**WARNING: CONTAINS VAGUE SPOILERS**
I read the first hundred pages or so of this and wondered when it was actually going to be all about Phury–because I have say the kiddies of the series totally stole the opening slot in this show.
But I read on, because Ward’s prose only ever invites you to keep going, right? I’m glad I did.
I’ll admit I was around 100 pages from the end and wondered if I’d be left content with the ending. Around 30 pages from the end, I was still wondering that. Then, in the very very very last chapter, a handful of pages from the end, Ward went and sent me a little misty eyed.
Now, because I’m a pedantic bugger, I felt the need to sit and analyse why it didn’t seem as though Phury got his full spotlight yet I still wanted to read on.
I love poor mentally tortured Phury who everyone else understands more than he understands himself. So, theoretically, I should have been peeved I didn’t get to see a whole lot more of him. But I think it’s the busy-ness of this book that keeps the reader involved and stops them feeling totally cheated.
The last couple of books have been so totally consumed with the Brother at the forefront of them that I went into this one expecting the same when I shouldn’t have.
This book wasn’t so much about a ‘Brother’ but more about the ‘Brotherhood’ as a whole. It was as though we’d gone back to the Lessers for a reminder that they’re still there and they still have an agenda, and yes the issue is only going to get worse (because, for goodness sake, you didn’t all think they’d retreated did ya?). The evolvement of events between the younger generation was an awesome story arc (shame it claimed the headline, but hey …), and I’m unsurprised by Lash’s ‘promotion’. But because of everything (else) the author has crammed into this novel, Phury’s moment of glory was somewhat stolen from him.
I’m not saying this book wasn’t a decent read because it was. But as a reader, I’d kinda got into the flow of the last few books and Ward went and produced something with a different current in this one and I was unprepared for it. So, when I neared the end and it looked as though Phury’s big sole-mate-y moment was going to get diminshed beneath Xhex’s moment, and Lash’s moment, I was a little miffed. I thought for one horrid second, the ending was going to fall flat. It didn’t. But not because Phury rose from the ashes and burned brightly. The ending was saved by Z who (yet again) brought a tear to my eye.
Okay, long story short (sorry about the waffle, but it’s pre-lunch on a Sunday and one often needs to reach for the syrup to accompany my long-windedness):
This is a decent read. It’s just not following the same pattern as the last few in the series. It almost felt as though I’d gone back to Wrath’s story when too many other things were introduced for the main man to stand up and shine. But I’d still deffo recommend.