There has always been a darkness to Ilmar, but never more so than now. The city chafes under the heavy hand of the Palleseen occupation, the choke-hold of its criminal underworld, the boot of its factory owners, the weight of its wretched poor and the burden of its ancient curse.
What will be the spark that lights the conflagration?
Ilmar, City of Long Shadows.
City of Bad Decisions.
City of Last Chances.
Despite the city's refugees, wanderers, murderers, madmen, fanatics and thieves, the catalyst, as always, will be the Anchorwood - that dark grove of trees, that primeval remnant, that portal, when the moon is full, to strange and distant shores.
Ilmar, some say, is the worst place in the world and the gateway to a thousand worse places.
Beset by enemies within and without, the last thing anyone needs is a miracle…
City-by-city, kingdom-by-kingdom, the Palleseen have sworn to bring Perfection and Correctness to an imperfect world. As their legions scour the world of superstition with the bright flame of reason, so they deliver a mountain of ragged, holed and scorched flesh to the field hospital tents just behind the frontline.
Which is where Yasnic, one-time priest, healer and rebel, finds himself. Reprieved from the gallows and sent to war clutching a box of orphan Gods, he has been sequestered to a particularity unorthodox medical unit.
Led by ‘the Butcher’, an ogre of a man who’s a dab hand with a bone-saw and an alchemical tincture, the unit’s motley crew of conscripts, healers and orderlies are no strangers to the horrors of war. Their’s is an unspeakable trade: elbow-deep in gore they have a first-hand view of the suffering caused by flesh-rending monsters, arcane magical weaponry and embittered enemy soldiers.
Entrusted – for now – with saving lives deemed otherwise un-saveable, the field hospital’s crew face a precarious existence. Their work with unapproved magic, necromancy, demonology and Yansic’s thoroughly illicit Gods could lead to the unit being disbanded, arrested or worse.
House of Open Wounds follows on from City of Last Chances in the world of the Tyrant Philosophers, charting the ruthless Palleseen quest to bring their perfection to the rest of the world. Although this is book 2 of the series, it can also be read on its own without City of Last Chances (although hopefully, if you do, you’ll be moved to go back and pick up the first!)