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[personal profile] beekeeperofeden
(And by "review" I definitely mean "disorganized thought-spam.")

Non-spoilery thoughts on "Hero":

Not as bad as I was worried it would be. If this is where the series ends, I'm pretty okay with it. I wish we'd gotten more resolution with the Netherese-betrayal arc, but the amount of resolution we got lays the foundation for post-fic slowburn forgiveness fic.

Spoilery thoughts on "Hero", in no particular order:

Dahlia isn't dead and I'm so happy. I was super worried she was gonna get fridged. We didn't get much of her, but it seems like she's on the road to recovery, too.

I'm actually pretty okay with how Entreri's emotional arc resolved. He's actually happy and doesn't want to die and isn't as self-loathing, but he isn't exactly squishy. (He totally smothered someone with a pillow in the third act. It was for a good cause, but it was still smothering someone with a pillow.) He and Dahlia are hanging out in Luskan and we got some sappy "I love you"s thrown back and forth between them, but it doesn't feel like the "everyone settles down and has 2.5 kids" thing that annoyed me about the end of Harry Potter. So I'm a lot more okay with "Entreri and Dahlia settle in the recovering ruins of Luskan" aspect of the ending than I thought I'd be. They're living in the same town as Jarlaxle and it seems like Drizzt and Catti-brie will be around a lot, since Catti-brie is involved in rebuilding the Hosttower. Between everyone being on speaking terms and Entreri's awkward "we both care about Drizzt" conversation with Catti-brie, the ground is fertile for post-canon infastructure-and-polyamory fics.

There sure was a plot with Regis and Wulfgar and Pikel. I sure skipped most of it. (I'll probably read most of it on my proper readthrough of the book; this was my "bee skims to find out what happens to the characters she actually cares about" readthrough.) Since RAS has a tendency to summarize whatever important events are going on when characters run into the plot, I didn't really need to follow that part to get the important bits.

Drizzt's brush with unreality from Maestro actually continued to matter in this book. Much of the book was spent with everyone else despairing and trying to help him. (For a while he went to train with monks because emotional discipline or something. It didn't help.) The solution turned out to involve fighting Entreri, with lots of intentional dialogue-callbacks to previous fights. (I'm still not entirely sure why this worked --there was some magical shit going on in the background while Enteri distracted Drizzt-- but it did and it was fun to read.) The pacing of that entire plotline was a bit weird and the throwing Drizzt in with the monks seemed pointless, but it could have been worse.

We got a lot of Drizzt/Artemis friendship cuteness. (Again, solid foundation for post-canon polyamorous shipping.) Like, there was an entire portion of the plot (the follow-up to the Regis-and-Wulfgar plot that I ignored) that seemed to exist purely for the purpose of giving them a chance to run through tunnels, stab things, and make fond quips at each other. It was very cute and if I hadn't shipped it before I sure would now. (Life is good as a multishipper. When one OTP is sad or neglected *glares at lack of Jarlaxle/Artemis resolution plotline* I can turn to another.)

Speaking of lack of resolution to the Jarlaxle/Artemis betrayal storyline. For a charisma-based character, Jarlaxle really sucks at apologies. (Also, my fic Memory of Ashes is now officially jossed. Alas.) He neglected to include some very important information and kept trying to pull the "would you prefer they'd killed you" card, which doesn't work when the answer is an emphatic yes. But he did manage to mention the "I was going to come back for you" (which is the important bit) without actually betraying Kimmuriel's involvement, which is probably why Kimmuriel is still not-dead. (Random aside: Kimmuriel seems to be the only therapist in the entire realm. This is... unfortunate.) This is also literally the only conversation between Jarlaxle and Artemis for the entire book. *screams*

In case you haven't already heard this spoiler: Zaknafein is somehow not-dead. It's not really explained and he shows up in Jarlaxle's office in the very last scene of the book. (Jarlaxle jumps over his desk and hugs him. It's very cute and very gay.)

Summary: I'm pretty okay with this book. There are things I would have liked to have gotten more of, but there's nothing that really bothered me. I don't feel bitter and upset like I did at the end of Road of the Patriarch, which was my main concern. There's a lot of ripe soil for post-canon fluff fic, which also makes me happy. If this is the resolution and last hurrah for these characters, I can accept that.
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