Autor: Adrian Tchaikovsky. The Air War · The Air War War Master's Gate: Shadows of the Apt 9 · War Master's Gate: Shadows of the Apt 9 · The Scarab Path. The penultimate book in the epic Shadows of the Apt cycle by Adrian Tchaikovsky, War Master's Gate is an explosive fantasy that propels you towards a dramatic. Master Hunter K. May 20, Dragon Maken War. May 16, Overgeared. May 16, God of Money. -. May 7, Life Mission.
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Adrian Tchaikovsky - [Shadows of the Apt 08] - The Air War (v) (epub) Jodry Drillen, Speaker for the Assembly Stenwold Maker, War Master Corog Breaker. War Master's Gate. Shadows of the Apt (Series). Book 9. Adrian Tchaikovsky Author (). cover image of The Seal of the Worm. Gate Of The Dead Master Of War. Ebook Gate Of The Dead Master Of War currently available at osakeya.info for review only, if you need complete ebook Gate.
Enough with the generalities. At the end of book eight The Air War the Wasp Empire is stopped from conquering the Lowlands after a devastating battle before the gates and in the sky over Collegium.
With most of their air force destroyed, two major Wasp army groups are forced to retreat and reconsider their strategy. I've made this comparison before, but as a reminder think of the two sides as the Greeks city states Lowlands, Beetles and Ant kinden mostly, with the Mantids as a sort of Spartans and Collegium as Athens fighting against the overwhelming Persian hordes Wasp kinden and their slaves and conscripted troops. The one major variation being in the fact that both sides experience an accelerated industrial revolution, passing in a couple of decades through several centuries worth of military weapon development: from swords, bows and arrows, to machine guns, tanks, fighter and bomber planes, heavy artillery, submersibles and so on.
Anyway, none of the sides emerged unscathed from the Air War, and book nine picks up with the issue of supremacy still unresolved. Like two boxers in a championship match, Collegium and the Wasps have had a one minute reprise to draw their breath, and now they are back at each other's throat, with refreshed savagery. The Air War was a bit too focused on the technological and tactical aspect of the war for me, and slightly too depressing in seeing my favorite side having less and less prospects of coming up on top I root for Collegium in general, but the author does a great job at painting a realistic picture of the adversaries as humans and not cardboard villains.
In the language of the kinden world, book eight was all about the Apt. Book nine remedies this by bringing back the Inapt part of the world back into play, with a vengeance. Empress Seda of the Wasp Empire is already the most powerful magician in the world, but she wants more: in an ancient forest of the Mantis kinden hides a powerful magic force that could make her invincible.
The only one who could stop her is Cheerwell Maker, herself heir to mystical powers received from the Gods of the long passed Inapt dominance of the world. He had been very good and, although she would not acknowledge him as her better, he had met her and met her, time and again, even though his black-and-yellow striped Spearflight had not been equal to her Volenti.
And at the last, with her machine torn and mauled and its rotary piercers jammed, she had taken advantage of his fixation on her, and baited him in too close, leaping from the cockpit before their two fliers crashed and tangled, removing herself from the fight. She had watched, her own wings ablur, as the conjoined machines tumbled and fell - and felt as though she had killed her best friend.
The Esca Magni was some consolation after that.
The original design had sprung from the best of Collegium artifice and her own unparalleled understanding of the simple business of flying, and never had there been a more demanding mistress for the artificers than te Schola Taki-Amre, known as Taki to her friends. Even a month ago, she had still been making minute changes to perfect the new flier's handling.
The Esca Magni , as originally built, had surpassed the Volenti by a small but measurable degree - and there had been a great deal of measuring, for the Collegium Beetles were fond of that. Then had come the new clockwork - or the 'New Clockwork', to reflect the reverent way that the artificers talked about it. It involved some mad innovation in metallurgy from somewhere across the sea, some Spiderlands place or other, and it was not exactly common but there was a steady supply of the improved spring steel seeping into Collegium.
An artificer called Gainer had begun using it for some boat he was working on, and shortly afterwards one of Taki's mechanic disciples had brought it to her attention.
The level of precision required to take full advantage of the New Clockwork was formidable, but at around the same time, and apparently from the same source, Collegium began to see machine parts crafted to a frightening exactness, perfect in every tooth no matter how small.
The resulting engines were lighter, smaller and considerably more powerful than anything anyone had seen before, and Taki had kicked an awful lot of shins in the College - and got up the noses of a great many ground-bound Beetle-kinden - before she secured a supply for the flying machines.
Thankfully, by then, she had her supporters: She had run the Esca Magni through a lot of paces since then: This journey was different, though. She had thought to make it in one long leg, gliding where she could, hitching a ride in the high air currents and testing the New Clockwork to its logical conclusion. She had made good progress at first, but eventually minute changes in the engine's ticking and a sluggishness in the controls had convinced her that reality was going to fall considerably short of her ambitions - and that was without any hard weather or, most demanding of all, actual air combat.
She resolved to try and kick her tame artificers into working on something even better.
She put down in Helleron, and paid for the use of a winding engine to re-tension her flier. She felt bitterly disappointed about having to break her journey, for all that it gave her the chance to eat something that hadn't been dried half to death.
Taki was the first recorded pilot ever to make the trip from Collegium to Helleron in a single journey in a heavier-than-air machine, but she had failed in her original plan, therefore it still seemed like second prize. She had managed the flight from Helleron to here in another single bound although, had the political situation been tenser, she would have expected to have to fight her way past half the cities that had glided past below her. She had worried about her navigation as well, and whether she would even recognize her target when she saw it, but her charts and her compass were in agreement, and the view could have been nowhere else on earth.
Capitas, the heart of the Wasp Empire. This city had not been built with aviators in mind, either, but at least it was planned out by an Apt kinden that could fly, and so she spotted a half-dozen open spaces that looked to be ideal for landing her Esca , and several large fields outside the city as well, mostly attended by louring barracks and presumably given over to the innumerable soldiers of the Imperial army.
She brought her flier in low as she neared, knowing that every city provided a free updraught for the canny flier. She was determined not to end up somewhere on the outskirts: Besides, the city looked rather flat and, while that detracted from its scenic value, it was a gift to a pilot coming in low.
She revised her assessment of the place very quickly, because she was still coming in low - dangerously low now - and she had not quite reached the sprawling outskirts.
Right, so it's just a little bigger than I thought. She pulled up on the stick, inching a little more height, and then the first suburbs of Capitas were speeding beneath her, close enough that she caught the pale flash of faces peering up. And we'll see how good that cursed invitation was, too. The spectre of a dozen combat Spearflights lifting straight up from one of the airfields loomed large in her mind.
The sheer number of aircraft she saw was proof positive that she was not here on false pretences, however. Every airfield was cluttered with them, and the sky above Capitas was lumpy with airships and spotter balloons. When the invitation had arrived, her fellow aviators at the College had thought it was a hoax or a trap, depending on how suspicious their minds were.
None of them knew that she had been corresponding sporadically, secretly, with the Wasp capital for over a season. Not even Stenwold Maker was aware of that.
In fact, he probably topped the list of people Taki had no intention of telling. Capitas saw itself as the heart of Aptitude, and it was keenly aware of the longer pedigrees of Collegium and Helleron.
So do many others, who do the most appalling things. By believing yourself a hero, all your actions become heroic, no matter what they are. He is so self-centered and self-serving, his ressurection might well be more appaling than a victory of the Wasps in the war. No quarter is given, and many of the faces we have become accustomed to in previous volumes may not make it to the final battle.
The spectacular big canvas confrontations are well balanced with human kinden interest stories. I have selected only one quote on this conflict, the finest moment in the career of Stenwold, where he denounces the whole military mindset horor: We do not respect our enemies; We despair of them.
Your struggle, your fierce will to prevail in spite of all, we do not admire this. We see only a terrible, senseless waste of life - both ours and yours.
We are murdered potential, young men and women who might have become anything becoming only corpses through one's woman's dream of conquering a city she has not even seen. Because we will not be owned or dictated to. Because we will not be slaves and bare our backs to the lash.
And all because your Empress cannot bear there to be some empty name on a map somewhere that is not hers.