Title: The Luck Uglies: The Last Reckoning
Author: Paul Durham
Page Count/Review Word Count: 432
This book has an interesting story behind it, at least in terms of how I came to read it. I was sent the first two books in this trilogy by the publisher, but I found this third book in a charity shop and just knew that I had to have it. Of course, it’s also difficult to go into the plot without revealing spoilers, purely because of its position in the trilogy. Still, I’ll do my best.
The Last Reckoning follows the triumphant culmination in a conflict that’s been growing since the first book in the series, and we get to see each of the characters – and Rye especially – as they mature from being kids to being young adults. Along the way, they learn a lot about themselves, and while there are no new books coming out as far as I’m aware, they do end in such a way that you can tell yourself your own stories, and the way is paved for the author to revisit it, if he feels like it.
Durham’s world-building is fantastic, as always, but even if you haven’t read the first two books in the series, you’re not going to struggle to tell what’s happening. In fact, Durham’s writing reminds me a little bit of Terry Pratchett – he has his own fantasy world that reflects our own, and each of his characters is easy to relate to. It holds a mirror up to our own lives, especially in this book, while seamlessly mixing in fantasy and young adult tropes in a way that breathes some life into them. It doesn’t feel cliche – it feels exciting.
The Last Reckoning is actually my least favourite book in the series, but it was still a decent book with plenty to recommend it for. Of course, you’d want to read the series in order where possible, but if you get a chance to buy this then you ought to – and then you should go out and buy the first two books to complete your collection. Durham’s writing is suitable for kids of all ages – I’m 27 and I enjoyed it – and it would make a cracking bedtime read. It also has the benefit of having a badass female protagonist, so if you know a young girl who wants to take on the world then you couldn’t do much better if you’re looking for a book to give them. It’s a great story – and worth reading.