‘An ending honoring this beautiful trilogy.’
In this third and final book to the Winternight-trilogy, we continue to follow Vasja. She’s now facing the anger of whole Moscow after being blamed for causing the fires that almost ended the existence of the city. After escaping through a dangerous land called Midnight, Vasja learns that the Bear has been woken up by no other than his own brother: Morozko. While Vasja is trying to live with the pain she now constantly feels (both mental and physical), Morozko can no longer help her, because a new season drove Winter away, along with Morozko. But Vasja has other things on her mind: a new fight, greater than any before, is approaching. Vasja has to find out who her enemies and allies are in this unforeseen battle. And all that without the help of Morozko, who is trapped by weakness caused by the change of season.
I always end up with mixed feelings about the books in the Winternight-trilogy. On the one hand, I don’t really enjoy reading (in this case listening) it. But on the other hand, I always like what I read (heard). It’s hard to explain. It’s like kind of a battle, but the outcome is worth fighting for, so that’s what I did.
So here’s the thing: this book pretty much continued on with the amazing ambiance all three books contain. So that was a definite plus for me, also in this book. I also liked the fact that we got to see different and unknown sides from a few main characters, that really made this book enjoyable. Unfortunately, those ‘new’ sides did sometimes seem a bit strange; like it was not something that character would ever do. But still, all fine by me! I love a good character development.
The worldbuilding was pretty okay in this book. I didn’t think about it even once, and that’s a good thing! What really characterises Katherine Arden’s writing style – besides the reoccurring loooong scentences – is the time she takes to describe the tiniest details, wether that is on a plant, a human’s face or a tjort. This makes the scènes and the story overall feel so human (if that makes sense). I’m trying to say that you’ll be able to picture the described objects as never before.
This is, in short, a lovely ending to an amazing fantasy trilogy. Not the easiest books to read, but once you do, you’ll enter a great world, with amazing people and animals and magic and much, much more! So don’t let my sometimes negative tone keep you from reading this book. It’s great. Go read it.