genre: young adult fantasy
The Perilous Sea is the sequel to The Burning Sky, which you should go get in audiobook format and listen to right away. Everything you read next will be a spoiler for that book.
Reasons why you should listen to (or, I guess you could read but the narrator is phenomenal) The Perilous Sea:
Because the world-building is spectacular. There is our "known" world and then the Mage realms and the crucible-world and all that flies in between them all. The magic gets even more intense in this book and we learn more about what kinds of magic (both light and dark) Mages are capable of.
Because of Iolanthe and Titus. What they learn about each other and about themselves. For a second installment in a trilogy, their relationship was satisfyingly complicated - so much better than those second books where the protagonists spend the entire book either apart or hating each other. This was far deeper, what they had to sort through, and I really liked how it resolved.
Because the plot races forward, all the time, between two different storylines. And while we know enough to place one storyline in context, we don't know until the very end how the two are going to converge and it really was a well-done story device. I wanted this book on every minute.
Because it is just a dang good story. It is intricate and passionate and full of people choosing to watch out for others even when it's not in their best interest. It's oracles and blood magic and seers and people who can rain down fire and hew rock. It's a dark force on the prowl and constantly trying to find a place where you are safe.
I have no idea how it's going to end with the next book but I can't wait to find out. I'm all in on this one.