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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a fitting conclusion to a stunning trilogy
If you've come this far with Raybould & Gretel then you need no more reason than that to read this book.
With a mixed bag of feelings did I close this final tome. None of them reflecting negatively on the book itself, rather it's the scope of the punch packed into the final chapters that makes me say this.
Highly recommended.
Published 15 months ago by Michel Nita

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3.0 out of 5 stars Really not a series I've enjoyed
To be honest this is a series that I've not been a huge fan of, not because I've disliked the concept but purely because I really can't get on with the principle characters as I don't feel that I have an emotional link to them to care about their fates. Its tricky to read a book when this happens and when it's the same problem time and again throughout its something that...
Published 13 months ago by Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a fitting conclusion to a stunning trilogy, 7 May 2013
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This review is from: Necessary Evil: The Milkweed Triptych: Book Three (Kindle Edition)
If you've come this far with Raybould & Gretel then you need no more reason than that to read this book.
With a mixed bag of feelings did I close this final tome. None of them reflecting negatively on the book itself, rather it's the scope of the punch packed into the final chapters that makes me say this.
Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good finish, 5 May 2013
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This review is from: Necessary Evil: The Milkweed Triptych: Book Three (Kindle Edition)
Good finish to the series. Loose ends tied up and you can see how it was all worked out from the first book. Looking forward to his next book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent conclusion to an outstanding SF trilogy, 29 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Necessary Evil: The Milkweed Triptych: Book Three (Kindle Edition)
I really liked the first one in the series (Bitter Seeds), was amazed that the second one (The Coldest War) was even better and love this third (and final?) one. Very satisfying conclusion to an exciting and very well written series. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb resolution to the triptych, 10 May 2013
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Handily, the 1st several chapters bring you up to date (revise?) without slowing down the plot. The descriptions and sense of menace from the eidolons make this the most satisfying and frightening of the 3 books. A really satisfying conclusion. The whole thing hangs together so well - definitely all planned out rather than just a sequence of 3 books. Remarkable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing, 4 May 2013
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This review is from: Necessary Evil: The Milkweed Triptych: Book Three (Kindle Edition)
Fantastic trilogy from start to finish. Will definitely be watching for further books by Ian Tregillis. Would recommend people who like there fantasy books mixed with the real world, Brilliantly done so here.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Necessary Evil, 4 May 2013
By 
Steve D (London, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This book picks up immediately after its predecessor, The Coldest War, ended, so it's a little hard to comment on the story without dropping major spoilers. The Amazon blurb gives more than enough away. Put simply, if you've read the first two books, then you know what happened and you have expectations as to where this will lead and - by and large - you won't be disappointed. If you haven't read the first two, stop reading this and go and look up Bitter Seeds instead.

I thought this final instalment actually took a while to get going. The pacing of the first half of the novel is very deliberate, concentrating - as per the previous book - very much on the characters. Tregillis has also chosen to write parts of the book in the first person. It's an interesting stylistic choice and - for very spoilery reasons - I can't explain why but, although I found the switches between first and third person quite jarring at first, there is a very good reason for it, and it made a lot of sense once I got to grips with it.

I absolutely loved the previous book. The fact is, I guess, that this one was always going to struggle to live up to the standards set by its predecessor. It's got that tricky job to do of balancing character, action, plot and at the same time tie up all of the loose ends. Overall, I think it does a good job. I turned the final page, read the final line, and felt quite satisfied with the conclusion. But there were a couple of aspects of this final book that I felt could have been better. For a couple of reasons it perhaps lacks the dynamics of the previous books, which were told from the viewpoints of both English and German characters. This one is told purely from the English standpoint, and robs it of some of the shades of grey that worked so well in the first two novels. Also, Tregillis - an American - is writing about English characters, but he allows far too many American-isms to slip through the net on this occasion. Wallets are referred to (repeatedly) as billfolds, pavements as sidewalks, and policemen on the beat frequently end sentences with "what?" like they're toffs out for a stroll ("Nice night for a walk, what?" etc). Also, no Englishman in his right mind in the 1940s would've used the word 'snuck'. I refuse to believe that. It's a real shame, because each successive time one of these words sneaked (sneaked!!!) through the net I found it kicked me out of the experience. Although there were a handful of moments like this in the previous books, it is more noticeable in this one. I'm not sure if this is down to lazy editing, in a rush to get the book published. I would happily have waited a while longer for it and had it sorted out.

On the plus side, the action, when it comes, is written with a real flair for the dramatic. The characters stay true to themselves throughout, and there are some encounters, some scenes, where I couldn't tear myself away - the kind of scenes that the end of the previous book demanded to be written.

The 'Milkweed Tryptich' has been a fun ride. It's easy to read, not overly demanding, but it treats its outlandish subject matter - and the reader - with a degree of respect. It's the sort of story that could've lurched into cartoon-ish exaggeration but has, instead, delivered a character-driven adventure, full of twists and clever foreshadowing. I'll be curious to re-read it at some point with the knowledge of what happens later on, just to see how Tregillis laid all the groundwork earlier on. The title of the first book Bitter Seeds seems to have taken on a whole new level of meaning now that I've completed the trilogy.

I'm looking forward to seeing what Tregillis does next.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent end to the series, 12 April 2014
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The third book in the series has a sudden switch of narration at the start, but stick with it - it was a little uncomfortable for me when I opened it, but it really works once you get a chapter or so in.

This is a brilliant end to the series and it really shows the work the author has put into planning the story to avoid horrible plot holes and the usual pitfalls.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Proper job, 15 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Necessary Evil: The Milkweed Triptych: Book Three (Kindle Edition)
If you've read the previous volumes of the Milkweed Triptych, you probably won't have been able to restrain yourself from seizing this. If you are a really excellent planner, scoping out the full trilogy before committing, just know that the ending is as complex and rewarding as the rest.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Really not a series I've enjoyed, 26 July 2013
By 
Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog "Falcata T... - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
To be honest this is a series that I've not been a huge fan of, not because I've disliked the concept but purely because I really can't get on with the principle characters as I don't feel that I have an emotional link to them to care about their fates. Its tricky to read a book when this happens and when it's the same problem time and again throughout its something that really does leave you thinking that this author is not going to be for you.

That said, the story ideas are clever and the way that the author works on the pace does take it along at a reasonable rate so much so that there will be quite a few prepared to forgive the character defects to see what unfurls. Unfortunately I'm not one of them so whilst I will try the first book in a new series from this author it will be the last chance that Ian gets in my TBR pile.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Bittersweet Ending to a Good Series, 21 Jun 2013
By 
Ginny (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Necessary Evil: The Milkweed Triptych: Book Three (Kindle Edition)
See my review of this book, and many more, at TalesfromtheGreatEastRoad.wordpress.com

(Spoilers for the first two books in the series.)

To be given the chance to undo the mistakes of his past, to not only change the fate of his family but also save the world, Raybould Marsh has agreed to trust his most despised enemy. Gretel is one of the few living genetic experiments created by the mad Dr Von Westarp, who were used as soldiers during the Second World War. She can see the future, and has used her powers to kill Marsh's infant daughter once already. But the only wait to save his baby, and everyone else, is to trust Gretel. As the Eidolons - a race of god-like beings who abhor humans - destroy the world Gretel is able to send Marsh back in time from 1963 to 1940 in order to save this time line from destruction and redeem himself.

Necessary Evil is a very bittersweet book. After seeing Marsh become a shadow of the man he used to be in the last book, The Coldest War, he is given a chance to change history - but for a different version of himself. He gets to see his wife, when she still loved him, and his baby daughter, who has been dead for nearly twenty years, but can't reveal who he truly is. Marsh's pain and loneliness is visible throughout the novel, and heart-wrenching to read.

The comparisons between Old Marsh and Young Marsh is interesting to read. Both are obviously stubborn and determined to protect their family, but Old Marsh has become better at scheming and manipulating people: more willing to do the "necessary evil" in order to reach his goals. His loneliness has hardened him, and the possibility of saving his child has made him desperate. Yet, despite these faults, Old Marsh is a constantly sympathetic character.

The few insights we get into Gretel's mind are fascinating, in a very disturbing way. She has been described as "evil" constantly throughout the series, and these chapters certainly show she is unstable and obsessive, willing to kill anyone who gets in her way. No-one is safe, and a few key characters are killed in a fairly gruesome way.

Ultimately, this is a satisfying and emotional ending to a great series.

4 stars.
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