Saturday, January 19, 2008

In dreams begin responsibilities

The Sweet Far Thing is the final book in Libba Bray's trilogy, following A Great and Terrible Beauty and Rebel Angels. Bray brings the story to a satisfying conclusion, with plenty of the elements that made the first two books so enjoyable. As in the first two, Bray balances fast-paced adventure with Gothic-inspired teenage drama, with the characters remaining intrinsically real while they journey into fantastic lands and situations. Bray also handles all of her details beautifully -- she has an excellent handle on the rule of Chekhov's gun. The end seemed a little drawn out to me; the last few chapters felt like they were wrapping up loose ends that had already been wrapped. But throughout, the reader is thoroughly drawn in to Gemma's unfolding battle for the realms and for herself.

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