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The Edge of Dawn by Melinda Snodgrass
Cover Artist: Chris McGrath
Review by Drew Bittner
Tor Books Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780765338167
Date: 04 August 2015 List Price $26.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK

Links: Author's Website / Show Official Info /

Richard Oort and his dwindling band of loyal allies is up against it. The Old Ones are close to a final breakthrough into our world, he hasn't mastered the tools he needs to fight, and his mentor is powerless and unable to help. The only ray of hope is that there's another who might be able to use the paladin's weapon...and she's a nine year old Navajo girl.

Things are not looking good.

Also by Melinda Snodgrass:
* The Edge of Reason
* The Edge of Ruin
* Edge of Dawn

In the final part of the Edge series, Melinda Snodgrass brings the battle against the Old Ones to a rousing finale. Richard must rally his forces, even as their power erodes, for a last battle. Although he's picked up some worthy allies, including former enemy Mark Grenier and Cross, his former boss Kenntnis cannot help him. Worse, he's the only one able to use a sword that can destroy the Old Ones...which makes him invaluable and irreplaceable, even as he must endanger himself in every fight.

The discovery of Mosi, a little girl who survived an Old One incursion of her own, changes everything. She's a Navajo girl who shares Richard's abilities. If he falls, she could continue the fight, assuming she lives long enough. Richard's enemies are doing all they can to ensure that won't happen.

The Old Ones--who would bring down civilization, science and knowledge--have powerful followers, but their greater advantage is that reality itself gets strange around them. Richard has encountered that effect several times, but he hasn't discovered the enemy's end game. Working blind has put him at a severe disadvantage--so he needs information. All he knows is that amoral business magnate Alexander Titchen appears to be near the center of things.

While Richard makes moves against the Old Ones, betrayal is plotted and moves against Lumina Enterprises are made. Before he knows it, Richard and Mosi are on the run for their lives without their weapon, even as the biggest incursion of all takes shape. Richard and his young ally must hurry to Turkey, where the final battle will take place. If they cannot find the weapon and head off Titchen's master plan, the world itself will be destroyed.

In The Edge of Dawn, Snodgrass delivers a solid, satisfying conclusion to her trilogy. Richard has grown from a disbelieving cop to a decisive and determined hero. He's taking the final steps, in this book, to fulfill his destiny; much like Arthur after Merlin was taken away, he must trust in himself to see things through to the end, whatever it might cost. He discovers a significant other as well, adding more dimensions to his life.

Mosi, whose introduction includes escaping a murderer corrupted by the Old Ones, is by turns hero-in-training and terrified girl. Snodgrass gives her plenty of emotional range to work with, even as the story moves briskly around her. She isn't a miniature Ellen Ripley or a damsel in distress; she's a girl who's doing the best she can in a world that doesn't make sense any longer.

Grenier, as the enemy turned ally, also has an interesting story arc here. He tries to steer Richard in certain directions, but nobody can be sure of his ultimate goals. And as Richard keeps him at arms length, Grenier has reason to question his loyalties--and ask what he's really doing helping a paladin undo his life's work.

A terrific conclusion to this epic urban fantasy, Snodgrass continues to define the genre on her own terms. This is one book readers should grab on to now, because it might prove to be a harbinger for the next phase of urban fantasy.


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