*I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher. This has not influenced my review.*
One of the best things about this series is the humor. Everyone talks and acts like they’re Tumblr incarnate, including bad guys, grumpy old wizards, dragons, unicorns, and random townsfolk, but it’s funny and really just part of the premise that you either have to accept or not.
Another one of the best things about this series is all the adorable, loving relationships of all kinds that make you smile and feel fuzzy.
That being said, I think this final book had too much of both those things. There was an overabundance of mushy conversations and heart-to-hearts and inner monologues about love and friendship and family and home in this book, so much of it that it got redundant, especially when there was also so much of it in the last book. And between that and all the silly scenes of Sam’s distracted rambling, Gary talking about how amazing he (Gary) is, Kevin inappropriately hitting on everyone, Ryan trying to fight everyone he thinks is interesting in Sam, and Justin muttering about how he can’t believe this is his life… not very much actually happened. By 70%, all that had happened plot-wise was Sam getting back home and a small group going on a brief, fairly simple rescue mission. I might be smote by other fans for saying this, but this was my least favorite book in the series because of how slow and repetitive it felt.
BUT it was still a fun, funny, mostly lighthearted book that cracked me up at times, and it did bring a sufficient close to Sam’s whole destiny arc. And it had touching moments. And dragons. And a play about Gary’s stolen horn. And a battle between wizards. And best friends 5eva. And love.
And it’s not entirely over! In the author’s note at the end, Klune mentioned he’ll probably be returning to the series to write from Justin’s POV, and I will be very excited for that book because Justin was a great character I felt sympathy for from the start and who grew over the series.
Overall though, Sam’s story was a fun and touching one that I enjoyed reading.
Fans of Books 1-3 in TJ Klune's Tales from Verania Series. Anyone who likes modern humor, adorable friendships and family, M/M romance, sassy characters, and sweet stories.
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Nearly a year ago, blinded by grief and betrayal, Sam of Wilds made a desperate decision to follow the Great White into the Dark Woods. Now, he emerges to a world changed.
The City of Lockes is a prison. The King has been locked away in the dungeons. The Kingdom of Verania has fallen, and the Dark wizard Myrin sits on the throne.
But soon after his return, Sam learns of a resistance fighting in his name led by a courageous knight, a defiant prince, a pissed-off unicorn, and a half-giant who wants to smash everything in sight. If he has any hope of defeating the villains who have taken their home, Sam must face the consequences of his choices—and the friends he left behind.
LGBT+ Rep: Gay (Love Interest), Gay (Main Character)
Non-Human Type: Dragons, Mancers/Mages
Extra Love: Adorable Family, Adorable Found Family, Adorable Friendship, Funny, Healthy Relationship