After the short first book, Zahara’s gift, and the longer but just as fast-paced second book, Secrets of the Sapphire soul, I continued with the series’ book three.
Similarly, the book continues pretty much where the second left off – at the end of its major battle.
Thus, the third book starts with the forces on both sides retreating from the battlefield while some are missing.
Kirsten and her group were also left off in the midst of trouble by the end of book two, and they won’t have it easy as Merglan’s soldiers try to keep an iron grip on the area.
The ‘main’ group also splits as Anders is displaced by the battle and the others are unsure of the next steps.
Maija also gets back to the story after being off-screen for the second half of book two.
And as if Merglan’s plans weren’t enough, the elves are divided after the events of the second group.
Yet, as the world descends further into chaos, there are glimmers of hope. Little of it is something I could mention due to spoilers but I can say the book keeps the pace and style of the previous two: daring plans that kept me reading in Kirsten’s group, some search for answers (and hope) around Anders, and other challenges to face among the other characters.
Also, more about the prophecy mentioned in the first and second book is revealed when it comes to the identity of the two mentioned characters.
The finale then has some twists – one of the being quite sad. It also leaves a lot still open for the fourth, final book.
Both Anders’ and Kirsten’s group reunites at the end, though my gut feeling was that if the PoV shift moved from Kirsten a bit earlier, the tension would be stronger.
And I think some aspects of the story, especially those tied to the magic system, could’ve been explored better (including how, exactly, the major plot twist was possible) – and I’m curious whether the fourth book will answer my questions.
I’m going 5% down, mostly because of what I mentioned above – lack of clarity in some aspects of the story. The book is still as gripping as the first two, though, and I’m going for the fourth one soon.