There is a lot to cover in this book. There is a lot of action, many revelations, strengthening of relationships, tear-jerking… heartbreaking moments. This conclusion of a great series is a wild, rollercoaster ride.
Clare saves Alex while Alex rallies the Nightstalkers to save Clare and Reaper. Daniel saves Han and Beatrice then finds that Clare, Alex and Reaper carried out a mission just as large and dangerous as he, Jackson, Spider and Serenity completed. Daniel and Reaper begin to see the value of Clare and Alex to The Saints.
Meeting Odette is a plot device that sends Clare to the Historian and also helps slightly in the construction of the history of Clare’s family. Odette is an aside that creates a bit of confusion just before Clare’s change in that it is never really clear what she reveals to anyone else besides Spider. There are a few loose ends in this part of the story that are not tied up before the conclusion.
Clare’s value as a Watcher increases exponentially with her visit to the Historian because the history of her family reveals the unlimited power into which she will grow. With the Historian’s training, Clare gains control of the powers she has already exhibited and is thus more prepared for the increase of powers she receives with the change. She is also more prepared for her confrontation with Marcus.
As Clare collects powers, she also collects more and more of her family secrets. Doing so really helps her understand more about her destiny and her importance. Clare grows strong, and not just the way in which her powers grow but also as a person, as a Watcher, as half of a beautiful relationship, and as a true friend. Her loyalty and love grow as strong as the silver she wears and carries into battle.
It is very difficult to cover the part of the plot during which Daniel dies without wanting to cry again. There is heart-wrenching sobbing involved while reading this part of the book. In fact, there is crying during the fourth reading of this book. The entire sequence of events during the last visit to the Historian’s home is hard to read through. It seems logical that Lynnie might have cried while writing it.
Clare comes to accept her importance as a beacon of hope for the fight against the might of Macus’ army. The tactical mastery of Reaper and Daniel combined with the special talents of the Saints’ generals make a formidable fighting force. With Clare to focus on ending Marcus and his mission, the military plan is a strong one.
When everything does not go as planned, Clare improvises as she always does… in a nonconventional way. Finally finding Marcus, Clare’s finds her task to be infinitely harder than she thought because he is bonding with the sword’s evil nature already. As the bonding grows stronger and stronger, Clare finds herself in danger of losing the fight. It is during this dire circumstance that time is momentarily stopped by Farris, a man who has recurred throughout the books and seen by different characters. Clare learns that Farris is her father. He tells her to call on Nemesis to help end the battle.
Once time resumes, Clare teleports across the way and calls for Nemesis. It is then that Clare learns Nemesis already fulfilled her favor-for-a-favor by bringing Daniel back to life in turn for setting Nemesis free from the space between. In order for Nemesis to kill Marcus, Clare must forfeit her life (or Daniel’s). Of course, her love for Daniel is too strong to have his life taken. Therefore, she readily agrees to give up her own. Just like that, Nemesis turns Marcus to ash.
Clare asks for a moment to destroy the evil sword; she never wants it to fall into anyone else’s hands. On contact, the evil begins to work on Clare. It is only her ring, the symbol of Daniel’s love for her, that saves her and creates enough pure light to destroy the evil of the sword and the evil fed by Marcus’ narcissistic greed. Ready to pay her debt to Nemesis, Clare is surprised when the Historian makes a deal to go in her stead. Although Clare is ready to refuse her offer, the Historian is insistent and is carried away by Nemesis.
This part of the story is also very sad and brings tears again at the sacrifice of the Historian. Following all of the drain on her body, Clare barely makes it back to the battlefield before collapsing. It is several days before she can tell the story of what happened beneath the battlefield. It is only then that everyone begins truly thinking about a real future. Clare and Daniel begin thinking about some peace and quiet in their lives.
This story has a little of everything: drama, dry wit, sarcasm, self-doubt, self awareness, self confidence, complete love, complete loss, evil, sacrifice, joy, success, happiness, looking forward to tomorrow. There is little more to ask from a story but these things. This book garnered 4 out of 5 stars. It would have been 4.5, but that potential for rating is not given.