At the dawn of The Liberation, the final entry in Ian Tregillis’ Alchemy Wars series, things aren’t looking good for humanity. The mechanical now calling himself Daniel, has freed his fellow Clakkers, and the French are still (barely) holding on against all odds, but the war is far from won. When the mad metal dictator Queen Mab gains the secrets to mechanical Free Will, she sets her sights on slaughtering her makers. As the fight moves back across the pond to continental Europe, the war pits meat versus machine, humans against humans, mechanicals against mechanicals.
The survival of the “good guys” depends upon collaboration and cooperation between former slaves, enslavers, and the enemy of their mutual enemy. One faction of rogue Clakkers want to crush all humans, another prefers a more libertarian ideal of humans and machines living separate but equal. The humans are just as split, with the Dutch hoping to reimpose their rule over Clakkers and humankind and the French wanting to free humans and Clakkers alike. But neither group has pure motivations and as conflicts arise, suspicions and bigotry threaten what little hope for victory there is. The Liberation is part philosophical debate over human nature and choice, part contemplation on colonialism and slavery, and part action-y alternate history. It brings the trilogy to a raucous, blood-soaked end where no one gets everything they want, but everyone gets exactly what they deserve.