***Description is spoiler for The Philosopher’s Flight***
Thanks to a stunning flying performance and a harrowing shootout in the streets of Boston, Robert Canderelli Weekes’s lifelong dream has come true: he’s the first male allowed to join the US Sigilry Corps’s Rescue and Evacuation service, an elite, all-woman team of flying medics.
But as he deploys to France during the waning days of the Great War, Sigilwoman Third-Class Canderelli learns that carrying the injured from the front lines to the field hospital is not the grand adventure he imagined. His division, full of misfits and renegades, is stretched the breaking point and has no patience for a man striving to prove himself. Slowly, Robert wins their trust and discovers his comrades are plotting to end the Great War by outlawed philosophical means. Robert becomes caught up in their conspiracy, running raids in enemy territory and uncovering vital intelligence. Friends old and new will need his help with a dangerous scheme that just might win the war overnight and save a few million lives. But the German smokecarvers have plans of their own: a devastating all-out attack that threatens to destroy the Corps and France itself. Naturally, Robert is trapped right in the thick of it.
Author: Tom Miller | Publisher: Simon & Schuster
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Thanks to NetGalley and Simon & Schuster for the review copy of this book! It will be published on July 16.
I enjoyed The Philosopher’s Flight. It was worth the read and I was happy to read the sequel. I’m glad I did — because The Philosopher’s War was even better. Gone are the college days and courting of first love; this was a story of camaraderie, trauma, war, and the greater good.
We open with Robert on his way to France to serve in Rescue & Evacuation for WWI. He’s placed on a team of misfits who are close like family and passionate about doing good, doing their jobs. After a slightly rocky start, he finds his place among them. But it’s not the glamorous life of heroism that he’d picture. It’s hard and ugly and filled with trauma, and there’s a lot more at stake than he ever thought. Turns out he’s also the center of a master plan that could end the war and save millions of lives. Also, Danielle is back in Washington DC, so far removed from what he’s going through now — physically and emotionally.
The biggest thing that struck me about this story is how much more mature Robert is. He’s a year older and goes through a lot on the frontlines of the war that makes him more mature. Tom Miller brought this out not only through Robert’s internal monologues, but also in the language choices Robert uses naturally, in the descriptions of all his experiences. The whole writing style is subtly shifted.
About a third of the way through the book, the story really picked up and I was hooked. Tom Miller does a great job of bringing readers into this alternate universe of a war, all action and no unnecessary, drawn out battle details. And the ending was fantastic; I had never imagined it all happening like that.
There’s plot space for future Philosopher books (I hope there will be!), but it also all wrapped up nicely. All in all a solid story with good writing that is exciting and magical and fun.