Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Lord Sunday

Seven days. Seven keys. Seven virtues. Seven sins.

In this thrilling conclusion to Garth Nix's Keys to the Kingdom series, Arthur Penhaligon must complete his quest to save the Kingdom he is heir to...and Arthur's world.
from amazon.com

Beth says 4.5 Stars...

So another series comes to a close. Garth Nix (who's one of my favorite authors) has taken us on a ride through the House that controls the universe and all of the worlds that compose it. As a closer this book was good. It did get choppy at times, but that was really because it attempted to tie up all of the loose plot ends. I felt that particular goal was accomplished rather successfully. He doesn't leave everything hanging, and the few lingering questions are just the normal ones for a series ender. The only other thing that I had an issue with was the pacing. It got really slow in the middle, and then ended with a final chunk so fast it almost gave me whiplash, but I enjoyed the ride. I was not expecting the ending, which was refreshing. Nix wrapped up everything in a way that proved why he's a great talent in fantasy.

Arthur grew yet again in this book, and what's more, this book belonged to him. I don't think that he's ever remained stagnant, which is remarkable. This time he became even more Denizen than anything else, and felt that weight. He was more aloof and quick to anger, but a major part of the book is Arthur's struggle to retain his humanity and identity. There were, of course, other characters, but they all paled in comparison and importance to Arthur. I love the fact that Nix isn't afraid to place that sort of content in a book meant for middle schoolers. Nothing is dumbed down for the sake of an age group that supposedly can't comprehend complex issues. The high point of this philosophical and intense musing is in the final chapters, which bring the series to a beautiful close. They send a message that validates the books without getting too heady or preaching.

This was a lovely closer. The main issue that I had was that it got rather slow in the middle. The grand scope of this series wasn't lost in attempting to wrap everything up in a tidy little package. Instead, although it created some struggles, Nix pulled the threads together and wove them into a workable ending. The gaps are slight, proving that this is a fantastic, and epic, series.


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