Last to Rise (A Rojan Dizon Novel) is the final book in this series by Francis Knight. See my review for Fade to Black and the second in the series Before the Fall.
The blurb: The city rises upwards not across. Those at the bottom, as you might imagine are rather downtrodden and rarely see light, or much of it anyway. Those at the top, in the clouds, are living on cloud nine; that would by the Ministry. You do Not cross the Ministry. Rojan freed the Downsiders from the Pit they resided in and when doing so he doomed the city to starvation unless he can do something about it. He may act like he doesn’t care about much but people are beginning to crack the code about him. Pain mages have been made legal in order to get the city running, which they must because they have an army at both their gates ready to pick the city apart should they fail. They desperately need power, and more pain mages to help.
Why I picked up this book: because I picked up all three at the same time with the intent to read the series. Mission accomplished.
What is good about the novel: There is a great deal about this novel that just works. It is a great last novel. The second novel was one of those typical build-up novels where nothing too much happens but it builds up in tension to this novel. So from the start we have a ‘situation’ and a lot of tension. In the last novel Rojan was betrayed by Dench, who now works for the army waiting outside of the city and has some rather hateful feelings towards Rojan now. Speaking in general terms though this novel has love found, friends lost and sacrifices made. All powerful concepts to include into a novel. So it is fast paced and powerful. The ending is perfect for the trilogy.
What is not so good about this novel: There is only on minor character issue I have that irked me a little. It works for the story though. Makes it that much more dramatic at the ending. Hits you in your soft spots. But Rojan is considered a ladies man that can never hold onto the ladies because he always screws up. However he has a friend, who he loves to spend time with, who makes the ‘black’ of pain magic dim around the edges which is a good thing… and you know he has feelings for her… but he is confused about it each and every single time. Utterly oblivious. Not even an inkling. Not even the beginning of an inkling. I thought it would just make more logical sense if he began to have an inkling his feelings were different and needed to be accounted for in a different way, even if he still didn’t ‘get it’. But again, just a minor point on my side and it works on a writing side as is.
I rank it 9/10