The events of the Eighteenth Moon left Ethan Wate separated from Lena Duchannes and everyone else in his hometown of Gatlin. Despite wanting nothing more his whole life than to see his hometown in his rear view mirror, right now he’s determined to get back there. To return to Lena.
Lena refuses to believe Ethan is gone for good, even though everyone else seems to believe he’s not coming back. She’s willing to do anything, including trusting an old enemy and going toe-to-toe with the most dangerous Caster in the world, to bring him home.
Beautiful Redemption is the final book in The Caster Chronicles, and it ties up a majority of the loose ends from the series. To be fair, the single leftover loose end might have been a continuation of a conflict from the previous book and I’m just looking for it to have a deeper meaning.
The biggest problem for me with Beautiful Redemption was I never worried Ethan or Lena would fail to achieve their goals. Yes, both ran headlong into obstacles that stalled their forward progress. But those obstacles simply slowed down the story’s pacing, never making me question their ability to succeed.
I narrowed the problem down to the coincidences that just happened to crop up. Ethan just happens to figure out how to communicate with Lena when another character has been unable to communicate with him during the past few years. And then Lena manages to stumble upon another character while searching for a way to get Ethan back and said character is able to arrange the next step they need to take.
This kind of avoidance of challenging the characters or even letting them fail made Beautiful Redemption read like a quest type of story. For me, it never drew me into their emotional struggles because I never questioned how the book would end.
The silver lining (as in all of The Caster Chronicles for me if I’m being honest) is Macon Ravenwood. He’s still nowhere near as big of a player as I would like to see, but he’s certainly a presence when he’s featured in a scene. I love the little details we learned about him from Lena as they added dimension to his character. I’m still holding out hope that Garcia and Stohl might decide to write a proper story featuring him.
For a reader who enjoyed the first three books in the series, they won’t be disappointed with Beautiful Creatures. It relies so heavily on the relationship between Lena and Ethan built in the previous books, that new readers might be lost.
Beautiful Redemption by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl is published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and came out in 2012.