Lord Sunday, by Garth Nix

Lord Sunday is the final book in Garth Nix's ambitious fantasy/adventure series “The Keys to the Kingdom”. Over the course of the six previous novels Nix's protagonist—an asthmatic 12-year-old named Arthur Penhaligon—has learned that he is destined to inherit the House, a space at the center of the universe created by a godlike being known as the Architect. In defiance of the Architect's wishes, the House was separated into seven parts, each controlled by a different Trustee: Mister Monday, Grim Tuesday, Drowned Wednesday, Sir Thursday, Lady Friday, Superior Saturday, and Lord Sunday. Arthur has defeated the first six Trustees and assumed control of their realms, but he still has to defeat Lord Sunday—the trickiest and least vulnerable Trustee of all.

Reading this series was like looking at a technically impressive painting that I failed to connect with—the books were truly epic in scope, but lacked sufficient humanity to make a lasting impression. The constant literary shout-outs, Biblical references, and nods to Arthurian legend were fun, but Nix failed to develop his characters into three-dimensional beings. (Imagine the exact opposite of Rick Riordan's “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” series. That coasted by on jokes and character development; this sacrifices humor and personality in favor of ever-more-intricate plotting.) Still, one has to admire Nix's undeniable effort and skill—both of which are constantly on display—and fans of puzzles and literary allusions should find these books to be rich sources of entertainment.

Review based on publisher-provided copy.
Posted by: Julianka


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