5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: The Dark River (The Fourth Realm Trilogy) (Hardcover)
Most of my thoughts have been shared by other reviewers, but I thought I would add some insight. 'The Dark River' is essentially a solid read that flows well and keeps the pages turning, much like its prequel 'The Traveler'. However, I feel John Twelve Hawks lost a bit of the grip he had on the plot-line in the first installment of the trilogy and failed to progress it much (in fact you might say he took one step forward and two steps backwards).
Some of the plot additions were very left-field and poorly concieved, almost of the point that you might consider the novel to be slightly rushed; for example the Free Running society didn't appear to fit in with the general semantics of the story and was untidy in its research, and the inclusion of the Ark of the Covenant felt more like an afterthought than the major plot device that it should have been. The love story was, on the whole, the sequel's saving grace that allowed it to flow as well as it did - but the impact on the characters could have been developed to a much better depth.
Once again John Twelve Hawks marvels us with his in-depth knowledge of technology and its affects on privacy, and although this only shines through properly in a few areas within the novel, without it the story might as well have been from another series as it seemed to fire out new plot-lines at every available opportunity.
Despite its obvious flaws, this novel is a satisfactory second installment to the Fourth Realm series, but it would not be unwise to say that is does have a case of 'middle-chapter-itis'. However, any fan of The Traveler should definately get their hands on a copy, and although it might not fullfil every expectation, I am certainly looking forwards to the final installment.