The Last Goddess (The Shattered Messiah Trilogy)
“The Last Goddess is a very exciting, smoothly written adventure that will stay in my collection to be re-read someday, which is not something I offer to many novels.”
“I have never come across such a perfectly hidden and brilliantly effected (plot) twist.”
–CS Fantasy Reviews
When a man discovers the body of the long-lost Messiah, he fears her very presence might incite a holy war. When she wakes up, he is certain of it…
Nathan Rook never had much use for faith. As a soldier in the last war, he witnessed first-hand the devastation wrought by the ageless religious schism so deeply dividing his country. But when he discovers an ancient coffin and finds a living, breathing woman inside, he believes he may have stumbled across the greatest discovery in history – or the greatest hoax. From her ceremonial dress to her elaborate tattoos, the mysterious woman is the perfect incarnation of the Messiah, and she wields a power that defies the very laws of magic. There’s just one problem: she doesn’t remember anything, not even her own name.
As he strives to restore her memory, Rook realizes it might not matter if she is the genuine Messiah or not. Once word of her discovery gets out, every faction in the city will seek to claim her legendary power as their own. Together they struggle to evade a mad prince, a renegade general, and a power-hungry senator, but Rook has yet to confront the biggest problem of all: he is falling in love with her.
Join in the epic fantasy adventure praised for its gripping action, seamless world-building, and enough twists and turns to keep you guessing. The Shattered Messiah Trilogy begins with THE LAST GODDESS (145,000 words).
The adventure continues with THE LAST EMPRESS and concludes with THE LAST SACRIFICE, both available now!
Want all three books at once? The Complete Shattered Messiah Trilogy is now available! Save 33% by purchasing the series as a single e-book for $9.99.
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I had something of a hard time getting into this book, but after a while I got drawn into the story and the characters in a major way. I am generally reluctant to read “book one of X” because so often I find that book one just isn’t enough to get me interested, a teasing glimpse and then “to be continued.”I thought this, however, was a good solid “book one” because there were some actual resolutions, or at least a natural closing point rather than a forced cliffhanger. I was entertained and felt satisfied at the end, like a good stopping point had been reached, but was still interested in reading more about the world.I am not *entirely* sure whether I missed some clues along the way or whether the author deliberately withheld some rather vital information for the purposes of a major plot twist. When I came to the realization, and I’m really trying to avoid spoiling things here, that all was not quite as it had been portrayed (or at least as I had read it), my immediate reaction was “Hey, that’s cheating!” However, my second thought was that it was actually a *very* clever way to handle it, and my third was that I might just be oblivious to clues and signposts. As I have thought more about it, my ultimate opinion is much more on the “very clever” rather than “cheating” and I have to appreciate an author who can hoodwink me so thoroughly.At any rate, the twist did catch me by surprise, obviously, and there were other unexpected twists and turns along the way.In some respects, the characters are something of standard types – it would be fairly easy to come up with labels for them, like Tough but Sensitive. However, in my opinion, the author is able to take the characters beyond the label. I liked the central three (then four) quite a bit and they were charming people rather than cardboard props.I do think the book could benefit from some additional polishing. However, in its favor, the errors obviously weren’t too distracting because I never started marking them in the Kindle, which I normally do when they start taking me out of the story.
When I started reading THE LAST GODDESS after “buying” it from Amazon Best Sellers, Top 100 Kindle Free List, my first thought was: why-in-the-heck haven’t I ever heard of this book or its author, C.E. Stalbaum before?The story, the world, the characters, and the writing are all outstanding. Warring religions and their allegiant countries provide an intricate backdrop for a fresh plot and the twists work.I highly recommend this book. It deserves more than five stars.
While it doesn’t have any characters as interesting as Kvothe or Locke Lamora, The Last Goddess is still a good, fun read. Lost magical arts, secret societies, imperial politics, mystery woman, there is a lot happening in the book, but the pacing is well done so the reader is never overwhelmed.Definitely worth the 5 dollars for the Kindle version. A great first effort from a new author. Looking forward to the next book to resolve some of the lingering questions.
I enjoyed this book.The story concerns a group of comrades embarked on a bit of a quest (although they wouldn’t call it that): A somewhat jaded (but secretly idealistic) not-quite crooked but not-quite legit operator within the seams of society, a mercenary-type guy who acts rough and tough but who would die for his friends (not that he would admit it), a female warrior (who is really a chanteuse at heart), an idealistic monk (who is destined to have all his of beliefs crushed), and a female goddess (who may not be a goddess, or may be more than a goddess, or may be…well we don’t know what she may be and that search for what she is describes the plot)The characters are unique as is the world within which they operate. The story is moves at a good pace with enough plot twists to keep the book interesting. There’s even a bit of romance to spice it up a bit while not being overwhelming…it isn’t chick-lit.I’ll buy the sequel.
This is the first book in a great series. At first it was a little hard to follow, but I’m glad I stuck it out because it all came together and is very interesting – and I loved the 2nd book so really excited about this series.
This was a delightful fantasy read. The characters are well drawn and interact well and they find themselves in quite a pickle right from the git-go.I have to say, this kind of story is my favorite. Unique, fantastical, unlimited by anything but the reaches to which the imagination can aspire. The author has done a really good job of writing and I enjoyed this book very much.
I really enjoyed the book overall. The characters were okay, but a few of them (particularly the prince) lack any sense of depth. The story provided just enough foreshadowing to shed light on what was to come without ruining the adventure. I plan on buying the next book in the series tonight.
I got hooked from page one and whole heartedly agree with the praises from other reviewers. I add only two things. The first, is that Stalbaum included an appendix (page 673) to help a reader during the first few chapters to envision Esharia: its nations, the political and religious structures, and who’s who. The second, is that The Shattered Messiah Trilogy predates the Eve Chronicles by 400 years. Excellent read!
This book is very good for many ages. I loved the way the characters change though the story. There is alot of twist in the story and i think a lot of surprises. I enjoyed this book a lot and i hope you guys will read it too.
I typically pass by books in this genre, but I grabbed this one at the recommendation of a friend and was hooked in about three chapters.The Last Goddess is well crafted, with an entertaining plot that develops and twists at an enjoyable pace. The melting pot of ideologies at the core of the book is enhanced by the foibles of the characters, a very inviting scenario for any reader.I went into the book with no expectations, and finished with a feeling that my time was well spent.A great effort by C.E. Stalbaum, and I look forward to reading more of his work.