Friday, April 21, 2023

🍷🍷🍷🍷 #Review of From the Grave by Kresley Cole

Title: From the Grave
Series:  The Arcana Chronicles #6
Author: Kresley Cole
Format: 356 pages, Kindle Edition
Published: April 18, 2023
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Reviewer: Crystal
Source: Author
Rating: 4 out of 5
Kresley Cole’s New York Times bestselling Arcana Chronicles series comes to a spectacular and fiery conclusion in this final installment.

When even the gods hold their breath . . .

To defeat the Emperor and Fortune, Evie, the great Empress of Arcana, must repair her bond with Death, despite the earth-shattering developments between them.

And danger lurks in every shadow . . .

Their allies—a sea witch, a band of roving warriors, and more than a couple of rogues—overcome terrifying obstacles to help them. But when Jack makes a shocking discovery, the fallout threatens to tear their alliance apart.

One girl could deliver salvation—or doom.

If the Empress and her friends can remain united, will their powers be enough to defeat a catastrophic curse on the world, or will hellfire reign forever? The end looms for us all until the best hand wins. . . .

Crystal's Thoughts:

"I was the vines. I was the trees. I was the very earth. Motherfucking Earth."

Kresley Cole's The Arcana Chronicles comes to a stunning conclusion five years in the making, and it was one hell of a ride!

From the Grave picks up right where The Dark Calling left off. Following the battle with the Hanged Man, Evie has returned to castle Lethe and Aric to rebuild their trust and repair their relationship, as well as prepare to start a family together. Meanwhile, Jack and Gabriel are on the hunt for other Major Arcana seeking possible allies for the coming battle with the Emperor and Fortune. But they're all running out of time... Minor Arcana are assembling and they have the Empress in their sites, while deadly flash freezes are ravaging what's left of civilization, and the Gods don't seem to be playing by the same rules. The fate of the world hangs in the balance...Can Evie and her allies find a way to end the game that doesn't result in the death of them all? Or will the God's viscous tournament play on?

Now, it's been five years since that last book, The Dark Calling, was released, so it did take me a hot minute to remember what had happened and catch myself up with the storyline. Once I did though, wow, what a rollercoaster! The beginning of the book starts out pretty sedate compared to the rest of the series, and I was on the edge of my seat waiting for the other shoe to drop. But I honestly loved that time, because readers got to see a side of Death that we had yet to know. All of those intricate layers piled on by grief and despair were peeled away. I was rooting for Death from the get-go, his story is tragic and turbulent, and who doesn't love a good, morally gray love interest? Evie's character has been forged in fire, and I've really enjoyed watching her develop throughout the series, but here is where she really grows into her own, as does her relationship with both Circe and Finn. Not to mention Jack, the rest of the guys, and their growing comradeship. The narrative was powerful and raw, and once this group is forced to leave the castle, pulse-pounding choices lead to furious action. There were heart-warming and humorous moments, as well as the grisly and devastating. Kresley didn’t pull any punches, and there were many situations that pulled at my heartstrings and left me in tears. Aric's letters to Evie and Jack absolutely gutted me.

I didn't see anything in this book coming, but it worked and made sense. The ending was not what I expected. There were times where I had no idea where Cole was going with it. Other times I flipped back in my book to see if I missed something. From the Grave is exactly what fans have come to expect from this talented author I think. And while I can't say that I loved how this epic tale was concluded, I was satisfied with it. Though I despaired at not having an extended epilogue where we were able to bear witness to the happily-ever-after instead of being told it happened. The Arcana Chronicles is nonetheless an entrancing tale from start to finish with unforgettable characters, and I have absolutely enjoyed every second of the journey. Hail Tar Ro!

"Know that you and I will see each other again. I will search through the ether of eternity until we reunite. You have my love, my dearest Evie. It's given. Wholly entrusted to you. And you had such care with it."

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