The survivors of the Monument 14 have finally made it to the safety of a Canadian refugee camp. Dean and Alex are cautiously starting to hope that a happy ending might be possible.
But for Josie, separated from the group and trapped in a brutal prison camp for exposed Type Os, things have gone from bad to worse. Traumatized by her experiences, she has given up all hope of rescue or safety.
Meanwhile, scared by the government's unusual interest in her pregnancy, Astrid (with her two protectors, Dean and Jake in tow) joins Niko on his desperate quest to be reunited with his lost love Josie.
Author Emmy Laybourne reaches new heights of tension and romance in this action-packed conclusion to the Monument 14 trilogy.
Review: Whew! Is your heart still pounding from that ending? I'm fairly outspoken about my views of POV switches, but I think Lambourne carried it off brilliantly at the end of Sky on Fire, and I was grateful I'd checked out the entire series to just launch into the final book.
My expectations were high. Lambourne has done such a good job with the series so far that I expected a truly grand finale. While the book itself started a little slow, it quickly escalated into what I hoped to find.
Not all of the Monument 14 have made it to the refugee camp, one being lost and one having run away for the safety of the group. Those who have made it miss Josie, the "mother" of the group, but they are starting to find some normalcy in their new way of life. However, Astrid has started to notice that the girls who are pregnant are disappearing, and she's scared. She wants to flee, but how? And why should she with no proof? The appearance of an article with Josie's picture in a concentration-camp-like facility, and the hope they can reunite her with the rest of the group, gives Dean and Astrid the reason they need to flee, but are they truly better off on their own?
Lambourne has truly crafted some incredible characters, and watching them complete their journeys was not in one bit disappointing. The overt sex that bothered me in the other books is missing in this book, and honestly, it made it better. We get to see the true motivations of the characters, seeing their growth and their failings. It was amazing. It was terrifying. It was gripping. I loved it.
It's funny to me how much I want to see all the characters, even the ones I don't like, grow and learn, and how upset I get when that doesn't always happen. However, every character behaved exactly how they would have had they been real people. Lambourne recognized who her characters truly were, spots and all, and held them true.
This was a satisfying end to an incredible series. I'd suggest it for slightly more mature teen readers, though, given some of the more mature themes of the series.
Rating: Four stars
For the Sensitive Reader: There is an attempted rape scene, some brutally violent outbursts in the concentration camp, horrid guards, and a few more incidents with those exposed to the crazy-making chemicals.