DeMalo has established his borders. New Haven is expanding and its subjects appear to be thriving. At a quick glance, this land is exactly the paradise DeMalo proclaims it to be.
But at its border, a small token of resistance remains. Saba and her family have pledged themselves to destroy DeMalo and all he has built. But what can so few hope to accomplish against a united nation?
The final installment of Young’s trilogy focuses on the struggle taking place within Saba. Every time she attempts to leave the Angel of Death behind and find a non-violent solution to the rebel’s problems, a crisis gets in the way. Her sister is growing up and discovering new talents, DeMalo wants Saba for his wife, and there is a traitor among her small group of trusted friends. The path Saba takes is filled with surprising twists, and the suspense continues to grow in this gripping tale.
- DeMalo asks Saba if she’s pregnant.
- Saba starts kissing Jack and undressing him. “I kiss him . . . He ain’t kissin me back. He ain’t touchin me. He jest stands, not movin. His shirt hangs open. Did I do that? I don’t recall. I press closer, ever closer. My fevered hands roam him. Reckless. Hell-bent. Uh-uh. He grabs ’em. Firmly. Stop right there, he says.”
- Saba makes out with Jack. “Our kisses grow hungry. Our bodies heat . . . I push him off, sit up an start puttin my cloths to rights. He’s made a heroic effort to undress me.”
- An unnamed character has intercourse with Molly so he can learn, “how to please a woman. Yer teachin me. That’s all this is.”
- Saba sleeps with Jack. “We’re skin to skin. Breath to breath. There’s now. There’s here. There’s him an”
- Saba agrees to marry DeMalo if he gives her friends and family safe passage. When Jack finds out, he and Saba fight. “What deal did you make? To marry him, I says. His eyes harden to ice. You bought our freedom in his bed.”
- Saba has a miscarriage. “You miscarried, lady . . . if often happens with the first one. Sometimes you don’t even know you’re pregnant.” Saba’s not sure who the father was as she slept with both DeMalo and Jack.
- Saba and the rebels set out to blow up a bridge. At the last minute, a group of Tonton and slaves cross the bridge and get blown up with it. “Gone. The three Tonton. All gone. The Stewards in their cart. The blameless beasts. Animals an people, now bloody lumps of flesh. Flung like so much bad meat.”
- Mercy has scars on her back. “I’ll survive, she says. I’ve had worse. Thin white lines, the scars of a whip, criss-cross her sun-tough skin.”
- Mercy slaps Creed. “Marry me, he says. She slaps him hard. Almost slaps his head off. Everybody turns at the sound. The angry crack of skin on skin.”
- In New Eden, weak newborn babies are left outside overnight. If they survive, they are given a second chance to live.
- Someone nails a dead crow to a tree, hoping Saba will think it is her pet Nero and get frightened. “There’s a crow spiked to the trunk. Jest above head height. Wings spread wide. Dead. Nero.”
- Emmi is shot. “We’re runnin an pullin her along by her hands. Lugh one side, me the other. There’s a crack. I feel the shot hit her. The blast throws her forward. I hold tight to her hand. She goes limp between us.”
- Lugh is shot. “What’ve you done? I shout at Lugh. He’s on his feet, lookin dazed. A gun thuds. a bolt slams him in the back. No! I scream as his arms fly up as he twists an falls to my arms. Then we tip we topple out of the window down to the river below.”
- Saba kills DeMalo. “DeMalo’s knife slashes my arm . . . I seize the crystal rock. I raise it high. I smash DeMalo in the head…My fingers wet with his blood. His head’s crushed. A mess of hair, blood an”
Drugs and Alcohol
- Saba is given a sleeping potion. “From a tiny stone bottle she tipped the merest, barest blink of a teardrop . . . Molly weakened it three times in water. Saba drained the cup, then lay down. Short minutes later she was out.”
- Profanity is used throughout the book. The profanity used includes: Gawd, bullshit, bullshitter, fergawdsake, dammit, ass, sonofabitch, ohmigawd, damn, and hell.
- Gawdamn and gawdamnmit are said many times throughout the story.
- Saba has a chance to shoot DeMalo, but “I cain’t. I cain’t do it. Slowly I lower my bow. I says, Gawdamnn you sonofabitch.”
- Emmi starts to hear earth songs, a sign that she can become a shaman. “They’d wakened her at dawn yesterday. The earth songs…the songs leading her, telling her, teaching her. Not songs with words. No. No words. Dreams.”
- DeMalo claims to have visions of what the earth looked like before the apocalypse.
- Saba has a heartstone. It gets hot as a way of leading a person to their heart’s desire.
- Saba wonders if it is ever right to kill. “I killed some people. Not becuz I wanted to, I had to. It was kill or be killed. Is that wrong? . . . That’s a big question, says Mercy. Is it ever right to kill another person?”
by Morgan Lynn