In Furies of Calderon, #1 New York Times bestselling author Jim Butcher introduced readers to a world where the forces of nature take physical form. But now, it is human nature that threatens to throw the realm into chaos…
For centuries, the people of Alera have harnessed the furies—elementals of earth, air, fire, water, wood, and metal—to protect their land from aggressors. But no fury can save them from the dangers they face within. A mysterious attack from across the sea has weakened the First Lord. Should he fall, a bloody civil war is inevitable. The responsibility of fending off assassination attempts and treachery within the First Lord’s circle of spies falls on Tavi, the one man with no fury to call…
“You will probably find, in life, that successes and victories tend to overshadow the risks you took, while failure will amplify how idiotic they were.”
I enjoyed Academ’s Fury more than I liked Furies of Calderon, even though the rating is close. I was actually enjoying myself by the end of the book. It was hard to rate this book, though. The first half of this book was slow and I just didn’t care about any of it. The second half balanced out that boring start. The second half even flowed better. I also didn’t care about anything that happened except Tavi’s story. Thankfully, the second half was mostly Tavi.
Tavi’s storyline is by far the best of them all. It feels like a young adult storyline because Tavi is young and he has all these responsibilities he doesn’t have and he manages to do it all without the help of any adult or those who are more qualified. The rest of the story in Academ’s Fury doesn’t really fit with the main part of the story. I vehemently dislike all of Isana’s story. I feel like I should love her, but she just does not fit in and it mostly feels like throwaway.
I didn’t mind the story with Bernard and Amara to a point. What was going on felt like it was important, and I like Doroga. It was actually kind of horrifying what was going on and I was interested. I just hate their relationship. Most of their story was focused on their relationship that I don’t even like in the first place. On the other side of the coin, Tavi and Kitai are so darn cute together it hurts. I’m loving them together. Everything about it is good and wholesome.
This society is awful and I hate it. It isn’t exactly unnatural, though it is also because of the Furies. I know what Butcher is trying to do. He is trying to recreate ancient Rome here. But I still hate it. The disparity between male and female just sucks and therefore I hate it. There is a good paragraph in the book that covers part of it:
Kitai, never changing expression, put her fingertips lightly over Tavi’s lips, and continued as if he hadn’t spoken. “I have seen you protect others, though they consider you to be weaker than they. I have seen a very few decent people, like the boy we took from the tower.” She paused for a moment in consideration. “I have seen women trade pleasure for coin to feed their children, and others do the same so that they could ignore their children while making themselves foolish with wines and powders. I have seen men who labor as long as the sun is up go home to wives who hold them in contempt for never being there. I have seen men beat and use those whom they should protect, even their own children. I have seen your kind place others of their own in slavery. I have seen them fighting to be free of the same. I have seen men of the law betray it, men who hate the law be kind. I have seen gentle defenders, sadistic healers, creators of beauty scorned while craftsmen of destruction are worshiped.”
Kitai shook her head slowly. “Your kind, Aleran, are the most vicious and gentle, most savage and noble, most treacherous and loyal, most terrifying and fascinating creatures I have ever seen.” Her fingers brushed over his cheek again. “And you are unique among them.”
The worldbuilding once again feels deficient. Parts of it are explained just fine, the 100% most important parts. The rest just.. I still don’t understand whether some of these people are even humanoids or not. The vord, the parasitic type race is interesting though. I know that is where the series is headed, because it isn’t over yet. Which is a good thing I liked them, I guess.
Like Tavi, like Kitai. Like the Vord. Disliked almost everything else. If this focused on everything I liked I would have liked this book, but everything else almost entirely cancels out those good parts.
To read more reviews for this series, check out the Codex Alera series page!