by Taran Matharu
Pages: 417 paperback
Publisher: Hodder Children's Books
Publication Date: May 5th 2016
On trial for a crime he did not commit, Fletcher must face the Inquisition who will decide his future - the process is gruelling, lead by those who will do anything to see him suffer and haunted by ghosts from the past with clues to Fletcher's tragic origins.
But Fletcher has little time to dwell on these new revelations when the king announces a deadly challenge to the graduating students at Vocans. One that involves entering Orc territory to complete a risky mission. With loyal demons by their sides, commoners and nobles, dwarves and elves must overcome barriers of class and race and work together to triumph. The reward: a fortune in gold, the safety of an empire and PEACE.
With the entire empire watching, Fletcher has much to prove, but there are those out to get him and it soon becomes clear that there's a traitor in their midst, trying to thwart the mission and create unrest within the Empire.
With everything stacked against him, Fletcher must use everything in his power to fight his way to victory.
**Spoilers for those who haven't read The Novice**
So if you haven't guessed this week is all about the Summoner Books! The Inquisition is the second book in the series and carries on a year after the end of The Novice. It is just as captivating as its predecessor and with such high expectations after book one it did not disappoint.
The Inquisition starts with Fletcher and Ignatius in jail, where he has been since the Tournament a year ago. The trail is right around the corner and Fletcher doesn't know what to expect, but a year is a long time and he is ready so seal his fait. With the help of old friends and some new Fletchers trial unravels in the most unexpected of ways but that is just the start of the dangers that face our misfit group of friends. Throughout the book we follow Fletcher, Othello and Sylva as they are pushed to their limits and tested further than anyone thought possible when sent into the heart of the Orc Jungle.
I'll be honest after The Novice I didn't know how Taran Matharu was going to keep up the pace. More often than not sequels fall short of the books before them and I was worried this might fall into the same trap. However, I am glad to report than I was mistaken!! The Inquisition keeps up the same level of adventure, the same intense relationships and most importantly still left my jaw on the floor with all its unexpected plot twists.
Throughout this installment we get to know more about Fletchers past, most importantly where exactly that little naked baby in the snow at Pelts gates came from. As a reader we get to see the inner workings of the Elves and Dwarves in more detail and finally understand why the King (up until this point) is such a bastard towards the other races. One of the things I love most about these books is that as much as it is fantasy there is a strong message within its text that translates to the real work. The strong emphasis on inclusion and not judging people by how they look on the outside is heartwarming and the fact that it takes just one person to see someones worth no matter their race, colour, gender is a strong message I wish more people today remembered.
Overall I adored this book just as much as The Novice and even though it may have included one of my pet hates (cliffhangers) I wouldn't change a single word. This book sets up nicely for the final installment of the Summoner series and I can't wait to find out what happens next.