Review of DESTINY by Elizabeth Haydon (see her website)
DESTINY: CHILD OF THE SKY--Book III in the RHAPSODY Series
TOR, August 2001
Rhapsody, Achmed, and Grunthor have all established themselves in the new world, but until the demon F'dor is destroyed, there can be no peace, no final victory, and no happy ending for Rhapsody's mostly unlucky romance with Ashe. To defeat the demon, they must first find him--and that is a good trick since the demon has taken over the body of a human and can fit perfectly into human society. Rhapsody must hunt down the cursed children born with a drop of demon blood--blood that will restore Achmed's ability to track anyone--the ability that made him the greatest assassin in the history of the lost world.
F'dor is only one of Rhapsody's problems. The new continent the three comrads reached (see our review of RHAPSODY for more information on the earlier portion of this saga) is torn by war between the members of the three fleets of refugees. After millions of deaths, hatred and mistrust linger on. Finally, Rhapsody herself learns that Ashe is already married and has lied to her. Although her political power may grow, she is emotionally crushed.
Author Elizabeth Haydon ( see all of our reviews of novels by this author) delivers a powerfully emotional and compelling story. Rhapsody is just imperfect enough to make her suffering real and meaningful. She continues to grow as a character and as a political figure until she becomes the dominant character of this age of the world.
Of the three novels in the RHAPSODY series, DESTINY is the weakest. Haydon's description of the arriving Cymrians at the great council repeated itself way too much and the romantic misunderstandings between Rhapsody and Ashe could have come out of an uninspired romance novel. That said, being the weakest in this powerful series doesn't keep DESTINY from being a fine and rewarding novel. Fans of the series will need to read DESTINY to find out how Haydon resolves both the external plot and the emotional entanglements she surrounded her characters with. Fantasy fans who have not yet discovered the RHAPSODY series are in for a treat. The three novels should be read in order and are not fully free-standing.
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