The Realm of the Gods
By: Tamora Pierce
During a dire battle against the fearsome Skinners, Daine and her mage teacher Numair are swept into the Divine Realms. Though happy to be alive, they are not where they want to be. They are desperately needed back home, where their old enemy, Ozorne, and his army of strange creatures are waging war against Tortall. Trapped in the mystical realms Daine discovers her mysterious parentage. And as these secrets of her past are revealed so is the treacherous way back to Tortall. So they embark on an extraordinary journey home, where the fate of all Tortall rests with Daine and her wild magic.
An enjoyable conclusion to a wonderful tale. Having finished the series, I can now emphatically say that I really loved reading Daine's journey. However, I didn't connect to it on the same level that I did Alanna's story. By no fault of the series, I just identified more with Alanna. But the interesting thing about reading The Immortal series was loving a character so different than myself.
I liked the plot of this one, weird as it was. It wasn't what I was expecting out of a final book, but I really enjoyed that about it. It was unexpected, sort of new territory. While it did feel too quick to me. There wasn't enough build-up. Everything was solved in one fell swoop and then we were at the final end of the series. I think it was that this ending felt too much like the endings of the other books, rather than like an ending to a whole series.
I wish Daine's relationship with her father had been cultivated a little further. I know there wasn't much time to do so, but there was all of this emotional background leading up to it. I expected a bit more. We've been told how she never knew who her father was, then she finds out he's a god. But she doesn't seem all that interested in getting to know him, which just struck me as odd.
But those were really my only complaints. I liked seeing all of the characters from various books again, seeing them defeat the final enemy. Tamora Pierce is great at creating engaging stories without the use of manipulative tricks or cheap thrills. You are invested in the story because it is told well and because you are invested in the characters.
I try not to say this in every review, but these books feel really refreshing. They don't pretend to be something that they're not, and you easily learn to love what they are presenting.
"Haven't we all thought something's a joy, only to find that it's evil inside?"
"It is her nature to strive, to overset, to imagine all as being different...Still, to follow one's nature is no excuse to openly defy one's parents."