Moment of Truth, by Michael Pryor

‘I have some distressing news.’ She took a breath. ‘Holmland has invaded the Low Countries.’
George smothered an oath. Aubrey clenched his fists and his heart pounded inside his chest…
‘At ten o’clock,’ Lady Rose continued, visibly growing paler, ‘your father is due in the Lower House. He is going to announce that we are at war.’
There it is, Aubrey thought numbly. Such a simple statement: we are at war. Nation against nation, and misery would be the only inevitable outcome.

Aubrey is only days into his training at the Magic Department when everything changes. His father, the Prime Minister, declares Albion is at war. Aubrey and his best friend George are left unsure whether they should enlist against the wishes of their parents.

Soon, though, they are a part of the Special Services, on a mission to gather intelligence. They are reunited with Caroline and are sent to Gallia to investigate mysterious magical emanations. What they find there is horrific – Holmland, and Aubrey’s nemesis Dr Tremaine – is about to unleash an unstoppable horror on the world. Aubrey and his friends must do their best to stop them.

Moment of Truth is the fifth instalment in the steam-punk series, Laws of Magic. Like its predecessors it is a clever blend of wry humour, action and intrigue. With parallels with real-world history, likeable characters and an absorbing plot, this is fantasy as it should be done. Best read in sequence, the titles can be read as stand-alone, but readers who read out of order will likely go looking for the earlier ones.

Great stuff for teens and adults.

Moment of Truth (Laws of Magic)

Moment of Truth, by Michael Pryor
Random House, 2010

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