Skip to main content

Horizon

Happy sigh. It is always nice when a trilogy I love ends on a high note, and Horizon, the final book Jenn Reese's Above World trilogy, does just that.

This is a review of an ARC received in exchange for a fair review.

Synopsis:
Aluna and Hoku, Kampii from the City of Shifting Tides, and their friends, Equian Dash and winged Aviar Calli, are determined to stop a war. The maniacal ex-scientist Karl Strand is planning to conquer the world with his enormous army of tech-enhanced soldiers . . . unless the four friends can get to Strand first. Aluna’s plan is dangerous: pose as Upgraders and infiltrate the army. But the enemy isn’t what they expected and the strategy begins to crumble. When the friends are torn apart by conflicting allegiances, their slim chance of avoiding war seems to disappear completely. For Aluna and Hoku, what began as a quest to save their own people has become a mission to save the world. But do Aluna and her friends have any hope of defeating Strand if they can’t take him on together?

My favorite thing about these books have been the characters. Aluna, Hoku, Calli, and Dash won my hearts thoroughly in Above World and Vachir, Nathif, and Tayan found their own places in it during Mirage. I went into this book with a whole lot of love for these characters and an equal amount of fear for their safety and well-being. I was also concerned about their relationships with each other based on the synopsis, as that is the main reason I love them all so much. They are who they are because of the way the care for, stand with, and help each other despite their differences. There are some sad moments in the book. They are all separated, Dash and Vachir going one way, Calli returning to Sky Feather Landing, and Aluna and Hoku returning to Shifting Tides, as they are all driven by a need to save their own people. What I really liked though was how they worked through that and understood what the others had to do and why. It was cause for minor conflict and there were some misunderstandings, as is always the case when people are tired, stressed, and scared, but through it all the foundation of their friendship and loyalty to each other stayed strong. From the beginning I've loved the theme of family and choice of community that is woven through these stories. This final installment stays true to that while also demonstrating how complicated and hard the world is to live in and how nothing is ever simple, particularly the choices we have to make in a crisis. It also manages to introduce even more characters who have earned places in my heart too.

All four of the main characters experience some harrowing things over the course of their final journeys. It is all very definitely there, but not too detailed and in your face, a perfect balance for the intended audience. The book starts with them all together and then as they start to split up follows them each in the places they are going. It's a lot of action, but it was not at all difficult to keep track of. I particularly enjoyed watching Aluna, Hoku, and Calli return to their homes. They've all seen and experienced so much of the outside world and it changed them. Watching them all face the changes in themselves with their new views of their homes is fascinating, and one I think will appeal to the older MG reader who is questioning their own place in the world and seeing their families and communities through a different lens than they did as a child. I really liked the way the story ended too, but won't go into too many details of why to avoid spoilers. 

This trilogy is also a favorite of my daughter, who is nine, and several of my students so I know how well this works with the MG demographic. I think they are going to eat up this book as fast and happily as they did the others. 

I received an e-galley from the publisher, Candlewick Press, via NetGalley. Horizon will be available on April 8th. 

Comments

Charlotte said…
I'm looking forward to this lots! I'm glad it's good.
Brandy said…
I really liked it! Felt it tied things up well but not too perfectly and left room for the imagination too.

Popular posts from this blog

TTT: Most Recent Additions to My TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly themed blog hop created by  The Broke and the Bookish  and now hosted at  That Artsy Reader Girl . This Week's Topic: Most Recent Additions to My TBR List From Most Recent to Least: What books have recently caught your eye?

Shorter Musings MG Fantasy

Here are some shorter musings on recent MG fantasy reads. Anya and the Dragon   by Sofiya Pasternack This book is fun. It is a book full of adventure, an obvious bad guy, some more complicated morally gray area characters, and a strong, brave heroine. It is also a book about friendships, community, and fighting for what is right. All things that usually work for me really well. While I enjoyed this, I did feel it was a little overlong and there were certain plot points at the end I didn't love. However, there were things I thought were done really well, such as Anya's Jewish faith and the idea that power needs to be challenged. In the end it was a middle of the road read for me, but it is one I will certainly be recommending to dragon and fantasy adventure lovers I know! R is for Rebel   by J. Anderson Coats This is tough because I usually really like Coats's books. I had such a hard time with this one though on so many levels. It's difficult to get into because t

Serafina and the Black Cloak

Serafina and the Black Cloak  by Robert Beatty is a thrilling tale of mystery and adventure set at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC in 1899. Having lived in Asheville and visited the house several times, there was no way I was going to pass up a chance to read this. (Also it's MG fantasy, always a bonus for me.) Serafina lives in secret in the basement of the Vanderbilt's spacious vacation home. She has lived there most of her life. Her father worked on the house as it was being built and is the mechanic who runs the massive generator and keeps the electricity going. Serafina is the chief rat catcher, slipping through the halls of her massive home secretly and quietly. She is light on her feet, sees well in the dark, and is quick enough to catch the vermin and keep them out. Serafina knows she if different and strange. Her father insists she stay hidden. But all that changes when one night Serafina witnesses a horrible crime. A little girl, a guest in the house, is fleein

YA Book GIVEAWAY!!!

On Tuesday I posted my Top Ten Books Read so Far in 2013 and promised to highlight more of this year's favorites and offer them in giveaways. This is the YA giveaway. This is open to anyone who lives where Book Depository ships for free . Book Choices: TO ENTER: Leave a comment below saying which book looks most interesting to you and leave a way I can reach you if you are the winner. (email address or twitter handle-If you are using Twitter it would be helpful if you followed me, @brandymuses , in case I need to DM you.) Entries after Monday, July 1 8:00 PM EST are invalid. The winner will be drawn as close to 8 as possible.  Yes, I still do my giveaways the old fashioned way.

Shadowshaper

Shadowshaper  by Daniel José Older is everywhere. Best of lists. Award buzz. Blogs everywhere. It's one of those books everyone is reading and talking about. I had it on my TBR but decided I definitely needed to read it before the year was out just so I could weigh in on one of the most talked about books of 2015 if asked. It is deserving of every good thing said about it. Every. One. Sierra was looking forward to a relaxing summer break. Her plans involved hanging out with her friends and painting. They did not involve being chased by zombie like creatures and threatened by a magical power connected to her family's heritage she has never heard of. When murals begin fading all over her Brooklyn neighborhood, Sierra is perplexed. When her grandfather, who had a stroke, begins to apologize and starts repeating strange phases and insisting Sierra get the help of a boy she barely knows to help her finish her mural, Sierra is concerned but mostly about her grandfather. Then at a