Beautiful Redemption was somewhat of a shock for me. After my disappointing experience with the third installment, Beautiful Chaos, I had extremely low expectations of what was to come with the finale, however. Everything that I disliked (or hated) about book three, seems to have been remedied in book four!
In the previous novel, Ethan Wate makes a rather selfless decision with the hope that it would remedy all of the major supernatural problems for his loved ones. This book chronicles his journey in surviving the consequences of that decision. I could probably elaborate, but I really don’t want to risk spoiling this for anyone who has not read the predecessors of Beautiful Redemption. I had a vague notion of what the end-goal for this book, and as such the series in its entirety, would consist of. Yet I had no idea just how the authors planned on reaching that goal, and I’m very happy to add that I really couldn’t predict what was going to happen (for the most part) from the first page unto the last.
I really don’t like blatant predictability in my books, which installment three was chalk-full of. Beautiful Redemption was very hard to predict. There is a very important confrontation that occurs midway through the novel with a finale that I absolutely didn’t see coming. It was, dare I say, exciting to experience! There are also a lot of little details from the other books that come into play during Ethan’s gloomy adventure which I didn’t expect to see again. I loved how these seemingly minor things ended up playing huge parts in the plot. It captivated my interest all the more.
Others elements I enjoyed: There is an introduction of a few new characters that leave you feeling haunted as you empathize with their plight. Garcia and Stohl do a lovely job of describing these characters’ emotional and physical pain in such a way that you just can’t help but relate to it. These people are also very different than the crazy Gatlin cast and personas that you become accustomed to; it was a refreshing change!
There is a decent amount of character growth, at least for Ethan Wate. He has been going through one hell of a roller coaster ride ever since he meets Lena, and while there is a substantial amount of personal growth between book one and three, it’s nothing quite like this. His character comes full circle with his realizations of what it truly means to love someone, or to lose something that is so damn important to you. While he’s seen that good and evil aren’t inherently black and white, I think he finally comprehends just what it means to be gray; how difficult it is to stay simply in the black or the white.
My only qualm with this novel is Lena’s perspective. The entire series is told from Ethan’s point-of-view. So when I noticed that we would get a glimpse into the mind of Lena, I was eager to read on. But I’m sorry to say that it was a disappointment and probably the only portion of the book that could have been written much better. I feel like there is very little in the way that she thinks or speaks that could differentiate her from Ethan. If there wasn’t a page that boldly stated “Lena,” I don’t believe the reader would actually be able to tell if was Lena or not. This was a colossal letdown and one of the major reasons for my lowering the rating for this novel.
Overall, I would have to say that Beautiful Redemption was a delightful way to finish off the series. I enjoyed the book, especially the scenery and the new folks we meet. To be perfectly honest, if Beautiful Chaos was written as half as good as the other novels in the series, I think the series would have been pretty damn fantastic across the board. My rating for this book: four outta five crows. My rating for the series: three outta five pies.