Book Review: The Realm of Gods by Glen Dahlgren

There is always a slightly bittersweet moment when I finish reading a series that I’ve really enjoyed. A part of me never wants it to end, while the rest of me is thoroughly enjoying the fact that I thoroughly enjoyed the series. Such it was with Glen Dahlgren’s The Realm of Gods, the final book in the Chronicles of Chaos series.

1. Thoughts on the plot

This book picks up right where the previous book left off, which is to say, right in the middle of the drama. Galen is in the Dreaming and the rest of the world is a) trying to figure out how to live now that the Child of Chaos is gone and the gods are no longer in the world or b) trying to get Galen back. Things are looking up, but there is sedition in the ranks, and the gods of Order may not be as far gone as they thought. Now Dantess, Eve, Motti and others must work together to find Galen and figure out how to save the world once and for all, for the sake of everyone.

Without going into too many spoilers, I was pleased with the many twists and turns that this book followed. I wasn’t expecting Eve to have such a big role to play, but I really liked the way it was done. I also enjoyed the way the story delved into the origins of the gods while also remaining relevant—even, dare I say, essential—to the plot. I think that the pacing was well done, starting off a bit slow with intricate details of the various temples before speeding up as things became more and more perilous. I will admit that it took me a moment to remember all the things that were going on since it’s been a while since I read the previous book, but honestly, everything was clear enough that I wasn’t confused in the slightest. And the ending? That very last line? It hits in a truly amazing way that very nearly had me screaming in joy and dismay at the same time. 

2. Thoughts on the characters

As I mentioned above, I wasn’t expecting Eve to have such a major role in this book. It makes perfect sense given her previous adventures, so I shouldn’t have been surprised. She is the perfect candidate to lead the charge into the new world. I think that she was portrayed with such intensity that she leapt off the page and fit in perfectly with the characters that were older than her in years and wisdom, while still retaining her child-like innocence. Eve’s sacrifices throughout the story tugged at my heartstrings each time, and I was thrilled to see how things ended up for her.

Also, what the author did to Dantess? Oh, my, did that just…hurt, but in the best way.

3. Favourite part

The ending was most definitely my favourite. Everything turned out so well, not just for the characters, but with every thread tied off neatly and the dangling pieces of the story were captured and sorted in just the right way. Well, except for that very, very last thread in the last line. I am still tempted to shout at the author for that, but truly with the best intentions in mind.

4. Critique

My only real critique of the book is that I think the politics played a larger role than I was expecting at the beginning of the story. It felt like the major plot points took a bit longer to raise their heads, since there was so much of the new world order to be established. However, I also wouldn’t necessarily change anything regarding the pacing of the book, since everything that was discussed was essential for later in the story. So, I guess the point is moot.

Overall, I would say that The Realm of Gods was a thrilling conclusion to a series that has captured the mind and the heart. The characters throughout the series popped off the page in such a realistic, unique way, and the world is one that deserves to be remembered. An excellent indeed.