Review of Skinshaper (Rend the Dark #2) by Mark Gelineau and Joe King

I think I’ve been pretty clear that I’m a big fan of the Ascended series by Gelineau and King. I love the different storylines but my favorites so far are that of Ferran in Rend the Dark and Elinor of Reaper. Today I’m stoked to feature Skinshaper, the second novella in the Rend the Dark series.

Read on to know more about the book and check out my review!

Skinshaper Mark Gelineau Joe KingAbout the book

Barricades broken.

A mining town empty.

One survivor swings in a cage, waiting to die.

Ferran’s tattoos burn as horrors near. They should run. They should seek help. But to save a few, they must journey deeper into the heart of the nightmare to face an ancient foe.

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Great follow-up to Rend the Dark

I thought this was a pretty good follow-up to Rend the Dark. Skinshaper picks up a couple of months after the events in Rend the Dark.  Ferran, Mireia and Riffolk have been traveling to find and destroy the Ruins or creatures of the dark. Mireia can sense the evil and her visions lead them to a mining town that is seemingly empty save for a woman in a cage. They find out that the town was attacked by hideous creatures that are now hiding in the mine. They enter the mine to search for survivors and confront and destroy these creatures, but they find themselves facing an ancient and far more horrific monster.

Like the previous novella in the series, Skinshaper is fast-paced and exciting. And, of course, you still have the diverse, interesting and complex characters that you can’t help but root for. The book gives us more bits and pieces about their backstories and more insights into their personalities. We also discover just how strong and powerful they are in their own ways, especially Mireia.

The story is somewhat darker and the creatures even more hideous and scary – and I mean freakishly scary. The ending promises of more intriguing and exciting things to come and it makes you wonder about the fates of Ferran, Mireia and Riffolk.

I really think fans of horror and fantasy will love this one. This series continues to be one of my favorites and I can’t wait to read more.

Note: I received a review copy of this book from the authors. All opinions and views expressed here are my own.

The Echoes of the Ascended

Rend the Dark is only one of the four mini-series in the Echoes of the Ascended series of series which follows five orphans from the fantastical world of Aedaron. The Reaper series follows the story of Elinor; Rend the Dark follows the story of Ferran; Best Left in the Shadows follows the story of Alys; and Faith and Moonlight follows the story of Roan and Kay.

Check out my reviews of the other novellas in the Ascended series: 

Read an excerpt from Skinshaper

Just before dawn, Mireia started screaming.

Riffolk shot up wide-eyed from his blankets, his hand fumbling with his sword. He looked around for any sign of trouble, but there was none. There was only Mireia, sitting bolt upright, her eyes staring vacantly into the darkness as she wailed, and Ferran kneeling before her.

Just like last night.

And the night before that.

Her screams cut through the still, cold air, echoing off the stones around them. Then, just as abruptly as they began, her screams cut off. Mireia drew a huge, shuddering gasp and slumped forward. Ferran caught her gently.

“Ferran…” she whispered.

“Shh,” he said, easing her back down. “Rest now.”

Mireia looked as if she would argue, but Ferran held her gaze and she relented. She closed her eyes, a look of peace returning to her face.

Slowly, her breathing slowed and she drifted into a light sleep. Ferran pulled blankets around her before joining Riffolk on the other side of the campfire.

For long minutes, the two men sat in silence, staring at the crackling fire. Riffolk drew his cloak tighter, trying to regain some semblance of warmth, but he knew it wasn’t the weather that chilled him.

“I feel like it’s getting worse,” Riffolk said.

Ferran sat with his hood up, the shadows from the firelight mixing with the tattoos on his face.

“It is,” he said tightly.

“What does that mean?”

Ferran looked out into the darkness. “It means we’re getting close.”

About the Authors

Mark and Joe have been writing and telling stories together for the last 25 years. They share a love for the classic fantasy tales of their childhood. Their Echoes of the Ascended series brings those old epic characters and worlds to new life.

Visit their Website and connect with them on FacebookTwitterMark’s Amazon Page and Joe’s Amazon Page.

For their latest releases, join their mailing list.

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