Review: The Rising

I received this book for free from YA Books Central in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The RisingThe Rising by Kelley Armstrong
Series: Darkness Rising #3
Published by HarperCollins on April 2, 2013
Genres: Adventure, Paranormal, Romance
Pages: 406
Format: ARC
Source: YA Books Central

Things are getting desperate for Maya and her friends. Hunted by the powerful St. Clouds and now a rival Cabal as well, they're quickly running out of places to hide. And with the whole world thinking they died in a helicopter crash, it's not like they can just go to the authorities for help.

All they have is the name and number of someone who might be able to give them a few answers. Answers to why they're so valuable, and why their supernatural powers are getting more and more out of control.

But Maya is unprepared for the truths that await her. And now, like it or not, she'll have to face down some demons from her past if she ever hopes to move on with her life. Because Maya can't keep running forever.

Old secrets are revealed and unexpected characters make a surprising return in this stunning conclusion to Kelley Armstrong's New York Times bestselling Darkness Rising trilogy.

First Sentence: “I was running through the forest.”

As ever, Kelley Armstrong delivers an entertaining, fast-paced, paranormal novel. With The Rising, Armstrong wraps up the Darkness Rising trilogy, though likely not her young adult tales set in this universe. The Rising brims with actions and tough decisions for the teenage characters. This review is spoiler-free for the series.

Yet again, I’m really grateful to find romance not the central element of this series. Armstrong focuses primarily on the group dynamics and world building, instead. In The Rising, Maya and her friends face their biggest challenge yet: trying to escape to cabals. The stakes are very high, and Armstrong takes a pretty unique direction with it compared to a lot of evil corporation stories. The characters all have shades of grey to their natures, and it lends a dose of realism to the supernatural story.

Almost all of the characters in the Darkness Rising series are at least somewhat sympathetic and likable. Bad guys aren’t always all bad, and the good guys have their dark sides. Maya is a powerful heroine, who takes care of herself and her friends, clearly the leader of their little pack. Daniel and Rafe, the two love interests, are both decent guys, strong and devoted to their friends. Sam, perhaps my personal favorite, is sarcastic and a bit mean, but the kind of person a group needs to have around to get things done. Hayley may be blonde, but there’s more to her. Corey’s the clown, around to lighten the mood in the tough moments. In addition to those guys, the Darkness Rising series also joins up with the Darkest Powers series, with the main characters of that series making an appearance.

While there is a love triangle, Armstrong does a nice job with it. Only at the very end is it completely certain which guy Maya will choose, for one thing. Even better, Maya never leads anyone on. She reacts honestly and openly to those around her, and never claims to love both guys equally. When she finds herself in that situation, she takes the time to think things through and make an informed decision.

The Rising does flag a bit towards the end, changing in both tone and pacing. It felt as though Armstrong realized she needed to wrap things up, and did so as quickly as possible. There’s a bit more telling through that section, and my mind wandered a bit. Still, I do like where the series left off fairly well, and do want to know more about the characters and the world.

Though the Darkness Rising series is complete, readers have not seen the last of these kids and their world, and I am very glad of that. Kelley Armstrong is the author of consistently enjoyable novels, and I recommend them to anyone who enjoys paranormal stories full of action and a bit of romance.

Favorite Quote:

“She obviously didn’t take his crap. Still, it would drive me crazy, constantly needing to remind my boyfriend that I could handle myself just fine.”

10 responses to “Review: The Rising”

  1. Molli Moran says:

    I know we talked a bit about Kelley’s books on Twitter, but I’m really happy you enjoyed this one. I’m going to cross my fingers my library has it. I own the DP trilogy, but my poor bookshelf just doesn’t have room right now for this trilogy as well. Kelley is one of my favorite authors, which I think I mentioned.

    I’m really glad Maya remains honest about the love triangle. I like Rafe, but I was surprised to find myself rooting for Daniel. I liked that the romance was never over-powering in the first two books, so I’m glad it’s still true here.

    • Christina says:

      That is a poor bookshelf indeed that doesn’t have room for more books. 🙁 I can’t imagine the library wouldn’t buy Kelley Armstrong. She’s so popular. Her books are just so fun.

      I think I was rooting for Daniel in book one, but, with these two, I didn’t really care. Both guys are good options, I think.

  2. MJ says:

    I’m really excited for this one, mainly because I heard some of the characters from Darkest Powers are going to be making cameos.

  3. Giselle says:

    Dude? Didn’t I read this the other day? OMG you know what I think I did? I totally read your Calling review thinking it was this one I was reading! BAHAHA.

    But what is up with these endings? I’m finding lately all the trilogies and series endings are either rushed or way too underwhelming for the time spent with the characters. Boo! But I’m super excited for this one Kelley rocks my book world!

    • Christina says:

      Bahaha, that explains why you said you hadn’t read it yet and I was so confused because I was like HOW HAS GISELLE NOT READ THIS YET? Nice work!

      Yeah, I feel like the problem with this one is it’s an ending to this series, but we’re clearly going to pick up again with a new teen in this group, so it’s not a REAL ending.

  4. Kendra says:

    oh gosh I am really excited about getting to read this one soon! Kelley had me reading her books ever since The Summoning and all those came out and I loved them! Thanks for the review and I can’t wait to read it myself now.

  5. I need to read The Rising, in fact it is in my to-read-before-BEA pile. Also. It thrills me to no end that you liked it! I say that because I never know how you’ll react to a book, so it’s a nice little surprise.

    I think for paranormal Armstrong is quite the cracktastic writer. And I mean that in a great way.

  6. Christina says:

    Ha, am I one of the weird unpredictable people on your blog feed? If so, that’s pretty awesome.

    She is cracktastic, but in a healthy way. Like, I know I will get a shot of fun adventure times, and I am all about that.

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