Friday, January 17, 2014

The Book of the Crowman - Spoilers, Sweetie

The Book of the Crowman (Black Dawn #2)The Book of the Crowman by Joseph D'Lacey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As Gordon Black draws ever closer to the Crowman, Megan Maurice walks the Black Feathered Path and chronicles the Crowman's tale for the good of the world. How are Gordon and the Crowman linked? And is the Crowman the world's destroyer or its salvation?

I got this from the fine folks at Angry Robot and Netgalley.

This review contains copious spoilers so read at your own risk.

All good things must come to an end and here we are, the end of the Black Dawn Duology. Gordon Black's and Megan Maurice's tales progress and intersect in dramatic fashion. Megan continues learning how to be a Keeper, walking the Weave and experiencing the story of Gordon Black and his quest to find the Crowman. Gordon leaves a trail of dead Wardsmen in his wake, trying to sniff out the Crowman at any cost.

In The Book of the Crowman, the Black Dawn speeds toward its inevitable conclusion. I had a pretty good idea what Gordon Black's final fate was going to be before I opened the book but Joseph D'Lacey made me work for it and it still cut me deep when it happened. I loved reading about Gordon's conflicted relationship with Denise and his neverending battle against the Ward and was sad when he met his final fate.

Megan's story, that of her chronicling Gordon Black's quest and learning to be a Keeper, was interesting in different ways. I loved that her and Gordon's paths intersected a couple times due to the Weave and some timey wimey stuff.

As with Black Feathers, the book had a strong ecological message. It was also very pro-women, what with only a woman being able to cleave the Keepers to the land once and for all. While I had an inkling that Gordon would wind up being The Crowman from the start, I had no idea how far things would go. I sure didn't see him going the Jesus/Braveheart route at the end.

There's a lot more I have to say but it's hard to put it into words. The Book of the Crowman reminds me of harsher versions of the kind of books Neil Gaiman and Charles DeLint write, exploring what it means to be a symbol for the people. There's also a Native American feel at times. It's a pretty powerful book.

While I didn't enjoy it quite as much as Black Feathers, it's still definitely worth your time. If you're a fan of dystopias, environmentally conscious fiction, Neil Gaiman, or Charles DeLint, you'll want to pick this up. Four out of five stars.

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