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Corber Port is the commercial center and largest metropolis of the tottering Solarian Empire. A devastating earthquake and fire have reduced much of the city to charred rubble roamed by gangs.
Tia Samos, once a prominent imperial citizen, is held captive in this urban wasteland by demons masquerading as mortal men. Tia’s former companions scour the city searching for her but are stymied at every turn.
Worse, dark forces plot to unleash yet another calamity on Corber Port – and Tia’s captors may be the only ones who can prevent it – if they choose to do so.
The last book in the Empire series left us at a crucial moment with Tia making a great sacrifice in order to save her friends. Peter, Kyle, and Rebecca had no power to stop Tia’s decision, leaving them with the only option of regrouping later to find Tia and attempt to rescue her from evil. In Empire: Metropolis we find our characters in the largest city in the Empire, attempting to make new lives for themselves, gaining increased knowledge, and even magical power. But at the same time, they must attempt to locate Tia, and Kyle’s nephew Barry, without allowing evil entities to gain knowledge of what they are doing. To make matters worse, there are places in the city where Kyle’s burgeoning magical powers are ineffective, there are those in power who stand to gain from keeping it that way, and in this city teeming with humanity, a demon on the loose could cause permanent havoc, not just for Tia and her friends, but all of the Empire.
Throughout the first three books in this series there has been a bit of a pattern emerging with small story threads occurring over and over again in slightly different ways. In Empire: Metropolis those threads start to come together to create a larger picture of why Kyle, Rebecca, Peter, and Tia all keep encountering the same evils, and what it will mean if they can’t defeat the darkness. But even the most corrupted of humans may still have some humanity in him. To stop the darkest of times, this man will have to remember what he was before he was taken by darkness. It’s up to Tia to figure out how to make that happen, while it’s up to her companions to save her before it is too late for her and everyone else.
So far all of the Empire books have been worth reading with a good blend of a fantasy setting, dark and cosmic horror, and even a bit of modern technology thrown in. The setting of Empire: Metropolis improves on the formula a bit by giving a real sense of the larger society and helps the reader to understand what life is like for common folks in the largest city in the Empire. The end still leaves the reader with some questions which will hopefully be answered in subsequent volumes. Tying the whole story together will be a real challenge but if the series stays consistent, author Tim Goff should be up to the task.
If you like your fantasy blended with a good dose of horror, a bit of the supernatural, and a bit of the cosmic, this series is well worth checking out.