Idols Fall: Iconoclasts, Book 3 Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
“At long last, even gods will know regret....”
Agnes Manteo now bears her father’s sentient Djao sword, along with a terrible revelation - the gods are charlatans, ancient sorcerers who draw their strength from the suffering of humanity. She and her Syraeic companions have but one duty: to track down those pretenders and end their reign of cruelty and lies, no matter the cost. To that end, the magical blade - mighty, single-minded Szaa’da’shaela - won’t allow any wavering of their commitment.
But the empire is in turmoil with the sudden passing of its undying queen. Noble houses clash and threaten civil war, murderous barbarians mass on the frontier in preparation for a bloody invasion, and all feel the aching void left by the clergy, whose temples were devastated by a great fire. Can the kingdom survive, should Agnes succeed in tearing away its very foundations? And if she fails, what might sorcerers with nearly godlike powers do to exact their revenge?
Idols Fall is the thrilling conclusion to the compelling Iconoclasts trilogy.
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|Listening Length||19 hours and 49 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||August 17, 2021|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #67,809 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#146 in Military Fantasy (Audible Books & Originals)
#413 in Military Fantasy (Books)
#2,045 in Horror Fiction
Top reviews from the United States
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I remembered how much I liked it and started checking to see if there were any others out, and to my surprise the 2 and final books came out. I have read both in the past 2 months, and I give the entire series 5 stars. It goes into a fantasy world where there is an ancient past on the continent/islands setting that isn't well known. 10,000+ years in the past there was a civilization that appeared to thrive off of human sacrifice to blood thirsty gods and practicing of sorcery. The setting of the book is in its present time, and there are ancient buried temples all across the northern continent (now a waste land where nothing grows) where the temples of these gods still exist, and are filled with still functioning sorcery. The mysterious practices and language of this ancient civilization is mostly forgotten, although it is necessary for the modern day magic that is employed by the colleges of sorcerers across the land. An explorer organization trained and designed to outfit groups to explore these ancient ruins (which often leads to disastrous deaths of many in the group) are where the main characters are from, and they are on a journey to take a malevolent artifact that was retrieved decades earlier back to whence it came after someone accidentally cut themselves on the gem stone. It absorbed their blood, killing them instantly, followed by a powerful pandemic that had people in the main capital decaying and dying at rapid rates. This is how Book 1 starts, I won't give any more away.
If you are reading this review and like fantasy books that are REALLY good, as I do, buy this entire series. You will not regret it. There are plenty of unexpected things to encounter in the series to add on to the already excellent story line. I am keeping this series, and I know I will read it again at least a few times in the years to come.
Although, the book was a satisfying finish to the series, I did have 2 things that bothered me.
Some minor spoilers follow..........
My main criticism is that Agnes never developed significantly through the story. I feel out of everyone, should have had more of a personal journey in this finale, since she was the new main POV after Auric's death in book 2. Her blade basically made all her decisions and stunted her character growth, in my opinion. She always seemed to be angry, as well and that became basically her personality. While she made a very important and clever decision at the end, it would have been nice if that was due her slowly growing into that decision and not just a sudden realiztion that got her there. She actually became my least favorite character of the book and the loss of Auric as the main POV was a void never really filled by any other character for me.
The other choice I wasn't happy with, was the dual storyline of Agnes on her quest and Illanda fighting for her throne. The storylines stayed paralell the whole time and never converged. Each had its own satisfying ending, but I personaly would have liked them connect at some point to make the ending of the book feel like it "stuck the landing" more strongly.
With all this said, I did like the series quite a bit and Aching God is one of my all time favorite books. My concerns may be in the minority with other readers, but I think they're valid observations. But these did not impact my overall enjoyment of the book and Mike Shel's great story telling and imaginative, exciting world he created. I look forward to what writes next and will keep reading whatever he puts out there.
Looking forward to the next book set in the same universe.
Top reviews from other countries
There aren’t many who get close to, or ask as much of the reader as, Steven Erikson’s prose, pathos, Machiavellian-ness (!), etc - but this series sits comfortably alongside the top tier of mortals such as Brandon Sanderson, Joe Abercrombie etc. A real sense of scope, with individual characters and some witty dialogue. It’s very good, recommended. 👍
With the reveal that the gods were bloodthirsty sorcerers feeding off the energy and prayers given to them and that they all needed to be cut down, people's worldview is shattered. Agnes managed to slay Timilis in Sin Eater, and this has far reaching consequences. Members of the crew begin questioning their own morality and resolve, especially those with powers linked to a god, and once the outside world feels the impact of Timilis' death, chaos ensues. Couple this with Ilanda becoming the new queen and stepping into the role during the turmoil and we have grounds for one thrilling conclusion.
Agnes narrative is centred around her quest to dismantle and kill the remaining "gods" in their hideaway in the Barrowlands, while Ilanda is focused on reigning in her shattered kingdom while outside invaders (who have been mentioned way back in Aching God) seek to use the chaos to their advantage and attack. All of the narrative threads from Aching God until now are resolved while still leaving some room for more tales to be told in this world!
As is the usual with Mike Shel, we get that dark atmosphere surrounding the world and its characters. Everything feels dark, dirty and lived in. The dungeon itself feels straight out of a horror movie, with booby traps that affect not only the physical but mental states of our characters. Some of them come to gristly ends, and Mike Shel's writing style makes you feel every bone snapping, dismemberment, decapitation, and other gruesome bodily harm. His writing is so visceral and atmospheric that it can be hard to read at times, but makes the moments pack a punch. Its sad to see characters die in any medium, but in Shel's work they are often killed off in such quick and brutal fashion that I as a reader was left shocked if I had read it correctly. The ending itself came almost a little too quickly, but I still enjoyed how the story ended for both Agnes and Ilanda. I'm hearing his next work will be within this world, but set a little in the future and I am excited to see what happens!