A few other reviewers have mentioned that this book feels rushed, like Dakota was ready to move on to other pastures. I agree. These last two books felt both meandering and simultaneously jam packed with history tidbits, which left me unsatisfied. My blind guess: founding Mountaindale Press has taken taken a higher priority, even if wasn’t intentional.
One thing I loved about early entries of this series was experiencing Cal explore the rules of his universe. We got to watch him hack reality, creating traps, monsters, and everything in between. It was great. This book has those same elements, but they feel different. Like a waste of time. The world is ending, the sky is falling, people are losing their minds. When we jump from those goings ons to Cal fiddling with traps, it feels insubstantial. Out of place. In the first books, he had all the time in the world to play. In these last two, he has zero. It is not the right time to tinker.
The Master is interesting, but we are given almost nothing about him. I think we needed more time to develop him as a character, rather than gather tiny, vague snippets of his past. He is a central character, yet he is given insufficient time. Same with Minya. Same with Xenocide. Same with Barry (whom took me ages to even remember). That’s perhaps why the end of this series feels so dang rushed. We needed more time with the characters.
I loved this series... for the most part. It had some truly amazing moments. Even though it didn’t end on a high note, I am sad to see it go and look forward to Mr. Krout’s (and Mountaindale Presses) other adventures.