"How do you deal with the fear?" I ask.
He shrugs. "I fight."
"Is that enough?"
"It has to be."
Book Links: Goodreads
Wow. I forgot how goddamn fantastic Demon Apocalypse is! A breakneck-paced follow-on from Blood Beast, with the long-awaited merging of all the characters and stories that have come before. It's definitely not for the faint of heart, or stomach. To be so big and bold and brazen only halfway through the series would cause me to worry, at least, it would if it weren't Darren Shan behind the wheel. Demon Apocalypse has all the ingredients for a pulse-pounding conclusion, but the author manages to pull off such a massive story, and still show us that what's to come is even bigger.
Grubbs is stuck thousands of feet in the air, cornered in an aeroplane - holy crap! - by the cunning Lord Loss and his familiars.
But just when all hope is lost, and Grubbs gets ready to make one final stand, Beranabus shows up to save the day.
And by saving the day, I mean grabbing our helpless hero and diving for the earth!
That hope though is quickly squashed.
Because the literal end of the world is coming.
And there might be no one to stop it...
What an opening this entry has. If anyone needs an idea of how to open a novel, then look no further. It fully justifies the infuriating To Be Continued... we're given at the end of the previous instalment. Not only that, but the entire book lives up to the expectations set in Blood Beast: A truly action-packed adrenaline ride that hits the nail on the head.
We're also witness to the coalescence of all the main characters, and others, of the series so far. Our mains, Grubbs, Kernel and Bec, are united through impossible circumstances. Mr Shan builds the mythology like a giant, but there's no threat of it falling, it's solid. To see everyone united, to see them from different perceptions really highlights their exceptional growth. Some of which we haven't even been with them to see.
Grubbs is revealed to be a true magician - among other things - and his undiluted fear is shown more clearly. It comes startlingly close to being irritating, but it never crosses to it. It's masterfully handled, and while Grubbs can be cowardly, he's very honest about it. Heck, he has every right to be that way. But at the same time he's one of the bravest cowards ever. It's something he comes to have to overcome, and it's a sad but thrilling time.
Kernel is a lot darker, a lot of time has past since we last saw him, and things have not been kind. He's thick-skinned and more broody-like than before. It shows how much he's been through, the growth he's had to take, that his sometimes callous words are a startling contrast from before.
Bec is introduced fully nearer the end, and her millennium or so trapped is a horrific thought. We don't see how affected she is yet, but I'm sure we'll get a good notion of it soon.
Got to love Beranabus though. He's the powerful Gandalf/Dumbledore-like leader, but he's certainly unique, and can hold his own. He's a lot more darker and by far more realistic.
And the emotions throughout Demon Apocalypse... Excitement, terror, shock, hope; it's all conveyed to perfection. It's heartbreaking and inspiring all at the same time. Plus, that ending... I say that a lot, but Mr Shan is unbeatable at endings. Just when you think he can't top a shock, he hits you from behind.
Previous Instalment: Blood Beast
Next Instalment: Death's Shadow
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