SPOILER WARNING: The synopsis and review will contain spoilers for the first two books in The Lumatere Chronicles, Finnkin of the Rock (review here) and Froi of the Exiles (review here). However, my review will not contain spoilers for this last book..
Title: Quintana of Charyn
Series: The Lumatere Chronicles #3
Author: Melina Marchetta
Genre: Young Adult; Fantasy
Synopsis: There’s a babe in my belly that whispers the valley, Froi. I follow the whispers and come to the road . . .
Separated from the girl he loves and has sworn to protect, Froi must travel through Charyn to search for Quintana, the mother of Charyn’s unborn king, and protect her against those who will do anything to gain power. But what happens when loyalty to family and country conflict? When the forces marshalled in Charyn’s war gather and threaten to involve the whole of the land, including Lumatere, only Froi can set things right, with the help of those he loves.(Goodreads)
There’s one thing that I really don’t like when it comes to these stories with many characters and parallel storylines: when one chapter ends on a cliffhanger of sorts and the next chapter switches over to another group for something completely different. Unfortunately, this thing kept happening in this book which made me kind of frustrated. Parts of this book tended to drag, and it felt like there was just too many things that Marchetta wanted to wrap up as a finale to the series. The book did drag less than the previous one, so I can appreciate that.
I also ended up liking Finnikin a lot less in this book compared to the previous books. I liked him in the first book, felt rather bored with him and his storyline in the second book, and was annoyed by him in this book. Maybe it’s because I found the characters in Charyn way more interesting than the characters in Lumatere. It’s not hard to do because I really like the dynamics between Froi, Quintana, and their companions.
I liked seeing how headstrong their group was, how stubborn they are with each other, and because they really are devoted to each other, despite some of the hurtful things they might say. I especially loved Quintana’s character, how she’s a lot more cunning that people think. She’s seen as some savage nutso princess, but is actually rather smart and is one of the few characters that isn’t afraid of stating things bluntly and directly. One of the gripes I have with the other characters is that things can get pretty vague at times. Euphemisms, people trailing off, things seen in expressions, hiding their feelings. With Quintana, she just blurts out what she feels with no sugar-coating. I think that’s why I like her, and Tesadora.
Again, like the last book, I felt the pacing was odd for me. Some parts would feel like they were dragging and others just seemed to blink by. I even had a little difficulty keeping track of how much time had passed. There were little bits that I had to facepalm at and just go “… Really? REALLY?” because I felt that those things could have been avoided with a spot more common sense. Given what the characters have been though, little details like that seemed like things they might easily remember.
Overall: The whole series has been a crazy ride from the start. Again, there’s so much political power play going on and there’s the personal lives of the characters. Seeing them grow from the first book was an interesting journey, especially Froi. They’ve all developed over the course of the trilogy, and there were very good and also bad parts. This wasn’t a perfect series, but it doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy it. This last book gets four stars from me. The series as a whole? Probably 4.5 stars. 🙂
Shoutout to the #PostFinnikinSupportGroup. 😛