Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Crown of Renewal by Elizabeth Moon

 So, Elizabeth Moon finally brings the Paladin's Legacy series to a close with this book. She borrows a few tricks from David Weber, in maintaining the suspense through telling the story in multiple POVs, but keeps it simple enough for mere mortals to follow.

All of the threads containing our old friends are brought to successful conclusions, and she leaves just enough questions unanswered and notes suspended to make one hope for a return to the saga at some time.

******Spoilers below********

The demon-possessed tyrant, Immer, is on the move, having stolen part of the ancient Regalia, he is driven to possess it all, believing it will let him rule the world. The dark elves, or Iynisin, are on the move, also trying to gain possession of the crown locked in the Treasury. After a nearly successful attempt leaves Camwyn badly wounded, the king sends for Dorrin to take it away from his land to Aare, where it seems to wish to go, anyway.

Kieri and Arian are raising their twins, and his sense of the taig and connection to the Old magic of the humans is growing rapidly. He and Paksennarion work together to cast a spell backwards in time to put the mage lords to sleep in the cavern where they appear in the early books in the series, and then when the dragon instructs him that he is about to destroy that place, Kieri uses the Old magic to bring them forward in time, hoping for their aid in his struggles with evil.

Former thief and assassin, Arvid, grows rapidly in his knowledge of Gird's Laws and ends up promoted far beyond his expectations. The mage hunters have been targeting families and children, and all of the Girdsmen who follow the Marshall-General are trying to stop them. The Marshall-General was wounded in the previous book by a poisoned Iynisin dagger and is not healing well, so Paksennarion must find a Kuoknomen who is willing to travel far from his grove to heal her.

Arcolin leads the mercenaries in the South in the fight against Immer's forces, trying to retake town's lost in the last fighting season.

So, I suppose it's allowed, in a book about magic and gods who speak to mortals, to use a deus ex machina twist at the end to wrap things up, but it just feels a little like cheating to me when Immer is strangled by the magic necklace he's been wearing for months, Dorrin is transformed into a goddess of sorts herself, and the mage hunters are defeated by Gird's power manifesting itself and striking them all down with bolts of lightning.

Bummed that it's over once more, mildly disappointed in the way it all turned out. Still and all, a good read and a marvelous series returning to the world of Sheepfarmer's Daughter.

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