Release Date: 4/10/2012
Target Audience: Teens/Young Adults
Synopsis: Having escaped from Hong Kong, the five gatekeepers - Matt, Pedro, Scott, Jamie and Scarlett - are scattered in a hostile and dangerous world. As they struggle to re-group and plan their next move, the malevolent King of the Old Ones gathers his forces in Oblivion: a desolate landscape where the last survivors of humanity must fight the ultimate battle.
My Review: Wow. Well I'm not even sure where to begin with this book. I waited years to read this and though I sort of guessed part of the ending correctly, it was no less of a shock when it happened. I bawled my eyes out and I felt immensely sad for two characters in particular though there was a happier epilogue to soften the blow.
It was a little disconcerting at first, what with the jumping between Jamie/Holly, Matt/Lohan, Pedro/Scott and Scarlett/Richard and it took some serious getting used too, and that was just the gatekeepers and there companions. There were also some POV shifts to those behind the enemy lines too, but by the end these all came together brilliantly with no loose ends.
The research done for this book must have been immense because, whether the characters were in Rome, Naples, Brazil, Cairo or Antarctica, the descriptions were vivid and very easy to picture. Oblivion was especially well planned out; I could almost feel the empty coldness in the Old One's fortress while I was reading and imagine the swarms of enemy soldiers in the final battle.
Was I happy with the twists and turns? I'd say I was even if I would personally have preferred a happier ending for all involved. Poor Richard is all I have to say, I really felt for that man, and I wouldn't have wished what he was forced to do on any one (lets just say the mystery of the Inca's Knife is revealed). Having said that it wasn't doom and gloom all the way to the end and I have to admit if there was one character I was proud of it was Matt. He proved himself to be strong and determined despite being weighed down with knowledge he should never have had to carry. Scott also impressed me, though I wanted to slap him on several occasions near the middle of the book.
When it came to the epilogue I was hoping for some relief or maybe just some hope, which is actually what I got. I loved the epilogue and it did provide some sort of closure and I shed a few happy tears whilst reading it, and it was also nice to have a bit more explanation of the dream world too.
All in all I was very impressed with the ending to this series. it was an emotional, frightening and thrilling ride and i'm sure certain scenes from this book will haunt me for a very long time (and no, I'm not exaggerating). I don't know how Horowitz will match this with what he writes next but I hope he gives it a good go.