Marc and Dana review Deosil (Whyborne &Griffin #11) by Jordan L. Hawk (Published by Widdershins Press, October 11, 2019)
Note: a copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
Check out MtSnow’s interview with Julian G. Simmons (Whyborne & Griffin narrator) HERE.
Check out Dana and Marc’s review of ‘Balefire’ (Whyborne & Griffin 10) HERE.
Check out MtSnow, Marc, and Dana’s review of ‘Draakenwood’ (Whyborne & Griffin 9) HERE.
Check out Dana and Marc’s review of ‘Undertow’ (Whyborne & Griffin 8.5) HERE
Check out Marc’s review of ‘Fallow’ (Whyborne & Griffin 8) HERE.
Check out Marc’s review of ‘Maelstrom’ (Whyborne & Griffin 7) HERE.
Check out Marc’s review of ‘Hoarfrost’ (Whyborne &Griffin 6) [Audiobook] HERE.
Check out Marc’s review of ‘Bloodline’ (Whyborne & Griffin 5) HERE.
Whyborne, Griffin, and their friends have faced down cultists, monsters, and sorcerers. But their greatest challenge is now upon them.
On the return voyage from Balefire Manor, Whyborne receives the worst news possible: Widdershins has fallen before the onslaught of the Fideles and their servants. There’s still time to stop the return of the Masters, but that window grows shorter by the hour.
Together with Christine and Iskander, Whyborne and Griffin must reach Widdershins to face the ultimate test—and decide the fate of the world, once and for all.
Marc – This 11th book in the Whyborne & Griffin series is the last book in my favorite book series and the end of an era. For me it’s like my favorite series is ending after years of giving me joy and excitement and there was a certain nervousness and sadness when I opened this book, but mostly pure anticipation for what I knew would be an amazing read. Jordan L. Hawk has earned my trust after 10 amazing books in this series and while the ending of a series often determines how one feels about a series going forward and it is very difficult to create a conclusion that is satisfying to all, I knew the characters in this series were in good hands.
If you haven’t read book 11 yet, let me ensure you that it is all you may be hoping for and more. Don’t be afraid to open the book, it is like a love letter to the series and the characters and the fans. I am not sure how it all fits seamlessly into one book, but it does! Readers get to revisit characters and events from all the previous books, there are old and new opponents and monsters, quite a few moments that were so funny that I honestly laughed out loud, moments that broke my heart, moments that made me giddy with the awesomeness of the characters, moments of gruesome horror and breathless action. Moments of awe and wonder and quiet, intimate moments of connection and love.
Everything I wanted and more is balanced perfectly in this book in an epic conclusion that left me completely happy, awed and satisfied. Yes, it is the end for these characters I love so much, but it is the end they deserve and they will forever remain in my heart.
It is amazing to look back over these 11 books and see the personal journey of every character. However much they developed and changed during the events in this series, I always felt they remained true to their core, but man, what a journey it was.
I really, really do not want to spoil anything from this series finale, but let me just say that the stakes are extremely high from the very beginning of the book. Whyborne already knows that he and his sister may need to die to prevent the Masters’ return and carries this heavy burden quietly, with an incredible strength and determination to keep everyone he loves safe at any cost. However the book begins with devastating news that change everything for Whyborne and his friends and make something that seemed almost impossible in the previous book even harder.
There is so much that happens in this book, so much these characters we love have to accomplish for even the slightest chance at success, but even when doubt and desperation try to creep in and at times all seems lost, they have formed a connection, a loyalty and love for each other that is just beautiful to see. It is the reason why these characters have so easily conquered my heart. Our beloved MCs have a deep love and respect for each other. They also make each other stronger with their unwavering support. They all have beautiful moments with each other in this book, where we can once again appreciate the characters and their love for each other as we say goodbye to them.
The book takes its time to shine a spotlight on all the wonderful characters in this universe and explores the relationships that connect them. At the heart, for me, was the relationship between Whyborne and his romantic soul mate Griffin and their incredible love that has gotten so deep and wonderful through these books and the relationship of Whyborne and Christine, also soul mates in another way, the best and most loyal of friends and my two favorite characters in this entire series.
I have read or listened to north of 1500 books in the LGBTQ+ Fiction genre and it means a lot that among all those many books, the books in this series have continously been among my very favorites. Even though I always want to give a fair and balanced review for the books I read, there has never been much of anything I was able to criticise about these books, because the author create such wonderful characters and such an amazing and fascinating world and knew exactly what to do with them. I was often surprised about the direction these books took, but never disappointed. I’m just happy to open the book, jump into a different world and enjoy the ride. What the author accomplished with this series is something very, very special and I really can’t recommend this final book and of course this entire series enough!
10/10 Pots of Gold (100% Recommended) – Compares to 5/5 Stars
Dana – I honestly don’t know where to start with my review. There is so much I want to say about this book and the series as a whole. I originally thought (hoped?) with books titled Widdershins and Deosil, terms meaning counterclockwise and clockwise, that the series would go for 12 books like a clock. I was disappointed in a way learning that it would end on book 11. Of course these characters have been through a lot and drawing out a series too long can make people lose interest. For whatever reason it had to finish, I was sad to see the series end, but it was a perfect ending for the series and I can’t be mad at all.
It is reflected on by many of the characters, the events from the previous books that have brought them to where they are now. Good events and bad, but I don’t believe that any of the characters would change a thing. Even when something happens that cause both Whyborne and his best friend Christine to blame themselves, they quickly realize that things still couldn’t have happened another way without making something different. Something different enough that might have caused Whyborne, Griffin, Christine, Iskander, Persephone, and so many others to not be ready for the fight that is to come in this book.
After returning from Balefire, the location of their last book, Whyborne, Griffin, Christine, and Iskander find that Widdershins was taken over in their absence. I admit that it caught me by surprise. I figured they would return just before the Masters (dark and alien beings from outside our realm of existence) came to take over, and that they would somehow be prepared. Not knowing what happened to all their allies in town as the Masters’ herald raised the dead and poisoned the general population with something that turned them into Stepford wives has the group scrambling. They need to save loved ones and fight off the cult that protects the Masters before they can be poisoned as well.
There is so much action in this book right from the beginning. Eventually the recently returned group, find their loved ones and the real work begins. Whyborne and his twin Persephone have to stop the Masters from actually coming through because that would be the end of the world as we know it, wouldn’t it? So much to say, so much that I can’t give away. I don’t always want books to become movies because well duh, books are always better, but there is a scene where Whyborne and Persephone walk down the road toward the armies and their combined magic blows away and sets fire to their enemies. It was written so beautifully that I saw it as a movie while reading. And then I thought just how wonderful a movie(s) this series would make.
For just a bit I was scared that this book might not have a happy ending. Not all books can have a happy ending, after all, life itself doesn’t guarantee happy endings for everyone. And the loss of any one of the major characters of this series would have felt very bittersweet at best. I, however, felt nothing but joy and happiness at the end of this journey. I was a little late to start this series, I think there were four or five books out at least when I listened to Widdershins. It is one of the best decisions I made when I did start, though, and the author has had me so invested in these characters. I just can’t recommend it enough.
10/10 Pots of Gold (100% Recommended) – Compares to 5/5 Stars
Jordan L. Hawk is a trans author from North Carolina. Childhood tales of mountain ghosts and mysterious creatures gave him a life-long love of things that go bump in the night. When he isn’t writing, he brews his own beer and tries to keep the cats from destroying the house.