Rating: 4/5 stars.
So…I liked this one better than the first book. Probably the reason is because there seemed to be more of Kien’s point of view instead of Ela. The one before had focused mostly on Ela.
On the first day of military leave, the Infinite tells Kien to go to ToronSea and lead the people back to the Infinite before they stray too far. This is not what Kien had planned to do. He wants to court Ela, not go to some far off place where they may kill him as part of some ritual. There is no choice but to obey the Infinite. Meanwhile Ela is given a vision that shakes her to her core. Parne has turned away from the Infinite and is now in danger of suffering terrible judgement. She feels that she must go to warn they before it’s too late. Pulled apart, they go their separate ways, hoping the Infinite will bring them together soon.
Kien is my favorite character in this series. He is very humorous and makes many mistakes, usually with good intentions though. He also, to his detriment, speaks his mind quite freely. Ela is kind and caring, but so sad and in a way angry. She’s given the hardest task she has ever faced in this book, but she follows the Infinite all the way. Akabe is probably in second place for being my favorite character. His is a king who never wanted to be king. He is sarcastic (even more so than Kien), but kingly when he wants to. He follows the Infinite’s orders to the letter, even when he doesn’t necessarily agree. Tzana was like a flower that fades away. She was sweet, but didn’t play much of a part.
This was a faster plot than the last one. Ela is sent to Parne where the people have rejected her and hate her with a vengeance. So with a feeling that her death is near, she heads into the thick of danger. She suffers so so much. Kien is sent to ToronSea. Definitely not where he wanted to go. He makes some big mistakes and is put in worse danger than before. Only by the Infinite’s mercy can he be saved. Forever on his mind is the danger Ela is in and that he must save her. He is in love.
There is a big battle. So much death and heartbreak is poured upon her and her family. Suffering becomes a part of everyday life. Danger is at every turn. It was pretty exciting. Sexual abuse was hinted at and almost happened.
The parallels this and the Old Testament is very prevalent. It is very allegorical and I wonder if that’s the reason I don’t care for it as much as other people. I don’t think it’s my favorite type of genre.
I’ll recommend this to older teens for some of the content. It was a great allegory, but I’m not sure if that’s my thing. We’ll see how the next one goes!