The end is nigh for Patch and Nora, as Becca Fitzpatrick's Fallen Angel series draws to a dramatic close...
WARNING: Spoilers after the jump!
Had Stephenie Meyer's Twilight Saga not come out when it did, Becca Fitzpatrick's Hush, Hush would probably have generated a great deal more hype. Don't get me wrong - the books have been massively successful, but anything remotely romantic in the field of Teenage Fiction is likely to draw comparisons to Meyer's vampire series for years to come.
Which is a shame, because Fitzpatrick's series is far more accessible and more enjoyable. Much of this comes from the fact that series heroine Nora Grey is very much a likeable protagonist; she spends a considerable amount of time pining over love interest Patch, but she still manages to be a role model who is capable of standing on her own two feet and kicking ass just as well as the boys do.
And there's a considerable amount of ass-kicking crammed into this 450-page novel. As the title suggests, this is the final installment of Fitzpatrick's fantastic quartet, which sees Nora stuck in the middle of a centuries-old battle between the Archangels and the Nephilim (a race descended from pairings between humans and angels).
The central dilemma is one we've been building towards since we were introduced to the characters back in Hush, Hush. Nora spends most of the novel struggling to form a decision while those around her try to make it for her; she wants to save her lover Patch (a Fallen Angel) but is also torn between saving Nephilim like herself, who for centuries have been subjugated and enslaved by Archangels.
This all builds towards a climactic battle (complete with a few surprising faces returning from captivity in hell) that settles the dispute between the two warring factions once and for all. Although the final battle is nicely staged, I did feel that the escape from hell could have been better exploited. The conclusion of the battle hinged around the destruction of a central foe, but in hindsight I feel that the battle was tied up a little too neatly.
But this didn't stop Finale from being an enjoyable reading experience. Vee Sky (Nora's best friend and undoubtedly my favourite character in the whole series) grows up a great deal in this book, and Fitzpatrick does conclude with an ending that is satisfying for the reader. Not all the characters reach the happy ending that they expect, but that only enhanced the overall experience and left me lingering over the fate of the characters after I turned the last page.
All in all it was a satisfying conclusion to a very popular series. I for one look forward to seeing what Fitzpatrick does next.