This time, I didn't leave it too long before reading the this volume after reading the previous. I made that mistake with the second part and I think it affected my enjoyment of the book as I spent much of the time trying to remember things from the first part which were essential to making sense of the second part. And that is a point that I want to emphasise from the outset, these books really don't stand alone. The trilogy should be taken and read as one volume to get the most out of it.
That said, I think this final part really is a more engaging read than the previous. Almost from the outset, Morgon is being hunted, relentlessly. He is still wrestling with riddles; what is his purpose, where is the high one, who are the shape changers, why did Deth betray him, what does Ghisteslwchlohm want with him? And remaining doggedly at his side, through thick and thin, is his beloved Raederle.
Some of the scenes in this book particularly impressed me. His battle with Ghisteslwchlohm in the defence of Lungold is one of the best wizardly battles I've ever seen laid down in writing. Also his escape from Lungold and the pursuit of the shape-changers as he is being driven to Erlenstar mountain is described beautifully, the sense of desperation, hopelessness and fear conveyed so effectively.
And throughout this book, as with the rest of the trilogy, McKillip's eloquant writing style pervades. She has a turn of phrase and prose that makes her writing unique. Her writing definitely has a strong feminine feel, an emphasis far more on emotions and feelings rather than battles. In conversations, more is often communicated in the silences in between words than the words themselves.
Overall, whilst I thought this trilogy was very good, I did not enjoy this as much as I enjoyed The Forgotten Beasts of Eld and I would recommend that rather than this trilogy for anyone looking for somewhere to start with this author.