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Titans of Chaos    by John C. Wright order for
Titans of Chaos
by John C. Wright
Order:  USA  Can
Tor, 2007 (2007)

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* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Titans of Chaos follows Orphans of Chaos and Fugitives of Chaos in an (often distractingly) erudite fantasy series about five superhuman hostages in the struggle between Cosmos and Chaos. They were taken from their families as monster cubs, transformed into human children, and raised in an isolated British boarding school under headmaster Boggin, by what seem on the surface to be adult humans, but are actually mythological creatures (mainly Olympians), whose own powers counterbalance those of the children they guard.

The five (each from a different paradigm of Chaos) grew up, attempted escape more than once, were influenced by their enforced humanity, and bonded closely. As the second book began, they worked to regain the memories that had been wiped, succeeded in an escape attempt, enjoyed cruise ship luxury, and survived the inevitable attacks by their enemies. Amelia, who narrates throughout, is often picked to lead the group, sees in multiple dimensions, and has a crush on Victor who can manipulate his surroundings at the molecular level. The others are Vanity (a Phaeacian princess who can summon a magical ship and change their surroundings by thought alone), Colin whose passions empower him, and Quentin who practices thaumaturgy. Their ongoing teen badinage is, IMHO, the best part of these books.

This conclusion to the trilogy continues with the quintet fending off attacks from different factions of their enemies, knowing that the Olympians have them on a long leash, and concerned to avoid a final war between Cosmos and Chaos that would destroy humanity as collateral damage. In between battles and bargains with the bad guys, they visit San Francisco and LA. They retreat to an isolated island where they work to refine their weapons and understand better how to perform effectively as a group and to complement each other's powers. Oh, and they also take a trip to Mars - and finally win their freedom.

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