The Silent Army by James A Moore (Seven Forges series #4)

The Silent Army by James A. Moore is the fourth book in the Seven Forges series. There is some contention about whether or not this is the final book in the series, but I hope it is not the final book as I need more Seven Forges book in my life.

The story follows on immediately after the conclusion of City of Wonders, with the city of Old Canhoon narrowly escaping the clutches of the Saba Taalor as it commences its journey to its new location. The Saba Taalor war machine continues to march across the Fellein Empire, killing everyone and everything they find with great prejudice - not a thing has been able to stand up to them except for the mythical silent army of stone men protecting the city of Old Canhoon. A final confrontation is coming, one last chance for the Fellein Empire to escape annihilation, but after everything the Saba Taalor have taken the Fellein Empire will question whether they even want to survive.

This book packs a punch, cramming in tonnes of action, adventure and magic to craft some epic set pieces. This is an epic tale that refuses to be bound by convention, which leads to some of the most creative battles and ways to die that I've read about. Sometimes it feels like it's trying a little too hard, and sometimes the magic is a little too convenient, but it wasn't unexpected - Moore has been building towards this for the past three books. The Silent Army truly earns the title of epic fantasy.

A big plus for this book is that Moore didn't introduce any new main characters, and instead spent some time trimming the cast in creative and unexpected ways. Most of the deaths in this book feel earned and had meaning, which is always a plus, and it let me brush of one of the cheap deaths that annoyed me. With the smaller cast we got to examine the characters in more depth, and explore these different races in more depth. Moore lets us see both sides of the war, and while I never became truly sympathetic to the Saba Taalor cause, I certainly came to understand it and respect it.

The Silent Army is a book that improves on every facet that made its predecessors great. This feels like a satisfying conclusion to the first arc of a much bigger story, because this book ends a bunch of plot threads that began right back at the start of the first book, but it leaves some big threads wide open begging for more. I need more stories set in this world. Please indulge me, Mr Moore.

10/10 I need more stories set in this world

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