Thursday, May 21, 2015

Audiobook Review: End of Days


End of Days (Penryn and the End of Days, #3)Author: Susan Ee
Narrator: Caitlin Davies
Series: Penryn & the End of Days, #3
Released: May 12th 2014
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Length: 8 hrs and 43 mins
Buy: Audible

End of Days is the explosive conclusion to Susan Ee's bestselling Penryn & the End of Days trilogy. After a daring escape from the angels, Penryn and Raffe are on the run. They're both desperate to find a doctor who can reverse the twisted changes inflicted by the angels on Raffe and Penryn's sister. As they set off in search of answers, a startling revelation about Raffe's past unleashes dark forces that threaten them all.
When the angels release an apocalyptic nightmare onto humans, both sides are set on a path toward war. As unlikely alliances form and strategies shift, who will emerge victorious? Forced to pick sides in the fight for control of the earthly realm, Raffe and Penryn must choose: Their own kind, or each other?

End of Days is the conclusion we’ve all been anxiously waiting to read since early 2011, when Susan Ee first released what was to become a self-published sensation. Angelfall was quite a surprise for readers and publishers alike and luckily, the quality was recognized on all sides. But if Angelfall was a huge success, the book that followed, World After, was an even bigger hit. Not only did Ee manage to reach the same level of excellence, she somehow doubled the excitement and our own emotional investment.


It’s pretty clear that End of Days had some big shoes to fill, but unfortunately, the conclusion to Susan Ee’s trilogy was born with relatively small feet. All on its own, this book would have been something to talk about, but compared to the previous two, it doesn’t quite reach the same heights. From the beginning, it was extremely difficult to scrounge up the excitement we were left with in World After. While funny and filled with witty banter, this third book seemed rather aimless and poorly structured. Admittedly, I may be a bit harsh, but it’s only because my expectations were sky high.

The good news is that Penryn and Raffe spend most of this book together. We’ve seen them change from enemies to reluctant companions to trusted friends and eventually something more. And while the ‘something more’ part still can’t be if Raffe is to rejoin his own kind, the bond between these two, the true friendship and companionship, is undeniable. Although his honor demands that he maintain his distance, it is only a physical distance he keeps, and even that with limited success.

The tension between them is delicious, perhaps not quite as exciting as before, but palpable nevertheless. That could be the source of my biggest disappointment – after all the build-up, the ending seemed rather anti-climactic on all fronts. It was fine, I suppose, but if ‘fine’ is the best we can do right after ‘spectacular’, something obviously went wrong somewhere.

Be that as it may, it needs to be said that Caitlin Davies did a spectacular job with her narration once again. I honestly didn’t like her in any of the other audiobooks she narrated, but hers is the perfect voice for Penryn and in this case, it adds a lot to the story itself. If you do decide to read this trilogy, and I definitely recommend it as a whole, then audio might be the better choice.




22 comments:

  1. OK, I really need to get going on this series.

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  2. I've yet to read World After, believe it or not. I started it a number of times, but I just couldn't get into it. It sounds like everything is pretty much status quo as far as hype is concern, so I'm still keeping my fingers crossed that I'll enjoy these books.

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  3. I started reading this and just wasn't feeling it. Like you said, it's fine on its own but when compared to its predecessors it falls seriously short. Not to mention it was originally supposed to be longer than a trilogy so I feel like the series--though still amazing!--has really fallen short of its potential since Angelfall. Not sure if I'll finish it, especially with an anticlimactic ending, but thanks for your honesty, Maja. If I continue I'll have to go in with fewer expectations for sure.

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  4. Awww, I'm sad to know that this book was anti-climactic, although I understand... if it succeeds books where the tension and excitement and urgency were off the charts, it would certainly be hard to keep that momentum going. I wonder if one reads the books in a row with no pause in between, it would be better? Since there is no wait beforehand to be done.

    Faye at The Social Potato

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  5. Ah yes I'm always so curious about the end and at the same time so anxious to read them because it's so easy to be disappointed so even if it sounds good I'm sorry that you were waiting for more too.

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  6. Book 1 was enough for me, I wanted more

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  7. I haven't read any of these, but I'm sorry the last book wasn't as great as the first two. It really can be difficult to replicate that, I would imagine.

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  8. I didn't pick up the second book when it came out because there was such a long wait between it and book one that I was fearful that the same would happen with book three. By the time all these were released, I lost interest in the series all together. I'm not sure I'll finish or not, but nice to hear audio is a sound way to go. I could do that. Sorry to hear this wasn't everything you hoped for, Maja. I hear the romantic conclusion was happy but lackluster. :( Wonderful review. :)

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  9. I haven't even started this series but I really can't wait too. So many people have loved it and I really can't wait to meet Penryn and Raffe. Great review! :)

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  10. I loved book one but have yet to read the others. I'm a little sad this didn't live up to the first two in your eyes. Darn it! I was hoping for something mind blowing.

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  11. I loved this book but not as much as the previous ones. I adored having Penryn and Raffe together, and the twins were hilarious this time around, and I loved the progression of the relationship between Penryn and Paige and their mum...

    But I was left with so many questions!! I want to know so much more about the hellions and their world, and the angels and their coming to Earth, and where was Michael the archangel, and wether Gabriel was nuts or not... I NEEDED MOOOORE!!

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  12. Thanks for the tip, Maja. I've got the first book in my tbr pile when I read glowing reviews for Angelfall. I hope to get the audiobooks someday.

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  13. I read Angelfall way back and loved it, but still haven't gotten around to reading World After. There hasn't been as much hype for this one's release for some reason. It's too bad though that it didn't meet your expectations, Maja, and that you found the ending anti-climatic.

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  14. I have copies of the first two books on my Kindle begging to be read. I bought it when it was self pubbed gem. What is wrong with me? I am sad though that everyone seems to be a tad bit disappointed in the finale. Still it sounds like a must read series.

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  15. Ahh! I haven't read World After yet, though I absolutely adored Angelfall. I'm behind everything - so frustrating! I skimmed your review (sorry, it feels like a sin and I've got to confess!), but I didn't want any spoilers. Can't wait to find the time to get to the last two books :)

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  16. Yup, I've seen a lot of people with a similar opinion - the final book just doesn't seem to have the same oomph as its predecessors. Nevertheless, I'll still be reading it just to get some closure and see how it all ends. I'm so glad that this series turned out to be such a hit - wasn't Angelfall initially self-published?

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  17. I loved the first two and have great hopes for this one but this often seems to be the case that the last book in a series can be an anti-climax.

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  18. I'm glad to know that I wasn't the only one slightly disappointed with this read Maja, I don't know if my expectations were just too high going into this or, just the long wait kind of peetered away at my feelings for this. But I was grateful for the time that we go to spend with Raffe and Penryn, I bet you can guess which were some of my favourite scenes ;)

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  19. Sadly this isn't the first time I've heard that End of Days is a little disappointing as a conclusion to the series. I haven't read any of the books yet but I'm sad that this one didn't end strongly for all the people that fell in love with the books. Penryn and Raffe sound like they have an awesome dynamic.

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  20. OOoh nice review! I can't wait to read this one as well! I am hearing that the ending isn't all we hoped for. I guess it's because what was meant to be 5 books was now quickly shoved into one epic finale in this third book. But oh well. I will still read it at my first chance! Great review!

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  21. The series as a whole appeals to me so much! It is hard sometimes for the series to keep building in level like Angelfall created, but still you hope for the ending to be at its best. I've heard this is the series to read if you're looking for angel lore and a fierce heroine - so I'm in for sure and plan to read these gems back-to-back.
    Lovely review, Maja - have a wonderful weekend :)

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  22. Sorry it didn’t quite live to your expectations, Maja. I was planning to read this series, but after your recommendation I think about audio format.

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