Tuesday, November 4, 2014

The Darkest Hour (Warriors #6) by Erin Hunter


*** Warning: This review contains spoilers!! ***

This book was awesome!

From start to finish, this book was action-packed, suspenseful, and emotional. I LOVED the scene when Fireheart received his nine lives! There is a bit of a spiritual angle in this book, with belief in StarClan being kind of like a religious faith. It's not exactly like religion, though, because the fact that clan leaders do actually get nine lives makes the existence of StarClan kind of incontestable.

I almost gave this book 4 1/2 stars because I was so disappointed in the way Tigerstar died. It was a shame, and not at all fitting, for such a fierce warrior to die in such an ignoble way. And I just couldn't fathom how any one injury could cause him to lose all nine lives at once! But, after seeing what happened to Firestar after he lost his first life, I could imagine a scenario in which Tigerstar faced StarClan but refused to repent, and his insistence on fighting caused him to return to life before he had fully healed, meaning that he started each new life with a mortal injury. I guess it still bothered me a little that I had to come up with that explanation myself, but also, by the end of the book, it became clear that it was important to the story that Scourge not know about the nine lives of leaders until he faced Firestar.

Like Forest of Secrets, this book really struck me as being more appropriate for an older age group - like middle school. There's quite a bit of gore, and a lot of explicit descriptions of killing. Again, I find myself intrigued at the idea that somehow, certain things like violence are less objectionable just because the main characters are cats.

In the end, I couldn't let a couple misgivings stop me from giving this book 5 stars. I just couldn't put it down, I wanted to see what would happen next!

Now that I've finished this series, I'm hooked. And given my wariness when I started the first book, I'm pretty darn shocked at how much it won me over. When I lamented to Isabelle that I was so sad to not have any more books to read about cats, she said, "Well, there are the super editions." What! A quick search brought me to this page, which lists a whole bunch of Warriors books! A lot of them are about the next generation of cats, and I don't know if I'll read them all, but the super editions are all about the cats in the original series, so I'll definitely read those!

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