The conclusion to the gothic paranormal-romance trilogy started in Nevermore (2010).
The last time Isobel saw Varen, in Enshadowed (2012), he nearly killed her; technically, she temporarily died of her injuries on the operating table. Lilith still has Varen wrapped up in her twisted lies, turning him against Isobel—who in spite of everything still loves Varen. Although Varen is lost to the dreamworld, he’s still blurring the lines between it and reality, to dangerous ends that suit Lilith too well. Through a long string of action sequences in atmospheric dream settings, Isobel learns even more about the nature of the dreamworld and nightmarish Nocs, and her love for Varen is tested. Creagh’s prose is still slow-paced and lush to the point of occasionally feeling overwritten, but this time around the story structure is well-supported by the placement of action and story-driving tension—especially in some surprise betrayals and twists. In the end, the question is whether Isobel can save Varen from his own inner demons and self-destructive tendencies—the very vulnerabilities that allowed Lilith access to him in the first place. Throughout, the real-life consequences of actions—especially for loved ones oblivious of the supernatural happenings—ground the story and add extra stakes. The denouement gives the ending extra weight.
A romantic, hard-fought conclusion that should please fans. (Paranormal romance. 12 & up)