The Final Death
Entry to Heaven is only granted to those strong enough to fight their way out of Hell. Accordingly, Normals, as they are known, with no extra abilities or Guild training, are at an immense disadvantage. Azrael is the fourth Unchained, a necromancer of nearly unlimited power, and his ambition is to end death. Accompanied by the warrior Glint, who shares his unlikely care for the weaker, Normal humans, Azrael gathers the artifacts and the spells he will need to enter the realm of Death – and, if he is very fortunate, to defeat Death himself.
The Final Death was an interesting read, with a pantheon that showed an interesting mix of religious mythologies, including the scythe-wielding, incarnate Death common to Western Judaeo-Christian representations. The range of magical abilities woven into the plot was also well-thought out, and mostly consistent. The reason I principally found myself straying from this read was that while the major plot arc is to do with Azrael’s plan to overthrow Death, the vast majority of the actual story time rests with Glint, and the variety of special effects he and his Guild mates can apply to a fight. The relevance of these scenes to the plot didn’t really come clear for me. However, the writing was very imaginative, and the story was by and large enjoyable. I think with a little pruning, this could be a very strong fantasy read indeed.