Brilliance of the Moon: Battle for Maruyama

October 11, 2017 at 6:00 pm (Reads) (, )

battleBrilliance of the Moon: Battle for Maruyama by Lian Hearn

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Tales of the Otori has been about Takeo and Kaede, first and foremost. The plots are complex enough to keep a reader engaged, but the real focus of the books have been the two main characters and their relationship. Their stakes have risen, and the plots against them are circling closer, as we enter the third act of the saga. Given that the last book ended on a cliffhanger of an ending, none of this is a surprise.

Hearn brings in a new point-of-view character here, Shizuka, which felt odd to me. It was necessary to bring her in to tell all the angles of the story, but to bring her in so close to the end of the story feels clunky. I feel like authors should know which characters will be central to their story from the beginning, and use them as POV characters from the start so they won’t be introduced so suddenly later in the story.

Her style continues to enchant, and her characters are intriguing. Nothing stays still as Hearn takes us through to the events that will conclude the series, but there’s still a gentle, susurrating pace here that lulls you into a false feeling of complacency. It’s a strange dichotomy, but it works remarkably well.

Battle for Marumaya isn’t a book to read by itself; you’ll need Scars of Victory on hand to finish this series quickly. Of course, the book isn’t one to start with, either, since if you do, you miss out on Takeo and Kaede’s relationship developing over the previous two books. Take my word for it: start at the beginning.

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