Author: Rebecca Ethington
Publisher: Imdalind Press
Length: 374 pages
Source: ARC from the Author
Underneath the deep red barrier Edmund has placed over the city, Prague is in ruins…
Vilỳ hide in the darkened alleys, waiting to attack anyone who passes, while Edmund’s men roam the blood-soaked streets, scouring every crumbling building in a mad attempt to flush out Ilyan and his men.
Among the danger, Ilyan and Joclyn are trapped, unable to leave the city. trying to keep their people safe behind a powerful shield, unseen from Edmund and his scouts.
Wyn spends her days haunted by her daughter and watching Thom waste away from the mysterious curse slowly taking him.
Ryland has risen above his father’s control, ready to take his place as his brother’s second. However, Sain needs his help first for a simple assignment, or so he thinks.
Their safety is about to be shattered.
A mole behind those safe, Cathedral walls has begun whispering through the survivors that Joclyn is unstable, that her magic is an uncontainable force that will destroy them all in the end.
Determined not to let the rumors affect her, Joclyn battles ahead, only to have reality and sight intersect in an explosion that shatters the walls between future, past, and present, leaving her imprisoned in a seamless existence she must learn to control … before Edmund and Ovailia control her.
Before Sain unfurls the plan he has been orchestrating for centuries.
Characters: As this series comes to an end the story is splintered into more than one perspective. In this book we have Joclyn, fighting to discover what's going on with her magic and how to take control of it before the whispers and rumors about her come true. We have Wyn, haunted by her daughter and trying to overcome the pain and hurt emanating from the piece of the Soul's Blade in her possession. Sain is pulling strings on both sides so that his version of the future will come to pass, the one that will make him King of all magical beings. Finally we have Dramin who is fighting to stay alive so that he can help Joclyn in anyway he can, but just how long can he hold out? I love the complexities of all of these characters. Each one has grown and changed so much since we first met them, some like Joclyn have had real changed and really developed into a stronger and fiercer character, while some like Sain have only now revealed who they really were thus changing our perceptions of them. Either way it's done with a great finesse and is pulled off very well.
Romance: So there isn't as much romance in this book as you'd think. There are some great scenes between Jos and Ilyan, scenes that just reaffirm what they mean to each other. We also have a little bit of development with Risha and Ryland, more confirmation that they do have feelings for each other more than any actual development. Other than that though there isn't all that much romance in this book. However I never felt like something was missing, everything still flowed great and while a little more romance where one specific couple is concerned would have been great, it wasn't needed... yet.
World-Building: So you'd think with as much world-building as this series has had that it couldn't possibly develop any further, or maybe you think it can. Either way Ethington does a fabulous job at expanding this world in this installment. There is so much about this series that we didn't know, mostly things that are revealed to have been lies. We learn even more about Drak magic and how all magics work in this world as we get more chapters from the very first Drak himself, Sain. As we move into the final installment there's still so much more to be learned and so much more to see.
Predictability: So, yeah... There wasn't all that much in this installment that I could predict. I'm sure I've said it before but since Ethington essentially throws out the YA formula when she writes it's hard to predict where things are going. Things that if I was reading any other book I'd write off as pointless drama that won't amount to anything I now look at with serious eyes and genuinely worry about what's going to happen next. I'm never sure who will live or die and now that this series is told from the point of view of a multitude of characters it's quite possible anyone could die.
Ending: So since there are many perspectives going into this ending there are also a few cliffhangers that we'll get to in a minute. First let's talk about the final climax that I never saw coming, in fact I had a completely different final climax given the foreshadowing we're given in this book. This final climax is just a precursor for a much larger battle to come in the final book. The first cliffhanger left my jaw on the floor and I still can't pick it up. It's a game changer I wasn't willing to believe could happen, but it did. The second and final cliffhanger was shocking and something I'm lloking forward to seeing developed, but it pales in comparison to the first.
So, before this book was published, when the author would talk about it she said that she wanted to make it good, as there were mixed reviews about Burnt Devotion, I;m here to say that she achieved that goal. This is actually my new favorite book of the series. I can't wait for you guys to read it!