Another great book in the series, although this one is unusual since it takes a breather from the main storyline and focuses on a mini-story: Harkat's background and who he really is.
A small section of the first part shows a realistic grieving for Darren, which I found depressing but needed to be convincing and respectful to a fallen character. After a surprising reveal by two return characters (yay), Darren accompanies his friend Harkat in his journey.
A break from the vampire war was inevitable but the author kept it interesting by introducing a gritty, surreal world. There is a new character who stands out as quirky but psychologically twisted, which intrigued me. New creatures, difficult obstacles, and a mystery to boot. Who Harkat turns out to be? A surprise that I liked.
It veers slightly off course but this is needed and ties in it’s ways into the main storyline in the end. By this point Darren has grown into a stronger character, and Harkat fighting his personal demons is enjoyable since I’ve come to know the character over several books now.
There is a void where a character has been lost, so I think the placement of this one – two off by themselves in a different direction – was needed to let the reader absorb and not jumble the main storyline.
Again Shan impresses with the complexity of the created world, rich in fantasy and imagination.
“It is too easy to say 'what if' and paint a picture of a perfect world.”