The blurb of this book calls this the ‘explosive finale’, but I have to admit, unfortunately I think this was my least favourite of the trilogy. The first two books were really fast paced and I felt compelled to keep reading, but I felt like this one was just slower and not quite as gripping.
And to be honest, the ending left me feeling quite disappointed. I’m not sure if I just didn’t ‘get it’, but it felt like the conclusion happened really quickly and without much explanation and then the book ended. I guess it was more political than the usual big climax that a YA book like this would get and it just wasn’t what I expected, I just kept waiting for the fight.
BUT, I did enjoy finishing Leora’s story. Leora has experienced life as marked and blank and learnt the traditions and histories of both, and she now has the monumental task of trying to reunite them before Jack Minnow can destroy them both.
After spending much of book two in Featherstone, we spend most of this book back in Sainstone, and Leora finds herself reunited with her mum, which I thought was great after their relationship fractured when the truth of her father came out.
“There is much that I do not know, Leora Flint, I admit that. The beginning of wisdom is realising just that – that there is so much more to the world than you can ever know or understand.”
Like the first books in the trilogy, this book again presents interesting perspectives on understanding other people and not taking your own history for granted as being the truth.
I don’t think we need to fight about whose story is the truest; I don’t think the existence of my story blots out the need for yours. I think that both stories together give us a new truth – a better, messier truth.
One of the things I loved about the first two books were the flawed but loveable side-characters like Obel, Oscar and Gull. And the fact that we didn’t hear as much from them in this book took the shine off for me, especially considering who took their place in the pages – Jack Minnow and Mayor Longsight, both of whom were detestable people.
I also found this quote pretty relevant after everything that is going on in America at the moment:
“Oh, you weren’t holding the knife – but if you watch and do not shout ‘Stop’, you are sanctioning everything you see.”
Overall, I’m glad I read this book to finish off the trilogy, but it was quite short and I kind of feel like the author could have made the first two books a bit longer and just had a series of two.
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