"This is happening." - Kate Daniels
Yes it was. And like Kate I wasn't ready. I really wasn't ready.
But so what? I love that the Andrews did this. They threw me a curveball. I was so sure Kate would not be seeing Roland in this capacity for at least another book. But nope. This book skips the appetizers and goes straight to the main course.
The action kicks in almost immediately and it is relentless. Kate and crew are constantly in crisis mode and it becomes increasingly clear that it is all leading straight to Roland.
Because Kate is aware that she may not live much longer she becomes a bit ruminative. She faces some hard truths about Voron and thinks about her past, her training and what she has been made to endure to prepare for just this thing.
Fittingly, this book also acts as somewhat of an old-home week as characters who had been instrumental in pivotal ways in the earlier books make re-appearances and prove to be instrumental in pivotal ways again. It was a nice to see some call backs and realize how they fit within the overall narrative. Even Kate's own revelations are the fruit of seeds that had been planted early in the series.
But before we get to the climactic scenes and the inevitable showdown, there is some business that needs to be taken care of
On some level Roland seemed like the mythical creature he was within the narrative of the story. So i had really no idea what he'd be like. I hadn't even really given him a thought really, just in the back of my mind he was some nebulous, all evil villain that Kate had to confront and hopefully kill. But he was more than that. So much more. His interactions with Kate, and Curran, bespeak a complexity that is gratifying to read about. I love antagonists like this. Ones that I want to hang out with and watch and can even kinda understand. he was charming and interesting and terrible. And exasperating. And, well, funny. Frankly, Roland is much more interesting alive than dead.
I loved the ending and resolution of the events of this book. Loved it. It was smart and logical and gratifying.
The last paragraph of the epilogue just killed me. Killed me.