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War and Craft: American Craft #3    by Tom Doyle order for
War and Craft
by Tom Doyle
Order:  USA  Can
Tor, 2017 (2017)
Hardcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Tom Doyle's War and Craft follows American Craftsmen and The Left-Hand Way to complete his American Craft trilogy, whose stories are a cross between urban fantasy and action packed Special Forces thrillers. Unfortunately I missed the second episode and do recommend reading them in order.

Dale Morton is from a pagan family, whose members have worked magic for the military, from Washington's army on. Michael Endicott's family are Puritans who have always loathed the Mortons, especially after the Left-Hand Morton branch went seriously to the dark side. In the first episode, a Persian sorceror's curse left Dale susceptible to the Left-Hand voice that he had fought his entire life. That story also introduced powerful exorcist Scherezade 'Scherie' Rezvani.

As War and Craft opens, Dale, Scherie (pregnant with Dale's child), and Michael are AWOL in Tokyo for the latter's wedding to Grace Marlowe, whose talents include combat of all kind. The foursome became close in The Left-Hand Way and Scherie gained a powerful guardian ghost in Madeline Morton (from the Left-Hand branch of the family). As anticipated, the celebration culminates in attempts to assassinate wedding party members, after which they flee to India.

Scherie is concerned about Madeline, who went missing in action in Tokyo (if a ghost can go MIA). Encouraged by the others (who want to keep her and her child to come out of danger) she and a very special dog fly to the Vatican for research. The others finish their preparations to enter the World Sanctuary, and head there without Scherie. But they won't be able to keep her out of danger as she soon follows them, with three enraged Furies hot on her heels.

Can this skilled foursome stop Armageddon? The story builds to an explosive conclusion in which an old nemesis - and an unborn child - play key roles. I have to say that Scherie was my favorite character at the beginning, and remains so at the end, along with feisty, foul-mouthed Madeline, who wins just a little redemption here.

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