie bears, tigers, obstacle courses, and a load of other kick ass stuff that'll make you wish you were as bad ass at Fable. It's one of those bits of writing that catches your breath; its tense, its compelling, its nerve racking, but at the same time, it makes you feel truly sorry for Fable and everything she's had to endure in her 1321 years of life.

And most importantly, it makes me want to read the rest of the series. How is Fable the only one left? Who exactly is Jonathan Cray? Why are his eyes 'warm' when the rest of his family has tortured her for so long? How did Hattie become the choreographer of Fable's annual death show?

Ahh so many questions I want answered! Fable seems so docile in Death Sentence, making no attempt to hurt any of the people that keep her bound in chains 40 stories underground, but the thoughts are there. "I could have killed them in three seconds, snap, snap, leave them lying on the floor."

There's something deeply menacing about this strange earth, and something even more troubling about Fable Ketterling. I fully intend to find out what that is. Fantastic teaser for the Last City on Earth series. A solid 4 out of 5.

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