Wereworld: War of the Werelords by Curtis Jobling
|Wereworld: War of the Werelords by Curtis Jobling|
|Reviewer: Robert James|
|Summary: Stunning climax to an epic series. Massively recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 480||Date: October 2013|
|External links: Author's website|
Warning: Major spoilers for the previous five Wereworld books below. (Apart from anything else, there's so many deaths in the series that just knowing who's left standing by the start of book six is something of a spoiler in itself!)
With the Catlords at each other's throats, there appears to finally be a chance for Drew Ferran and his allies to win the war and bring peace to Lyssia. Stacked against him, though, are still fearsome foes - including the dreadful Wyld Wolves, mockeries of lycanthropes. Meanwhile Drew's adoptive brother Trent, bitten by one of the vile creatures, knows that he is doomed to become one but is determined to gain his revenge before he loses control. As the opposing forces gather, huge armies could decide the fate of the Seven Realms... but in Icegarden, perhaps the most deadly force of them all still has a part to play in this war.
Isn't it amazing? You wait a decade or so for a truly fantastic six book series for teens with a stunning conclusion, and then three come to an end in the space of one year. Yes, following in the footsteps of the awesome Gone by Michael Grant, and Ally Carter's wonderful Gallagher Girls, Curtis Jobling has brought his Wereworld sequence to a suitably epic finale here.
The politics of Lyssia and Bast and the shifting alliances, the plot twists and turns, and the great fight scenes are as good as ever here, but what has always placed this series above most teen fantasy has been the wonderful characterisation. While Drew's hero's journey has been an enjoyable read, there are several character arcs which over the course of the sextet have been just as interesting (and arguably more so, in some cases.) Hector's struggle against sinking into darkness has always been the one that fascinated me the most, closely followed by Gretchen's development from a spoilt young lady into a real heroine and Vega's change from a playboy pirate to a brave and loyal friend to Drew. In this book, though, Trent takes centre stage for a fair part of the novel and completes his transformation from minor misguided antagonist to a true hero in a stunning plot strand.
On something of a side note, having originally said in my review of Wereworld: Rise of the Wolf that the villains were pure evil, it's interesting to note that over the course of the series there's been much more of a move to shades of grey. The villains vary from the irredeemable to those with their own codes of honour, while the tactics being used by the heroes as they get more and more desperate have started to become more questionable at times.
It's also unpredictable, exciting, and a tearjerker in parts - I was taken completely by surprise by one death in particular (and having tried to guess who'd stay alive, I had a terrible record!) If anything, it could arguably have been a little bit longer - not normally a criticism I have of books spanning this length, but a sign of just how much I've grown to enjoy this world.
On the other hand, while the climax resolves almost everything, there are just a couple of loose ends left open... could it be that six books aren't quite enough after all? It's a fine finish if it is, but I'll hold on to my hope that we may get another book or two. If not, back to crossing my fingers for a prequel featuring Wergar, or at the very least a companion book to the series! (There's an eight page character list, featuring a hundred characters, at the start which is just begging to be developed into an encyclopedia!)
Hugely recommended, both as a book and a series. (I could say that it's incredible, but since I used that word three times in as many sentences in my review of book one I think I've probably reached my limit!)
As mentioned above, another epic sequence to have come to an end this year is Michael Grant's superb Gone by Michael Grant series. While that's sci-fi rather than fantasy, there are enough things in common with Wereworld - including the 'shades of grey' characterisation, the power of normal people to make a difference in a world of mutated teens there (as opposed to Werelords here), and the superb character arcs - to make me very happy to recommend it as a great read for fans of this series.
You can read more book reviews or buy Wereworld: War of the Werelords by Curtis Jobling at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
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