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Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely: A Review of Lori M. Lee’s “The Infinite”

Goodreads.com Description: “The walls of Ninurta keep its citizens safe. Kai always believed the only danger to the city came from within. Now, with a rebel force threatening the fragile government, the walls have become more of a prison than ever. To make matters worse, as Avan explores his new identity as an Infinite, Kai struggles to remind him what it means to be human. And she fears her brother, Reev, is involved with the rebels. With the two people she cares about most on opposite sides of a brewing war, Kai will do whatever it takes to bring peace. But she’s lost her power to manipulate the threads of time, and she learns that a civil war might be the beginning of something far worse that will crumble not only Ninurta’s walls but also the entire city. In this thrilling sequel to Gates of Thread and Stone, Kai must decide how much of her humanity she’s willing to lose to protect the only family she’s ever known.”

My Thoughts:

I received an e-copy of this book via Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.

Lori M. Lee’s The Infinite is a great continuation of Kai’s journey! In this installment, the characters play a bigger role than the plot. Don’t get me wrong. The plot is intriguing, but, I loved learning more about the characters.

Kai continues to reign as a strong protagonist determined to protect her family (Reev) and her close friends (Mason, Avan) from all enemies. She has a wonderful “never give up, no matter what” attitude. It serves her well. She doesn’t rush into situations. Kai does take a moment to think through plans of actions. Granted, they may not be the best actions, but at least she thinks first. Kai has two inner struggles–Her Humanity vs. Her Immortality and Being Powerless vs. Being Powerful. It’s a struggle that lasts the entire book. Because it never is solved, I’m betting Lee has a final book to deliver.

Avan is more of a conundrum than Kai. At times, he is the good Infinite still embracing some shred of his former human life. Other times, he’s the complete bad Infinite enjoying the power of his new role. He struggles between embracing his remaining humanity and giving in to the darkness lurking underneath the surface. Unfortunately, he’s going to need a sabbatical to figure it all out.

I have read quite a few young adult books with interesting love triangles. Lee delivers a triangle in 4D! Avan is in love with Kai. She didn’t realize what her feelings were until the poor boy died and became an Infinite. Mason is also in love with her. In The Infinite, he professes his feelings. But, he’ll be okay just being her friend if that’s all he can get. Reev is also in love with her. Yes, he’s her brother but it’s not a blood relationship. If there is a third book, I hope this relationship is fleshed out more. At times, I picked up on his feelings running deeper than just a big brother wanting to protect his little sister. And, Kai? She’s in love with each and every one of these guys! In the third book, if there is one, I hope she finally puts the puzzle together and gets the right guy.

There is a very strong theme running throughout Lee’s book–absolute power corrupts absolutely. It doesn’t matter if that power is in the hands of a human, mahjo (Emryn) or Infinite (Istar/Avan/Kalla/Irra).

I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Infinite. I enjoyed the characters, the plot, and the descriptions. Unfortunately, there are too many loose ends for this story to be finished: 1) What will Emryn and Cassia do after their escape; 2) What will Istar do next?; 3) What will Avan’s choice be?; 4) Will Kai tell Avan about the threads?; 5) What will Kai learn from Kronos?; 6) Will Kai choose her immortality?; 7) What will happen at the meeting with the Infinites?; 8) Will we meet more Infinites?; and 9) What happens to Mason after his recovery? Ms. Lee if you’re reading, I’ve given you some things to explore. We need the final book in this series.

I highly recommend The Infinite to anyone wanting to read a good young adult fantasy–well-written, intriguing plot, well-developed characters!

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