This book is set in a post Apocalyptic world where technology has been truncated by some unknown source. This story focuses on the children of the initial survivors featured in the Dies the Fire, the first three books. This book is the 5th of seven in the second series set in this world. Rudi and Mathilda are prominent in this volume but not dominant. Baroness Tiphaine d'Ath, Grand Constable of the PPA is featured throughout the book but many characters from the previous books have their very own chapters in this book.
This book does a lot of flash backs. I can't decide if it would clarify or confuse if you were reading it as a stand alone. Frankly I would not recommend it as a standalone. It is, in many ways, a summation of much that has gone on before due to the flash backs.
The beauty of an ongoing saga is that you can do a flash back and flesh out a minor mention in a previous book until it is several chapters in the current book. This isn't a bad thing if you like reveling in the minutia of the characters, which I do.
Polytheism is a staple throughout the series and some explanation of such is provided in this book. Based on the way the story jumped from one time and location to another, it often felt like a book of short stories. In spite of what may appear to be a critical review, I still liked the book.
I highly recommend the series.
This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.