Title: The Beauty of Darkness (The Remnant Chronicles, #3)
Author: Mary E. Pearson
Publish Date: August 2, 2016
# of Pages: 647
**Warning: Possible spoilers!**
(From Goodreads) Lia has survived Venda—but so has a great evil bent on the destruction of Morrighan. And only Lia can stop it.
With war on the horizon, Lia has no choice but to assume her role as First Daughter, as soldier—as leader. While she struggles to reach Morrighan and warn them, she finds herself at cross-purposes with Rafe and suspicious of Kaden, who has hunted her down.
In this conclusion to the Remnant Chronicles trilogy, traitors must be rooted out, sacrifices must be made, and impossible odds must be overcome as the future of every kingdom hangs in the balance.
The Beauty of Darkness, book three of The Remnant Chronicles by Mary E. Pearson, picks up where the second book left off. In this book you follow Lia, Rafe, and Rafe’s four officers as they race across the lands to Dalbreck. Along the way Kaden and Griz join them, choosing to follow and protect Lia over loyalty to Venda and the Komizar. Tension between Lia and Rafe mounts as they each battle duty and loyalty to their own countries. In the end, Lia, Rafe, and Kaden all win—their lives aren’t easy, their journey is long, but they find happiness in each other and the kingdoms they lead.
I’m still in awe over this book. In short, I loved it. What a fantastic ending to a fantastic trilogy.
Lia is an inspiration. She follows her head and sight as she guides her followers to a path that saves all the kingdoms—including the scorned kingdom of Venda. She gives people hope where there is no hope. She is compassionate but does not let her heart get in the way of duty; she does what needs to be done. I like that she is no wilting flower, nor is she a helpless damsel in distress. She’s a powerful character in her own right and wields her power for good.
Rafe is interesting in this book, and for a time, he’s difficult to like. Despite the best of intentions, he puts restrictions on Lia similar to the ones she had as a prisoner in Venda. While his love for Lia is obvious throughout the book, the sudden strain and stress in his life leads him to make bad decisions and say the wrong things. While in my head I was shouting, “Nooo! Rafe! What are you doing?” I also appreciated the complexity of his character. I think him wrestling with what he needed to do to keep Lia safe gave his character depth it wouldn’t have had otherwise. In the end, he sets Lia free to save her kingdom, trailing along afterwards to support her and fight alongside her.
Kaden is the cupcake of this book, loyal and honorable throughout. His blooming relationship with Pauline is very sweet. They both deserve happiness, and it was a welcome development that they find it in each other.
I liked that Aster continues to make appearances in the book, even in death. Aster is Lia’s strength and purpose, her reason for fighting on and giving Venda a new hope. While Lia regrets her inability to save Aster’s life, she does Aster’s death justice by giving people like her a better future. This was an appreciated addition to the book—Aster did not die in vain.
Despite my love for the book, I did struggle with the king and queen of Morrighan. Lia’s parents bring her down in much of The Remnant Chronicles, taking away her freedom and selling her off in marriage. While the queen’s intentions were to save Lia’s life, the quick turnaround in behavior and thoughts seemed slightly unbelievable in both the king and queen. I wanted to keep hating them, therefore I was continually waiting for the catch or trick behind their sudden niceness.
The ending of the book was dramatic and not what I expected. Lia rises as the newly minted Venda queen after she convinces the Vendans to lay down their swords, and Rafe retires back to Dalbreck. New treaties are signed, and Venda rebuilds itself as a kingdom with hope. I was honestly expecting Kaden to take over Venda with Lia’s support—I was not expecting Lia to lead the people as their queen. While Lia and Rafe reunite, it is not until the very end, and it is unknown how they make the relationship work since they are both independent rulers of their own kingdoms.
“One we fear to take a stand, tyranny will have won.”
“Truth was a harder skill to master than swinging a sword.”
Have you read The Remnant Chronicles. Did you like the ending?
Buy this book here*, or check it out at your local library.
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