The ending of this series is beyond perfect.
The ending of this series is beyond perfect. Beyond anything that I could have conjured in my mind. It is an absolute piece of artwork. This ending feels so bittersweet to me. There are so many concluding thoughts that are difficult to sort out.
First and foremost, The Darkling. This beautiful, twisted, power hungry, lonely boy that only ever wanted to belong somewhere. His differences cast him as other and he was bitter towards all those that made him suffer in his darkness alone. The Darkling makes for such a compelling and believable villain because most of what he says and believes is actually true. He did want a safe place for Grisha, somewhere for them to belong. So he made the Second Army. This stems from his own struggles throughout his life being hunted and different. Of course, this isn't enough for the Darkling. I hate to say it, but Bhagra pretty much poisoned his mind with ideals of power and strength. Sure, she wanted her son to have strength and to not be victimized as she had as a child. But I think that the message was lost in translation to the Darkling. What is infinite? The universe and the greed of men. Power became the Darkling's ultimate goal. And then Alina popped into his life and he became all but obsessed with the idea of her with him. He had finally found someone with power akin to his own. Someone that he could live the countless years with and not be alone in his power any longer. I think that his feelings for Alina stem from that young boy who only ever wanted someone to belong with. To not be alone. To be with someone that was an equal. But by this point, the Darkling's heart has already been corrupted by greed and power so his love for Alina became twisted and turned to the point of obsession. This is my second time reading this book and I still have convoluted feelings towards the Darkling. I love him, I hate him, I feel sorry for him, and I mourn him. I understand where he was coming from and why he did the things he did while still not forgiving him for all the people that he killed and the horrific things that he did.
The Darkling: "You might make me a better man."
Alina: "You might make me a monster."
Now, the plot. Leigh Bardugo can wield a plot like a weapon and slay you with details shrouded in mystery. The turn of events that takes place in this book is absolutely brilliant.
I'm not going to lie and say that I am not a little broken inside after finishing this book. But I suppose that the best books do take a little piece of your heart in the end. I am ever so grateful to Leigh Bardugo for sharing this exquisite and irresistible world with us. Bardugo has become a Saint in her own right with her esteemed stories that have definitely become holy to me. I recommend this book series to everyone! I would shout this from the heavens if I could. I will forever be a lifelong fan of Leigh Bardugo's writing and I shall spread its gospel wherever I shall go.