, January 01, 2013
I finished this book about an hour ago and when I set it down I'm pretty sure my face was about to split from the huge smile on my face. But my heart, my poor heart! It was beating at a wildly erratic rate for the entire last quarter of the book! And since it's nearly 600 pages, that's at least a couple hours of nearly beating right out of my chest. And since I have children I had lots of interruptions, but I just hauled that book around for the ride. I set it down to dump food in a bowl, but picked it up to mix the food together. And so it went for the last quarter of the book. And while the last quarter nearly sent me into heart attack mode, the entire book was so good I nearly cried from the beauty of it. I really love when you read a book and you just want to tell everyone you see that they really must read it. When you're in the line at the grocery store and you want to tap the shoulder of the person in front of you and just randomly tell them that you know this really great book they should read... and while I couldn't hardly put the book down, I did find time to do some gushing on social network sites. But really all I can say is, if you are looking for a series that completely entrances you, that has everything a fantasy should have, read this series. Read it! I have been trying to convince people, but so far not everyone is listening. World, read this freaking series!
I love fantasy, but sometimes there's a series that somehow stands out from others and this is one of those. I read The Demon King last year and immediately continued the series and then had to anxiously await the fourth. It's now out, so you can get the entire series and read it, and trust me, you'll want to read it straight through! I already want to reread it!
Okay, so yes, serious gushing going on... sorry about that. But this series has everything going for it. The characters are thoroughly entrancing and addicting. They are thoroughly fleshed out and they will constantly surprise you. The plot is as twisty as it gets. Don't bother trying to figure it out, you'll never guess how it will play out. The world is everything I want in a fantasy. It's a bit smaller than many fantasy books I've read, being as they can travel places much more quickly, but really, it wasn't at all a negative, just something different (the world, or seven realms is small, not the size of the book, the book is huge). It still has the different and unique places I love. This world has wizards, demonai (like Native Americans) and vale folk (city folk). That's just mentioning those in the Queendom that is the focus, but through the series we see more as they travel. This book is more focused on just their lands though with no far off travel. And the romance, oh the romance! It deserves it's own paragraph...
First off, I want this to be a spoiler free review for the series so I'm not going to give anything away. But I will tell you that the romance is as epic as it gets. These two characters meet obstacle after obstacle. And really, it's not possible for them to ever get together for real. But yet, might it be? Well, you have to read it. But I have to say that all the twists and turns really lead to some surprising discoveries that really change the whole game and how people see things. Two people that are at opposite ends of the social structure (princess vs. street lord) could end up as nearly equals. It is possible. But it takes near death experience (time and time again) and lots of deaths of others to lead to what may become possible. And the entire time all you can do is bite your fingers and hope, hope, hope that somehow things will work out. That they will survive just to be in each others arms again even if it's not forever, even if it's just for one night. They need to survive just to accomplish that one small thing. Okay, I could ramble on and on about this romance. All I can say is EPIC. EPIC. EPIC.
In case you haven't figured it out yet, this book was the perfect conclusion for the series. It had everything I wanted, needed, desired and so, so much more. You'd think that things would finally work out when eek, another wrench is thrown in their plans. It will have your head spinning and your legs trembling. Yep, my legs surely did tremble. And maybe my bottom lip. Just a little.
Added on later: I have to say that some time has passed and I'm still obsessing about this book. I recently heard someone say in a review that they could lay on their bed and literally stare at the ceiling for hours thinking about the book. Well, that's this book. I literally DID stare at the ceiling for hours because I couldn't sleep once I finished it! I just laid there and thought about how much I loved it and everything that went down. I've done some debating and some research, trying to figure out which book is my most favorite this year. I think it's hard to determine because your memory fades a bit so those you've read more recently are the ones you remember. Well, after a lot of thinking I have decided that this book is my number one most favorite book this year. I would say Finnikin of the Rock and Froi of the Exiles is just a bit behind it, and it was a bit hard to determine for sure, but this series, this book in particular, was even better, in my opinion. So that's it, this is the best book of 2012 for me!