Title: The Golden One: Reckoning
Author: Hans M. Hirschi
Page Count: 254
This is the third and final book in Hans M. Hirschi’s The Golden One YA fantasy trilogy, and I guess I’m lucky because I started reading the series just as this one came out, so I didn’t have to wait. The second book ends on a bit of a cliffhanger, and the stakes just continue to rise here until literally the entire planet is at risk.
Sure, there are a few tropes in here (most notably the idea of a chosen one), but I think Hans did a great job with this series and managed to create something that fits that YA ideal of containing a cracking story while adding a little something extra. Here, that mostly takes the form on taking a closer look at humanity’s impact on the environment – only in our reality, we don’t have a Golden One to save us.
It’s also cool because we see Jason, our protagonist, come to grips with the true extent of his skills. At the beginning, he’s almost overwhelmed just to find out that he can transform into a golden butterfly. By the end, he’s able to absorb the skills of other byeonsin and even to essentially teleport, and it was cleverly done within the constraints of what we already knew about the magic system. There was some cracking symbolism here too, most notably towards the end at a funeral.