…was that the ending? Really? That was the ending?
Well, I mean, okay, but…
I guess it’s supposed to be the typical fantasy ending, and that’s the point. But all the detailed talk about military maneuvers, of the sort that shows up in Extruded Fantasy Product when the author’s rationing his plot, was kind of jarring – it didn’t feel like it was part of the same book. The meta stuff turned much too perfunctory.
And maybe I’m projecting my own tastes (though I think it does say something that it was only when they’d lost the three most plot-participant companions that the style shift happened), but I really didn’t feel like the author cared as much about Amatus, Calliope, and Sir John as he did about the companions and the Duke. The structure of the story demanded that he put everything behind the Prince and Princess – but if you’re more interested in the witch, the assassin, and the super-nanny, why bother writing this kind of a book in the first place?
Anyway. The first half or so was awesome, and vocabulary was abused, so, I liked it anyway. But I would have liked it a lot more if the focus of the ending had been different.