________________ CM . . . . Volume XVI Number 32. . . .April 23, 2010


The Reckoning. (The Darkest Powers Series, Book 3).

Kelley Armstrong.
Toronto, ON: Doubleday Canada, 2010.
391 pp., pbk., $17.95.
ISBN 978-0-385-66536-0.

Grades 9-12 / Ages 14-17.

Review by Jennifer Draper.

**** /4



Fingers brushed my face, making me jump back from the door. Across the room, nails scraped along the floor.

“He’s coming,” a voice whispered. “The master is coming.”

“M-master?” I said.

“They lie, “ the demi-demon said. “It’s just another---“

A wail at my ear drowned her out. I jumped back, knocking over a chair and falling hard. A blast of desert wind whipped my hair in my face, twisting my clothibng, binding me. I heard the sounds of struggle, the curses of the demi-demon barely rising over the gibbering and shrieking of spirits.

Then, as suddenly as it had begun, it ended.

The Reckoning, the third in "The Darkest Powers Series," continues the story begun in The Summoning of a group of teens with supernatural powers. The main character, Chole, is a necromancer—she can literally raise the dead. She and the other teens are first held captive, then hunted by the Edison group. This group was supposed to exist to assist supernaturals through scientific research and experiment. The teens were a genetic experiment, and, if the scientists don't think they are a success, the "subjects" are terminated. In the first book, the Edison group attempted to have the subjects raised as normal children, unaware of their special powers. But when they come into their powers violently at adolescence, then the subjects are whisked away to a group home and told they are suffering from a mental illness. After all, no sane person sees dead people, right? In this book, the Edison group gives up the pretext of mental illness and decides to train the teens in their powers—under lock and key.

    The third book starts with the group supposedly safe and on the run. The father of Derek the werewolf and Simon the sorcerer has gathered together a group of adults that will train the teens to use their powers. But something does not feel right. The teens notice how uncomfortable they make the adults who are afraid of the strength of their powers. This starts the double-crossing part of the novel wherein the teens end up not knowing whom to trust except each other.

     The theme of adults imposing their will on the teens runs throughout the novel. It seems that every decision made is counterproductive or is malicious towards the teens. Death is an often occurrence, and character after character is killed off. This at least gives Chole the necromancer someone to talk to, but it can get a little disturbing. The best part of the whole book, and the one that readers are waiting for, is at the end. After three books in the series, Chole gets the boy she did not know she wanted. Werewolves and demons, back-stabbing adults and witches abound in this amazing third book in the series.

Highly Recommended.

Jennifer Draper is a librarian at the Pickering Public Library in Pickering, ON.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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