ARC Review: CAST-OFF (Peridot Shift #3) by R.J. Theodore (2022)

Genre: Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy
Year Release: December 2022
Buy Link: Bookshop.org

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Read an eARC from the author
There will be light spoilers for Flotsam and Salvage
Content warning: deicide, dismemberment, murder, chemical warfare, references to torture, gun violence

Souls are torn from their bodies, introducing new beasts, while the gods who still live don’t seem to care. It’s up to Talis, her splinter crew, a half-freed goddess, a transplanted alien, an empress, and a priestess to set it all straight before all souls go to the ether and transform into monsters beyond everyone’s comprehension.

A thrilling conclusion that rights wrongs both within the story and healing from historical ones, definitely a romp that will stay with me and a go-to recommendation for folks looking for a queer adventure expertly navigating the lines between science fiction and fantasy.

An interview with the author will be going up on 12/6/2022.

The most impressive thing about this finale is the command Theodore has over their cast and the several pieces moving between harbors, boats, and other people. Each new movement, alliance, broken alliance, and transference of power flowed seamlessly, which is a feat considering how many people want similar outcomes with very different approaches. I really like the depth permitted and the complexity of emotions. The one that stood out to me most is Empress Emeranth, who not only is an empress at fourteen, but also needed to have another soul implanted in her to keep her on this mortal plane. Mortality is a shaky thing, and it’s really cool the ways science and magic come together to form a solution. It poses much danger for everyone involved, and there’s an excellent pattern of action and debriefs that keep the world-building fresh in the reader’s mind, but also keeps the story going at a good clip.

I cannot talk about how cool the ending is without spoiling everything, but I really like the direction Theodore took the visuals and resolutions. It’s very anime, but more importantly, builds a lot on the themes established previously, especially around divinity, societal structure, and the meaning of being a leader. It’s rad; I’ll stop talking about it.

Overall, a really fun series if you’re looking for queer adventure that’s low on romance but high on found family and queer platonic relationships while the world around them literally falls apart.

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2 thoughts on “ARC Review: CAST-OFF (Peridot Shift #3) by R.J. Theodore (2022)

  1. Pingback: Author to Author with R.J. Theodore (The Peridot Shift) | Jo Writes Fantasy

  2. Pingback: December 2022 Reading Recap | Jo Writes Fantasy

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