A very different beast to the other Riverside novels, this has plenty to recommend it (prose, characters, world building) but is much harder to read (and to like). My favourite characters are peripheral, and while I developed a sort of horrified empathy for Theron, it was difficult to maintain at times.
Overall, I think this suffers from being over-long - and for going exactly where you expect it to - like a slow motion car crash. That said, I also think this is a book that will improve on re-reading, as there's nuance and pathos that will only be apparent when approached with foreknowledge (and a lack of expectations. This is a hard landing read straight after The Privilege of the Sword).Full review