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Review: ‘Heroes’ Reward’, Book 7 of the Hero Series, by Moira J. Moore

July 10, 2013

Heroes' Reward cover artSummary: Source Shintaro Karish and Shield Dunleavy Mallorough have lived in Taro’s childhood home of Flown Raven for five years. They have created a home with Taro’s cousin, the duchess, and with the villagers. But when they are summoned to Shidonee’s Gap by the Triple S Council, their lives are shaken up in unexpected ways.  Taro and Lee leave their family and the comfort of Flown Raven and once again travel out into the world.

What they find is an rude awakening.  Regular people no longer treat the Pairs with respect, or at least with politeness.  Attacks on Pairs are frequent, which leaves Taro and Lee bewildered and confused.  And there are rumors about the Emperor becoming unbalanced and Pairs disappearing.

At Shidonee’s Gap, more changes await Taro and Lee.  Their relationship is treated like a shameful, hideous abomination, and the Triple S itself has changed in ways Taro and Lee find unsettling.  When they are called into the Council, they are asked to account for all of the lies and half-truths they told the Council over the years–and must decide if they should continue to keep their secrets, or finally confess.

On top of their Triple S problems, Taro is once again summoned to the Emperor’s side, despite the illegality of the Emperor’s action.  With the rumors about the ruler’s crumbling sanity, does Taro dare refuse?

My Thoughts: What a fitting end to the series!  I could not have imagined a better ending to wrap things up.  There was drama, there was action, there was adventure and intrigue–and, most importantly, a very satisfying ending.  I have to say, the ending wasn’t quite what I had suspected or entirely hoped for, but it was so much better than I could have thought.  I can’t believe the publisher wouldn’t publish the final book and Ms. Moore had to do it herself.  True, the previous book did end well and could have worked as an ending for the series–except there were many unanswered questions, and that wouldn’t have gone over very well if it was the end of the series (I know it wouldn’t have with me).  So thank you, Ms. Moore, for releasing the final book!!

One thing I can mention but can’t go into too much detail about without giving away some twists: Aryne is back.  And she’s awesome.  I’ll give you a little hint: she’s just as unusual as the Pair who found her and she causes just as much trouble.  Now, that’s all I’m saying about Aryne. Any more and I’ll give away too much!

By now, Taro and Lee are comfortable and in sync with each other.  They work together seamlessly and accomplish a great deal.  Their 8-year-old relationship has matured into something less contentious and much deeper.  It’s obvious that these two care about each other a great deal.

I wish we had seen more of a few other favorite characters, like Fiona and Stacin (I would have loved to see how Stacin had grown up, but it probably didn’t fit in well with the story). Healer Browne is featured and she’s lovely.  We do see some old faces come back into the picture, such as Aryne, but also the Emperor, Ogawa and Tennyson, and Risa.

The humor from the previous novels is still present in this one, despite the more serious and warlike nature of this book’s plot.  One of the things I liked most about this series as a whole was that it entertained.  It made me laugh.  That’s no small thing!  This book continues that humor even with its subject matter and I so appreciate that.  The humor also helped to lighten some of the more serious moment that otherwise might have come across as heavy-handed.

The plot is engrossing and kept me turning the pages well into the night.  In fact, I stayed up much too late trying to finish the book before work the next morning, and ended up reading until about 3am (oops!).  But it kept me hooked to the pages, and that’s what matters.  The plot isn’t exactly unusual–royalty sticks its nose where it doesn’t belong–but given that royalty isn’t supposed to interfere in Triple S affairs at all, it’s enough to set up a lot of tension, intrigue, and unanswered questions.  Luckily for the reader, all of the questions are answered by the end.

I can’t find anything wrong with this one.  The characters developed well, the plot kept me reading, and the end was satisfying.  This book lends itself well to re-readability.  Yes, the cover art isn’t as good as the rest of the series, but given the circumstances (that the publisher decided not to publish the final book and Ms. Moore did it herself), I’m not fussed about it.  I give this book 5 stars.

5 stars

Buy on Amazon * Author’s Website * GoodReads * Shelfari

Book info: published 2013, 332 pages, ISBN B00BAVQD6S

Copy is an e-book copy.

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