Book Review: ‘Crown of Renewal’, by Elizabeth Moon

Warning: includes minor spoilers.

As the end of a series, Crown of Renewal was always bound to be good. It was forced to wrap up a lot of massive events, and several of them delivered fully during the course of the book. After eight books with the characters, a massive amount of emotional investment meant that I could empathise strongly with them all, further adding to my enjoyment. One of the best aspects of Crown of Renewal specifically and the wider series in general was the storyline involving Arcolin and the gnomes. I also enjoyed Arcolin’s storyline in general, due to my personal interest in mercenary companies, in part due to nostalgia for The Deed of Paksenarrion.

That being said, I have to confess, the ending left me feeling a little unsatisfied. While I enjoyed the conclusions of Dorrin’s and Alured’s storylines, I feel questions remain concerning certain of the others. In Fintha, I would have been interested to see how the Marshal-General and Arvid rebuilt the Fellowship following the events of the past few books, and given the series’ focus on state-building. In Lyonya too, I felt that Kieri’s storyline seemed to end somewhat abruptly. Is that the end of the iyinsin threat? I realise it is very easy to criticise as a reader, and I think my dissatisfaction is in part down to the series being over rather than with the ending itself, which simply reflects just how good I’ve found the series to be.

‘Crown of Renewal’, by Elizabeth Moon is the fifth and final in the Paladin’s Legacy series.

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