The final chapter. We’re almost done guys. Well, there’s an epilogue. It’s not really labeled as an epilogue, but the chapters aren’t labeled or numbered as chapters either; I added the numbers to make it easier. Every section is divided by labeling where it takes place.
Speaking of which, where the bloody helicopter are we now?
M5 Highway, Siberian Steppes, Russia
Remember when I said things are going to get vague? I wasn’t kidding. It’s a short chapter, and I think through my quoting you’ll end up seeing all of it, so you’ll get an idea of what I’m talking about. So buckle up kids, it’s going to be a wild ride.
But I’m not going to lie, the first few sentences here aren’t bad.
Bruno clung to the door. Yana drove fast and erratic, the tires sliding as she sped through the tundra. Each bump was torture. Glancing out the window, Bruno could see that the world had begun to change.
It’s not brilliant, but it looks like decent writing to me. We’ve got suspense, we’ve got action, we’ve got emotion…it’s things like this that make me think Trussoni isn’t an awful writer. It’s as if she rushed this book out. If she had written everything else the way this opening was written, I don’t know if I’d be doing this sporking.
But then we get the next couple of sentences.
The sky turned ashy, and then blood-red. They drove past villagers staring up at the heavens; they passed herds of goats struck dead, the bodies lying in the snow; they passed streams of water flowing with blood; they passed the decimated, charred trunks of burned trees. Increasing her speed, Yana careened along the road, sliding ever more dangerously close to the sheer icy edge.
Guys, what is going on? Who is doing the killing? Why? How? Are all the escapees from the Panopticon murderizing everyone they come cross? Why? What does it achieve? How did they kill all these people? The blood thing makes me think manually, but… once again, what does that achieve? How did they burn down trees so quickly?
What the eff is happening?!?
A flock of Watchers broke from the crust of the earth, lifting into the sky like crazed birds.
Oh, okay, so it’s not the Nephilim. It’s the Watchers that Valko insisted that they break out who then killed him. That makes more sense.
Actually wait a sec no it doesn’t. The escaped Nephilim would arguably kill all these people after being released because they were driven crazy from torture or something. The Watchers… well, why are they here? I understand them being crazy after being freed from millennia-long imprisonment, but why would they go to Siberia? They don’t know jack about the Panopticon. Maybe they followed Lucien, but then… isn’t Lucien a good guy? Or not? I don’t know; it’s not clear. And why would they kill all these people? They have no reason to! That was never their M.O. to begin with! What do the goats have to do with anything? Why would the Watchers kill all the goats they came across?
What the heck does “broke from the crust of the Earth” (because “Earth” should be capitalized, D’Arvit!) mean? Were the Watchers underground? Why? What were they doing there? Did they tunnel to Siberia from Bulgaria?
Or am I getting this all wrong? Are the Watchers just taking off from the ground? If so, then why say they “broke from the crust of the Earth” when you can just say something that doesn’t sound like they’re popping out of the dirt like gophers?
Lightning coursed above, cracking through the ionized atmosphere, alighting upon the craggy mountain peak ahead of them. The earth appeared to tip upon its axis and a nexus of stars fell overhead, glowing with a strange, bright fervor. The moon grew large and purple. Rain fell, hissing upon them, staining the snow black. The fallen angels were rebelling. The battle had begun.
[jumping up and down at every word] What! The! Heckamajigger! Is! Happening!
(Aside from Trussoni still not capitalizing the word “Earth.” Or “Moon.”)
Seriously, what? Can angels change the weather? I didn’t think so. The books haven’t mentioned anything of the sort before this. And the Moon’s change in color? What’s that about? Why is the rain turning snow black? What the wiggly chickens is going on with the Earth’s axis? And the stars? Dear God in Heaven, the stars are falling! What’s up with that? How are they doing that? What does that mean? Why am I in a Starfleet uniform?!
WHAT THE HELL
And what’s really weird? This… book wasn’t written in the year it takes place in. It takes place in 2010. So… I’m a bit weirded out, because this doesn’t add up. Why would Trussoni have all these apocalyptic things happen in 2010 when they… didn’t. If it was set in an unspecified time, or in the vague ‘present day,’ like in Supernatural or something, I’d leave it, but… it just feels off.
Also… archangels? According to the last book, they dealt with this situation pretty handily by locking up the Watchers. Now the Watchers are actually destroying the world and murderizing every man, woman and goat they come across. Isn’t it the job of the archangels, or the Big Man Upstairs, or something, to give some kind of a response? No? Not even a memo to the unsuspecting peoples of the planet? Because this isn’t the foretold apocalypse of Revelation, for which we all arguably got prior warning on. It’s just your run-of-the-mill urban fantasy apocalypse caused because some dickweed thought it was a great idea to let out the gang of guys who rebelled against the King of the Universe!
Yana pulled over.
It’s apocalypse NOW! The landscape is being overrun by murderous killer angels pouring a reign of fire all over this winter wonderland! Why would you stop?!
At the roadside Verlaine packed snow into his hands returned to Bruno. The snow formed hard, wet packs. Bruno felt the delicious cold against his singed body as Verlaine held the melting ice to his skin, pressing it lightly against his cheek. The cold gave him some relief. Bruno realizing that he was shivering, whether because of the cold or the pain or the terrible fear that was growing inside of him, he could not tell.
Oh right, because Bruno’s burned. Last chapter mentioned he was injured, but you’d think they’d grab the snow and keep going as fast as possible. It’s not a bad paragraph, but it just seems out of place for them to pull over and do this when they’re trying to escape a flying death horde burninating the countryside. It ruins the momentum of the scene.
The chapter’s been like: “RUN RUN DEATH BLOOD BLOOD DEATH BLOOD oh and stop and get some ice for that burn.”
Wait, weren’t they all running around a nuclear reactor? And it went off? I don’t quite know how this all works, but I thought they’d be exposed to a ton of radioactivity or something?
Somewhere in that sizzling hole in Chelyabinsk lay the man who had started all of this.
Look, I know you’re talking about Merlin Godwin, and he’s a douchebag, I get that…but he didn’t start the apocalypse. Valko did that by letting the Watchers out of their cage. He’s dead too though, burned like one of Molly Carpenter’s homemade dinners. I suppose we can place some of the blame on Godwin, or we can be logical and blame the leadership of the Angelologit Society for letting Godwin live when he was clearly a threat for the past twenty years!
Bruno closed his eyes, trying to forget what he’d seen.
I’m also trying as hard as I can to forget this monstrosity of a novel.
Of all the horrors of that day—the Nephilim breaking free of their cages, the Watchers bearing down upon them from above, the explosions thundering through the underground prison—nothing compared with the terrible end Merlin Godwin had met at the hands of Eno.
Hey yo, question here: how did Azov explain to Bruno that Valko decided to let the Watchers out of their cage? Because that’s kind of a biggie. I’m just curious.
Anyhow, I don’t understand how Watchers swooping down and apparently killing/burning everything in sight and painting the landscape with blood is somehow not as bad as the way Merlin Godwin, a self-professed chuckmuffin, died.
Hang on—why would Eno kill Godwin? Wasn’t she working for him? I suppose she was working for the twins, who were working with Godwin, but… they’re still allies, right? There isn’t any reason for Eno to kill Godwin.
Oh, who am I kidding? None of this adds up. I need to stop pretending that there should be some logic behind the characters’ actions.
Bruno had watched it all from a distance—the way Eno rose up like a cobra behind Godwin, curling her black wings around his body until Bruno saw nothing but a stream of blood falling over the floor. When she’d finished she left Godwin’s mangled remains among the ruins of the laboratory. What disturbed Bruno most of all was the fact that the surveillance reports had been wrong—Eno didn’t keep the trophies of her kills. When she’d finished with Godwin, she turned to Bruno, her lips red with blood, and he understood the true horror of what she did to her male victims. Bruno knew that Godwin’s fate could have been his own.
Um… well on the bright side I get to use this again?
Seriously, what the fuck Trussoni? You threw away any notion that I should take this book seriously a long time ago, but this? This is certifiably insane. You literally had one villain eat another villain’s penis in your book.
I can’t believe I just said that.
I just… what?! What am I supposed to make of this? Here, at the end of all things Angelopolis I get to this obscene piece of insanity right before the conclusion! What is this?! What am I supposed to say about this? Why are there people who like this book? Look, if you ever come across a positive review of this novel online, please… just type ‘ENO EATS GODWIN’S PENIS’ in the comments or something because that’s proof enough that this book is a piece of garbage. I feel obscene writing that, but… that’s a thing that happens in the book, so apparently that’s a thing that can be mentioned in serious critical discussions of it.
Without using any foul language or euphemisms: a character in this book eats a penis. That’s what we’ve gotten to guys.
Alright, now that I’ve thoroughly processed this as much as I can… I still have to ask: what? Because once again, it’s an element that doesn’t make any sense. Why did Eno start eating her victims’ penises? That’s not a common thing, in-universe or out, so it’s not like she’s copying some sort of ancient Emim tradition or anything. It doesn’t accomplish anything. I suppose it’s demeaning, but… so is decapitation. Or the usual castration. This just screams of another amateur author desperately trying to shock the reader with something so out there, without there being any in-character justification for it.
Authors and artists out there: shock value =/= value. Evoking a reaction doesn’t make your work good. Just because I’m appalled, it doesn’t mean you’re a good author or artist. You’d be appalled if I cosplayed as Hitler in a synagogue, but that wouldn’t make me a daring artist, it’d make me an asshole.
Anyway, after Bruno remembers the… sausage feast…I think they all get in the car and keep driving. It doesn’t say that, it just says that they’re driving now.
As they drove onward, Bruno tried to make a division between the pain he felt burning through his body and the clear, direct movements of his thoughts. Despite the agony, he must remain sharp; he must keep his mind directed on the future. The real battle would be coming. If they made it out of Siberia alive—and, with Yana at the wheel, their chances were strong—the fight would be at its beginning. The greatest difficulties lay ahead. Soon there would be nowhere to hide.
Bruno, you’re not sharp. You haven’t been sharp this entire time. If the cast was a box of pencils, you’d be broken and useless. You’re the one who walked into Angela Valko’s collection of stuff and refused to believe that it had anything to do with her. You’re not just the village idiot, you’re like the standard by which they choose village idiots. You’ve got the IQ of a rock living under a rock. Charles Darwin would give up his theory of natural selection upon meeting you because by it there is no reason you should have lived this long. If a Magikarp threw up, the vomit would still be smarter than you, you stupid shisno!
…I’m sorry, I got a bit carried away.
But… why does he think this battle is going to be so difficult? I mean… Yana knows a charm that can kill all the Gibborim in the room. You can summon archangels to smite bad guys. Yeah, the last book said that summoning an archangel is at the cost of a life, but… c’mon, if the world’s being invaded, someone’s probably willing to make that sacrifice. And when it suits the conversation, the Nephilim are sometimes in decline. There aren’t that many Watchers—it isn’t like there’s enough to take over the world. They’re powerful, yes, but… we’ve got guns and rockets and bombs and shiz.
In short, this whole “Ohes noes we don’t know what to do!” schtick doesn’t work. You have plenty of options.
“You’re going to get us back to St. Petersburg in one piece?” Bruno said to Yana, his voice little more than a whisper.
Yana kept her eyes fixed on the road. “Even if I do,” she said, “what are we going to do then?”
Bruno felt the ice melting against his cheek. The cool liquid fell along the curve of his hand and along his neck. Before Bruno could respond, Verlaine spoke. “We’ll fight them,” he said. “We’ll fight them together, and we’ll win.
The dialogue in this book sucks.
Okay seriously, Yana and Verlaine’s lines aren’t bad, but… Bruno’s question? What? The previous paragraph illustrates he has faith in her driving skills. So why is he asking her about whether or not they’ll make it in this part?
But as far as endings go, this isn’t bad. If the book had ended here, I wouldn’t be that upset. Okay, I would be upset because Eno ate a penis, but Verlaine’s line isn’t a bad one. If it hadn’t been for the vagueness of what’s going on exactly, and the general stupidity throughout the rest of this book, this would be a solid ending. The good guys are on the run, the bad guys seem to have the upper hand, and Verlaine and Evangeline seem to be permanently separated. If I were invested in this story at all, it’s a great cliffhanger.
Sadly though, that’s not it. There’s an epilogue to get to. And the very last line of the epilogue, of the book, will show you precisely how awful this book is. It’s table-flippingly stupid. I almost don’t know if I want to spork it.
But I’ll make it. I told you guys I’d show you, and I keep my promises.
It’s almost over. Hang in there.
1 And ends with ‘astration.’