Author: Rick Yancey
Protagonist(s): Will Henry
Other Characters: Pellinor Warthorp, Lily Bates, Arkwright, Von Helrung, Jack Kearns
Synopsis: An unfortunate accident happens regarding Will. Fearing for his life, Pellinor decides to leave him behind on his new journey on hunting down the “Holy Grail of Monstrumologist”. Instead he brings with him a young apprentice named Arkwright, who preys on Warthrop’s vain personality. When Arkwright comes back without Warthrop and claiming that he has been taken by the monster, Will refuses to believe the events that occur and goes out to find what has happened to his master.
Review: I feel that this book was a deal breaker for me. I really did feel that this series would become part of my favorites since the first two books are so beautifully written. Unfortunately, I have to say it but this was a let down. That hurts for me to say, it really did fall flat from its predecessors. As much as I love seeing Will Henry and Warthrop again, I was rather disappointed on the actual story line. Yes, there is death, there is blood and there are things that go bump in the night, but the author was writing towards an ultimate climax, that just didn’t own up to the expectation. I felt really frustrated by the end of the book and wished that Yancey created a better ending than what he settled for. Instead of the book being about scary monsters and gory details, it almost seemed – preachy. Yes, preachy and if you read the book I think you’ll understand what you mean. Dont get me wrong there are parts that I did enjoy in this book but ultimately, it was a disappointment.
I really did enjoy the parts with Wymond Kendall. This was one of the worthy part of the book that did scare me and almost gave me a heart attack. The parts about Will, Kendall’s ribs and some finger chopping, a worthy scene. Really, when I put those three together they sound almost ominous. Obvious enough, Will Henry is one of my favorite characters in this series, and you have to admire Will’s constant loyalty and patience with Warthrop, to choose a life of sleepless nights and moments of hunger strike to normalcy, is amazing. At the same time though, this is the book were you see the attachment that the master has for his assistant. As much as I hate to admit it, you really get to see the “human” side Warthrop in here. The moments of weakness and uncertainty that I saw within him made him more likable and human, but it takes away from his mysterious aspect as a monstrumologists. On another point, I enjoyed the little banter between Will and Lily Bates, it seems so cute and so normal, just something that Will needed. Although his reasons for being with the Bates was a bit annoying. I feel that this series always underestimate the “children”.
Anyways, I know I said I was disappointed in this book, but I’m still going to read the last book. Of course it might be some time since this did leave a bad taste for me. Boo!
Ending: As the two get a late night visit from a man named Kendall, we find that he has delivered a package from Jack Kearns, a man we met in the second book of the series. The Nidus, a scary inhumane object that is part of the “Holy Grail”. When touched, the person become a indescribable, unnatural person with no rational thinking, similar to a zombie, and just like it, when bitten the host also becomes the terrible creature. Now all throughout the book we learn that the Nidus is suppose to originate from a larger creature that is the “Holy Grail” of Warthrop’s society. No one has ever seen or discovered its origins, and those that might have, does not live long enough to tell their story. Seriously, the whole book was leading up to this one climatic event. The whole time it was a big mystery what this monster is, how big it is or even where it originated from. I was so disappointed in the ending. I WANTED a monster, a real live monster that lives in the clouds that kills people and let their body and blood rain down on the village. Unfortunately that is not the answer we get. All we get is that the ultimate monster is men, just us and the greed that have in the word consumes us to the core that we become these monsters. This is what I mean that the book kinda got a bit preachy. Only because the author got a bit out of hand with the-whole-human-greed-will-consume-us-in-the-end bit. Now I’m not saying that the whole book is bad or even that its badly written. Not at all, I just wished that there really wasn’t such a build up on this one matter, only to be given a lame outcome.
I won’t really go into details on what happens between Will and Pellinore since I think that it was the most enjoyable part of the book. You really get to see the bond between the two.