Genres: Fantasy, Contemporary or Urban Fantasy, Queer Protagonists
Representation: Asexual MC, achillean MC, Native American MC, queernorm culture, background M/M
PoV: Third-person, past-tense, multiple PoVs
Published on: 28th February 2023
In the epic conclusion to K.D. Edwards' first blockbuster trilogy in The Tarot Sequence series, readers followed Rune on a race against time as an age-old threat rose to threaten the city of New Atlantis. Now, for the first time, The Eidolon tells what really happened to Max, Quinn, and Anna as prisoners in the Hourglass Throne's base of operation.
The Eidolon is the first in a brand-new collection of novels and novellas in the Magnus Academy Series. These stories will be told through the various points of view of Rune's found family, ultimately leading to a planned arc of novels set at the new Magnus Academy. The book was printed in partnership with Rainbow Crate, the world's largest queer subscription box service, which produced a limited-edition hardcover. There will also be an Audible version, along with a self-published eBook.
I received this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
~all the found-family feels
~it’s not enough to not be bad
~the kids are all right
~only the very foolish fuck with fools
*spoilers for The Hourglass Throne!*
My review of The Hourglass Throne
I highly doubt I was the only Tarot Sequence fan who was distressed to hear that Edwards had to cut a ton of plot related to our favorite kids from Hourglass Throne. But it all turned out for the best, because that cut content grew into what became The Eidolon, which means that instead of being just one thread of a novel focused on the adult characters, Quinn, Max and Anna ended up getting their very own book!
Which is the start of its own spin-off series. THEY GOT THEIR OWN SERIES, FOLX! THE SQUEE IS REAL!
And – while I have absolutely zero objection to indulgent, wish-fulfillment fanservice! – I am here to assure you that The Eidolon is not, in fact, simply indulgent, wish-fulfilment fanservice. While it’s definitely not necessary for any Tarot Sequence fan to read The Eidolon – as promised, Edwards has very carefully made sure both series work as standalones from each other – it adds a wealth of nuance, detail and depth to the events of The Hourglass Throne, and lays the foundations for an enormous amount of forthcoming adventures, trials, and general bombshells in future books (of both series).
To say nothing of the bombshells dropped in this book.
AND HAD MANY GOOSEBUMPS.
K.D. EDWARDS SIR, HOW DARE YOU!
In brief: The Eidolon covers the time Quinn and Max, and then Anna, spent as captives of Lady Time in The Hourglass Throne, and it is every bit as epic as we could have wished for. Calling them ‘fan favorites’ implies there is any member of the cast who is not a fave, and I’m pretty sure the fandom will back me when I say that’s not the case, but it is true that Max, Quinn and Anna are especially beloved, and The Eidolon serves as an excellent Exhibit A in the case for THIS IS WHY. These kids are amazing, and it’s impossible not to feel so damn PROUD of them as we see how they handle themselves without adult protection, in a very dangerous situation. Yes, they’ve been well-trained by Rune, Brand, Addam, and Corrinne, but they’re also intrinsically good, smart, brave kids who love and protect each other unhesitatingly and unflinchingly. Getting to spend more time with them is a JOY.
“I just made my first bad choice!”
“Not even this hour, Quinn,” Max said.
The deep-dive in to each of their heads – in third-person, not first-, which I think was the right call here – is both genuinely fun, and proof that they are not ‘just’ secondary characters in someone else’s story; they’re fully developed and more than capable of carrying their own novel. They exist as separate
people constructs from Rune, and that independence from the main character and main storyline is not something a lot of authors can pull off.
Don’t Arcana ever just try therapy?”
And more than anything we’ve seen yet, The Eidolon makes it clear that Quinn, Max and Anna are only going to become more and more important to the overarching story Edwards is telling. We’ve seen them growing into themselves, sure – but this book will give you chills as you get glimpses of what exactly they’re all growing up to be. What they will be, when they finish growing.
These three will be mythic.
“That’s good,” Max said. “Because if you were doing more than talking to him, I’d name every bone in your body as I broke it.
If spending more time with Quinn and Max and Anna wasn’t incentive enough for you, The Eidolon provides important insight into the workings of New Atlantis, expanding on the brief looks we’ve had in the Sequence. Rune, Brand and Addam have always been passing through when they encounter the misfits of their society, but Quinn, Max and Anna spend a good chunk of time in this book among people Scions would normally never even see, never mind interact with. It’s both worldbuilding and foreshadowing, as well as helping to explain how Lady Time managed to gather the support she did in Hourglass.
Speaking of Lady Time, she feels so much more developed in The Eidolon than she did in Hourglass – we see so much more of her that that’s not really a surprise, but I was surprised at how much my feelings about her changed after this book. I went from thinking of her as terrifying to feeling…wary contempt, is the best way I can think of to put it. Is she dangerous? Yes. But there’s a huge difference between an enemy who is more intelligent than you are…and one who isn’t smart enough to see how their arrogance blinds them.
Which is interesting, but what made the bottom drop out of my stomach was realising what reframing her like this meant, in terms of the greater story. We know from the Sequence that Rune and his family have other, longer-term enemies to eventually deal with, but Hourglass portrayed Lady Time as a great and terrifying threat. And she is! But if you’re paying attention (and seriously, are any of us fans not going over every line with a magnifying glass, at this point??? You should see my
conspiracy theory board) Eidolon kind of…zooms out a little (by zooming in, and yes, I know that sounds contradictory, read it and you’ll see what I mean!) to show us just how small Lady Time actually is. In terms of the bigger picture, she is pathetic. She is nothing.
…Hi, that is utterly terrifying. If she is small, what in the RIVER’S NAME does that say about the behind-the-scenes enemies we haven’t seen unmasked yet?!
And I know I’ve said this already, but dear GODS, the number (and nature!) of the bombshells we get in this book!!! About the worldbuilding, about the Arcana, about our favourite kids, about things I cannot mention because SPOILERS…!!! I have yet to speak to anyone who didn’t completely lose it over Eidolon‘s two epilogues!
BECAUSE. YOU KNOW. ONE HEART ATTACK WAS NOT ENOUGH, OBVIOUSLY!
*shakes fist at KD*
“I haven’t forgotten you, you stupid first-act gun,” Max murmured to [REDACTED].
In conclusion? I don’t consider The Eidolon missable for any Tarot Sequence fan. You absolutely should not start here, but The Eidolon fits together with The Hourglass Throne like yin with yang; they’re both excellent by themselves, but together they interlock to form something impossibly great. We are all so much richer for it!
“I love you all. I have lived lifetimes with you in my head. They were good lives.”
One meaning of ‘eidolon’ is ‘an idealised person or thing’, and I am here to tell you that The Eidolon is perfectly named; it is ideal in every possible way. It made me laugh and gasp and shriek, it had me taking SO MANY NOTES for my theory board, it gave me TWO SEPARATE HEART ATTACKS, and it made me feel incredibly loved (especially the inclusion of one particular Easter egg <3). It made me RABID for the next book, and I adored every word of it!
These kids are going to be legends, and this is their story.
The Eidolon is available as an ebook and audiobook this coming Tuesday. Don’t miss it!
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