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Tashue’ works as a Regulation Officer otherwise known as a tinman. He keeps an eye on his tainted charges and reports any suspicious behavior. But as the years go by he begins to doubt the laws he is sworn to uphold. It’s hard to ignore the increasing desperation and oppression the tainted are experiencing. Especially when one is his own son he sent to be locked up in the Rift for refusing to register. When a girls’ mutilated corpse washes up on the shore, it seems no cares but Tashue’. As he begins to dig deeper into the girl’s death he will uncover horrific truths about the treatment of the tainted.
Legacy of the Brightwash is a gritty tale told through multiple character points of view. The world is a bleak place for those who are tainted with supernatural abilities. They must register or else be locked up in the Rift. And those who end up in the Rift rarely leave it alive. What do the guards care if the tainted beat each other to death? But even registered the tainted live in poverty, forced to perform jobs that fit the abilities they have.
While there is an underlying murder mystery, politics and romance take the lead in this story. Tashue’ finds himself wrapped up in the political games of the society’s elite, where they see no wrong in oppressing the tainted. To them, they feel as if it is their duty to label them and put the tainted to use for society’s well being. Already doubting the authority and laws, watching the rich squander and talk about the tainted as if they were animals makes Tashue’ question all he has done as a tinman.
The world is built so well, the writing so intricate with descriptions and eliciting emotions, but I do wish more of the story was tied to the girl’s murder. There is a heavy focus on Tashue’s romantic interest and physical attraction to other characters. Being in such a bleak setting the romance born from desperation and loneliness worked, but it wasn’t what initially drew me to the book.
However, that being said, Krystle Matar is an amazing writer. Her words flow across the page and paint such a vivid and dark world for the characters to inhabit. The story will pull from you so many emotions and leave them to linger long after you’ve closed the pages.
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