Sequel to Into the Wind
Mermen of Ea Trilogy: Book Three
With the final confrontation between the island and mainland Ea factions looming, Taren and Ian sail with Odhrán to investigate a lost colony of merfolk in the Eastern Lands. Upon their arrival, the King of Astenya welcomes them as friends. Odhrán, however, isn’t so quick to trust the descendent of the man who held him prisoner for nearly a decade, especially now that he has someone to cherish and protect—the mysterious winged boy he rescued from the depths.
Armed with the knowledge he believes will save the Ea, Taren returns to the mainland. With Ian at his side, Taren convinces Vurin that their people must unite with their island brethren before it’s too late. When Seria and his men attack, Taren must call upon the ancient power of the rune stone to protect his comrades. But using the stone’s immeasurable power commands a hefty price—and Ian fears that price is Taren’s life.
(Previous two book reviews found here http://kimichanexperience.com/?s=mermen+of+ea)
WOW. What a conclusion! This is book three in the series and it MUST be read in order. It’s a far too complex story to jump in without the previous books as background.
In a nutshell Taren was a slave who was kidnapped by a pirate who held and sort of loved by the man who took him from a previous slave owner who wasn’t as kind. He’s rescued by Ian and the two begin their relationship – part of which is showing to Taren that he shares his body and soul with that of a merman of the people Ea. Through many trials and tribulations he also learns that his soul is bound to another’s (Treande) and that he and Ian (Owyn) shared a love in an earlier incarnation.
At the end of the last book we’d just learned about Owyn and Treande and met a whole other bevy of new characters including Sebastian and Odhrán and they have an epic battle in the end wherein Sebastian loses his lover Rider and kills himself in battle but is reborn because he’s a dragon! Now Sebastian is young again and attaching himself to Odhrán and their story continues…
The bulk of the story is Taren and Ian battling with the witch Seria and moving forward towards a new role in the government of their people. But it’s also about laying groundwork for (what I hope?!) is more story from Sebastian and Odhrán.
There’s far too much involved in this story to “summarize” and if you haven’t been following along it won’t make any sense but if you’re a fan and you haven’t read this yet – HOLD ON TO YOUR PANTS! There is SO much going on – action, adventure, battles, government building, way cool powers, destiny taking effect, past lives, future loves… it’s packed … every page is full, full, full. (The ending… so bittersweet – totally crying!)
I think for fans of fantasy this must be what heaven is like. For me, one of the things that makes me avoid the genre, is that I have to work so hard to enjoy it. What I mean is, though Shira is amazing at world building, because it is all new, every bit of it takes some brain power for me to keep up with and follow. Now, don’t get me wrong, I enjoy it, but it’s work. And all the new names and exotic sounds and places takes a bit of brain energy and sometimes I just want to easily float instead of doing the hard rowing. Shira’s world is very complex and I had to go back and forth between books one and two and three since it’d been so long since I’d been in this world. So… while my efforts are FULLY REWARDED… for me I have to work a bit and that detracts it from a perfect read just a bit.
Shira Anthony always amazes me with the width and breadth of her work. From the contemporary Blue Notes series, to the meremen of Ea to the Blood series – each so different and yet she dives so completely into the world and immerses her readers with her. She’s a gifted writer and storyteller and I think her characters are her best asset. Even the secondary characters are amazingly well thought out and three dimensional.
For fans of the series this is a sad but beautiful ending to a great series and I know many of us are hopeful there will be a spin-off with Sebastian and Odhrán!
Micahel Stellman does all the books in this series and it must take work figuring out an entire new world and giving it a voice. He does an excellent job with it and since I’ve only experienced this series through him, he defines it for me and Taren’s voice is his interoperation. I’ve really enjoyed listening to this and highly recommend it.
Overall 4.5 of 5 stars
Copy Generously Provided by Publisher for Honest Review