Warning: Flashbacks to Rape
Alert: You will be consumed with an unceasing need to read the next book immediately upon finishing The Last Sun.
Rune Saint John, last child of the fallen Sun Court, is hired to search for Lady Judgment’s missing son, Addam, on New Atlantis, the island city where the Atlanteans moved after ordinary humans destroyed their original home.
With his companion and bodyguard, Brand, he questions Addam’s relatives and business contacts through the highest ranks of the nobles of New Atlantis. But as they investigate, they uncover more than a missing man: a legendary creature connected to the secret of the massacre of Rune’s Court.
In looking for Addam, can Rune find the truth behind his family’s death and the torments of his past?
“The thing you must never forget about Atlantean culture is that we don’t coddle our victims. Victims are quarantined and cast out, their defeat viewed as a genetic defect.”
The Last Sun is an amazing, infinitely quotable, incredibly engaging, depth-filled urban fantasy that I am incredibly thankful for having read. Thanks to all my friends who wouldn’t stop talking about it because I’m not certain I would have read it otherwise. This is actually a very difficult book for me to describe because there is so much nuance to everything. This was just so well written and so absolutely full of life.
The main character, Rune Saint John, is a smartass and I love him to pieces. He hasn’t had an easy life, and I want everything good and wholesome to come to him. He and his Companion, Brand, are two of the biggest smartasses to ever smartass and I love it. Their snark and friendship is the best there ever is. They struggle a bit, they don’t live a comfy life, and it wasn’t always this way but they have learned to adapt. Rune is the heir to the Sun Throne before it was mysteriously destroyed one evening and the perpetrators remain unknown. Thrones are run by Arcana which “are the closest things to gods on this planet”. Rune isn’t yet an Arcana, he is more of a baby Arcana. But he was part of a powerful, functioning house before the destruction of it when he was a teenager. So expect some serious power coming from Rune. He has survived, even if it damaged him in some severe ways.
The characters are the best. Every single one of them. Rune and Brand are the best friends ever and Brand is hyper-focused on the safety and happiness of Rune. Quinn is mine. Full stop. You can’t have him. He can see the future, threads of possible futures, and he doesn’t fit in properly. And he’s mine. Stay away. Max is given oven to Rune to look after (due to a comical series of events), and he is my broken little boy who has to learn the world isn’t out to hurt him. He has found his family in everyone here. This cast is amazing and I love them all.
And don’t even get me started on the romance. Holy shit, I’m in love. I can’t wait to see more of it. I don’t want to spoil it too much, because it comes about quite later in the book than I typically talk about. But if I don’t get more of this romance soon, I may riot. It It is utterly perfect. It may happen a bit quickly, but the buildup was still amazing and the outcome was amazing and everything about it was amazing.
The world is not the kindest thing: the strong live, the weak perish. But it feels so rich and nuanced. It is jam packed with random things that just make it feel like a world. There are people in charge, the courts, the arcana. and they aren’t always the best people. Some really aren’t great, indeed. And Rune works Lord Tower as a problem solver, sometimes. The worldbuilding in The Last Sun most reminds me of the worldbuilding in Kate Daniels – both include little bits of things that make a collective whole. Areas that are just not safe and no one ventures there unless they have a death wish or they are desperate. Buildings with stories attached to them. Things like that. It just makes everything feel so whole.
The world itself had a war, and it hasn’t fully recovered. The Atlanteans tried to stay hidden, but eventually the humans found out they existed. Things kind of went poorly. The island of Atlantis was lost, and they moved to New Atlantis, on the island of Nantucket. The world had to take some time to adapt to the changes, and some Atlanteans move slowly. And humans don’t really understand how to keep safe in their world. So it is a world in flux, filled with danger, and our main character is the one who gets sent out to deal with it. Perfect.
The story (and backstory) just had me completely sucked in from the very first chapter. Rune has been tasked to look for Addam, the godson of his boss Lord Tower, who is missing. Most aren’t convinced that he is even missing, such as his family and business partners. Yet when searching in Addam’s office, Rune knows he hasn’t just gone wandering again. Something dark was in Addam’s office, something that keeps attacking Rune. And it turns out to be something huge.
I loved The Last Sun. I’m sad that I didn’t read it sooner. However this does mean that my wait for book two is less. I loved the entire experience reading it. I loved it so much I read it twice before I even wrote this review. I cannot get enough of the characters or the world. And I have so many Ideas about what is going to happen in the future of the series. I can’t wait!