The final installment was very exciting. Cnan and her group of Shield-Brethren finally arrive at the Khagan's camp...to complete their mission of assassinating the Khan of Khan's or die trying. The Shield Brethren, the Rats, and the Livonian knights, finally rise up in an effort to take back Hunern from the Mongols and kill Onghwe Khan. Lian and Gansukh must decide where they stand. In Rome, the Cardinals must decide on a new pope, while Ocyrhoe must find her kin-sisters and Ferenc has to decide where his path lies...
POSSIBLE SPOILERS BELOW.
SKIP TO NEXT BOLD PRINT TO AVOID.
There are lots of characters and lots of battles in this one; a violent end to a grand adventure. For the most part, I loved every rebellious, bloody, and occasionally heartbreaking moment. The ending is where I struggle. It was left really open; the surviving knights are escaping, and the surviving Mongols are pursuing, so in theory the adventure continues past the end. Feronantus, Ocryrhoe, and Lian were set up to look like traitors; and while I understand why that may have been necessary for Lian's character...How would she be free of the Mongols if she wound up married to one? Also she had no way of knowing whether or not Gansuhk was going to come back to her. She took the only chance she had... But what is up with Ocryrhoe "going rogue"? How did she go rogue exactly? Did Lena and Frederick set her up and forget to tell us? Feronantus led the shield brethren for 3 books then just up and ditches? And what was the final significance of the spirit banner and the living sprout cut from it? Such an important item left unexplained. I feel I've been left wanting to know more, and there is no more to know. So I've got the satisfaction of knowing how the story ends without the closure of an actual ending.
END OF SPOILER ALERT.
It was an interesting storyline, but I admit I'm not that interested in reading the prequels or sidequests...I might have interest in a sequel, if the authors ever decide to clarify the end events, but that's probably me being greedy. I do think book 3 was better than 2, but not as good as 1.
Review's original post date:
Apr 25, 13