Otoro Queril: Saeire Insu Executioner

Rated 5.00/5 based on 1 reviews
The long-awaited follow-up to Melody and the Pier to Forever: Book Two is here! In this companion novel we meet an unlikely hero for the Saeire Insu: an executioner named Otoro Queril. His grim task is to kill those unfortunate souls singled out from the other condemned, who face a far worse fate in the icy soul-sucking clutches of Necrolius Anaxagorius.

He's a hero? Yes.


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About Shawn Michel de Montaigne

I'm a writer, illustrator, and fractalist. A wonderer, wanderer, and an unapologetic introvert. I'm a romantic; I'm inspired by the epic, the authentic, the numinous, and the luminous. Most of all, I'm blessed.

I'm very deeply involved with an extraordinary, beautiful woman who has been with me now for a decade. We have forged, through awful times and amazing ones, a life that I feel every morning is worth waking up to and contributing to.

I'm interested in connecting with folks who enjoy my art and would like to be part of whichever world or worlds I've discovered and shared. I'm deeply political, philosophical, and opinionated; and I have no patience with manipulators, salespersons, stalkers, bullshit artists, and the psychotic and insane. For that reason, I'm not everyone's cup o' tea. I'm good with that.

Most of all, as I said at the beginning, I'm blessed. If you would know anything about me or my attitude as I go through my days, that's the truest and most relevant one.

About the Series: Melody and the Pier to Forever
The Pier goes on ... forever

Also in Series: Melody and the Pier to Forever

Also by This Author


Review by: KJH Cardinalis on April 10, 2016 :
If you have read Melody and the Pier to Forever, Book 1 (if you haven’t, what are you waiting for?), you will recall the massive cliffhanger at the end. In the Epilogue, we get our first real look at the evil empire that Necrolius Anaxagorius has created. We find out that Necrolius is having people shipped in from all over Aquanus so that he can consume their souls and consign them to an everlasting hell.

On the docks, there are executioners making examples of those who fall out of line. Reading the epilogue, I couldn’t help but think that their victims were the lucky ones. They were able to move on. They were saved from a fate worse than death. Death is not the enemy.

… Not a very popular opinion.

And that’s where Otoro Queril comes in. This book follows the story of a man assigned in secret by Conor Kieran to those very chopping blocks. Every day, he executes hundreds of innocent men, women and children as an act of mercy. He does it to save them from being devoured by a monster that will enslave their souls.

Like Melody’s other side-story, Sole Survivor: The Story of Kaza of Theseus, this is a grim, bleak book which delves into the horrors of a fascist regime and doesn’t attempt to spare the reader’s sensibilities. There is a lot here which hearkens to the death camps of Nazi Germany. But whereas Kaza dealt with the initial shock of fresh trauma, this story visits characters who have been so long submerged in it that they’ve passed into a completely different mindset. There is significantly less internal monologue here than there is in Kaza or Montaigne’s other works. This bleakness is a reflection of the inner numbness that sometimes arises in the wake of long-standing trauma. The characters in this story never accept the world around them or the direness of their lives, but they have adapted. This is a challenging mindset that is not often explored in fantasy.

The other standout aspect of this book for me is the exploration of the ultra-thin line between evil and benevolence. On the surface, Otoro’s days are spent engaged in the exact same malevolent actions as his fellow executioners. But because his intent is compassionate, he transmutes cruelty into mercy. He actually injects holiness into unholy acts. Actions like these on some level redeem a world where evil is possible, because forms of holiness such as these could not exist in a universe that is all goodness.

When you live in a world that’s rife with darkness and violence (like Otoro’s, and like ours), it is hard to find hope in something that is only gentleness and light. The mind rejects it, because it doesn’t believe it can be real—and even if it is, it lacks the force and commitment to combat evil—which uses every tactic to its advantage. For this reason I believe that hope in a frightening world must itself be frightening.

And that’s Otoro Queril. And that’s why I love this book.

If you do decide to read it, I highly recommend you read the other books in the series first! Otoro Queril: Saeire Insu Executioner is a side-story to Melody and the Pier to Forever. Read Melody and the Pier to Forever books 1 and 2, and also read Sole Survivor: The Story of Kaza of Theseus. You could read Otoro as a standalone, but you’d be pretty lost. The other books give you the context you need!
(reviewed 12 days after purchase)
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