Beyond the Shadows (The Night Angel Trilogy #3)

Read:  2018

Author:  Brent Weeks

Published:  2008

Genre:  Fantasy

Pages:  689 (paperback)

Selected By:  Lady Esbe

Lady Esbe’s Score:  Scoring Great Book

“Logan Gyre is king of Cenaria, a country under siege, with a threadbare army and little hope.  He has one chance – a desperate gamble, but one that could destroy his kingdom. 

“In the north, the new Godking has a plan.  If it comes to fruition, no one will have the power to stop him. 

“Kylar Stern has no choice.  To save his friends – and perhaps his enemies – he must accomplish the impossible: assassinate a goddess.”

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Lady Esbe’s Review

I’m starting this with two CDs left to go in this novel.  However, I can confidently say, I’m enjoying this one more than book two, but about the same as the first.  All of the different stories are converging for the ultimate battle for Midcyru comes to head in this novel.  I’ll tell you, it took a bit to get there, but it is finally upon me.

 So, I’ll get my evil thoughts out of the way first.  Yes, I still hate Elene.  She suddenly has seen the error of her ways, and this still does not make me like her character any more.  I can appreciate her humble and upstanding behavior.  However, she still grates on my last nerve.  *****SPOILER ALERT*****→ We finally understand the price of losing your life as the Night Angel, a family member or friend is lost.  In this case, with Kylar’s most recent death and resurrection would cost Elene her life.  Dare I say, yes I shall, “please, please, let this not be a tease.”  I don’t think I’ve wanted a character dead this badly since Rachel Morgan.  Haven’t gotten there yet.  If it happens, I might do a happy dance.

I was pleased to find that Durzo had died, yet he resurrected one last time and is on his last life.  He is truly trying to make his wrongs right.  I can appreciate his regret and his desire to be there for those he loves.  What he admits and what we assumed previously, is that he came to love Kylar as his own son, just as Duke Drake thought the same.  It is not that Durzo has lost his gruff way, it is still there.  However, he is not as guarded as he was in the initial installment.  As per the usual, I find his character direct, not as cruel as before, but willing to teach as much as he can without divulging too much.  There is something to be said for learning through experience.  ←*****END SPOILER*****

The trio of Feir, Solon and Dorian are destined to meet again.  While separated during the middle installment, these three friends could not be separated for too long.  Feir has been indentured to Lantano Garuwashi and does him a great service.  However, this is not where he wanted his life’s path to take him, yet he is true to his word and serves willingly and fearlessly.  Solon finally was able to return home in this novel and assume his rightful role as an emperor of his lands.  He too has many trials and tribulations to overcome, including returning home an outlaw of sorts.  These two, I have no issues with how they handled their situations and what they did to achieve their respective paths back to each other.  However, Dorian, grated on my nerves.

Dorian, Dorian, Dorian.  I know I didn’t really mention him in my previous reviews, but his character has been pretty central to each novel.  He is son of the villain of the previous two installments who is quite the antithesis of his father.  He has a desire to do well and he broke from his powers of foresight and causes as many problems as if he had it.  I have no issues with him handling his half siblings so harshly and finally, as most had taken their father’s stance on cruelty and the best he could do for his land was to cull the wicked as quickly as possible.  However, my point of contention for him is his obsession with Jenine Gyre.  He had a vision of her as his wife while he had his foresight, and because of his love/obsession of her, he refused to let her make her own decision between Logan and himself.  I understand his desperation.  However, I felt that his desperation to control and maintain met that of his father’s, just without the loss of life and subjugation of many.

I would say it is a tie between Kylar and Vi on who evolved the most in the novel.  With the end of the last installment, the pair are now married, unwillingly (at least on Kylar’s part), which they are permanently bonded.  I prefer this bond to Kylar’s “love” for Elene.  Vi has shown that she is capable of more than just being a talented wet “boy”, and I find that she does care for others.  She is a good in her own way and her love for Kylar is evidenced over and over.  While she reluctantly takes on her role at the Chantry, she did a great job assimilating and becoming a battle Mage along with training the sisters of the Chantry.  Vi’s willingness to sacrifice and put others before herself makes Elene seem rather drool.  Unfortunately, while Kylar did evolve, he didn’t come nearly as far as Vi.

Kylar, as per the usual is willing to throw all away for Elene.  He does make some great strides through the book.  He makes the hard decision when Logan cannot.  He takes the actions as needed to save the people of Cesnaria from the rule of Tara Grayson.  He willingly walks away from his friendships to make sure they thrive and he can live as he needs to as the Night Angel.  However, his selfishness with regards to Elene keeps getting rammed down our throats.  Love?  Eh, maybe.  Infatuation is more like it.  That infatuation is more likely than not to cause dire consequences for all those around him at the most critical moment.  However, it’s Kylar.  What can we expect from this “love-sick” twenty year old?  I expect him to be the Night Angel, learn from Durzo Blint and all he has sacrificed to get to this point.  I expect him to understand that Vi is more likely a better fit for him than Elene ever was.  Vi loved him without any compunction or with requirements as Elene does (ok, Elene turns it around in this novel, but it was too little too late for me.)

Overall, the battles were excellent.  It took a while to get there sometimes, but it was tied up nicely.  As usual, Mr. Boehmer did an excellent job reading this.

Lady Esbe listened to the Tantor Audio CD version (narrated by Paul Boehmer) of this selection.

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