This Review contains spoilers.
“You’ve been away a long time. Were you lost?”
“I was wounded, not lost.”
Series: The Half Bad Trilogy
Published: 2016, by Penguin.
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Paranormal, Magic, Romance, LGBT
Contains: Strong Language, Violence/Torture/Abuse, Death, Mentions of Blood/Gore
Half Lost is the finale to the incredible trilogy of Half Bad, which I had very high expectations for after falling in love with the story line and characters, and I was not disappointed.
The story is a continuation and epic conclusion to the previous books, telling the story of protagonist, Nathan Byrn, and how he comes to terms with the death of his Father. In this book Nathan is still Nathan, yet we have an opportunity to see his black witch side, where his anger consumes him for a large portion of the book. Nathan’s character is presented beautifully, being able to see how less of a white witch he’s becoming by collecting a pile of stones, each one representing someone he’s killed, to the point where he doesn’t see murder as something terrible; he sees it as yet another stone to add to his pile. This presentation touched me from the first mention, leaving me heartbroken each time and worrying along with all the other characters. Although, his anger can be frustrating in places, it’s justifiable and his strong language in places is entertaining to read.
Another reason why I love this conclusion is the progression of Nathan and Gabriel’s relationship. Although, Nathan’s anger caused a few problems at the beginning, and each mention of Annalise seemed to push them further away from each other, during the middle of the book they seemed to accept their feelings and establish a romantic relationship. As someone who loves any LGBT representation, I loved this progression, finding how their relationship wasn’t the key plot line of the book and appreciated that. Their interactions and personalities made you fall in love with them all over again, which made the conclusion more heartbreaking.
The ending was another reason this book is so perfect; Sally Green knows how to conclude a series. Even though after reading Gabriel’s death I had to put the book down for a moment, wondering how someone could kill off a character so flawless until realising that this is the reaction that chapter was provoking. The death of Gabriel sparked a new side of Nathan’s character; his vulnerability. Prior to this the only vulnerable side of Nathan shown to readers was his ability during battle. However, after the passing of his lover, Nathan’s mental state collapsed, showing readers how lost he is without him. Due to this, I believe the series ended beautifully, showing Nathan and Gabriel’s connection until the end where he shown his gentle side and used magic to be near him once again.
Also, I love that the cover makes no sense until practically the last page – well played.