Ten years have passed in Terre d'Ange, peace and prosperity for the country, and for Phedre and Joscelin. Phedre has never forgotten Hyacinche, still trapped by the curse of the angel Rahab, and has long searched for (and never found) the one thing which could free him - the name of god. Then comes a request for help from Melisand Sharizhai, her son Imriel, hidden away in secret these ten years is now missing, presumed abducted. And if Phedre will search for him, Melisande promises a lead on the lost tribe of the yeshuites, and perhaps the name of god.
Phedre's third and final adventure, is bigger, scarier, more dangerous, and much more exciting than the last. I couldn't have believed that Jacqueline Carey knew how to better the last book, but she did.
I was glad to see that Phedre and Joscelin's relationship has solidified somewhat, I guess 10 years without mishap worked well for them. But it's still amazing, the trial that happen to their relationship. When phedre gets involved in something because she must, because Kushiel wills it, and Joscelin stands by her no matter what, no matter what danger she puts herself in, he has to watch her do it, and be there to protect her.. I still think this has to be the most heroic and romantic partnership in the history of fantasy fiction. I don't think I've read better or cried more for a long time.
The lore and history of the books is still brilliant also, the storyline roughly follows the legend of the lost tribes of israel (jewish lore), but as I know barely anything about that in real terms, I couldn't say anything about how the story was used, or how close to 'realistic' it was, I don't even know much of the relative countries in modern terms... But I can say that it was amazingly well written. Especially exciting is the rare instances of 'magic' or visions and such that occur, the majority of the style is more historical fiction style than fantasy, so when the magic creeps in, melded subtly in, you almost don't see it coming, but it makes some amazing scenes.
I would guess that anyone reading this review has probably already read the first two books, but if you haven't, you really should, because this trilogy only gets better and better. And they're huge long books but so well worth the reading time. I lost my 7% lead on my book challenge while reading these, but I don't regret it. See my other reviews of Kushiel's Legacy:
← #2 Kushiel's Chosen
| #4 Kushiel's Scion