Review: The Light of All That Falls (The Licanius Trilogy #3) by James Islington


Rating: 8.5/10

Synopsis

The Light of All That Falls concludes the epic adventure that began in The Shadow of What Was Lost, the acclaimed fantasy blockbuster from James Islington.

The Boundary is whole once again, but it may be too late.

Banes now stalk Andarra, while in Ilin Illan, the political machinations of a generation come to a head as Wirr’s newfound ability forces his family’s old enemies into action.

Imprisoned and alone in a strange land, Davian is pitted against the remaining Venerate as they work tirelessly to undo Asha’s sacrifice – even as he struggles with what he has learned about the friend he chose to set free.

And Caeden, now facing the consequences of his centuries-old plan, must finally confront its reality – heartbroken at how it began, and devastated by how it must end.

Review

“The old saying is wrong, you know–a common enemy does not a friendship make. You can only ever be as good as the people you are willing to fight beside. […] Alliances made from convenience only ever weaken a cause.”

Thank you to Orbit books for a review copy. Receiving this book did not affect my review in any way. I continued my trilogy buddy read with Eleni (find her blog here!) and Sam (check out Sam’s review here!) and could not have asked for better discussion partners!

The Light of All That Falls is a satisfying conclusion to a really solid trilogy full of compelling characters, monsters, excellent worldbuilding, uncertain loyalties, heart thumping action, and moments full of emotion.

Islington continued to impress in his debut series with his characters in particular. I have really enjoyed Caeden’s POV throughout the entire trilogy, but in this final installment I grew to love the other three POVs almost as much. Davian especially had a lot of things happen and a lot of development that made his part of the story so engaging to follow. Asha and Wirr were excellent as always as all four of these POV characters strive to save the world from destruction and death.

“Believing in El, trying to follow His rules, doesn’t make you in some way superior. If anything, it makes you more aware that none of us can claim to be truly good. That’s why forgiveness is so important.…..I’m not suggesting that enemies should suddenly be friends, but I am choosing to forgive. Because if I don’t, I’m nothing more than empty words.”

I loved how Islington connected all the pieces of the puzzle that he has been hinting at throughout the entire trilogy. I was very impressed with how satisfying the ending of this book and series turned out to be. Islington had weaved quite a few threads throughout this series that if handled wrong could have been disastrous. However, this debut author did a great job and although I wish it could have been slightly more epic of an ending, I left it feeling very satisfied in how Islington handled it.

This entry continued the trend of having stellar worldbuilding and lore, not as pretty background pieces, but as integral parts of the story that is unfolding in front of us. As this story continued to progress I found myself really enjoying how Islington continued to handle that in a way that most debut authors, and even authors who have published many books, are unable to.

As I said above, The Light of All that Falls was a very satisfying conclusion to this trilogy. I can now say that I definitely recommend the Licanius trilogy to fans of epic fantasy with complex worldbuilding that is not overdone, characters that you come to care for rather quickly, and a plot that will keep you intrigued until the very last page.

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