The Last Hope

The Last Hope  - Erin Hunter The Last Hope is the final installement in the final series of Warriors books (chronilogically since 'the Erins' have said they would write a sort of prequel or origins series eventually). Words cannot describe how I have enjoyed this series as a whole. I got into it skeptically; wondering if even my love of cats wouldn't be enough to make a whole series of books with cat protagonists interesting. Thinking these were children's books that would probably bore me eventually...boy was I wrong. These books have more loss, grief, death and violence than most YA books out there, let alone children's books. There's something so utterly raw about these books; the emotions, the instincts. These cats are almost human...but much more primal. It's both simple and complex and it just tugs at the heartstrings. I think so many readers overlook this series because they think it odd or even childish as I once did and I'm so glad I took a chance on The Warriors...what a ride!

But back to 'The Last Hope'. I think it's fair to say that the whole 'Omen of the Stars' series has been a set-up for this book. The Dark Forest is rising, kept 'alive' by mere memory, they are training tirelessly to eventually cross over to the living world and face the four clans in battle. Starclan is no longer of any help to the living, as they too fear the Dark Forest. It's up to the three of the prophecy; Jayfeather (♥), Lionblaze and Dovewing, to find the fourth cat prophesised. They must find the forth before light and dark meet in the final battle. I was a bit surprised to find that 'The Last Hope' got off to an almost slow start. I think it was mostly my expectations that the whole book would be one explossive installement. I would have docked maybe half a star if the ending hadn't made up for it. The Erins did indeed need to tie up some loose ends...set up some events up for the final battle looming. Once things start moving however: WOAH! The pacing is lightening speed and the shared narratives give the story even more intensity; kinda like the jerky camera movements action film-makers are so keen on these days, only without making you nauseous. :) As always battles in 'The Warriors' books are a gruesome affair. NO ONE is safe; the elderly and the young die in battle just like the rest of the Warriors.

I really enjoyed how most loose ends from the previous series came into play. Past storylines for Firestar, Brambleclaw, Squirrelflight, Leafpool and many more re-emerged and were resolved. Fans of the previous series will be pleased. Personally in the past two series my favorite has always been Jayfeather, and he will join Brambleclaw (♥!!) and of course Firestar as all-time favorite characters; so I enjoyed the way everything ended and while we suspected this ending was coming for Firestar ...ugh so sad! there were still some surprises along the way. I did find the last chapters were abrupt; everything happened so fast it was almost anticlimactic. But with me, theres always a longing when a beloved series ends...for it to go on. I deeply long to see my characters *after* all the ordeals; when they know peace and the war is over, I long to join them as they...go on. I can't wait to re-read the whole freaking series eventually. From 'Into the Wild' with no interruption till 'The Last Hope' with all the Super Edtions in chronological order, cause I'm a nerd like that!

All in all it ones quite a memorable and emotional ride with The Warrior Cats and I'm couldn't be happier I took a chance on these books way back when!