The Descent by Alma Katsu

The final installment in the “mesmerizing” (Booklist, starred review) and addictive trilogy—find out who truly holds the key to Lanny’s heart and whether she’ll ever be reunited with her beloved in this gripping supernatural tale of magic, lust, and 15802137longing.

Lanore McIlvrae has been on the run from Adair for hundreds of years, dismayed by his mysterious powers and afraid of his temper. She betrayed Adair’s trust and imprisoned him behind a stone wall to save Jonathan, the love of her life. When Adair was freed 200 years later, she was sure that he would find her and make her existence a living hell. But things turned out far different than she’d imagined.

Four years later, Lanore has tracked Adair to his mystical island home, where he has been living in self-imposed exile, to ask for a favor. She wants Adair to send her to the hereafter so she may beg the Queen of the Underworld to release Jonathan, whom she has been keeping as her consort. Will Lanore honor her promise to Adair to return? Or is her intention to reunite with Jonathan at any cost?

Of all the forces of the universe, the most mysterious, confounding, and humbling is the power of love. The epic story of love and loss, magic and destiny that began with The Taker and sparked a chase around the world in The Reckoning comes to a surprising conclusion with The Descent. –

If you’ve read book reviews on my blog before, you know this isn’t the type of book I usually read; however, I had the opportunity to meet the author at a book fest a couple of years ago, heard her speak about the first book in the trilogy, The Taker, and was immediately intrigued.  Besides, I’m a sucker for period books.

Although I enjoyed the first two books in this series, this one was my least favorite.  Throughout these books, my feelings toward Adair varied from fascination, awe, anger, shock, disgust, pity, admiration – you get the picture.  He was definitely a multi-faceted character.  But the Adair in The Descent seemed to be a different character entirely – not necessarily a bad thing.  In order to be with Lanore, he needed to redeem himself in some way, and rather than just tell the reader Adair had changed, the author brought in some characters from the first two books to demonstrate this transformation, although it still seemed sudden and somewhat dubious to me.  I also learned more about Adair’s past – always interesting – and the revelation toward the end of the book was a unique twist, something I didn’t see coming.

The journey with Lanore through this series allowed me to see her metamorphosis from an immature and naive teenage girl into a self-confident woman who has experienced many lifetimes of happiness, regret, and sorrow, but now knows what she wants.  In this book, she was given the rare opportunity to ease her conscience and make amends with people from her past.

The Descent wrapped up this series with a satisfying ending, but I felt as if the end came abruptly and wondered if I was missing some pages.  Overall, I liked this series and am glad I read it.  If you’re a fan of paranormal romance or maybe tired of the repetitive pattern of some books in that genre, I would recommend this series as it offers a new twist.

This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher through NetGalley.

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