Book 3 of the Matsumoto Trilogy.
Vera and Roman are reunited, but as things get worse for the Blackwatch Empire there’s only one way Vera’s path can take her: to the throne or to her death. Will the allies she’s made be enough to help her seize the empire? Will her unique abilities, enhanced by her implant, give her the resources she needs to fight an interplanetary army? And will Roman still stick with her now that her path is leading where neither of them wanted to go?
In this, the last in this series, Vera’s sense of responsibility for the people of the empire wins out over her desire to go somewhere save and peaceful with Roman. She discovers that the Emperor, her cousin, is killing off all the others in her family, making sure that none of them will be able to take his place, and she’s pretty sure that no matter where she goes, he’ll find her and keep trying to kill her until he succeeds. The other option is to do what several people have suggested, and make a bid to become Empress. The only reason she can consider it is because she’s discovered that her implant, a computer in her head, has a lot more to offer her than she originally thought, and she has allies. But the allies are a bit shaky. We don’t know if she can rely on them to back her up when the time comes to face her cousin.
Again the character growth is substantial and the central relationship moves into unexpected territory. As with the rest of this series, the writing is excellent with a refreshing depth of perception, and the only flaw is the insufficient copy editing. Once again that alone stops this being 5 stars.
The book provides a satisfying ending to the series.
I recommend this series, but only if copy errors don’t drive you crazy.
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