Dawnbreaker wraps up the Legends of the Duskwalker trilogy nicely. Picking up where the last book left off, Wren and his mother Cass are separated after a massive battle at Morningside — a city taken over by Cass’s other son, Asher, and the electrified zombies known as Weir that Asher seems to be able to control. Wren is about to give up, assuming all is lost, when he meets a stranger named Haiku who seems vaguely familiar.
Wren goes in to training to learn to control and command his gifts, while Cass rallies a rag-tag band of people who are willing to take the fight to Asher and the Weir and this book leads to the final battle that we’ve been anticipating since the beginning of book two.
Author Jay Posey gives a world that is at once unfamiliar and yet all-too-possibly familiar as our own future. He peoples the world with characters that ring true and are so real and human that we can not help but be drawn in to them, hoping for the best.
In book one we were introduced to Cass and Wren. Though Three was the dominant figure through the book, it was clear that Cass and her son Wren were to play a part in a larger story. In book two, it is Wren who shines and is the dominant figure, though we are introduced to a new character who also captures a great deal of attention, Asher. And now in book three, the glue that has held the three books together rises above all the other great characters that Posey has introduced. This is Cass’s book.
Although the big face off will have to come between the brothers – the good Wren against the evil Asher – Wren spends much of the book either wandering or training, while Cass is actively seeking a way to defeat Asher and the Weir. Given the tremendous amount of action that Posey gave us in the first book and followed up in the second book, this one is a slight let-down. Even the final battle just doesn’t have the kick to it that we’ve come to expect, though we do get some unexpectedly human moments that have us cheering.
The three books in the series each have a different focal character and the books themselves have a tone to them that reflect that main character. In Three, we were extremely active and secretive. The reader was constantly learning new things and working to keep up, while often being caught off-guard by Three’s actions. In Morningside Fall, the tone of the book captured the youthful innocence of Wren, maintained his energy and the eagerness to learn new things. Now in Dawnbreaker, we have the maternal sense of care and planning, while also being slightly on edge as we watch a mother looking to protect a cub, ready to spring in to action when necessary.
It is difficult to say how this book would read if you haven’t read the previous two books. I’m fairly well versed in the series and it’s hard for me not to picture the events from the previous books while reading this one. If you haven’t read the previous two books, you really should go and read them … NOW … because they are remarkable. One of the best sci-fi series’ I’ve read in a long time.
This book doesn’t offer up the pizzazz that I was hoping for, given the big battles we’ve already seen through the series. There is a battle to end the book (and the trilogy), but it wraps up rather neatly and, frankly, easily. I haven’t fully decided how I feel about this. Just because it didn’t end how I wanted it to end doesn’t make this ‘bad.’ Endings can come about in a myriad of ways. I’m pretty sure I’m going to read the entire trilogy again and then we’ll see how I feel about the culmination of events.
Looking for a good book? Dawnbreaker is the third book in the Legends of the Duskwalker trilogy, which may be one of the best sci-fi trilogies published in the last decade. Start at the beginning, with Three, and don’t stop until you get to the end.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgally, in exchange for an honest review.
* * * * * *
author: Jay Posey
series: Legends of the Duskwalker #3
publisher: Angry Robot
paperback, 512 pages