REVIEW: Holy Sister by Mark Lawrence

Readers and writers often describe novels as being character driven or plot driven. If there is such a thing, then Holy Sister, the third volume in Mark Lawrence’s Book of the Ancestor trilogy, is setting driven. The problem that drives the story’s conflict, as revealed in the earlier volumes as well, is that the focus moon is no longer able to hold back planet Abeth’s ice crust from closing in on the Corridor of habitable land that it keeps warm. People living near the encroaching miles-high ice walls are losing land and are forced to migrate into other people’s land, which causes the main conflict of the story, war. On the surface it sounds simple, but Lawrence’s extremely creative, dense world-building and his attention to the most minute details make Holy Sister a tour-de-force of speculative fiction writing.