Endure (The Protector #4) by M.R. Merrick – Bout-of-Books 9.0 Review

76c36-endure_cover_finallargeWrapped in darkness and woven with defeat, every action Chase has taken since being exiled from the Circle has been met with a devastating response. Now he’s been burdened with a quest that seems impossible, and he needs to evolve into something more, something greater than he ever thought he could be.
Armed with magic, friendship, and an unbreakable will, Chase must build an army and find a weapon capable of defeating the ultimate evil. But he knows that nothing great comes without sacrifice. Blessed by the very gods who have abandoned him and carrying the fate of all the worlds on his shoulders, Chase Williams is about find out just how much one man can endure.

Okay, I had to go back and look just to be sure. It’s been over a year since I read the last book in this series. Yes, I read and reviewed Release in December of 2012. This is usually the time that I give a whole lot of excuses for why I waited so long to pick up the next book. Honestly, the only one that I have is that I was scared. I mentioned being left in an emotional heap at the end of the last book. I wasn’t exaggerating. I realized at the end of Release that no one was safe. I honestly couldn’t put anything past M.R. Merrick after what he did to faithful readers in Release. I hardly ever question an author’s reasoning when they do something that I don’t like, but this? This was almost too much. I guess after all my grumbling, complaining and digging my heels in the ground procrastinating, you’re probably wondering if I’ve forgiven him. The short answer is almost. *sigh*

Endure picks up where Release left off. That’s both good and bad. Good, because readers don’t have to worry about gaps or bringing themselves back up to speed if they waited as long as I did between books. Bad… because it picks up EXACTLY where Release left off. Right in the middle of the pain and anguish that I was trying to forget. Believe me when I say there is no forgetting that pain. That’s not necessarily a bad thing though. The loss that occurred in Release or in any of the previous books didn’t deserve to be glossed over or swept under a rug. As much as it hurt to ‘feel’ that pain all over again, it made it more real. Needless to say, Endure was not a ‘light and fluffy’ read.

As I read Endure I realized exactly how far these characters have come. They’ve been through a lot together and Chase’s memories made that apparent. Rather than being redundant, those flash backs added to the story and put things in perspective. Sometimes a memory sequence works and sometimes it doesn’t, these obviously worked… very well. The growth of not just Chase, but all of the characters was apparent.

Once again, the world building was phenomenal. There are so many dimensions and layers to the worlds that the author created in this series and he didn’t hold back in Endure any more than he did in the rest of the series. I was cringing and gagging right along with the characters in some parts. *shudders*

I honestly could keep going – yeah this series is that good. What you really need to know is that it is well worth the read. There’s a lot more to this series than what’s on the surface. The characters have depth, there’s more than one lesson to be learned and it’s all laced with amazing imagery and characters that are not only smart, but full of wit. There’s humor, action, drama and tears… yeah, the tears are pretty much unavoidable. *sigh*

Now for the burning question. When I finished Release I asked M.R. Merrick if what he put readers through at the end of that book was really necessary. His answer was yes. Do I agree? The juries still out. Yes, I felt better about where things were left. Yes, the series came to a satisfactory end. Was I any happier with the outcome once I finished Endure? No. Yet, the fact that the author made me ‘feel’ enough about these characters to care and to ‘yell’ at him for the pain that they had to endure pretty much attests to the fact that I’d do it all again, regardless.



2 comments on “Endure (The Protector #4) by M.R. Merrick – Bout-of-Books 9.0 Review

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