“My brother failed. I will not.”
They came to earth—Pestilence, War, Famine, Death—four horsemen riding their screaming steeds, racing to the corners of the world. Four horsemen with the power to destroy all of humanity. They came to earth, and they came to end us all.
The day Jerusalem falls, Miriam Elmahdy knows her life is over. Houses are burning, the streets run red with blood, and a traitorous army is massacring every last resident. There is no surviving this, especially not once Miriam catches the eye of War himself. But when the massive and terrifying horseman corners Miriam, he calls her his wife, and instead of killing her, he takes her back to his camp.
Now Miriam faces a terrifying future, one where she watches her world burn town by town, and the one man responsible for it all is her seemingly indestructible “husband”. But there’s another side to him, one that’s gentle and loving and dead set on winning her over, and she might not be strong enough to resist.
However, if there’s one thing Miriam has learned, it’s that love and war cannot coexist. And so she must make the ultimate choice: surrender to War and watch humankind fall, or sacrifice everything and stop him.
Please Note: There is violence, torture, near-death experiences, Stockholm Syndrome and sexual scenes in this book, not suitable for readers under the edge of 18.
Spoilers: Please note that my review will contain spoilers!
It’s year 13 of the horsemen and War is descending on Jerusalem bringing destruction and death to everything and everyone. Miriam knows her life is over but still she fights and that’s what gets War’s attention. After being wounded by Miriam, War chases her and claims her as his wife.
While in his camp, Miriam does her best to prevent more human killing. In every fight Miriam sneaks out and kills as many War’s soldiers as she can without getting caught. In the meanwhile she must find strength to resist War’s attentiveness towards her which she finds really hard to do because she finds him incredibly manly and sexy. She can see in him things no one else can: love and affection.
She uses his affection towards her to try to change his ways but he has his purpose very clear. She tries to ask him why Pestilence failed on his mission but War avoids talking to her about it.
“I am yours and you are mine, Miriam—” I quake at those words. “—but I am not like you, and you should never forget that.”
Unlike Pestilence, War has some human ways because he was made of human emotions, created on the basis of human fighting. He thrives on war and fights.
Soon War must decide if he wants to stay with the human he loves and raise a family or if he will fulfill his duty in exterminating humankind.
In the end of this book, the fourth horseman and most powerful one, Death, appears to present to War, a very important choice he must make in order to save Miriam.
“Why are you doing this?” I ask War. He gives me a smile. “For your soft heart.”
After finishing Pestilence I grabbed War immediately. I must say I enjoyed Pestilence better. The lack of the human factor and emotions pleased me more than this one, because War had many human traits and knew more human ways. I found Pestilence more original. I really struggled to love the character War more than I did with Pestilence. There was some innocence in Pestilence because he did not know anything about the human ways and simply figured it out along his relationship with Sara. War is more ‘conscious’ of humankind which made his actions and his stubbornness more unforgiving to me.
That ending though I absolutely loved.
– Miriam begging War to heal a little boy
– War discovers Miriam’s condition and rethinks his ways towards others
– Miriam sacrificing herself for War
– War pleading for Miriam’s life with his brother
“Your heart is largely an enigma to me. But we shall find out the truth of it soon enough.”
“Stay with me, Miriam.” His hand flexes against my side. “Sleep in my tent. Make your weapons. Argue with me.”
“Four calamities, four chances.” An unwelcome tingle of fear slips down my spine. “Four chances for what?” His eyes fall heavily on me. “Redemption.”
“It’s the power of love that I find beautiful.” It can change so many things— For better, or worse.
“War—” I begin. “Don’t.” One look at his expression, and it’s clear he isn’t fucking around. Agitatedly he begins to remove the rest of his weapons. “God didn’t send me a wife,” he says under his breath. “He sent me my reckoning.”
“You are painfully human. Your bones want to break, your skin wants to bleed, your heart wants to stop. And for the first time ever, I am desperate for none of those things to happen. I have never known true fear until now.”
“All creatures can experience pestilence, famine, and death—but war, true war, that is a singularly human experience.”
“I vowed to you that I would change,” he says. “I’m trying.”
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