This is the third installment in the Kingfountain series and picks up seven years after The Thief’s Daughter. Owen has gone from a frightened child, cowering in the kitchen to one of the most trusted confidants of King Severn Augustine. He has watched his King grow ever more ruthless and mad with power. Owen knows that it’s just a matter of time the King will fail, someone will come to topple this man he has loyally served yet come to fear and revile. This man who has taken so much from Owen and still demands more.
Owen is ordered by his King to incite war with a neighboring kingdom. His appetite for power has taken over his reason, Owen sees this but feels he has no choice but to obey. Or at least appear to do so. It seems that Owen has an agenda of his own. It seems that there is a limit to Owen’s loyalty. He’s been robbed of everything that he has held dear. His protector, his mentor, his safe haven and his true love. As Owen’s understanding of his fountain-blessed powers grows, he begins to understand the role that he must play.
Watching Owen grow over these three books has been a treat. He has gone from a scared little boy into one of the most formidable men in the realm. His presence and power is only enhanced by his humanity and his internal struggle with what is truly right and what is wrong. He is taken through a gauntlet of trials and tests, each one harder than the one before. You spend much of the book wondering if Owen will truly do the right thing or will he fall into the same trap that his King fell into before him. Will he take the power for himself or will he allow it to transfer to its rightful owner?
There is even more magic in this book and while we are only introduced to a couple new characters, they have a huge impact on Owen and the story as a whole. There are times where the prophesy and the powers of the fountain threaten to take over the entire narrative, but the author skillfully brings everything back together again as the story runs its course.
I was dreading the end of the book, but only because I didn’t want the story to end. I didn’t want to leave Owen and his world. It was bittersweet to see the story end. I was happy and sad at the same time. I truly enjoyed how the saga unfolded and how it concluded. But all the same, I would really love to see Owen and his friends again.