That Dark Infinity

Featured
That Dark Infinity
Age Range
14+
Release Date
October 19, 2021
ISBN
978-0759557833
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An immortal monster hunter and a royal handmaiden embark on an epic journey to change their fates in this soul-stirring young adult fantasy novel for fans of The Witcher and The Last Unicorn. By night, the Ankou is a legendary, permanently young mercenary—the most fearsome sword for hire in all of the Five Lands, and its most abiding mystery. But when the sun rises, a dark magic leaves him no more than bones. Cursed with this cycle of death and resurrection, the Ankou wants only to find the final rest that has been prophesied for him, no matter the cost. When the kingdom of Kaer-Ise is sacked, Flora, handmaiden to the royal family, is assaulted and left for dead. Wounded, heartbroken, and the sole survivor of the massacre, Flora wants desperately to be reunited with the princess she served and loved. She and the Ankou make a deal: He will help Flora find her princess, and train Flora in combat, in exchange for her aid in breaking his curse. But it isn't easy to kill an immortal, especially when their bond begins to deepen into something more . . . Together, they will solve mysteries, battle monsters, and race against time in this fantasy novel about sacrifice, love, and healing by Elysium Girls author Kate Pentecost.

Editor review

1 review
Highly devourable YA fantasy
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
THAT DARK INFINITY is a captivating YA fantasy read about grief, loss, healing, and love. The Ankou is a legendary figure who has been alive for more than 300 years as part of a curse that he is desperate to break. He fills his nights learning new things and defeating monsters and demons and his days as a skeleton in the in between. The answer to his curse is a riddle that begins to make sense when he finds a young woman.

Flora is the handmaid to the princess of Kaer-Ise, a life that she was selected into as a young girl from an orphanage. She has grown up virtuous in their ways, and her entire life falls apart when their kingdom was invaded and destroyed by a rival nation. In her attempt to save the princess, Flora found herself a victim of brutal men who assaulted her and left her for dead amidst the bodies of her countrymen. When the Ankou finds her, she is barely hanging on.

As they spend time together searching out the answers to his curse, each begins to reach for something new and find something unexpected within themselves as they race time, fate, and monsters.

What I loved: This story captivates the reader from the first page and keeps a steady and consuming pace throughout, making it highly devourable. The characters really shine in this story, particularly for the obstacles which they must overcome and the way they come into their own, especially Flora who must come to terms with her past and the trauma that was inflicted upon her, while also carving out a new life for herself. Her journey is particularly noteworthy and will resonate with readers who may also have trauma in their pasts. Other characters who appear later in the story become equally endearing, and I appreciated seeing them grow and develop into unique individuals who also steal the reader's heart.

The themes here were also really thought-provoking around assault, guilt, grief, healing, religion, family, love - corrupted and true, sacrifice, and defining yourself. These are particularly poignant in the stories of both the Ankou (Lazarus) and Flora, who are each overcoming their own traumas and redefining themselves in the world in which they find themselves. I found these deeper dives to be particularly powerful and really elevate the story.

The world-building was also really fascinating, and although I appreciate the stand-alone, this was a world I would love to spend more time in. A spin-off in Parth would be wonderful. The magic, history, monsters and unicorns, kingdoms, and their religions were all endlessly intriguing, and the writing expertly wove these details throughout without sacrificing pace. The ending of the book was really perfect as well.

Final verdict: A compelling, thought-provoking, and consuming story, THAT DARK INFINITY is a beautifully written YA fantasy that is highly devourable. I would particularly recommend this book for fans of THE SHADOWS BETWEEN US, VESPERTINE, and THE MERCIFUL CROW.
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