Last First Snow

Tor. (Craft Sequence, Bk. 4). Jul. 2015. 384p. ISBN 9780765379405. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466868403. FANTASY
The God wars are over, and now Craftsmen rule over the city-state of Dresediel Lex. Lawyer Elayne Kevarian is brought in on a contract dispute between the Red King, ruler of the city, and Tan Batac, a businessman seeking permission to redevelop the slum called Skittersill. Elayne believes she has a fair deal worked out, but a judge orders her back to the Skittersill to include the residents in the negotiations. The Skittersill might be a slum, but it houses thousands of people who want to fight for their homes. They choose as their negotiator Temoc Almotil, a priest of the old gods.
VERDICT This latest series entry (after Full Fathom Five) serves as a prequel and takes place before Three Parts Dead. A bizarrely triumphant blending of lawyers with gods, magic, and faith, Gladstone's book transfixes modern socioeconomic issues such as gentrification but never neglects the magic in his worlds.[See Prepub Alert, 2/2/15.]
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