ARC Review – Jade Legacy

Hello, everyone! I’m excited to share my thoughts about Jade Legacy with you all, but it has been so hard to put it all into words. Reading this trilogy has been a truly epic adventure, and I’m quite sad it is over. I hope I’ve done it justice.

Jade, the mysterious and magical substance once exclusive to the Green Bone warriors of Kekon, is now known and coveted throughout the world. Everyone wants access to the supernatural abilities it provides, from traditional forces such as governments, mercenaries, and criminal kingpins, to modern players, including doctors, athletes, and movie studios. As the struggle over the control of jade grows ever larger and more deadly, the Kaul family, and the ancient ways of the Kekonese Green Bones, will never be the same.

The Kauls have been battered by war and tragedy. They are plagued by resentments and old wounds as their adversaries are on the ascent and their country is riven by dangerous factions and foreign interference that could destroy the Green Bone way of life altogether. As a new generation arises, the clan’s growing empire is in danger of coming apart.

The clan must discern allies from enemies, set aside aside bloody rivalries, and make terrible sacrifices… but even the unbreakable bonds of blood and loyalty may not be enough to ensure the survival of the Green Bone clans and the nation they are sworn to protect.

The way to defeat a chess master was not with greater genius, but by forcing her to play a different game.

But what’s the point of life if we give up on the people we love?

Was this what it truly meant to hold, power, Shae wondered, almost detached from her own sense of ballooning fear. Passing on the worst consequences of your failure to others, whether you wanted to or not?

You’d think it would be easier to face death as you get older, but it doesn’t work that way. You get more attached to life, to people you love and things that are worth living for.

When something has to be done, there’s always a way to do it.

Perhaps that was the great tragedy of jade warrior and their families. Even when we win, we suffer.

We don’t handle this world. We make it handle us.

***Thank you to NetGalley and Orbit Books for providing a copy of the book. My review contains my honest thoughts about my reading experience.***

This is a really hard book to review without talking about what happens in it. So, I’ll stick mostly to my reading experience and general impressions because I don’t want to spoil how everything turns out for anyone. First and foremost, I was an emotional mess throughout reading this book. Fonda puts the characters through so much awful stuff, as usual, and it was all absolutely heartbreaking. I cried a lot while reading it, and there were a couple instances of actual sobbing. I mean full on ugly crying. It was that devastating. My reaction really is a credit to the fantastic character-building in these novels. It was truly some of the best characterization I’ve ever read, and it made me rejoice and weep alongside the characters as events happened in their lives.

My first general impression of this book is that it was probably one of the most epic finales, or honestly books in general, I’ve ever seen. The plot and writing were exquisite, and the complexity of all the different story-lines coming together the way they did was nothing short of masterful. I thought things were intricate and expansive in Jade War, but this book took it to a whole other level. There were three main plot threads in this book that were each massive in their own right: the conflict between the two clans, the overseas relationships and growth, and the brewing civil war at home between the clans and the clanless. Each conflict played an important role in the story, and its resolution, and the author managed to keep it all from getting confusing. In addition, there were plenty of callbacks to things that happened in previous books and how they influenced the outcome of the saga, which I enjoyed and appreciated. The expansiveness of the many plot threads, coupled with the devastating events, fantastic characters, and phenomenally written action scenes, made this book an epic read.

The second general impression I had after finishing the book was a feeling of wanting more. This story covers a lot of time, approximately 15-20 years I think, in a very expeditious manner. This was done really well, and it made sense for the story to progress in that way. I loved that it gave the opportunity to see how decades of age and experience changed (and didn’t change) the characters, while also showing them deal with the limitations often set by the body growing older. However, the fast pace left me wanting more time with the newer characters. It felt like we barely got a glimpse of some of them because of the massive number of characters in the book and the pace it set. It made the book feel a little less intimate than the earlier installments, but despite that, I still loved the new characters. I know I’m getting repetitive, but it is a testament to how great Fonda is at creating characters that I felt like I knew them without getting a ton of the story from their perspectives. She just needs to write some spin-off books now to give us more of the newer generation, especially Jaya. Please, Fonda!

Needless to say, I will now forever be a fan of this series and this author. Fonda stuck the landing here in the most epic, satisfying, and emotionally devastating way possible. I cannot recommend this book, or this series, enough, and I predict there will be countless re-reads in my future. Therefore, I rate this book 5 out of 5 stars. The clan is my blood, and the Pillar is its master. Under the eyes of all the gods in Heaven, I pledge this. On my honor, my life, and my jade.

Jade Legacy will be published on November 30, 2021. Be sure to pick it up so you don’t miss the mind-blowing conclusion to this wonderful series. Have you read it already? If so, what did you think? Let me know in the comments!

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