It's the Buc and Eld show

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Here we have a rip roaring adventure tale, set maybe on this planet centuries in the future or on another planet entirely. I tend to lean toward the first, but it doesn't make much difference to the story. We are presented with two teenagers, one a military veteran and the other a super smart "street rat". The young man Eld was a soldier for a while. After he left, he met Buc, and they have been together as friends ever since.
Before we go any further, I liked this story. It was filled with with all kinds of action. There are Gods. There are Mages who are connected to a particular God for their power. There are pirates. Who doesn't love pirates? There are walking, fighting corpses which are not zombies. I really got into it.
I do have a couple of things that pulled me out of the story. The ages of the main characters were a problem for me. Keeping Buc at 17 makes it easier to call this a YA book. Making Eld 19 presents even more problems.
Buc gets to go first. She takes drugs to "slow her mind down". Okay, she has a bad case of ADHD and had discovered a way to self-medicate. This is a good thing for her. She doesn't abuse the drug she takes. She is 14 when she first meets Eld. They form a fast friendship and have many adventures. Plus he teaches her how to read. She had been living on the streets, meaning she lies, steals, uses whatever comes to hand to survive. She is not an innocent. She should be in her early 20's, at least 4 to 5 years older than listed. By the way, most people who have read the number of books Buc is credited with reading after the age of 14 have taken more than 3 years to do it, especially when they are also earning a living and solving mysteries like Buc is reported to have done.
Now we come to Eld. How do you even say that combination of letters? It's actually worse when you learn in his full first name, the l and the d are in different syllables. That is minor, though, when I consider his age. He is supposed to be 19. Originally, he was older, but that made the age difference noticeable and upset some readers. This means he met Buc when he was 16. It's possible, but Eld is a younger son of an important, possible noble, family. He is a veteran. He lead men fighting in military action. Anybody but me getting the idea of child soldiers? Ignore that. Based on what I remember of medieval noble families, sons started learning to be squires between 10 and 12. They didn't actually gain that rank for 2 to 4 years. Maybe a fast learner in a liberal family would be ready to be a junior knight by the time he was 17. Even then, he would not be leading troops into battle. He would have had a senior officer with him. And we have Eld as having done all that and "retired" from it by the time he's 16. Eld is too young.
Other than that, the world building is imaginative. The Gods are interesting as they could be aliens or super computer AIs. There might be some kind of genetic modification done to Mages, considering the ability of some to regenerate. I guess we'll find out which when The Artifact is found.
Which bring us to what this adventure story is all about. This is a quest and The Artifact is the prize. We are not told any more about it than it is something the Gods are looking for. They do not know where it is. They are counting on their Mages to find it. That is where Buc and Eld come in, although they don't know finding The Artifact is What they were really hired to do. They have their own plans, somehow involving changing the economic structure of their world. I look forward to the next book in the series.