Thursday, 10 December 2015

Book Review: The Forever Song by Julie Kagawa

Vengeance will be hers.

Allison Sekemoto once struggled with the question: human or monster? With the death of her love, Zeke, she has her answer.


Allie will embrace her cold vampire side to hunt down and end Sarren, the psychopathic vampire who murdered Zeke. But the trail is bloody and long, and Sarren has left many surprises for Allie and her companions - her creator Kanin, and her blood brother, Jackal. The trail is leading straight to the one place they must protect at any cost - the last vampire-free zone on Earth, Eden. And Sarren has one final, brutal shock in store for Allie.

In a ruined world where no life is sacred and former allies can turn on you in one heartbeat, Allie will face her darkest days. And if she succeeds, her triumph will be short-lived in the face of surviving forever alone.



The Blood of Eden series has been one of my favourite YA book series for some time now, I would even go as far to say that I think it is the best YA series since The Hunger Games. I bought The Forever Song (the last book in the series) when it came out last year it took me a long time to get round to reading. I didn't put off reading it because I wasn't interested, I put off reading it because I was scared. It turns out I was right to be fearful.

Oh Julie, Julie, Julie. We need to have a serious conversation. I trusted you and then you went and stamped all over my heart. Anyone who follows my reviews knows that I don't really do Book Boyfriends. I rarely get book crushes but then you created Kanin. I cannot say what it is about this character that appeals to me so much but it is potent. I have never crushed on a book character, shit I haven't crushed on some of my ex boyfriends, the way I crushed on Kanin. To me he was perfect, more of a book soul mate than a book boyfriend. But then it all came crashing down, why? Because you killed him! I cried Julie, I WAS ON MY LUNCH BREAK AT WORK, JULIE! (It was awkward to say the least.) Look, I get why you did it I really do. It was about redemption, about finding closure but it broke my heart in two, so thanks for that.

Now that I have properly unleashed my Kanin feels I can get on with this book review. The Forever Song is the weakest of the trilogy, (and I am not just saying that because I am wounded) but I still absolutely loved it. It may be the weakest of the three but it is still up there with my favourite YA books. At this point I firmly believe that Julie Kagawa is incapable of writing a bad book. Her work is so rich and her world building so imaginative that it would be impossible for anything she penned to be bad.

Another reason I love, not only this book, but the whole series is that way Kagawa treats her audience. She doesn't treat her readers like children, she doesn't hold back the bad stuff to protect them. Julie Kagawa is prepared to go to some dark places the tone of the book is almost one of despair, there is gore, violence and horror. Sex, death and a lot of swearing. I love that she takes those risks and I find her work to be richer because of it.

I am sad to say farewell to these characters. They were just as likeable and magnetic in The Forever Song as they were in the previous two books. Allison is one of my favourite YA characters ever. She is flawed and can make bad decisions but she isn't selfish or arrogant. I find her real and gritty, in her relationship with Zeke she is the one with the harsher nature, she is the fighter and he is softer and more emotional. I have already talked about Kanin at length so I won't make you suffer with any more. Yet, despite my feelings for him it was Jackal who ended up being my favourite character, in this book and maybe in the series as a whole. The raider king breaths life into this story, without him this book could have fallen flat. Jackal isn't always easy to like, he can be nasty and his reluctance to feel any guilt over the people he has killed and what he is can, at times, be hard to swallow. Yet, behind all of that there is something softer and sweeter lingering under the surface. He pushes people away, he doesn't want to care but he does, he cares quite a lot I think. He pretends to be callous, to not give a damn but he is wiser than he wants to admit and often is the voice of reason. He is a complex and funny character and I have to admit that he has worked his way past all my Kanin feels into my heart.

Despite my sadness I do feel like this series has come to a satisfying conclusion. Yet, not everything about this final instalment was perfect. There was a little too much angst, and a little too much teen romance drama for my liking. I am not going to complain much, there is not much wrong to warrant it but The Forever Song didn't quite grip me like The Immortal Rules and The Eternity Cure did, which is why I am giving it four stars instead of five.

Oh and Julie, if you want to make up for taking a sledgehammer to my heart then putting it through a meat grinder a Jackal spin off, preferably adult, (because that shit would be red hot,) would be a fine place to start. Wink, wink.

4 stars

Find out more

The Forever Song by Julie Kagawa, blood of Eden book 3
Published May 2nd 2014 by MIRA Ink
Image courtesy of Goodreads

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