The Gates of the World have been opened.
I was glued to this book from the beginning. Writing with such vivid exactness, McKinley pulls the reader willingly into this carefully constructed universe. There is so much going on in this story that it is, at times, overwhelming and it is necessary to read the book a couple of times to grasp all that is going on.
Reading the novel was rather difficult at first as while there are crib notes at the back, there is so much specialised language and so many new characters and threads being introduced to you in each chapter at rate of knots. It reminded me of watching Pulp Fiction in the way that each character had his own storyline which eventually intertwines but the author expects that you learn the traditions, language and culture of the universe as well as hold together the adventures and cares of each character. This is no mean feat. While not meant as a criticism, the book relies on a dedicated attention, so read in a quiet space.
This book is very personal to McKinley which is apparent in the care he has taken to establish so much background and culture. As the characters, in part, reflect his own struggles and members of his family, it is evident that this is a nurtured novel from beginning to end.
It is nonetheless beautifully written. It is this that leads one to persevere with the book and it is well worth the time. Starting with the terrifying release of a spirit, raising the dead, followed by endless drama and tension stuffed to the gills with action, the book is totally immersive. If you get a kick out of sinking deeply into a rich, mysterious, dramatic universe then this will definitely be the series for you.
Ending with a cliff hanger worthy of Maze Runner and Divergent to name some recent successes, this book leaves you wanting more. Having invested the time, I want to know more and I know that I will be waiting in the way I waited for ‘The Scorch Trials’ and ‘Insurgent’, chomping at the bit to find out what will befall our heroes next in ‘City of Ice’ which is due out in 2016.
Blogger: The Aviator