I nearly gave this book 3 stars, but the last half drew its rating back to 4.
The thread that carries the story is made of steel, though the material surrounding the thread felt weak and flawed. The pace was off in the first half of the book – it took me all week to slog through it. The writing felt bland. Like the author was desperate to toss so much into the book that she lost her lyrical energy. But! Near the end her lovely narrative reappeared. The strength regained its footing. I devoured the second half in one night.
The Blood Shrike, who was my least favourite character in the other two books, was my favourite in this book. She felt the most consistent. Laia…I did not like Laia this time around. I didn’t like how she was constantly going against everyone’s advice. Sure, she’s independent and on a destined path. But UGH. Heroines who are constantly getting themselves into trouble because they ignore those around them PISS ME OFF. Her strength and determination near the end redeemed her, thankfully.
I’m also slightly disappointed with Keris. She is such an intriguing character. Polished and so dynamically malicious. But seriously..spoilers her ultimate goal is world domination? Is she going to have an evil laugh all flinch to hear in the next book? The Nightbringer is an excellent antagonist. Keris WAS until she was given such a tropey goal. It doesn’t fit her.
And Elias. Oh, Elias. For the most part, I really enjoyed his chapters. Learning more about the magic of the world and the history of the jinn was great. But everytime he ignored the very clear warning bells and kept making the same mistakes over and over…I wanted to throttle him. My heart does ache for him and Laia.
I’ll get to the last book eventually. I’m suffering from series exhaustion, which could be part of the reason why it was a bit tough for me to give this book a 4 star rating.